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Best halogen headlight bulbs, 9005 or 9011?

Odrapnew

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My 9011 bulbs lasted about 3 years(about 40k miles). The bulbs went out about 2 weeks apart. In winter months, headlights are pretty much on all the time.

I purchased 2 new ones again. They are definitely an improvement over the 9005 and worth the (assumed) shorter lifespan.
 




J_C

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I'm struggling a little bit with this thread in that if the 9011 bulb is so much better then why doesn't Phillips trim that tab themselves fill a market niche for brighter and better 9005 bulbs? It appears that the watts, 65, are the same for the 9005 and 9011 bulbs, but there seems to be a voltage difference, 12.8 volts for the 9005 bulbs by Sylvania and 12 volts for 9011 bulbs by Phillips.
Because what everyone here is doing is creating a potentially illegal modification of their lights, but fortunately not as bad as some of the other possible mods.

The housings are not designed for 9011. If there was supposed to be more light in the near field, they would have designed the housings to do this.

The major brands don't do the misleading things that lead customers to think it is up to them what to choose, won't produce this kind of product. They don't produce illegal lights unless you modify them to use for an unintended purpose, because being a major global corporation with their name on the product, they can't duck and run if DOT or someone else comes after them.
 




J_C

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I haven't been able to make up my mind because my '15 Limited uses the 9005's as the DRL's. Although there's not as many volts going to them while in DRL mode, they'll still get alot of hours on them quickly. I definitely want a brighter setup but don't want to be changing them a couple times a year.
There is not much to be concerned about with them being DRL's. Sure, they won't last as long if on as DRL, but at a lower voltage their lifespan is used up at a MUCH lower rate, like less than 1/10th as quickly depending on the exact voltage.

The lifespan has far more to do with running a hotter element in regular hi/low mode to produce more light. However since we are all talking about potentially illegal light mods, if you want your DRL to have even less of an impact on lifespan, you could simply put a silicon diode in series with the power to drop another 0.7V which would probably about cut in half (if not 1/4) the already low, lifespan reduction from running as DRL.
 




J_C

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Phillips does make a 9005 bulb: https://www.amazon.com/Philips-9011-Standard-Replacement-Headlight/dp/B019QIU0TC?th=1

Phillips 9011 bulb: https://www.amazon.com/Philips-9011..._cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8#customerReviews

So, I'll resort to math: Amps = Watts/Volts

In the case of the 9011 bulbs: 65/12 = 5.42 amps

In the case of the 9005 bulbs: 65/12.8 = 5.07 amps

The 9011 bulbs run 5.42 amperes, while the 9005 run with less current at 5.07 amperes. The 9011 bulbs, like the SilverStar Ultras probably have a much shorter life than the Phillip's 9005 bulbs. The SilverStar bulbs are also 12.8 volts and would run on the same current as the Phillip's 9005 bulb. So, if the life and brightness of the Phillip's 9011 bulb are similar the to the SilverStar 9005 bulb, I would rather use SilverStar's that run on the OEM recommended electrical current.

That seems correct initially but it's not that straight forward. When they claim 12V or 12.8V, they are just referring to a nominal 12V vehicle electrical system, knowing that the real voltage with an alternator running is closer to 14(.n)V.

Further any differences in the filament construction can change what the increase in resistance is at operating temperature at this higher voltage, and it will also depend on the losses in the headlight circuit on a per-vehicle basis, so the only way to be sure what current and the resultant wattage is in operation, is measure it yourself on the target vehicle.
 




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