4WD Modifications - Electrics and Lights
These days very few people travel without a portable fridge and camp lighting and that dictates some form of auxiliary battery power - we check out dual battery systems. We also compare HID and LED driving lights; Hella, Narva, Lightforce, M-Performance and others. See our real world tests on video and read our reports here.
COMBINATION HID-LED DRIVING LIGHTS
Combinations of HID distance and LED spread iights are the best you can get.
In this section we're examining combinations of HID distance and LED spread lights. This pairing offers the best blend of distance and beam width. Some combinations are contained in the one pair of lights, but most combine a bar and two driving lights.
NARVA ULTIMA LED 215 DRIVING LIGHTS
These are Narva's super-bright LED lights - June 2017
The Ultima LED 215s have been a long time coming, but our testing reveals that the wait has been worth it.
MEDIUM AND MEDIUM-PRICED LED DRIVING LIGHT VIDEO TESTS
The lineup of budget-priced LED driving lights keeps growing.
LEDs – light emitting diodes – now dominate the headlight and driving light arena, having already taken over the flashlight, head torch and camping light business. LED lights are bright, white and directional, and have unprecedented durability.
LARGE LED DRIVING LIGHT VIDEO TESTS
The range of 190-220mm diameter LED driving lights keeps growing - March 2017
LEDs now dominate the bush lighting scene, having long since taken over the camp and flashlight business. Large-sized lights fit most serious 4WDs and offer good distance and spread lighting.
LIGHTFORCE GENESIS LED
LightForce reckons the Genesis LED is a game changer - January 2017
New from LightForce, the 140W Genesis LED is said to redefine LED performance, with a 1053m range from a pair of lights and 5000-Kelvin colour temperature.
LIGHTFORCE VENOM LED
Maximum output in a compact package.
Designed, tested and made in Australia, the 75W LightForce Venom LED produces a 5000-Kelvin light temperature beam of one lux at distances up to 850m.
These driving lights are well made and keenly priced - February 2017
A Stedi Type-X pair of LED driving lights produces a NATA-accredited photometric laboratory tested 13,310 lumens, which is considerably more nett light volume than many prominent brands that cost up to three times the price.
NARVA LED FESTOON GLOBES
The LED revolution has now progressed to the ubiquitous festoon globe - December 2016
The LED takeover of automotive and camping lighting is complete: LED festoon globes can now replace conventional incandescent ones.
OPPOSITE LOCK ADVENTURER LED LIGHT RANGE
A new range of round and bar LED driving lights - February 2017
A new Adventurer range of LED lights complements Opposite Lock's lineup that includes products from Lightforce, Ultravision and Roadvision.
HELLA LED REPLACEMENT HEADLIGHTS
These LED units can replace any seven-inch round headlights - May 2017
Many older 4WDs, bikes and even new North American-brand trucks are fitted with seven-inch round headlights. These can be replaced by Hella's LED low/high beam headlights and there's also a dedicated high-beam unit for four-headlight applications.
REDARC'S GREEN POWER BCDC CHARGER
This charger works with all battery types and solar - November 2016
Redarc Electronics has released the next generation of its award-winning BCDC in-vehicle battery charger that's designed, built and tested in Australia. The new BCDC 25-amp model includes features that make it the most advanced product on the market, according to Redarc.
WAECO PERFECTCHARGE BATTERY CHARGER RANGE
Compact and lightweight charger range released - December 2016
Waeco’s next-generation ‘PerfectCharge’ series uses a six-stage charging cycle that is said to provide optimum charging for all Gel, AGM and wet-cell lead-acid batteries. The new chargers will also charge some, but not all, lithium batteries.
DAYLIGHT RUNNING LIGHT KITS FROM NARVA
Be seen is the safety message - July 2016
Once the exclusive domain of prestige European cars, Daytime Running Lights (DRLs) have become a common sight on many new passenger and commercial vehicles.
DUAL BATTERY SYSTEMS - January 2016
Your starting battery needs a mate in the bush
These days very few people travel without a portable fridge and camp lighting, and that dictates some form of auxiliary battery power. What do you need?
CUSTOM-DESIGNED PROJECTA BATTERY TRAYS
Model-specific trays for easy fitment - July 2016
Projecta has provided the ideal solution to mounting a second auxiliary battery into a vehicle with the launch of a range of custom built heavy duty battery trays.
HALOGEN OR HID OR LED DRIVING LIGHTS
The black art of lighting up bush roads
We all know that auxiliary lights are necessary for safe night driving on bush roads, but do you need to spend up on HID or LED lights, or are halogens good enough?
HELLA COMPACT HID DRIVING LIGHTS
Small doesn't necessarily mean dim
As small and medium sized 4WD frontal areas shrink and grille areas become smaller there’s often no space to fit large-diameter driving lights.
HELLA'S HALOGEN TRIO - November 2015
You don't have to pay a fortune for bush driving lights.
Most of the driving light focus (poor pun we know) is on HID and LED lights, but there’s still a place for the traditional halogen spot and spread beam lights.
HELLA RALLYE 4000 XENON TEST
Piercing the darkness for these paddock bashers.
There are driving lights, then there are good driving lights, reckons leading truck journalist Steve Brooks. 'Hellava good light,' is how he describes his Hella Rallye 4000 Xenons.
HELLA SAFETY DAYLIGHTS - April 2015
The importance of being seen.
While the daytime use of headlights is much better than no lights at all, this is not the ideal solution.
HELLA'S LIFETIME LED WARRANTY - October 2015
We've been testing them for 10 years and haven't had to claim warranty yet.
Hella Australia now offers a lifetime warranty for all automotive LED lighting products that carry the DuraLED® brand.
HOW LIGHTS WORK - July 2015
The black art of automotive lighting explained.
Lights that lit the way for 4WDs used to be variations on the same incandescent-globe theme, but now there are HID and LED lights. Here’s how they all work.
LED LIGHT BAR TESTS
LED light bars on test - Latest: Hella 470 pair - November 2016
Light bars are often easier to mount than large, round driving lights and can even be fitted to roof racks. However, while light bars give good spread beams, they don't have the beam distance of HID lights.
LED REPLACEMENT HEADLAMPS - February 2015
Much brighter light from these replacement units.
Truck-Lite has teamed up with Narva to produce a second generation LED replacement headlight for vehicles using seven-inch round lights.
LIGHT AND LIGHT BAR LEGALITIES - December 2015
Authorities have been slow to catch up with new technology.
In all Australian states you can be booked for mounting lights and light bars incorrectly. We've created a 'best fit' scenario that should see you legal across the eight separate nations that make up Australia.
LIGHTFORCE VENOM 50W HID DRIVING LIGHT TEST - April 2014
The Venom was launched in early 2014 and we checked a pair out.
Lightforce products were originally designed as spotlights for hunting and vermin control, so it's no surprise that the company's driving lights emphasise brightness and long-distance penetration. The latest Venom HID 50W models do both brilliantly.
NARVA ADAPTORS AND CABLE TIE VARIANTS
Items to help set up a bush-ready 4WD - December 2016
Narva has further added to its heavy duty RV accessory range, introducing six adaptors with battery connectors and a new range of cable ties.
NARVA BATTERY CABLE CONNECTORS - September 2015
An alternative to the familiar grey Anderson plugs and sockets.
A range of new red-coloured, heavy duty battery cable connectors is now available from Narva, with a clear visual difference from existing grey units.
NARVA DAYTIME RUNNING LAMPS
A great safety initiative to retro-fit.
LED Daytime Running Lamps from Narva produce an exceptionally bright light and are ideal for use during extended driving periods, thanks to low current draw and the long life expectancy of LEDs.
NARVA EXTREME HID LIGHT TEST - January 2014
Ruggedly made, powerful spread beam lights.
Narva's Extreme range is said to be designed and made with competition and hard-core off-roading in mind. These HID lights mount inside a chrome-moly tube frame that bolts securely to a bar and allows ample adjustment.
NARVA ULTIMA 225 HID DRIVING LIGHTS
Large-diameter HID lights on test
We tested Narva’s Ultima 225 HID lights on two of our 4WDs and found them to be, literally, brilliant.
PROJECTA'S MULTI-SOURCE BATTERY CHARGER - November 2015
This charger covers nearly all the bases.
Projecta has unveiled its class-leading IDC25 ‘Intelli-Charge’ 25A 9-32V, three-stage DC/Solar Battery Charger.The unit is the most advanced of its type currently available on the Australian market, Projecta claims.
REDARC MANAGER30 BATTERY CHARGER
The Manager30 can charge all battery types - including lithium.
Redarc’s Manager30 can charge auxiliary Lithium Ferro Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries as well as lead acid, calcium and AGM batteries.
The starting point for lighting improvement is with the standard headlights
No 4WD wagon or ute comes with lights that are adequate for night time bush driving. For that work you’ll need upgraded lighting.