Nissan Frontier Forum banner
1 - 2 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
My 2006 Frontier uses 9007-size bulbs. There are a massive amount of LED and HID retrofit bulb kits available in the 9007 size.
They all seem to be in the $20-$40 range and are going to be coming from China. Good luck even finding a US or European made product. Luckily, the Chinese are very good with LED's.
The LED's I have seen very recently (in person) are brighter than HID and also more compact. The trick with the LED is the heat dissipation. Some LED headlight bulbs have mini electric fans on them (dumb idea!) or aluminum finnned heat sinks, while the newer ones have a copper cloth braid that hangs out the back (like a pony tail). Those heat sinks GET HOT so beware. If the heat management is good, then the LED's will last a VERY long time. LED's also consume less power than halogen, while generating more light than a halogen.

The one major drawback to LED retrofitting is that the LED bulb is not a single omni-directional light source like a halogen. It is actually two (usually) diodes on one side of the "bulb" and two one the opposite side. Like this:

So installing these you will get a BRIGHTER, nice color light, but the light will not be thrown as far down the road as a halogen. This is because the LED design does not interact with your headlight reflector very efficiently, which was carefully designed for an omni-directional halogen bulb. So an LED be brighter at a short distance due to the raw increased lumen output, but you are losing out on the far distance.
This is the reason I have stuck to halogen bulbs, but I do use premium bulbs from GE that work significantly better than the $3.95 ones at pep boys.

As long as you purchase a kit for the size of bulb your vehicle uses (9007, 9005, H4, etc), it will be plug and play.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
I have used HID retro's in the past too, but not on a Frontier.
The issue with those is similar to the LED, the light source is not a the focal point of the reflector. So you end up throwing really bright an obnoxious light all over the place, making enemies out of everyone you shine your lights on when driving at night.
The stock reflector is designed for a halogen, it puts the light where you need it without the glare. HID and LED, well... you dont know exactly where that light will end up, but it is will be bright.

A good test is to to park on level ground 10 foot from a blank wall. Make sure lights are aimed correctly, then install HID or LED into one headlamp. Compare the beam patterns between the two. You will see noticeable differences, mostly in the form of scatter, in the LED and HID compared to halogen.

In my experience, HID bulb conversions, really only work at an acceptable level when installed in a projector headlight, but even then, it is sometimes hit and miss. I even swapped in a complete Cadillac CTS-V projector/bulb/ballast into a Nissan S14 and that actually did work very well because the projector lens was designed for the HID.

I used to do a lot of headlight modifications years ago in all sorts of cars. It was fun, but now I just like the simplicity and effectiveness of using the bulb that the reflector was designed for. Good light throw and I am not pissing off everyone that is coming toward me.

But these days, if you need more light....its all about the LED LIGHT BARS BRO!
 
1 - 2 of 3 Posts
Top