Daylight saving ended recently and with darkness reigning, it’s the perfect time of year to save significant scratch on lights for your rig. When you’re heading over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house, the last thing you want to do is hit a patch of black ice or a deer. There are plenty of budget lighting options for 4x4s and it’s up to you to decide if the hype is worth the cash when it comes to LEDs.
What you’re striving for while night driving is more akin to ambient lighting than fixed. Whether you have individual ones or a light bar, it’s a good idea to stagger lights and have them angled up higher or set to the side. If you have a white hood, you can blind yourself because of the reflection off them.
There are plenty of attractive choices when it comes to lighting your rig on a budget. LED lights for trucks and Jeeps are efficient options for off-road drivers and one big advantage is they have a lower amperage draw. HIDs tend to be pricier and even though they don’t have the “cool factor” of LEDs their tried and true technology gives substantial light per dollar output. “You get what you pay for” is the familiar adage, but there are counterfeit knockoff replicas peddled on eBay you want to steer clear of. Here are a few 4×4 lights that offer exceptional value without compromising quality.
Pro Comp Explorer Series 8 Cree LEDs
Pro Comp’s 2×2 square-shaped lights are a great budget alternative to springing for a light bar. LEDs expend less energy, run cooler and offer less wind resistance. Another advantage is these smaller lights are easier to mount and can be bolted to bumpers, windshields and roof racks. They’re more flexible and have a stem design instead of bracket, so one bolt and you’re done.
Hella 500 Series Black Magic
Lightweight with ABS shock-proof housing, the Black Magic lights are best-sellers for good reasons. The 6.5-inch lens kit is convenient and affordable, with adjustable mounting and a plug and play harness. When they’re turned off they have a blackout look and once they go on, they supply a bright white driving beam.
KC HiLiTES Apollo Pro Series
Looking for a long range light kit, but don’t want to break the bank? Apollo Series lights feature durable black Polymax housing and their clear lenses are optical quality. The focused beam is intense and easy to aim, courtesy of two axis mounts. The stem mounting design makes the 6-inch kit a quick, easy install.
Pro Comp Explorer Halogens
These high grade, high output halogens are an inexpensive option and they get the job done. Sporting 55-watt H3 bulbs, they’re compact with an ultra-slim 5-inch diameter design. Challenging mounting becomes easy because you can squeeze these into tricky locations on your 4×4.