LED vs. Halogen Lights

January 20, 2022

Uncle Al's Tech Tips of the Week

The information in this tech tip is to educate UTC staff and ensure customer satisfaction and safety.

What Are the Benefits of LED Lights for Semi Trucks?

LED (Light Emitting Diode) headlights produce a brighter, more stable light pattern than traditional halogen headlights. So, why have LED headlights replaced halogen headlights in many newer semi trucks? LEDs have been found to deliver significant energy savings while lasting far longer than transitional halogen headlights. The drawbacks to using LED lights include their more limited availability, higher price, and comparatively difficult replacement process. However,  you can expect the price of LED headlight replacements to drop as demand continues to grow.

What Are the Benefits of Halogen Headlights for Semi Trucks?

Introduced in the 1970s, halogen headlights are the most common and least expensive headlight type. Halogens are both easy to find and easy to replace. Drawbacks include a far shorter lifespan and higher energy use than LED headlights. At the same time, they have their advantages: halogen headlights can achieve an acceptable light pattern and density for far less money than LEDs.

Should You Replace Halogen Headlights With LED Headlights?

Is it worth it to replace your used semi truck‘s old Halogen bulbs with new LEDs? Not always. For many trucks, the process is a lot more complicated than changing out a bulb—and due to different light patterns produced by LEDs, would involve replacing the entire headlight assembly to achieve an acceptable road illumination. In fact, the reflectors in the new LED headlight may be completely different from those of the original halogen headlight.

Questions About Semi Truck Maintenance?

We’re happy to help at International Used Truck Center. Reach out to our team for DIY truck maintenance, repair resources, and how-to guides, and be sure to visit the Driver’s Corner for tech tips and more.

Steve Shick
Technical Training Consultant Sr.

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International Used Truck Center 41.776180, -88.200918.