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How to Make Your Car’s Headlights Brighter

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The 2016 GMC Sierra 1500 features LED headlights

Driving at night can be dangerous, especially if your car’s headlights aren’t up to par. And according to a study by the IIHS, the majority of cars on the road do a notably poor job of illuminating the road ahead.

To ensure that you’re able to see the road and your surroundings in the dark, take these steps to increasing the brightness of your vehicle’s headlights.

Tips for Brightening Your Car’s Headlights

Clean the lens: It’s common for dirt and condensation to obstruct the transparency of the lenses surrounding the bulbs by building up over time. Take time to remove the lens, drain it of any moisture, buff it with sandpaper, and wax it. If you can’t use fine sandpaper, toothpaste works also as a micro-abrasive to clean and buff the scratches out. You want to remove any hint of yellow tinting.

Change bulbs: Over time, bulbs dim and need replacing. Get a new set or, better yet, replace the bulbs you have with higher-performing units at a higher wattage (but still safely within system capacity). Certain color tones and types of bulbs are better than others, so do your research to pick the optimal bulb.

Rewire: If you are skilled working with electric, you can rewire the relays to get the highest output from the batteries. By splicing the system and adding routing components, you’ll lose less voltage between the battery and bulb, making them brighter than before.

Readjust aim: Make sure that your headlights are pointed in the right direction and haven’t been bumped up or down due to body damage or previous shoddy work on the front-end.

Sources: Eric the Car Guy, Revision3