A guide to LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Posted by Emma Samardzija on

Daytime Running Lights (also referred to as DRL or Daylight Running Lights) have been around for many years in Scandanavia. Most people will be aware that Volvo cars, by default, have their dipped beam activated throughout the day. It is claimed that DRL increases road safety and from February 2011 it has been mandatory for all new vehicles to be fitted with a DRL system (Source: EU) under directive 2008/89/EC.

In recent years, many new vehicles have been fitted with LED daytime running lights (DRL) which not only meet the new legal requirements but also enhance the styling of the vehicle. However, this type of DRL is still confined to the premium end of the vehicle market. Most new vehicles have DRL implemented through a standard halogen lamp which meets the requirements of the law but is not very visually appealing.

Adding LED daytime running lights to your car

There are now a wide range of aftermarket solutions that can be added to vehicles to enable drivers to take advantage of both the safety and styling benefits that daytime running lights can offer. Even if your car already has halogen DRL, you can improve the styling by adding an LED based DRL system.

There's a huge range of options available for consumer to choose from when looking for LED daytime running lights. However, we'd strongly advise choosing a system that has been made by an original equipment manufacturer. Philips have a range of LED (DRL) daytime running light kits that are built to the high quality standards that are insisted upon by your vehicle manufacturer. Many of the cheaper kits on the market are unreliable and are prone to technical faults and LED bulb failures.

Choosing a kit that has been made by an original equipment manufacturer reduces the risk of any problems. Furthermore, you also have the benefit of technical support from the manufacturer and a 12 month warranty from Car Bulbs Direct.

Which kits are available?

At the moment there are a range of kits available from Philips, although we are informed that OSRAM will be launching a range soon. In the meantime, Philips have three solutions to choose from:-

  • Philips LED Daylight 4
    This entry level kit is designed for those who are looking for the most cost effective option or have a smaller compact vehicle where space at the front of the vehicle is more limited. This kit features 4 LEDs.
  • Philips LED Daytime Lights
    This is the original Philips LED daytime running lights kits, featuring 5 LEDs. It's their mid-level product and is suitable for most vehicles.
  • Philips LED Daylight 8
    If you're looking for the premier product then this is it. The Daylight 8 features 8 ultra-thin high precision LEDs for the ultimate in style and visibility.

Will they fit my car?

All of the kits have been designed to fit most cars. For smaller, compact vehicles then the Philips Daylight 4 is the best option. For all other vehicles then any of the kits should fit, so it's down to a choice between budget and features. We have listed compatability for the most common vehicles in our online vehicle database, but if your vehicle is not listed there then it is still likely that one kit will be suitable. Please refer to the specific product pages of each kit for more detailed fitting information.

Are they simple to fit?

Installation usually takes less than 2 hours by a mechnic or auto-electrician.

How do I find out more or buy?

Take a look at our LED daytime running lights section.

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