How to choose the perfect headlight bulbs for Kia Sorento?


Kia Sorento Headlight Bulb Size Chart

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2020 Kia Sorento ChartBuy Bulb on Amazon
Fog Light Bulb Front
Headlight Bulb High Beam
Headlight Bulb Low Beam
Turn Signal Light Bulb Front
License Plate Light Bulb
Parking Light Bulb
Turn Signal Light Bulb Rear
Side Marker Light Bulb Front
Side Marker Light Bulb Rear
Tail Light Bulb Inner
Tail Light Bulb Outer
Brake Light Bulb Outer
Back Up Light Bulb
Glove Box Light Bulb
Trunk or Cargo Area Light
Dome Light Bulb

The Kia Sorento is a very popular SUV with family buyers. It is one of the cheapest in its segment, it offers a lot of space inside, comfortable ride quality and well-appointed interior.

The Korean company even paid attention to the front headlights, which illuminate the road well, especially in HID-guise.

Kia Sorento headlight bulbs are very expensive to replace, and they tend to fail at random times. This leaves you in the dark when walking towards your car (or walking away from it if you leave your lights on).

There really isn’t much that can be done other than simply taking this into consideration when buying a Kia .

The reason why these headlights are so expensive to replace is because of the design. The headlight unit used on this car consists of all kinds of little parts that are very expensive, for example, it has four bulbs that are all individual.

The Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe headlights use the same type of design, and therefore their headlights are just as expensive to replace.

Another issue with this type of design is that you can’t really do a cheap fix for this problem. For example, if one bulb goes out on these headlight units , they all must be replaced because changing one may cause another to burn out prematurely .

So if you’re having issues with the lights in your Kia Sorento or Hyundai Santa Fe , it’s going to be an expensive repair. Replacing the whole assembly is going to cost upwards of $300-450 dollars depending on where you get it done since you need a professional who knows what they’re doing.

If you think you can DIY this to save some money, there are companies such as Xenon Depot which sell replacement headlight units that need only the halogen bulbs replaced. However, these types of repairs usually void your warranty if it is still valid and they don’t always work .

Since the Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe headlights use a different design than other cars , there really isn’t too much you can do about the price either. This type of design is expensive to produce, which leads to expensive headlights at the end-user level for the consumer. Furthermore, these headlights burn out frequently compared with lights on other cars because they have 4 separate bulbs inside them where most cars have one big bulb with various separate pieces of housing around it .

The headlight designs of the Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe are notably distinct compared to many other vehicles, which directly impacts the cost and maintenance aspects for owners. These unique designs, while visually appealing and potentially offering better lighting performance, are inherently more expensive to produce.

This higher production cost inevitably leads to a steeper price point for the end-user when purchasing replacement headlights. Additionally, the complexity of these headlights contributes to their frequency of burnouts. Unlike the more common headlight design that typically consists of a single large bulb surrounded by various housing components, the Sorento and Santa Fe headlights feature four separate bulbs within each unit.

If you are someone who likes to drive at night, the best thing you can do is spend a few extra bucks on Xenon or LED light bulbs . These light sources last longer and tend to burn brighter than halogen bulbs , which in turn makes your headlights look brighter. If you upgrade your standard halogen headlight lamps (Sorento & Santa Fe) to high beam Xenon/LEDs, this will make your lights appear much brighter. This will give the impression that your car’s headlights are working fine even if one or two of them burn out.

You need only replace the burned-out headlight with an LED unit (if one goes out). The LED bulb will burn brighter than the OEM halogen bulbs , which means it may blind oncoming traffic.

You can install Xenon HID kits yourself to replace your stock headlights , but this is not recommended for novice do-it-yourselfers . Replacing headlight units has its risks, and if you are not very good with electronics or wiring then you should seek help from a professional who knows what they’re doing since there are many things that can go wrong. Also, installation of any aftermarket parts to your Kia Sorento or Hyundai Santa Fe voids warranty , so be aware of this before buying anything.

Other than that, another thing you can do if you want to save some money on your Kia Sorento headlight replacement is to simply check out eBay for a new one.

After all, there might be someone else in your area who’s selling their undamaged light assembly at an affordable price. That way you can get rid of the problem without spending too much money yourself.

There is always a room for improvement in this category, especially for owners of Sorento’s with normal headlights with halogen bulbs. In this guide, we will talk about ways to improve the lighting on your Sorento.

How to find the right headlight bulbs for Kia Sorento?

Through the years, Kia has changed the bulbs in the headlight units of the Sorento. This means that the best way to know what kind of bulbs your Sorento has is by checking in the owner’s manual or asking at the nearest Kia dealer. Here are some of the light bulbs that can come with your vehicle.

HID Xenon headlights

This is one of the best options when it comes to headlight bulbs, so you should consider choosing this kind if your Sorento has this type of unit. They use xenon gas instead of halogen gases and mercury vapor for producing powerful beams of light which don’t require much energy to run either. They also have a longer life span than regular lights meaning they will probably still be working in 50,000 miles after you install them. However, these are very expensive, especially the kits that include two lamps at around $300 or more at most retailers. You can buy these online but then you’ll have to make sure you shop at a legitimate retailer.

HID bulbs for Sorento Headlights

The HID or high-intensity discharge headlight bulbs are also very efficient, but they have their flaws due to the ballasts that come with them. These need time to warm up before they can provide enough light and then they become dimmer as time goes on even if the power is turned off. This means that your lights will take longer to warm up in winter conditions so you might not be able to see pedestrians right away especially if it’s raining too. But there are still many Sorento owners who use this type of bulb because it offers more visibility despite having drawbacks when compared to other types of headlight bulbs.

That said, we still have a guide for you, but take it with a grain of salt (some models may overlap):

  • Kia Sorento 2003-2006 model year – H7 bulbs for both low beam and high beam;
  • Kia Sorento 2007-2009 model year – H11B bulb for the low beam, H7 bulb for the high beam;
  • Kia Sorento 2011-2013 model year – H11 bulb for the low beam, H1 bulb for the high beam;
  • Kia Sorento 2015-2015 model year – H7 bulbs for both low beam and high beam.

Models with HID headlights (also called Xenon) have different bulbs. Check in the owner’s manual for these bulbs.

How to upgrade the headlights of the Kia Sorento?

The Kia Sorento headlight is a well-known problem among the SUV’s owners. In most cases, the fault lies with a bad electrical connection because of a corroded bulb base, but sometimes it’s just a defective bulb or socket.

The common “TOM” error message for this car means that there is something wrong with either the left OR right halogen lamp, but not both together.

It does not mean that your left AND right headlights are out! If you have one working headlight and one faulty bulb, you will get this message. You could swap the two bulbs around to see if that fixes things – if so then simply replace whichever one was causing the problem.

Let’s be clear – you have a bad bulb, not a bad headlight assembly.

The faulty part of this problem is definitely on the outside of the car, but you will have some work to do around the headlights in order to fix it.

In order to keep headlights in good shape, when replacing your broken bulb with a new one, pay attention to the manufacturer.

We recommend always buying halogen bulbs from reputable manufacturers, as these not only shine brighter, but they also last longer. In other words, if you cheap out when buying bulbs, you’ll lose money in the long run.

If your Sorento isn’t equipped with HID bulbs, happily you can convert your existing headlights into more powerful HID ones (also known as Xenon).

You will need HID bulbs and a conversion kit because these bulbs use different electricity. The price may be higher than normal halogen bulbs, but the quality of the light will be higher and the bulbs themselves will last for a very long time.

We think that for a vehicle such as the Sorento, these are a very good investment.

Another alternative is LED bulbs. These bulbs produce the brightest light of them all, and they are also the most efficient. However, they produce light in a different way and often don’t work great with the existing headlight design.

Sure, new premium vehicles come with LED headlights, but those are specifically designed to make the most out of LED bulbs (and they don’t even come with bulbs, but with LED matrix lights).

Even though LED lights don’t bring big improvements in the performance department, they still have some advantages, like support for different color temperature and even full RGB support.

If you want customizable lights, there is no better option than LEDs.

With all that said, the best option is full aftermarket headlights. There are a lot of designs to choose from and they will not only make your Sorento look better from the outside, but they illuminate the road much better as well.

Most of them are HID-ready headlights and we can confirm that they make a big difference in the middle of the night. They do cost more than just installing a new bulb, but if you travel a lot through the night, they are absolutely worth it.

2007 Kia Sportage Bulb Wattage

Light Bulb – Wattage

Exterior Lights

  • Headlights (High/Low) – 55 / 55 W
  • Front turn signal / position lights – 28 / 8
  • Front fog lights – 27
  • Front side marker – 5
  • Rear turn signal lights – 27
  • Stop and tail lights – 27 / 8
  • Back-up lights – 18
  • License plate lights – 5
  • High mounted stop light – 5
  • Rear side marker – 5

Interior Lights

  • Room lamp – 10
  • Map lamp – 10
  • Rear cargo area lamp – 10
  • Door courtesy lamp – 5
  • Vanity mirror lamp – 3

See Also:

Ready for Winter: A Step-by-Step Guide to Prepping Your Kia Sorento for the Wintry Months

P0161 Code For Kia Sorento – Meaning, Causes, Symptoms, & Fixes

A Guide to Kia Sorento Dash Warning Lights (Symbols, Meaning & How to Respond)

See More

Kia Sorento headlight bulb    Kia Sorento bulb size    Kia Sorento bulb size chart

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3 thoughts on “How to choose the perfect headlight bulbs for Kia Sorento?”

  1. Looking for the best LED conversion kit for low bean headlight bulbs for my 2019 KIA Sorento. I bought Headlight Experts H7 LED bulbs but the lighting pattern for night driving is substandard with 4000 lumens and my wife is not happy since she does the night driving and I leave for Florida next month. HELP ME PLEASE!!!!!


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