OTC Headlights

If you’ve been following this build/blog for any length of time, I’m sure you’ve realized that I looooove lighting.  Whether it’s clearing out my corners or adding rear facing recovery lighting or the countless number of times I’ve changed up my front auxiliary lighting… I really enjoy it.  After helping a buddy out with a set of TruckLites in his rubi, I figured I wanted to try a little something in my Jeep.  Nothing too crazy b/c all the LED options I really want are incredibly expensive, but I still want to try a little something.

Luckily for me, I had a gift card from a Secret Santa gift exchange to my local Advanced Auto parts store.  With a skip in my step & gift card in hand, I headed off to the toy auto parts store to see what they had in stock in an H13 bulb that claimed to be amazing.


The options in H13 bulbs were actually not that great, but in the end I settled on a set of SilverStar Ultra bulbs from Sylvania.  The package claims a whiter light, 50% brighter, 40% more down-road visibility, & 50% more side-road visibility.  Ok Sylvania, impress me!


While not as easy to change as the bulbs on a LJ or TJ, the bulbs on a JK can be changed with out pulling off the grill.  Yes, it’s very snug in there and you have to remove a few things but it can be done with minimal effort.  On the drivers side (if you have a rubi) you need to remove the horn from the mounting bracket.  Use a 10mm wrench, then let the horn sit out of the way.  If you don’t have a ratcheting wrench, please go pick one up before you start this task.  On the passenger side, remove your air box and pull the 10mm screw holding on a reservoir bottle next to the radiator to allow access to the headlight housing.  Once you’ve gained access, remove the clips and give the bulbs about a quarter turn to remove them from the housings.

Looking at the bulbs side by side (stock on the left), you can see there is a little tint to the glass on the Sylvania bulbs and the filaments look a little beefier.


Installing both bulbs is as easy as inserting them in each housing, turning about a quarter turn and reinstalling the clips to connect the bulbs to the electrical.  Don’t forget to engage the red clip locks.

Check out the comparison pictures below.  The top image is stock, the bottom is the new Sylvania bulbs.  In person or in the pictures… quite honestly I can’t tell the difference between the two bulbs.


To double check my opinion, I tossed a lux meter on both the stock and new bulbs only to get an identical reading.  Disappointing.


After driving on these for a few days, the ONLY difference I have found is that the light the Sylvania bulbs puts out is a little whiter.  That’s about it.  If your bulbs are burned out and you need a replacement set, these will work fine.  If you are swapping these and expecting anything better than stock… Prepare to be disappointed with this low budget mod.


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