Aftermarket Headlights & Foglights 5th Gen 4Runner

 In 4Runner, 5th Gen 4Runner Mods

Best Headlights and Fog Lights 5th Gen 4Runner?

5th Gen 4Runner Headlights

HID Headlights from Amazon, the Retrofit Source or XenonDepot for 5th Gen 4Runner. LED Headlights and HID Retrofit Headlights for Toyota 4Runner.

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This is a general overview on LED Headlights and HID Retrofit Headlights for the 5th Gen Toyota 4Runner. We cover a little area of fog lights, but if you want to get deeper on quality fog light options, check out the overview of the Baja Designs 4Runner Fog Lights. We are not getting incredibly specific on brands from Amazon, Xenon Depot, or the Retrofit Source, although we are covering these three places to buy headlights.

LED Headlights Vs. HID Headlights on 5th Gen 4Runner

Difference between LED and HID? There is a big difference between an LED headlight bulb and a HID headlight retrofit and a basic 5th Gen 4Runner HID Bulb. 4Runner HID headlight retrofit kits are a bit more advanced in terms of the light output, the install and price. 4Runner HID headlight retrofit kits typically cost more, and take longer to install but they produce correct, better, higher quality light output compared to an aftermarket LED headlight kit (low and high beam).

With an HID retrofit, you convert the 4Runners halogen projector housing to an HID projector housing and then throw in an HID bulb. You can always throw an HID bulb into our factory halogen projector housing but it will never be a “true” HID headlight. Read more on HID Headlights here.

LED headlights are great because they are affordable, easy to install and give you a solid solution to the terrible stock halogen headlights on our 5th Gen 4Runner. LED headlights on your 4Runner (low beam and high beam) will produce less light than an HID retrofit kit, but they allow you to run your Low Beams all while not getting flashed by other cars on the road.

HID Headlights on 5th Gen 4Runner?

HID (High-intensity) Headlights 5th Gen 4Runner

A Common Misconception (HID is better?): There is a common misconception that the HID headlight kit is better. Well, that might be the case because they are in most cases “brighter”, they are not always the best for your specific 4Runner needs. There are some guys out there that want the HID headlight bulb because they are off-road often and want the brightest light possible towards dusk and night. If this is your goal, the HID headlight bulb and or retrofit kit will give the “most” light output on your headlights.

While the HID headlight bulb or retrofit kit might be brighter off-road, it might be “too bright” on-road. And, like we mentioned above, you may get flashed by oncoming traffic with your low beams on. This is no fun, and you really don’t want to be that guy on the road that is causing others viewing problems. But to each their own. And, we might be that guy on the road one day, but there is a solution to this.

Simple fix for HID Headlights: With the HID headlight retrofit kit, there is much brighter and “wider” light, meaning the beam pattern of your HIDs is going to be greater and wider than your stock halogens or an LED kit for that matter. If you want the brightest light possible and you still want to use your HID headlights on the road without getting flashed by oncoming drivers, you should simply angle your headlights down.

LED Headlights on 5th Gen 4Runner

4Runner LED Headlights Diode

LED Headlights and China (Amazon and eBay?): While most LED headlights for the 4Runner are a good replacement of the stock halogens, some are just terrible. With all LED bulbs, you have a “diode” that is located somewhere on top of the center of the bulb housing.

Most of the Amazon and eBay brands, the LED bulbs are a universal fit and more than likely made in China. But, it’s not that its made in China is the problem because everything is made in China. Your iPhone was made in China and we all love our iPhones. The point is most shoddy brands are manufactured in shoddy facilities that have sub-par production and quality control.

What this means for you is that the one size fits all actually doesn’t fit all. The diode on most LED light bulbs is most-often in the wrong location. This creates problems with correct light output and correct beam pattern on your halogen housing.

Choosing the right LED light bulb: What you want to find is an LED light with a diode that mimics the same diode location as your stock halogen bulbs all while being produced in a quality facility, which is more than likely a private party LED/HID headlight supplier who has high standards and who is never able to compete with an Amazon or eBay seller because of their cheap prices and wholesale imported products from China. For god sakes don’t ever buy anything on eBay.

From around the internet, may or may not be true: It is also important to note though, that many companies have tested the best and worst of LED’s in the low beams and they claim to not perform well due to the design of the OEM projector housings. They are designed for halogen light to come from all sides. With LED headlight bulbs, it doesn’t matter how you twist/adjust them. HID’s are far superior and will have zero impact from heat on the housings and maintain the factory horizon with zero light scatter.

Retrofitting Headlights in 4Runner (HID Headlights)?

What does it mean to retrofit a 4Runner Headlight? When the term “retrofitting your headlights” comes out, some people might stray away from this. It is incredibly simple. All you do is swap in a new HID projector housing. Some lights need to be wired, but most of them are plug and play set-ups with upgraded ballast systems. Yes, you will have to be somewhat handy but anyone with a basic toolbox should be able to get the job done. The more difficult route is modifying your own housing from a halogen projector housing

What are HID Headlights?

HID xenon headlights work in a way that is entirely different from regular, halogen headlights. There is no filament inside HID xenon bulbs. Instead, a combination of an electrical charge and xenon gas is used to produce the light. When the gas is excited by the electrical charge, it emits a much brighter, whiter light than that produced by halogen bulbs. At the same time, these headlights are much more efficient, and can last for a much longer period of time before they need replaced. – Xenon Pro

What does it mean to retrofit a headlight?

Retrofitting is the process of installing a xenon or bi-xenon projector into a reflector based halogen headlight. It is the best HID headlight upgrade possible since the projector will control the light into a properly dispersed, non-glaring beam pattern.” – The Retrofit Source.

5th Gen 4Runner Light Bulb Numbers (For reference)

If you want to do an LED swap on your 4Runner, here are the common bulb numbers.

  • Headlight Bulb High Beam: 9005 – Check Today’s Price
  • Headlight Bulb Low Beam: H11 – Check Price
  • Fog Light Bulb Front: H16 – Check Price
  • 4Runner Daytime Running Light Bulb (Same as High Beam): 9005
  • 4Runner Front Side Marker Light Bulb: 194
  • 4Runner Parking Light Bulb: 7443
  • License Plate Light Bulb: 168
  • Side Marker Light Bulb Front: 168
  • Turn Signal Light Bulb Rear: 7440A
  • Turn Signal Light Bulb Front: 7444NA
  • Daytime Running Light Bulb (Same as High Beams): 9005
  • Back Up Light Bulb: 921

Different Brands of Headlights

There are hundreds of options when looking at Headlights and Fog Lights for your 4Runner. For your 5th Gen 4Runner, you can opt for lights from XenonDepot, The Retrofit Source, brands from eBay and multiple highly-reviewed brands from Amazon.

Different Brands of Fog Lights

For Fog Lights, you can go with brands like XenonDepot, The Retrofit Source, Philips, and also brands from Amazon and eBay. What makes your Fog Lights different is there are companies that specifically make 5th Gen 4Runner Fog Light kits that are built for off-road use.

The two main companies for off-road LED fog lights are Rigid Industries, Baja Designs, but there are many other aftermarket Fog Light LED brands and companies. But, if you are just looking for a simple LED swap, check out the LED 4Runner Fog Lights. These fog lights are probably THE BEST, most affordable solution to upgrading your fog lights. We have them installed on our 2016 4Runner and the kick ass!

There are a handful of other popular options for Fog Lights on your 5th Gen 4Runner, but Rigid and Baja make the best trail products out there. If you want to stay with something street legal or at least street compatible (you won’t blind anyone), stay with lights from The Retrofit Source, XenonDepot or even Rigid Industries makes a DOT (Department of Transportation) safe fog light. Most of the Squadron line from Baja Designs are for UTV vehicles and are not DOT approved for on-road use.

What is common on the 5th Gen?

For headlights, most 5th Gen 4Runner owners go with lights from common Amazon brands like these 4Runner LED Headlights, brands or The Retrofit Source Morimoto kits. For Fog Lights, most 5th Gen 4Runner owners go with Rigid Industries, the Squadron-R Pros or the Baja Designs Squadron Sports.

XenonDepot For Headlights and Fog Lights?

Xenon Depot 4Runner LED Headlights (Low and High Beams)

One of the most common resources for 4Runner owners for headlights and fog lights is XenonDepot. If you are looking to step up your Headlight or Fog Light Game, XenonDepot is a good all-around source but it doesn’t mean they have the best headlights for your 5th Gen 4Runner.

XenonDepot carries a huge variety of Headlights and Foglights for the 5th Gen 4Runner. All of the XenonDepot lights are OEM quality and carry products from manufacturers like Philips, Osram, and their own brand; XenonDepot. There are many other options for headlights and fog lights out there. Also, some of these brands carry the same bulb brands as XenonDepot.

Some other brands to consider:

  • Philips
  • CougarMotor
  • Lightning Dark
  • OPT7
  • Kensun

The Retrofit Source For 4Runner Headlights & Fog Lights?

The Retrofit Source is a quality website for 4Runner Headlights and Fog Lights. For the 5th Gen 4Runner, you will want to look at the Morimoto Elite (Headlights) and the Morimoto XB LED bulb (Fog Lights). These are incredibly well-designed and well-made products that are damn near on-spec to OEM quality fit but pack much more lumens than your stock 4Runner Headlights and Fog Lights.

If you just want to put HID in the headlights then you would just need the H11 Kit here:

  • H11 Morimoto Elite

For the fog lights I recommend the XB LEDs here:

  • Toyota Oval Morimoto XB LEB

Retrofit Source Relays and Capacitor Link?

For your 4Runner you will want to order the H11B bulbs and you will not need the capacitor link. You will want the HD Relay as well to make everything plug and play, the canbus relays are for German cars.

Retrofit Source Ballast Options

  • 35w (XB35 – Longer Life/ Medium Intensity) – Recommend for 5th Gen 4Runner
  • 50w (XB55 – Shorter Lift/ High Intensity)

You have your choice of 35w (XB35) and 50w (XB55). All OEM HID systems are 35w, so this is the tried and true option. It comes with a five-year warranty and produces approximately three times the light of your stock setup. The optional 50w (XB55) ballasts are going to give you about 25% more light over the 35w system but at a shorter lifespan. Because of the shorter lifespan, the warranty is also reduced to three years instead of five.

Bulb Options (Color Options and Color Meanings)

  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 3000k – Yellow/Amber
  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 3800k – Mild Yellow
  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 4500k – Yellow to White
  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 5500k – Recommend Color (Bright White)
  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 6000k – Recommend Color (Bright White/ Blue)
  • H11B/H9/H8 – XB 6500k – Very Blue

A color chart is provided on the kit page (in the photos), but OEM bulb color is going to be in the 4300K-4500K range. Looking at the bulb options, you’ll see nothing above 6500K since anything beyond that sacrifices more light in exchange for more color. We’re more focused on performance vs looks here. As you move up the K range, you’re getting more color but less intensity from the bulb.

All vehicles with factory installed HID’s run the brightest 4300K bulbs (where The Retrofit Source offers a 4500k in some cases, but no difference in color or intensity would be expected in the 200k difference here), giving you a warm white light. 5500K sacrifices a tiny bit of intensity but gives you a pure white light to enhance contrast. 6500K is still mostly white, but with a slight tinge of blue to it. Alternately, 3000K bulbs are super yellow, we really just recommend those for use in fog lights.

What Headlights/ Foglights Should You Buy?

Headlights are pretty important, to say the least. You drive with them every day, so you should grab a pair of headlights are in a mid-high price range as these are a pretty important driving factor and you will depend on them for a long period of time.

As Xenon Depot is the most popular choice among 5th Gen 4Runner owners, you should consider checking out other 4Runner LED headlights as they are a bit more affordable. But, affordable does not always mean they are the best fit. Xenon Depot has incredible customer service and backs there products 100%. There is a reason why 50%+ of 4Runner owners out there choose Xenon Depot for their headlights. They kick ass.

Also, some of the other brands are on Amazon and you know Amazon backs their products, customers, and sellers at all costs. If you do have any problems on Amazon, you know you can return the product at almost any time. Some of the more bad ass products would include anything from The Retrofit Source or Xenon Depot.

If you are looking for something quick and dirty, grab a set off Amazon. If you want to do it the right way the first time, grab a set of LEDs or HIDs from the Retrofit Source or Xenon Depot.

Leave a comment if we missed anything or if you think there is a better bulb or light set-up out there. Also, we are not 5th Gen 4Runner lighting experts by any means. If we missed anything, please let us know. Thanks – cheers everyone!

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