Why Clear Lens Custom Headlights Are a Wise Buy

When you think of aftermarket headlights with custom lenses, smoked headlights and black headlights may come to mind first, but switching to a custom headlamp can be more about safety and functionality than style. Replacing a factory headlight assembly with projector headlights, or LED headlights with clear lenses can greatly improve vision at night, making these replacement headlights a smart investment for drivers.

The Problem with Conventional Headlight Assembly Lenses

Although a small number of vehicles are made with halo headlights, or LED headlight assemblies as standard features, or possible factory-direct options, the vast majority of cars, trucks, and SUVs on the road today feature headlight assemblies outfitted with a slightly frosted lens known as a Fresnel lens. Even on custom headlamp assemblies like projection headlights, Fresnel lenses can diminish the quality of light produced. Because they are translucent rather than transparent, the lenses soften the beam of light to a large degree.

Clear Lenses: The Sharp Alternative

Clear lenses are headlight lenses that are completely transparent. Compared to Fresnel lenses they are:

– Sharper. With no frosting to soften the light, clear lenses offer a more clearly defined beam pattern, with a dramatic difference between the brightness at the edge of the beam where the darkness begins. This differs from the gradual fade of light that is produced with Fresnel lenses.

– More Stylish. Clear lenses create a color flicker effect when the illumination from the headlights is detected from afar. Many vehicle owners like the aesthetic effect.


– More Intense. A clear lens headlamp is able to make the road more visible due to its enhanced intensity. As a result, you’re less likely to miss any objects in your field of vision.

– Able to Cover a Wider Area. The sharpness of the illumination produced by clear lens headlights fully lights up a wider section of road.

– Evener. Light from a clear lens headlight will be free of the dark spots that are all too common with Fresnel lenses.

Upgrading to Clear Lenses

Automakers like Acura and Honda are now offering clear lens headlights on some top-of-the-line vehicles, and industry experts predict that others may follow suit in the years to come; however, at this time, most vehicles on the road with clear lens headlights feature aftermarket LED projector headlights lens replacement, not OEM headlamps. If you are considering making the upgrade yourself, you need to ensure that you select the optimal size. There are two key measurements to consider:

  • The diameter refers to the distance across the headlight from one side to the other through the center. Most lenses are 2.5 or 3 inches wide.
  • Focus Height. The lens focus height refers to the distance from the flat part of the lens to the tallest point in the curved area of the lens. The standard focus height sizes are 25, 27, and 30 millimeters.


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