Replacing the standard headlight bulbs in your 5th gen 4Runner with new LED headlights can provide numerous benefits, including increased brightness, longer life and a unique look. If you’re considering replacing your headlight bulbs, though, you’ll want to make sure that you are getting the right bulbs and installing them properly.
To help you make an informed decision on your LED headlights, we’ve compiled some helpful information on their benefits, how to choose the rights ones and how to install them correctly:
Types of LED Headlight Bulbs for 4Runner We Recommend
As you consider LED headlights for your vehicles, there are a few different ones you can choose from. Before you choose an LED light, make sure it’s designed for your vehicle and that it meets your lighting needs. Whether you’re looking for 2015 4Runner LED headlights or 2016 4Runner LED headlights, you’ll need some information about your options:
- HE-H16 LED Fog Light Kit: This light kit fits 2014+ 4Runners along with 2014+ Tundras. The design is made for easy installation, and the bulbs have 25 watts and have 6000 lumens. In addition to its lighting power, it also has a 6500K color spectrum that comes with 8000K light blue tint and 3000K golden yellow films. Along with a color spectrum, you can rotate the bulb to adjust the vehicle’s beam pattern.
- HE-H11 LED Fog Light Kit: The HE-H11 LED lights are designed for the 2012-2015 Tacoma and 2016+ Tacomas. Like the last design, they are easily installed and feature 6000 lumens and 25 watts per bulb. They have the same color spectrum, with lights that can be adjusted.
- HE-H11 LED Low Beam Headlight Kit: As the name suggests, these lights are for low beam headlights. You can use them in 2014+ 4Runners and 2016+ Tacomas. The HE-H11 LED Low Beam shares the lighting qualities of the previously mentioned fog lights.
How to Install LED Headlights for Your 4Runner
Before you start installing your LED headlights, make sure you know how to do so correctly. Improperly installing lights can be a problem, as they’re crucial for safety when driving at night. As you install one of the recommended LED headlights listed above, follow the steps below:
1. Open the Kit and Make Sure Everything Is There
When you are beginning the installation process, you should first make sure that you have all of the pieces needed to complete the installation job. The first item you should see is the kit’s instructional manual. Next, you’ll want to look for the 3000K and 8000K films along with an Allen key.
Also, make sure that you see the individual lights with pigtail harnesses. Depending on the output of the lights, the bulbs may come with their own cooling fans.
2. Prepare the Vehicle
First, you’ll need to take the dust covers out of the back of the headlights. When you’re on the driver’s side, it’s best to take out the battery to make the installation process more manageable, as the battery obstructs access to the dust covers. On the passenger side, you will have enough room to work with, and you shouldn’t need to take anything out of the vehicle.
Taking the battery out will be the only part of the preparation process that you’ll need tools for other than your hands. To get the battery loose, you can use a 10-millimeter wrench to unscrew the battery clamps. If you have an impact driver or a drill with a 10-millimeter socket, you could also use that to undo the bolts.
To take the dust cover out of the back of the headlight, twist it off with your hand. Once you take off the cover, twist the headlight loose and pull it out of the back. With the headlight pulled out, you should see that it’s attached to a wire harness connector. All you have to do is unclip it from the connector, and you’ll be done with the preparation process.
3. Install the New Headlights
The headlight installation is simple. Just place the new bulbs into the same space you took the old bulbs out of, twisting it into place. While you put it into place, make sure that the headlights are lined up with the tabs so that you can twist it properly.
Depending on your headlight bulb, you may need to make a slight modification to the casing around the bulb if it doesn’t fit directly into the headlight space. You can make this adjustment using a Dremel rotary tool.
After the bulbs are in place, reattach the wire harness connectors. To make sure the wires are adequately secured, pull on them lightly to see if they stay connected. Once you’re sure the connectors are correctly attached, put the harness into the housing. The dust cover is the final part of the process. Twist it on as tight as possible.
If you took the battery off in the preparation process, you’ll need to reinstall it. After the battery is back in place, turn on the car and see if the lights work before you take your vehicle out on the road.
Benefits of Swapping LED Headlights in Your 4Runner
As you consider adding new LED headlights to your 4Runner, you should be aware of the benefits that they provide:
- Brightness and clarity: The main draw to LED lighting is their brightness. For example, LED headlights are 275% brighter than the standard halogen headlamps on the market. This level of illumination enables you to see more of the road, meaning that you’ll have more time to react to unforeseen hazards, like a deer running across the road. Along with being so bright, they use 260% less energy than other kinds of bulbs.
- Appearance: While driving, an LED light gives off a more natural-looking light, which makes driving in the dark easier. In addition, LED lighting gives your vehicle a crisp, modern look that will make your vehicle stand out from others.
- Longevity: No matter how straightforward a headlight installation process is, most people don’t want to have to take time out of their day to replace their bulbs. If staying on the road longer without having to change your lights is important to you, you’ll want to go with LEDs. They often last more than 25,000 hours, 25 times the amount of time that traditional light bulbs last.
Would You Rather Have a Professional Do the Install Job?
If you don’t feel comfortable or don’t have the time to install your new lights, you can get a professional to install them for you. Contact Southern Style Offroad to see what our team can do for you. Our staff members are some of the most experienced people working on offroading Toyota vehicles today.
If you’re located near the Baton Rouge, LA area, make an appointment at our store for service, installations, repairs or build consultations.