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EmmaRoid

Headlight Bulbs

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As we seem to be in a practical mood and I am bent on starting a particularly boring thread, where do we stand on headlight bulbs when OE fitment is traditional halogen bulb?

1) cheapo from the motor fsctors

2) branded normal (bosch/osram/Philips)

3) +50%/+100% bulbs (silver star/extreme vision/night breaker)

4) dubiously legal HID kit (personally I have projector headlamps so I could probably get away with it)

Mine blow with depressing regularity at inopportune times, like a quarter of the way into a 200 mile night journey. I've tried options 1 to 3.

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Option 2

Mine have been in for +5 years, they came with the car.

If yours are blowing then it's either a bad connection, over voltage or over heating.

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Option 2

Mine have been in for +5 years, they came with the car.

If yours are blowing then it's either a bad connection, over voltage or over heating.

This time I'm going to take the bulb holders out and give them a damn good seeing too. The male spades are easy to get at but the female connectors are a bit trickier. You need to do more than just blast them with wd40.

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Motor factors are fine. Whatever you do don't go to Halfords. They have something like a 1000% markup.

BTW the 150% bulbs run hotter to give the extra light which gives them a shorter life.

HIDs don't work well unless you've got projector lenses, which will probably have HIDs installed from the factory anyway.

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As we seem to be in a practical mood and I am bent on starting a particularly boring thread, where do we stand on headlight bulbs when OE fitment is traditional halogen bulb?

1) cheapo from the motor fsctors

2) branded normal (bosch/osram/Philips)

3) +50%/+100% bulbs (silver star/extreme vision/night breaker)

4) dubiously legal HID kit (personally I have projector headlamps so I could probably get away with it)

Mine blow with depressing regularity at inopportune times, like a quarter of the way into a 200 mile night journey. I've tried options 1 to 3.

2. Cheap enough (so long as not Halfords). 1 will break early as not robust. 3. will burn out early. 4 sounds pointless - if you can't see then either slow down, clean the windscreen or get cataract surgery.

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Just noticed you've got projector lenses. Worth trying the HIDs I suppose. Costs a few quid though and I'm not convinced normal halogens are too dim really.

I'm not mad keen on the idea unless someone really sold it to me.

I'm hoping to christen my aldi dremel.

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I put HID in a nineties era vehicle and they are pretty good. Did the obligatory scour of marque specific internet fora for a set that got decent results. Sailed through MOT but the place I use pretty much put everything as advisory as they know there's no work in it for them having ordered parts prematurely once only for me to take the car back to do the work.

Otherwise I bulk buy from Euro Crap Parts and they seem to have been perfectly ok but I don't really drive any of vehicles they go in for daily use.

Not to state the obvious but you aren't touching the bulb during installation? Another thing to look at is the security of the overall headlamp unit if it's lose and vibrates it can speed up bulb failure.

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I'm not mad keen on the idea unless someone really sold it to me. I'm hoping to christen my aldi dremel.

You've bought tools without asking?

Too late now but the Milwaukee M12 cordless rotary tool would have been the right choice.

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I've done 14,000 miles in my (now 134,000 mile) Mondeo and in that time not one bulb has blown. Which is good I suppose as changing headlight bulbs is probably going to turn out to be a pain in the ****, and rather than use nice easy H4 bulbs it uses one H1 and one H7 on each side. And I don't think I've got any H7s.

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I don't think my last car blew a bulb in the 5 years I had it.

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I use these http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MTEC-H7-12v-55w-Super-White-Xenon-Class-Upgrade-Bulbs-/371268133227?hash=item56714e216bI'm not sure they are street legal :ph34r: the light output is a lot better than standard halogens. I have a Saab so my lights are on all the time and they generally last about a year.

If the bulbs are blowing at a rate of knots it could be that when you're fitting them you are getting contamination on the glass which can cause a hot spot and premature failure. I always ware a clean pair of rubber gloves when replacing mine.

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Guest eight

The ones on our Fiat are awful no matter what I do - I guess because the car is so small that there simply isn't the distance to get the beam out very far ahead. Seriously it is so bad that sometimes I turn them off and then on again - while driving! - to make sure they are actually working! It's very disconcerting seeing your own car's shadow being cast in the lights of the vehicle behind.

Also there is a known problem with the adjustment motors, there is an adjuster ball that is clasped by plastic "fingers", these become brittle and break, and it only takes one finger to fail and the whole headlamp unit is a write off. Obviously no s/h available as they all do the same thing, but fortunately you can get them from Poland for about £60 for both sides.

If I ever came up with a easy and foolproof solution for this I'd become a minor legend in the Fiat Seicento modding community.

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The ones on our Fiat are awful no matter what I do - I guess because the car is so small that there simply isn't the distance to get the beam out very far ahead. Seriously it is so bad that sometimes I turn them off and then on again - while driving! - to make sure they are actually working! It's very disconcerting seeing your own car's shadow being cast in the lights of the vehicle behind.

Also there is a known problem with the adjustment motors, there is an adjuster ball that is clasped by plastic "fingers", these become brittle and break, and it only takes one finger to fail and the whole headlamp unit is a write off. Obviously no s/h available as they all do the same thing, but fortunately you can get them from Poland for about £60 for both sides.

If I ever came up with a easy and foolproof solution for this I'd become a minor legend in the Fiat Seicento modding community.

Sounds like a 3D printing opportunity.

You sometimes find if headlights seem anaemic that the alternator's not as good as it should be.

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If you have projectors then a set of 35W HIDS is the answer. 4000k is a reasonable colour.

You could say anything for shits and giggles and people would believe it. I know it can be done, I know it'll work quite well, but I don't know anyone who's actually done it or if I'm going to be blowing HID bulbs at regular intervals.

I've done 14,000 miles in my (now 134,000 mile) Mondeo and in that time not one bulb has blown. Which is good I suppose as changing headlight bulbs is probably going to turn out to be a pain in the ****, and rather than use nice easy H4 bulbs it uses one H1 and one H7 on each side. And I don't think I've got any H7s.

I seem to blow headlight bulbs, H7 at the rate of at least 1 a year but also W5W side lights and whatever are in the rear numberplate lights are buggers for going too.

You've bought tools without asking?

Too late now but the Milwaukee M12 cordless rotary tool would have been the right choice.

I'm confident enough in my sexuality to buy tools without asking now. The aldi version with cord was £13 not £120. From all the previous spanner discussion, this is a good starter buy at the moment http://www.halfords.com/motoring-travel/tools-diy/socket-sets/halfords-advanced-professional-170-piece-socket-ratchet-spanner-setfor the price of about 5 snap on combo spanners.

I put HID in a nineties era vehicle and they are pretty good. Did the obligatory scour of marque specific internet fora for a set that got decent results. Sailed through MOT but the place I use pretty much put everything as advisory as they know there's no work in it for them having ordered parts prematurely once only for me to take the car back to do the work.

Otherwise I bulk buy from Euro Crap Parts and they seem to have been perfectly ok but I don't really drive any of vehicles they go in for daily use.

Not to state the obvious but you aren't touching the bulb during installation? Another thing to look at is the security of the overall headlamp unit if it's lose and vibrates it can speed up bulb failure.

ITs is worth mentioning, I am aware of not touching the glass directly and try my best. I don't need any tools to change a bulb but what is not easy is getting the bulb and its holder into the headlight assembly without clanging it off the entry hole. Clipping it in is another bind.

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I use these http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MTEC-H7-12v-55w-Super-White-Xenon-Class-Upgrade-Bulbs-/371268133227?hash=item56714e216bI'm not sure they are street legal :ph34r: the light output is a lot better than standard halogens. I have a Saab so my lights are on all the time and they generally last about a year.

If the bulbs are blowing at a rate of knots it could be that when you're fitting them you are getting contamination on the glass which can cause a hot spot and premature failure. I always ware a clean pair of rubber gloves when replacing mine.

As above, I try not too. I would have thought 55w bulbs would be ok but if it ain't CE marked/ type approved it ain't legal and I bet you know that. :whistles:

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You should buy the retro toy/game Operation off ebay, and play it, in order to improve dexterity.

Edit to add: depending on how straighforward it is to remove, if it's tricky to either locate the bulb or get the rear covers to go back on and lock watertight, taking the whole light unit out can sometimes be a better option.

One benefit with cheaper motor factor bulbs is put them in new as a pair then if one goes change them as a pair whilst you're in a bulb changing mood.

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As above, I try not too. I would have thought 55w bulbs would be ok but if it ain't CE marked/ type approved it ain't legal and I bet you know that. :whistles:

Yeah, I bet he buys cheap electricals online without a fitted UK plug. I hope the shop he bought his mountain bike from made sure they fitted a nice big bell on the handlebars.

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Yeah, I bet he buys cheap electricals online without a fitted UK plug. I hope the shop he bought his mountain bike from made sure they fitted a nice big bell on the handlebars.

I like to live on the edge.

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I like to live on the edge.

I spent 3 months living on Bono. Not much fun. That annoying prat Geldof kept ringing for a whinge.

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You could say anything for shits and giggles and people would believe it. I know it can be done, I know it'll work quite well, but I don't know anyone who's actually done it or if I'm going to be blowing HID bulbs at regular intervals.

Well, I've stuck a set of 55 watt HIDS in an Alfa 159 which had projectors, and while the light is fantastic, they are a bit fierce. I've also retrofitted projectors to an Alfa 156 and this has transformed the lighting - these are 35W HIDS which I think is a reasonable compromise. I am not that keen on sticking HIDS in standard lights, they chuck a lot of light out, but it is all a bit unfocused.

In 3 years on the 159 one HID has popped, after 9 hours driving across Europe with the dipped beams on. None have popped in the 156 in 2 years, 30,000 miles.

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