The Differences Between 35W and 55W HID Kits

by Tammie Painter
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HID is the abbreviation for High Intensity Discharge. This type of light for your car is also known as a xenon lamp because the illumination is created by the ignition of xenon gas within the bulb. HIDs produce a white light that is three times brighter than the average halogen bulb. Two choices of HID for your car are the 35 Watt and 55 Watt kits. The comparison in this article is for the Philips brand HID kits.


Both the 12 Volt 35 Watt kit and 12 Volt 55 Watt kit are used in cars and motorcycles. However, the 24 Volt 35 Watt kit is for use in large trucks that have a 24 Volt battery.


The brightness of a standard 35 Watt HID kit from Philips is 2300 to 3500 lamperes. The 55 Watt kit has a brightness of 3000 to 4800 lamperes.

Warning Canceller Requirement

The 35 Watt kits do require a warning canceller if your stock socket is 50 Watts or 55 Watts. If you have the 50W/55W stock socket, you don't need a warning canceller for the 55 Watt kit. This overrides the warning system that is set off in some cars when HID lights are installed.

Lamp Type and Ballast

The 35 Watt kit has a high pressure sodium lamp and the 55 Watt has an low pressure sodium type lamp. A single ballast is used in the 35 Watt lamps. For the 55 Watt lamps either a quad or dual ballast is available. Both have a non-digital ballast measuring 85 mm by 75 mm by 30 mm.

Minimum Ambient Starting Temperature

The 35 Watt lamp will work in temperatures as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit. The 55 Watt lamp needs temperatures to be at least -20 degrees Fahrenheit to function.


Both the 35 Watt and 55 Watt kits have lamps that last two to three years. Both lamps are made of anti-UV Quartz and are 100 percent water and wind resistant. Each requires the extra relay harness kit if your car has daytime running lights on the same beam as the HID lamp. They both come with 28 inches of extra wiring and all cables and cases are made to inhibit electro-magnetic interferences.

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