We recently installed a Zenex HID kit in a 1994 Acura Integra. We love a lot of things about our Acura; however, we hate the fact that we can’t see at night. In fact, sometimes when it’s raining at night we can’t tell if our headlights are on or off, even when we turn on our brights. So, we decided it was time for a full headlight makeover. First, we restored the headlights using Turtle Wax’s Headlight Restoration Kit (here’s our tutorial/review of that kit). While we noticed an immediate difference in night-time visibility, we still felt like it was necessary to install an HID kit.
The Zenex HID Kit is available on Amazon and comes in various colors. We chose the 10000K version, which is advertised as a “Brilliant Blue” color. While we understood that the bluer the headlight, the less light output it would provide, we wanted to achieve that cool blue look to the car. The kit is only $48.99 and is sold directly by Zenex through Amazon.com.
The kit comes in a standard cardboard box, shown below:
We figure, as you can tell, that one way they save on costs is by skimping on their packaging. The kit comes with the bulbs packaged in foam protective padding, and the ballasts are wrapped in bubble wrap. The instruction manual is decent but leaves a little to be desired. The kit also comes with a set of zip ties to attach the ballasts to the vehicle. We found them to be a little to short for our application, but they might work in some vehicles. You will not get a relay harness with this kit, as it is a single beam kit. In layman’s terms, this means you will not have low-beams and high-beams. You will have one standard beam. Some people don’t like this, but with the HID lights being as bright as they are, other people don’t mind.
The ballasts are relatively small but are not the “slim” ballasts that other companies advertise. Unless you have an extremely tight engine compartment, you most likely will not find this to be an issue. The installation was very easy. You simply find a place to attach the ballasts to your vehicle’s frame, ensuring that each ballast is close enough to its respective headlight enclosure. Don’t make the mistake of attaching the ballast to the car’s frame only to realize the cables won’t reach the headlight! Once the ballasts have been secured to a safe area under the hood, the rest is plug-and-play. You don’t need to cut any wires or modify anything under the hood. The HID installation process is completely reversible.
Below you can see what our stock headlights look like. While they may seem bright enough in the photo, they are NOT. The car was parked so close to the garage door that the beam of light is concentrated in one spot. Trust us, these headlights were miserable.
Acura Integra’s employ two different headlight fixtures for their headlights. In the photo above, the bulb on the left is the high beam and the one on the right is the low beam. Imagine driving on a dark road with only the headlamp on the right…not a good feeling. So, we installed an HID bulb in the passenger side bulb, and the contrast was pretty amazing:
The difference in brightness is somewhat difficult to capture in a photo of the headlights; however, if you look just below the headlights at the yellow running lights, you can see the beams of light extending downward from each of the bulbs. It’s apparent that the beams extend much further down from the blue headlight on the left than the stock halogen headlight on the right. That’s a pretty accurate representation of the difference in brightness between the Zenex HID kit and the stock bulbs.
The color difference is best portrayed in the photo below, taken standing in front of the car. The HID bulb definitely has a blue/white tint to it, while the standard halogen has a yellow/white hue to it. HID kits above about 4300k definitely give off a more pure white light than halogen bulbs do, which is one reason why they illuminate the road so much better.
Below are a few more photos of the installed HID kit. The blue light emitted ends up looking a little whiter once it’s not up next to a yellow halogen bulb. We were worried that the 10000k Zenex kit might be a little too blue. We’ve all seen that rice burner on the street with headlights that look pure blue…so blue, in fact, that the lights don’t even seem to light up the road ahead of the car. In our opinion, they are even too blue to look classy. They look downright “dirty”. Even though this was a 10000k kit, we think it still gave off enough pure white light to be considered for your vehicle.
Overall, if you’re just getting into the headlight game, or looking for an inexpensive way to upgrade your headlights, the Zenex Kit isn’t a bad kit. It has good color, brightness, only takes about 30 minutes to install, and costs under $50. After having it in the car for several months, we’ve noticed that it flickers a little bit when going over bumps. This might not be an issue for highway driving, but if you’re driving on more rural, dark roads, you don’t want to risk your headlights going out while driving. The best way to prevent your headlights from flickering is to buy a kit that comes with a relay harness, like the Kensun HID kit. The relay harness connects directly to your vehicle’s battery as well as to both headlight cables. This gives the kit a direct source of power, rather than relying on the power feed from the headlight cables. You can check out our installation/review of the Kensun kit here.