Part VII: Light up my night
Last year, we decided to take Project RangeRunner down to the Mexican peninsula to watch the Baja 1000 and knew that we would need something significantly brighter than the stock headlights to navigate through Baja's pitch-black wilderness, in addition to all the impromptu night wheeling we find ourselves doing closer to home.
After some research, we decided our best bet would be KC HiLites' 8-inch HID 4000 Series lights. The lights are available with two different beam patterns (long range and driving) and the housings are made of high-quality stainless steel with oversized mounting flanges. For Project RangeRunner, we chose a set in the driving pattern.
The technology behind HIDs is similar to the lights used at stadiums. Mercury and Xenon gases are ignited by applying 30,000 volts of current between two electrodes in a glass tube. According to KC, bulb life is greatly extended-up to 5,000 hours (that's like leaving your lights on for seven months straight) and provides a whiter light that is closer to daylight than standard bulbs.
After more than a year of use and many trips, we continue to be impressed with KC's HIDs. In fact, we took some mildly whooped-out roads at over 60 mph at night in Baja and couldn't outrun just two of our 8-inch HID lights.
All of KC's lights come with comprehensive installation instructions and high-quality wiring harnesses, which make for an easy install. These lights also offer a 23-year warranty that even covers expensive items such as the pricey ballasts and HID bulbs to go along with the company's excellent customer service long after the original sale.