Last week my brother-in-law with his Land Rover (or Range Rover ?) bought a pair (he only needed one but, like you, felt replacing a pair would be better) of (ordinary) replacement headlamp bulbs from Halfords only to realise they were the wrong type. Main dealer only had one Xenon in stock. So, without any need for embarrasment, he made do with just the one for £150 - which seems cheap compared with yours !!
Gosh. I had no idea they were so expensive. The Xenon bulbs in my 1998 SL are still going strong with a blue/white light, though they don’t get much use so I presume the deterioration is use related rather than age.
A friend recently had to pay over £800 for a Jaguar headlamp, and that was much cheaper than the main dealer. I hate to think how much these fancy led screen dashboard displays will cost when they fail.
Yep. But not everything has become more expensive. For instance, I remember buying a Finlux 24" (I think!) colour TV back in the early eighties. Cost £500 IIRC. My son-in-law has just bought a 55" Sony TV for £600. Allowing for inflation, those items have become MUCH cheaper.
HID (high intensity discharge) lamps can give a near-natural white colour spectrum at high conversion efficiency, and were adopted by some car manufacturers. I used myself at home about 13 years ago for a crystal chandelier where I wanted a bright point-source white lamp much more energy-efficient than standard tungsten halogen lamps. I believe life is a function of both on burning time and frequency of ignition, and it is well known that colour can shift towards end of life.
These days of course LEDs have developed to the point where they offer similar efficiency, and are (Or can be) less costly. They don’t change in colour, And have long rated lives - however whether they achieve that depends a lot upon whether they are mounted with adequate cooling, and on having good regulation of voltage/current.
I wouldn’t change both at once, I’d change them as they die.
My car is 12 years old. One of the front xenon bulbs died at about 7 years old and, when I changed it, I also thought the same way, to change both, for the other should go hand in hand, I thought; but at the dealership I was told it wasn’t worth changing until it died. And, indeed, it still works at full capacity more than 5 years later. I’m touching wood, because, indeed, they are not cheap at all, although mine are in the order of about 250 €.
You can buy conventional halogen bulbs that have a bit of Xenon in there to give a bluish-looking light but they aren’t any brighter than conventional halogen. Whereas proper Xenon lights are a lot brighter.