Major Warnings Signs That Your Headlights Need to be Replaced

It’s easy to overlook the importance of your vehicle’s headlights during a bright summer afternoon, but just like the lights in your home, your vehicle’s headlights need to be replaced on a regular basis to function effectively. Driving without properly functioning headlights at night or in conditions with low visibility can be a danger to yourself and others on the road. To keep your headlights bright and ensure a safe drive, here are some of the warning signs you should be watching for to know if your vehicle needs a new set of headlight bulbs.

Dim Headlights

If you notice that the light coming from your headlights is dimmer than usual, there are two possible reasons. The first depends on how often you clean your vehicle. It’s possible for your vehicle’s headlight covers to develop a layer of buildup or grime that can decrease their overall effectiveness. If you noticed that your headlights have dimmed, make sure to thoroughly clean your vehicle’s headlight area and check if the light quality increases.

If the dimness persists after a thorough cleanse, the problem may be that your bulb is nearing the end of its service life. In this situation, you should begin searching for replacement headlight bulbs.

Flickering Headlights

If your vehicle’s headlights are flickering on and off, it can be a very serious danger and should be addressed immediately. Flickering can be a sign that the filament of the headlight bulb has become damaged or excessively worn, just like a light in your home may flicker toward the end of its life. This can be a sign that the bulb is very close to burning out entirely.

Flickering can also indicate that your vehicle’s headlight bulbs have a faulty connection. No matter what the cause, finding a replacement or fixing the connection before your headlights go out for good is essential for safe driving.

Single Headlight Out

Having a single headlight bulb burn out can sometimes be difficult to notice, but it is a major warning sign that your vehicle’s headlights are at the end of their useful lives. Since headlights are most often replaced in pairs, once one headlight goes out, it’s likely that the other has already begun to dim and could burn out soon as well. If one of your headlight bulbs has burnt out, you should look for a replacement pair as soon as possible.

Types of Headlight Bulbs

The typical car headlight can last 500 to 1,000 hours, but there are a lot of factors that can change that. In fact, some headlight bulbs are efficient enough to last well over 30,000 hours. That means the best way to know when to start looking for warning signs that your bulb may be nearing the end of its lifespan is to know what type of headlight bulbs your vehicle uses.

Halogen: 500-1,000 Hour Lifespan

HID: 2,000 Hour Lifespan

Xenon: 10,000 Hour Lifespan

LED: 30,000 Hour Lifespan

When thinking about a headlight bulb’s lifespan, it’s also important to remember that although headlight bulbs can be rated to last hundreds or thousands of hours, there are many real-world factors that affect their overall lifespan. Prolonged use and other factors can have an impact. It’s also possible that your bulb may have a factory defect or could deteriorate over time which can cause the headlight bulb to burn out quicker than expect. To stay safe on the road, it’s important to be on the lookout for any signs that your headlights may need to be replaced and have them checked or replaced when you first begin to notice these warning signs.

For more information on all things automotive, contact or visit the knowledgeable professionals at a Sanel NAPA location near you.

About Sanel NAPA

Since 1920, Sanel NAPA has been a leading auto parts, heavy-duty truck parts, and body shop supplies distributor with over 42 store locations throughout New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, and Massachusetts. We deliver quality car parts, heavy-duty truck parts, automotive paint and body supplies, and tools and equipment that are durable, dependable, and long-lasting in order to provide our clientele with the best products and services possible. For more information, call (603) 225-4000 or click to find a store near you.




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