How to Choose Headlight Bulbs for Your GMC Sierra?

The GMC Sierra is a lavish and beautiful model from GMC with more price and fanciness than Chevy Silverado. I did the comparison because they have a lot in common.

Anyway, most GMC Sierra comes with stock halogen bulbs that aren’t really that bright. It is high time you make a replacement and upgrade.

I prepared a list of ten of the best headlight bulbs for GMC Sierra models on the market I used. I tried to cover every size.

You may want to explore more headlights but are unsure what to look for. In that case, check out the buying guide. After all, you want the best for your beautiful vehicle.

1. Fahren 9012/HIR2 LED Headlight Bulbs

Fahren 9012/HIR2 LED Headlight Bulbs

Fahren 9012 adopts 360° adjustable locker ring to enable some models of Dodge, Ford, Toyota, GMC, Honda to finally obtain the best light beam pattern.

Pros

  • Emitting 10,000 Lumen with low energy of 60W is an impressive thing.
  • It has a cooling fan with 12,000 RPM that ensures faster heat dissipation.
  • The installation takes only 10 minutes. You can use the plug-and-play feature.

Cons

  • Some people experienced sudden light turn-off in the middle of the road. It is so rare but still risky.

I am starting the list with the bulb set that pleased me the most. The 9012 bulbs from Fahren have an epic 10,000 lumen that promises an intense light. Meanwhile, its color temperature of 6,500K has a cool-white hue that gives your GMC Sierra a lavish look. Take them for the high and low beams of your GMC Sierra 1500 from 2015.

The beam focus of the bulbs is already towards the road. But I could adjust it up to 360° based on my need. Because of such features, it is unnecessary to worry about blinding others on the street.

LED drivers are a key point that defines their lifespan. The Fahren 9012 bulbs have an intelligent IC driver for the best thermal and current flow control. For further cooling, it has an aviation aluminum body. Debris and water from the road won’t harm the bulbs because of their IP68 waterproof level.

You can find some useful tips on their product descriptions. Because of their similar design as stock halogen, I was able to install them in under 10 minutes. There is a built-in CANbus that removes the possibility of error codes from appearing on your GMC Sierra computer.

2. Wontolf 9005 HB3 LED Headlight Bulbs

Wontolf 9005 HB3 LED Headlight Bulbs

600% Brighter 120W 20000LM High Power Super Bright 6000K Cool White CSP Chips Conversion Kit IP68 Waterproof

Pros

  • Their excellent downward focus makes them safe for you and others both on-road and off-road.
  • They have high heat conductivity and powerful CSP chips.
  • Wontolf used superconductive copper pipes with gas-liquid circulation for a better cooling operation.

Cons

  • The instruction manual for the installation is written with too poor grammar to comprehend for many.
  • Some people received used bulbs.

The Wontolf 9005 LED bulbs are the perfect high beam choice for Sierra 95-98 & 2001-2013, Sierra 1500 1999, Sierra 3500 1999-2000 & 2014, and Sierra Denali Classic 2007. I was surprised to experience the 20,000 LM output of these bulbs. Their color is 6,000K, which is known as the Xenon white.

Apparently, the CSP chips help the bulbs to spend only 60W to produce 10,000LM. Lights that come from the bulbs can reach over 400 meters ahead. However, they don’t glare, making them safer for others on the road.

The thermal conductivity of the body of these bulbs is around ten times higher than your average LED bulbs.

While a regular copper plate can have a thermal conductivity of 420 w/m.k, the rating for these bulbs is 5,000 w/m.k. The speed of the 7-blades of their turbofan is 14,000 RPM. There is also an IP68 waterproof level for further protection.

3. NEWBORN 9006 HB4 Halogen Headlight Bulb

NEWBORN 9006 HB4 Halogen Headlight Bulb

High configuration, High brightness, Long Life, Earthquake resistance, Easy to use

Pros

  • The NEWBORN halogen bulbs have high resistance against heat, quake, and UV-rays.
  • The item is available in different sizes suitable for high or low beams of the GMC Sierra.
  • They have a warmish color of 5,000K that doesn’t glare as you drive at night.

Cons

  • They are not that bright contradictory to what NEWBORN advertised.

Many of us are going for a halogen bulb at a low cost. The 9006 halogen bulb set from NEWBORN has a voltage and wattage of 12V and 51W. Their color temperature is 5,000K. 

They are compatible with the low beam of GMC Sierra 95-98 & 2001-2006, Sierra 1500, 2500, 3500 1999-2000, and Sierra Classic 2007. Other size versions of it include 9005, 9012, and H11, which are also suitable for Sierra models.

The bulbs have a universal fit, meaning that they are installable on vehicles that accept their sizes. For avoiding blinding oncoming traffic, these halogen bulbs have durable topcoats. Their glass tube is pretty thick with a dense gas inside, which ensures a long lifespan.

NEWBORN uses a blue ion membrane that lets the bulbs cast out a highly whitish light. Underneath the bulb, their bases have PPS materials with improved thermal resistance.

These bulbs have a lumen of 2,000, which is pretty high for halogen. I was able to find DOT, ISO, and CE certification stamps on the product. Their shock resistance and anti-UV glass allow them to last for over 1,200 hours.

4. HID-Warehouse HID Xenon Replacement Bulbs

HID-Warehouse HID Xenon Replacement Bulbs

Compatible with 35W & 55W Ballast. Compatible with most aftermarket HID Lights

Pros

  • The base of the HID bulbs fit OEM housing with no issue. It is perfectly aligned.
  • Their quartz glass tube prevents the chance of fading from sun rays.
  • You don’t need to modify or wire anything. It is totally plug-and-play.

Cons

  • They have flickering issues and aren’t that long-lasting.

If you want a 9006 bulb, but you need an HID, then this pair of bulbs should please you. Their 6,000K Xenon white light is ideal for the low beam of my GMC Sierra headlights.

While there are many other color options, I think you shouldn’t pick any other than 5,000K or 6,000K for legality factors.

Meanwhile, you can also find H11, 9005, and 9012 variations of the bulbs. At an affordable rate, I got an HID with a plug-and-play wiring harness. It can run on a low wattage of 35 and 55.

There are Xenon gas pills inside the bulb that create a whiter light output. Its tube of quartz glass keeps it safe from UV rays and prevents fading.

I needed additional ballasts to use with the bulbs. They don’t come with any. Fortunately, they run well with both AC and DC ballast connections.

5. Innovited 55W AC HID bundle with Slim Ballast and Xenon bulb

Innovited 55W AC HID bundle with Slim Ballast and Xenon bulb

Waterproof, Dustproof, Shockproof & 3X Brighter than Halogen Bulbs. Lasts 5X Longer. 35% Less Power Consumption.

Pros

  • The bulbs have a modern AC chipset, giving them a better performance.
  • It has a set of color and size options. Pick the one depending on your requirement and preferences.
  • You get additional AC ballasts, wiring harnesses, mounting brackets, and an instruction manual in the package.
  • There is a 1-year warranty for the bulbs and a 2-year warranty for the ballasts.

Cons

  • Some people received defective items.

As a low beam bulb set, Innovited AC HID Bulbs performs extraordinarily. We know that HID bulbs need ballasts to work. This product comes with additional pair of slim ballast of the peak quality. While it has the size of 9005, you can also check out the H11, 9006, and 9012 versions for GMC Sierra.

You can select from a number of impressive color options, including 3,000K, 4,300K, 5,000K, 6,000K, and others. The bulbs take a low wattage but provide an intensely long-ranged beam.

Aside from the ballasts, I also got a set of wiring harnesses with a plug-and-play system. For helping me with the installation, there are also two mounting brackets for ballasts. I found an installment manual too.

Because of the AC chipset of the latest Gen, the bulbs can produce a brighter light than regular HID and halogen. Their IP68 makes them last even after using them in the rain or fog.

6. SEALIGHT X2 9012/HIR2 LED Bulbs Kit

SEALIGHT X2 9012/HIR2 LED Bulbs Kit

20000LM per pair will have a 1600FT long visibility that helps you breaking through the night and spoting hazards earlier

Pros

  • The bulbs have a high lumen of 18,000 and 6,000K color.
  • For an ultra-cooling operation, their turbofans have 20,000 RPM.
  • There is a built-in CANbus that prevents error codes or flickers. You can install the bulbs within 10-minutes.
  • They have a working temperature of -104° to 176° F.

Cons

  • They do not fit some vehicle models that they should. Although, you don’t need to worry about that since they fit GMC Sierra correctly.

Another 9012 headlight that can improve the lighting of your GMC Sierra 9015 is the SEALIGHT X2 LED bulbs. Their 18,000 lumens will make sure that nothing on the asphalt remains hard to see. But fortunately, they do not glare at oncoming drivers or passersby.

The bulbs use 100W, which makes sense considering the high brightness. SEALIGHT built them to have a color temperature of 6,000K, an ideal amount.

I was wondering how the bulbs can stay cool with that extreme operation. Well, the blades of the turbofans have a surprising speed of 20,000 RPM.

However, the fans don’t make any noticeable sound. The bulbs also have an aviation aluminum body. I was able to use these bulbs for both the high beam and low beam of my GMC Sierra 2015.

I got a beam distance of 1600 feet, thanks to the 4,500 LUX light. The illumination also happens widely on the road, making it easier to see everything.

7. Xentec H11 (H8/H9) 6000K HID Xenon Bulb

Xentec H11 (H8/H9) 6000K HID Xenon Bulb

HID xenon still remain the brightest light available, 8 colors to select from.

Pros

  • Xentec added bridge ballasts and wiring harnesses to the package.
  • They have a wide range of operating temperatures.
  • The xenon gas chamber is located accurately to get an exact OEM size.

Cons

  • They are not as bright as they should with 55W.
  • The bulbs do not fit GMC Sierra 2500, 3500 2014, even though they should.

For a stunning and pleasing replacement of the stock halogen bulbs of my GMC Sierra, I tried out the Xentec H11 HID Bulb Bundle. Since you will be taking it for the low beam of your Sierra 07-13 and Sierra Denali 07-12, I recommend the 6,000K color temperature version. The other variations are not that suitable except for the 5,000K one.

You can also get a 9005, 9006, and 9012 size variation of these bulbs. These bulbs are available at a low cost. They run on around 9V to 16V and have a wattage of 55. You can operate them fine under a temperature range from -40° to 203° F.

Many HID bulbs on the market do not come with the necessary ballast. But I got both bridge ballasts and a pair of wire harnesses. Meanwhile, I can use them with other aftermarket ballasts as well.

8. Hikari 2022 HyperStar Wireless LED Bulbs

Hikari 2022 HyperStar Wireless LED Bulbs

Super-Focused Light output, Wider Beam Pattern, Better Driving Vision

Pros

  • The H11 bulbs are tailor-made for GMC, Ford, Dodge Ram, and other popular vehicles.
  • These IP68 LED bulbs are the most energy-efficient bulbs on this list, with 20,000 lumens and 32W.
  • Upon buying and using the bulb for a year, you can get a replacement for little to no cost.
  • The beam is adjustable, depending on your need.

Cons

  • Many people avoid it for its high price. But we think the product totally deserves the cost.

The LED bulbs from Hikari 2022 HyperStar package emit an intense 20,000 lumen. By using only 32W as input, these bulbs can achieve that feature. I used them as the low beams of my Sierra. There are also other sizes compatible with different GMC Sierra models.

I was thinking about how the bulbs can produce that high lumen with only 32W. Apparently, they utilize a highly advanced chip called the 2022 Acme-X. It is the pinnacle of a series of impressive chips that Hikari manufactured.

Because of Hikari’s LED upgrade programs, you can get a replacement for almost no cost if you use one of their bulbs for over a year.

These bulbs offer a color temperature of 6,000K, which is a standard rating. I was able to adjust the beam focus up to 360°. Also, the installation procedure took only 5 minutes. They have a 1:1 OEM design.

9. OPP ULITE D5S Headlight Bulbs

OPP ULITE D5S Headlight Bulbs

UP to +50% D5S Headlight Bulb, Upgrade Your D5S 35W Hid Bulb, Waterproof & shockproof

Pros

  • The bulbs have a durable stainless steel base and a tube of anti-UA glass.
  • You can see around 150 meters ahead on the road.
  • The HID bulbs only use 35W energy to run their operations.

Cons

  • While they are bright, they are not as bright as we expected from the price range.
  • They are a bit high priced for many of us.

The D5S HID bulbs from the OPP ULITE surprised me with their high price at first. But there is a reason behind why it pleased so many people. The bulbs have a meta stents base that ensures a durable construction and long-lasting service. Its 5,500-color temperature gave me something in-between daylight and Xenon white.

With a decent brightness, my nighttime journeys improved pretty well. The bulbs only consume 35W energy. OPP ULITE promised a lifespan of 3,000h of using time for them.

The brand went serious with the build-quality of these bulbs. Their stainless-steel base and anti-UA glass tube help the bulb stay okay for a long time. A combination of diamond ball and Austria plansee electrode aided in getting a better light. Meanwhile, the xenon gas inside the tube has a purity level of 99.99%.

My testing of the bulbs led me to find out that you get around 150 meters beam distance with the bulbs. Because of their IP67 level, they do not get water inside after rains or snows. They are also shockproof. Note that the bulbs will fit as the low and high beams of your GMC Sierra 1500, 2500, 3500 16-17.

10. DZG D5S LED Headlight Bulb

DZG D5S LED Headlight Bulb

Not applicable to 2016-2019 GMC sierra, High Brightness and Long Lifespan.

Pros

  • Their aviation aluminum body and 10,000 RPM fans keep them cool after prolonged usage.
  • They have a wide operating temperature.
  • Focused downward, the beams can reach up to 150 meters without blinding anyone.

Cons

  • The bulbs are not easy to install for people with lesser experience.

The final product I used is the DZG D5S LED Bulbs. Do not misunderstand for being placed in the last spot, as I really didn’t list them the order of quality. In fact, this is actually the best D5S LED bulb that I came across. The bulbs offer an overall lumen output of 7,600 that will ensure that they do well as the low and high beams of your 2016-17 GMC Sierra 1500, 2500, 3500.

The bulbs take 45W energy and come with a total conversion kit. Once I lit them up, they took only 0.015 seconds to illuminate. Thanks to their advanced heat dissipation, they work okay from -40° to 176° F.

Speaking of heat-dissipation, the bulbs have bodies of aviation-grade aluminum alloy. This alloy has high heat resistance that removes excess heat in the air. Meanwhile, the 10,000 RPM of the cooling fan can cool the bulb pretty fast.

Buying Guide

Needless to say, you cannot pick any random bulb for your GMC Sierra, even if it matches the size. The market is already full of low-graded bulbs or those that aren’t worth their cost. So, by getting one without researching enough, you may end up with one that becomes the cause of your disappointment.

For the avoidance of such situations, you can check the factors below. These are the things you need to look for, and they define how a perfect headlight bulb for GMC Sierra is.

Bulb Type

Most GMC Sierra models come with stock halogen bulbs. So, when you are replacing them, you should target the ones with better brightness and performance.

HID and LED bulbs are in most cases, provide a longer lifespan, brighter light output, and higher efficiency. Prioritize the ones with at least a 7,000+ lumen rating.

Most LED bulbs will easily achieve that. But they are also costlier. If you are going for halogen, check whether it has a durable quartz glass tube and base.

HID has a longer lifespan compared to halogen. Meanwhile, the life of LED is even higher. In the case of a set of LEDs, you should check how speedy their heat dissipation turbofans are.

Size Compatibility

Before browsing for headlight bulbs online, you should know the stock bulb sizes of your Sierra models. Since the chart will be pretty big, we aren’t adding it. But you can find one online. Be aware of the bulb sizes you require and only go for them.

Do not even proceed to check out a bulb if it has no size variation that matches your high and low beam. You will need a set of 9005, 9006, H11, 9012, or D5S bulbs. It depends on your Sierra model or year.

Construction

Every type of bulb has some kind of signature construction materials. For example, the bodies of LED bulbs are almost always of aviation-grade aluminum for better cooling.

You can find plastic ones, which are low-quality. The best HID and halogen bulbs have stainless steel bases or PVC for a durable and long-lasting life.

Color and Legality

The coloring of the light bulbs will define whether they can be legally used on your GMC Sierra or not. Currently, a warm and white color range of 3,000K to 6,500K is allowed by the USA laws.

Any lower or higher will be too red or blue and illegal. Our suggestion is 6,000K, which is the Xenon white.

Beam Patterns from your GMC Sierra Headlights

Whether the beam is focused downward or not may save you from potentially getting pulled over. Light bulbs that glare on the eyes of oncoming traffic is not legal.

According to the law, your headlights should also help you see at least 50 to 100 meters ahead of your vehicle. Many bulbs come with adjustable beam patterns for this reason.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is LED or HID Better for Headlights?

You cannot simply label LED or HID better than the other. Yes, LED bulbs usually come with a higher lumen level. However, the housing they will be into defines their performance too.

HID works really well on projector housing, while LED on reflector housing. We admit that LEDs have higher efficiency and lifespan. In the end, it comes down to the built quality of individual products.

Is H11 the Same As 9012?

While both H11 and 9012 are for the low beams of different GMC Sierra models, they are not interchangeable. You cannot even do it with an adaptor. They don’t have the exact size and aren’t optically similar either.

What Headlight Bulb Does a 2014 GMC Sierra Take?

GMC Sierra 2014 uses 9012 as both high and low beam bulbs and 5202 as the fog lights. The same size is for its 2015 version.

What is the brightest headlight bulb for a truck?

The most powerful headlight bulbs for a truck are the SuperBright LED bulbs, which are rated to produce up to 50 times more light than regular incandescent lights. They are usually priced higher than regular LED bulbs, but they are worth the price for those who want to increase the brightness of their headlights without compromising their style.

How many lumens are perfect for GMC Sierra headlight bulb?

According to the manufacturer, the best GMC Sierra headlight bulbs come with 1000-3000 lumen, which is enough to illuminate your road ahead clearly.

Final Note

We often see people get really hyped by the flashy advertisement of a set of bulbs and get really upset later when they do not live up to their expectations.

Make sure that the bulbs actually hold all the things that they promise. Some of them with high lumen may fail to deliver it. The same goes for fitting or installment.

If you are new to automotive terms or haven't bought any headlamps before, you can get the help of your mechanic. Headlight bulbs should be a one-time purchase that you can forget about for many years to come. So, you may need to spend a bit high sometimes for a long-lasting and better service.

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