February '19

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48 THE SHOP FEBRUARY 2019 a vast array of LED options for many dif- ferent vehicle models. Our greatest volume of sales continues to come from LED head- light bulb upgrades. The new 2018 Chevrolet Silverado, for example, still comes with a halogen bulb inside a projector beam housing. When LED upgrades are installed and adjusted properly, a customer will experience two- to three-times the light output without distracting oncoming traffic. LEDs have become an easy upsell when talking with customers. Once they see an example of the brightness compared to the OEM lights, the cost seems well justified. We are currently designing and building 50-plus vehicles for the Minneapolis Auto Show coming up in March. A fair per- centage of these customized vehicles will have LED upgrades as part of the package. Consumers will be able to see the com- parison to original equipment firsthand. The installation of most LED bulbs is quite simple. Some truck and car models require the removal of components such as airboxes, inner fender well liners and/ or other potential interference in order to gain access to the factory bulb locations. Knowing which vehicles require an aftermarket anti-flicker harness is also very important during installation. Let's take a look at some of the opportu- nities aftermarket lighting offers. HEADLIGHT UPGRADES With safety being an eminent concern for all drivers, taking advantage of a brighter roadway at night can ease tension behind the wheel. LED headlights convert electricity into light in the most effective way possible. Approximately 80 percent of the energy consumed is used in the process of gener- ating light. A standard halogen bulb is quite the opposite in utilizing only 20 percent of its available energy. In addition to the high quality of light produced, another advantage is the lon- gevity of the product. Under normal driving conditions by a typical motorist, your customer can expect as much as 22 years of usage if driving in the dark 50 per- cent of the time. If the vehicle itself could claim a similar comparison, the repair industry would be a fraction of its current existence. OFF-ROAD OPPORTUNITY Using only 10 percent of the energy of an incandescent bulb, LEDs can be added to a vehicle's electrical system without the risk of battery failure. The off-road industry has quickly embraced LED technology. Many daytime adventures have now become a much safer after-dark event. LED light bars now available in virtually any shape, size and lumen output have flooded the market. Jeep Wrangler owners are leading the way in adapting to the use of multiple LED lighting options. Specially designed mounts for numerous locations around these vehicles help when upfitting for the trail. INTERIOR OPTIONS Most vehicles on the road today have in excess of 40 bulbs throughout the vehicle. With half located inside the vehicle, upgrades are desired by drivers and pas- sengers. Dome lights can become five-times brighter than from the factory when con- verted to LED. Visor lights and foot well areas along with compartment lighting are additional opportunities. A cool blue glow on the interior floor is starting to show up in production vehicles as well, enticing customers to a warmer, comforting feel. RAINBOW OF COLORS LEDs that are capable of changing color are known as RGB (red, blue, green) LEDs. This concept contains three different LEDs in a single unit. By adjusting the voltage, LIGHTEN UP We install a vast array of LED options for many different vehicle models. Our greatest volume of sales continues to come from LED headlight bulb upgrades. (Photos courtesy Philips Automotive Lighting)

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