How much does it cost to replace a headlight?
How much do headlights cost? The answer to that question is complicated, depending on which parts of the headlights you need, and whether you are willing to do the work of installing the lights yourself. The bulb itself can be as little as $10 for a halogen headlight bulb or more than $100 if it’s an HID or LED bulb.
Your headlights provide a measure of safety, whether you're driving in the dark or during the day. Headlight bulbs are wear items that need to be replaced periodically when they burn out, and your headlight assembly or headlight housing is right at the front of the car, which can lead to chips and accidental damage.
Whether you are asking how much does it cost to replace a headlight bulb or need to research your headlight cover replacement cost, read on for some helpful information.
Cost to replace a headlight at a shop
When you take your vehicle to a shop for any repair that requires parts, they have a professional technician install the new bulb for you. They’re in the business of serving customers, but it comes at a cost to keep their doors open. The cost for installing your new bulb is appropriately called labor.
The labor time required to change the average headlight bulb by a mechanic should be between five minutes and an hour, depending on the model of the vehicle and the difficulty of the process. When you factor in the cost of the bulb and the labor, you will be looking at a total cost of between $30 and $300, depending on the type of bulb and the difficulty of installation.
If you need to replace the entire headlight assembly, the price variation is extreme, to say the least. Headlight assemblies for some vehicles can be purchased at AutoZone for as low as $30, but the price range for a replacement headlight assembly can go as high as $4,000 and above, for headlight assemblies that contain high-tech light systems. Then add the labor cost to replace a headlight assembly, which would typically be between $100 and $400, depending on how complicated the installation is.
As you can see, the cost of replacing headlight assembly and the headlight bulb replacement cost at a mechanic shop will vary widely, depending upon what type of vehicle you have.
Cost to replace a headlight yourself
If you have some basic hand tools and a willingness to learn something new, you can do a headlight bulb or a headlight assembly replacement yourself using video and written online tutorials as well as your manufacturer’s vehicle information.
When you consider that labor costs add a mechanic shop will be a minimum of $100 per hour, the benefits of doing your own work become pretty clear.
The cost to replace a headlight bulb can be as low as $15 for the parts, if your headlight is a simple halogen bulb. If you have more complicated HID or LED headlights, you can expect to pay up to $100 or more per bulb.
Replacing the entire headlight assembly can cost as little as $30, rising to upwards of $4,000 for the parts, depending on the make and model of your vehicle.
What should you choose?
Taking your vehicle to a professional mechanic shop will certainly cost more than doing it yourself, but if you don’t have the time or the inclination to work on your car, then it is obviously the right choice for you.
If you have the time to invest in working on your car you can save a lot of money in the long run. It takes an initial investment of $50 to $100 to purchase a basic set of tools, but then you can do a lot of maintenance tasks on your vehicle, gaining independence and a sense of accomplishment in the process.
Get all of your headlight bulbs, headlight assemblies, tools, and any other parts you may need to maintain your vehicle at AutoZone, and be sure to check out all our helpful how-to articles when you are working on your vehicle.
If you want to upgrade your car headlights, check out this video for information about the different types of bulbs.
Some types of headlight, like halogen, are inexpensive to replace, but many new vehicles employ HID or LED bulbs, And those systems tend to be much more expensive due to their complexity and technology.
Changing a headlight bulb can take as little as five or 10 minutes, but if you have to change the headlight assembly as well you can expect at least a half-hour of work or more.
Some headlights may last the entire service life of the vehicle, but it’s typical for halogen bulbs to burn out after 500 to 1,000 hours of use. HID bulbs have a longer service life of 2,000 to 10,000 hours and LED bulbs will often last up to 40,000 hours.
Use a headlight restoration kit to revitalize them. Check out this video for a tutorial.