HID Upgrade for Vehicle Headlights

Submitted: Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 01:17
ThreadID: 91795 Views:6072 Replies:7 FollowUps:16
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Gday, just a quick enquiry as to whether anyone has "upgraded" from factory to after-market HID headlights ( as seen on ebay etc. ie: H4 HID Hi & Lo Kit 55W)?
They look comparitively cheaper than a spotty upgrade, but will they negate HID lighting driving lights or allow me to purchase non-HID driving-lights for amuch the same result? Any feedback welcome.
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Reply By: Member - Benno - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 01:34

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 01:34
Sorry, i should note it's an MN Triton but I'm not sure that will make any differences on upgrades.
AnswerID: 477467

Reply By: Member - Walter H (WA) - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 01:55

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 01:55
G'day Benno,I did buy a HID upgrade kit of ebay and i am more then happy with the Kit, but it pays to spend a little more and buy the better quality kits as some of the ballast are made in china as opposed to the US or Japan, and apparently the kits that have ballast from china wont last.But all in all they are a good product and work well with the IPF HID's spot light that I run, also worth noting is that I had heard that they don't like Corrugations which i thought might be a load of S#%.As last year i travelled the CSR and i was keeping my headlights on for safety reasons and both HID globes in my H4 driving lights blew,so that was that was a lesson learnt on my behalf,so in future i wont turn my lights on very badly corrugated roads except when the sun go's down.

Cheers 4 now
Happy motoring
AnswerID: 477468

Follow Up By: Member - Benno - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 02:36

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 02:36
Thanks Wal, that's good info to get back.
Did you notice whether you could have had driving lights without HID's Vs. the HID H4's or would the reverse have been true (Ie. Standard headlights Vs.HID driving lights?
FollowupID: 752693

Follow Up By: Ross M - Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 15:35

Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 15:35
G'day Walter H
I don't think your lights on or off would have made any difference.
There is no filament to fail in an HID lamp. I would suspect you have some severe undamped vibes happening at the lights if the conditions physically damaged the HID lamps.
FollowupID: 752813

Reply By: vk1dx - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 08:11

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 08:11
Hi Benno

If you do get them please make sure they are the correct ones. When the wrong ones are installed or they are adjusted incorrectly they can very easily dazzle or momentarily blind oncoming drivers.

Personally I they are a real pain in the neck.

AnswerID: 477470

Follow Up By: Ray - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 08:46

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 08:46
I must agree with Phil. They are a pain in the you know what and are they realy an upgrade or just a fad people get?
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:38

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:38
Don't vehicles have to have self levelling suspension & headlight washers for HID to be legal?
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Follow Up By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:40

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:40
Most sincerely agree they must be adjusted correctly, but if your original lights were correctly aligned you will be OK with just a simplle installation..... is it a fad I dont think so once you have them fitted you wont want to go back to standard lighting.
Dont go any higher than 6000k globes as the 'flare' back (as in light reflection) from road signs can be annoying.
I'm going to cut & paste a conversation I had with Holdger (hidlightsdownunder) only yesterday re radio interference..... some thing I wasnt aware of prior to purchase..... but I'm living with it.

Best read from the 'bottom up'

High beam are 70w as opposed the your 35w low beams. More power means more aggressive power consumption and feedback

Sent from my iPhone

On 10/02/2012, at 1:17 PM, "Tony" wrote:

Thanks for the reply..... well that is a bummer .....guess I'm going to have to learn to live with it, any idea why it only happens on hi beam.... is it because with all 4 ballasts firing up it becomes all to much?.... interesting turning the driving lights on which are HID doesnt increase or change the 'interference'
Thanks again
----- Original Message -----
From: Lightsdownunder
To: Tony
Sent: Friday, February 10, 2012 12:36 PM
Subject: Re: Question for you

Tony you will get interference on the AM band as it's very close to the frequency that the hid work at. It states that on our overview page, even ferrite core suppressors don't seem to help much

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On 09/02/2012, at 10:27 PM, "Tony" wrote:

Hi Holger,
Was probably back early August last year I purchased two (hi & lo beam) HID conversion kits for my new 200 series.
All installed & working very well....... one question though when driving & turning on high beam (lo beam ok) & I have the radio on the AM band I am getting 'interference' through the radio.... there is no 'interference' when on the FM band.
Hoping you can shed some light on this problem?
FollowupID: 752709

Follow Up By: Stu & "Bob" - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 10:04

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 10:04
G'day Tony,
I had the a similar problem with 'interference' through the radio(s) when I installed a pair of HID spotlights. The ballasts were very noisy up to the point that my Codan HF was not usable while the spotlights were on. I was also getting interference through the am band on the car radio.

The lights worked very well, but I was disappointed with the associated "noise" and the seller was not interested in my problem.
I ended up selling the lights locally, and put on a set of halogen lights.

Until someone can guarantee me (preferably in writing) that their HID spotlights will not cause RF interference, I will stay with halogen lighting.

FollowupID: 752712

Follow Up By: vk1dx - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 21:00

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 21:00
Tony and Stu

That raises an interesting point. If those lights cause interference to radio communications, ie AM radio reception, or any short wave services as well, then they may well be illegal under ACMA regulations. Regardless of what the RTA authorities say. Just imagine sitting next to an RFDS vehicle and putting them effectively off the air. I think a damned big hammer would come down if anything went wrong.

I may ask ACMA one day if that is the case. We had a pay TV set top box from the old Galaxy mod that was declared illegal due to the fact that it interfered with HF communications. Albeit my own comms it was still interfering with the comms and was modified by Galaxy to stop the interference.

This is another reason not to get them. I may have troubles using my HF with them on. And if it's an emergency I would certainly feel like using a bomb on them.

Definitely not getting them. But that's my opinion.

Stu: If you are interested ring ACMA and ask to talk to a Radio Inspector about radio interference.


FollowupID: 752752

Follow Up By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 22:53

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 22:53
Stu & Phil,
I have a Codan HF radio & I have no operational interference when the HID lights are on weather it be lo, hi beam or all driving lights on.
As Holdger said in my comms with him (earlier post on this topic) in my case at least it is the 70w high beams causing the interference the lo beam & driving lights are 35w.
As he explained it is the frequency that the lights operate at that cause the problem.... higher the wattage the greater the 'problem'. Keep in mind though only when I go to high beam do I get a problem, switch on driving lights NO difference in interference.
If these lights (HID) were that much of a problem they would have been outlawed long ago. Would like to know vehicles that come std with HID how do they get around the interference ..... cant see Benz & Lexus drivers putting up with interference on the AM band.....but then they may only listen to FM & iPods
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Follow Up By: Muntoo - Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 02:34

Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 02:34
Its obvious someone doesnt like HID lights.

I have just stopped selling HID gear, and one of the products i sold were , inline static filters. Worked exceptionally well. Never had any interference with mine, and never had a complaint back either.

Sold them for $15 each. Interest wasnt great so i stopped selling them.

Sold over 500 kits in last 12 months. Only sold 8 inline filters. Obviously the static doesnt affect many.

I myself, personal opinion, chose not to convert my headlights to HID only my driving lights. If you have seperate hi and low beam, then i recommend doing just the hibeam.

Otherwise, and there is no getting around it, HID low beam is dangerous for other road users. I've tried many different things, and all in all the glare and scatter is still too unpredicatable and dangerous.

Its just plain selfishness. Leave the ultra bright lights for hibeam.
FollowupID: 752763

Follow Up By: vk1dx - Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 07:28

Sunday, Feb 12, 2012 at 07:28
I think I will leave you guys to it. To those who get interference I say call the ACMA. To those who want use then just expect the flashes to remind you that you are annoying someone. To those whose cars are legal with them and the job is done properly then please keep them adjusted properly. To those who do it illegally well you are not worth the time.

Yesterday we went to the 4WD show in Canberra. We didn't even look at any driving lights. But we got a quote on a Conqueror and we got a quote for a brush bar with side steps/rock sliders and got a new attachment for the air hose and got a wheel cover and had a meal with a whole bunch of mates with a few beers and I am sunburnt and buggered. A good day and we are not broke. Yet!!!


FollowupID: 752768

Reply By: Ozhumvee - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:54

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 09:54
Retrofitting HID's to existing headlights is illegal, unless the vehicle is supplied with them originally and has height adjustment and headlight washers. Fitting HID's to driving lights is ok though.
Some good quality reflectors work well and others don't, the weird shaped reflectors on some vehicles give way too much glare sideways.
Once you have had HID's you will never want anything else the difference is like night and day with the added bonus that power consumption is much lower than standard H4 globes especially on high beam.
AnswerID: 477482

Follow Up By: Member - Benno - Monday, Feb 13, 2012 at 01:23

Monday, Feb 13, 2012 at 01:23
Well, I never thought there would be as much going-o as seeing the HID ugrade question
Awesome information back for me and a great wake-up call with legality of my normal headlights.
Thanks for all reponses
FollowupID: 752857

Reply By: gbc - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 12:02

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 12:02
I've never seen a set of retrofitted hid headlights that don't upset other drivers. They are illegal, as is me showing them my well set up hid spotlights, but hey if its good for the GOOSE.....
Prepare to be flashed all night long if you are mad enough to fit them.
No manufacturers fit a high beam hid as a stand alone - bi zenon is servo operated to change the focal length of the low beam.
AnswerID: 477485

Follow Up By: Member - Bucky - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 14:35

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 14:35
I do not agree with all of your statement.

Adjustment of the headlights is the key there.
I run aftermarket H4 HID's in the Patrol, and find them brilliant, on high beam.
On low beam thay are just another light, and/or as one of the boys at work said,
"they are bloody hopeless" .

I fitted HID H1's to my driving lights, AND WOW DID THAT MAKE A DIFFERENCE, !
Going to work in the mornings, I cop all the Deaslination Construction workers heading into Wonthaggi, and I do not get a chance to fire them. They are the lucjky ones there !

I now have other issues since drowning them, a few times, on a trip to Cape york last year.
But that is a different story.
I will get another set from Ebay.

Shame they are not waterproof though.

Cheers Bucky
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Follow Up By: gbc - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 20:27

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 20:27
Nice, yours must be the first patrol retrofitted with different focal length low beam hids that didn't give everyone the bleep s. All the ones up my way do. Take a flying guess at why the lenses need to be washed as part of the transport regs. Light scatter is atrocious ........... ah buggerit - read this.


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Follow Up By: Crackles - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 23:25

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 23:25
Intresting article & goes some way to answer many of my issues when I tried them.
Loved his analogy which explained why the light pattern is so poor. "If you go and change the light source, you've done the equivalent of putting on somebody else's eyeglasses: You can probably make them fit on your face OK, but you won't see properly." :-))
Cheers Craig.............
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Reply By: Crackles - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 14:41

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 14:41
Unless the Triton has electric headlight adjustment dont bother. For around town I found they put out too much light & annoyed other drivers. I had them in my Jeep & after a while the high low switching started to stick on high beam which was a PITA. Also the focal point/reflector shape weren't compatible with the quality kit I bought so had alot of stray light shooting off in all directions.
The key problem with having so much light on high beam is when you drop back to low you eyes struggle to adjust. Also at twilight the HID's white color is actually harder to see than a standard QI.
My recomendation after using them for 3 years is to fit quality QI globes in the standard lights & a get a pair of 55W HID driving lights. I just fitted a set of Power-vision driving lights which are very impressive.
Cheers Craig...................
AnswerID: 477491

Follow Up By: Member - Walter H (WA) - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 20:53

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 20:53
G'day Benno................,as for the difference from standard to HID, well I started with Hella H4's and they are a brilliant light by them selfs, but after fitting the HID's il never go back to standard lighting as there is no comparison,but i must be honest in saying that they did take a little time to get use to,and like others have said adjustment of the lights is the key and i only run the 5000k globes as they are more of a white light and siut my vision,but as far as interference with radios im yet to have any problems.And just or the record I have never been flashed and I do a lot of night driving including leaving home at 4.30 in the morning to start work.As for it being a fad i doubt it, as its relatively new technology and my guess is that in years to come car manufacturers will have them as standard equipment as some European sports cars are all ready using them.

FollowupID: 752751

Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 23:39

Saturday, Feb 11, 2012 at 23:39
I agree with walter got them in 100 series & ml triton aswell massy tractor, I only use philips globs there "no1"...just luv um.... but i also have a good set of spots (if buying spots buy the best you can)
cheers nick
Cheers Nick b

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Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Monday, Feb 13, 2012 at 14:53

Monday, Feb 13, 2012 at 14:53
Replacement globes for lights on cars is tightly regulated. All headlamps, side lamps, tail lamps etc have the lamps certified with a specified globe. If you replace the globe with a HID or led type globe then the lamp ceases to conform with the relevant ADR. The effect of this makes your vehicle unroadworthy. Your vehicle is liable to be issued with a defect notice.

For details see ADR-51 - Site Link

ADR 51—Filament Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the dimensional and photometric requirements for filament lamps which ensure interchangeability and correct functioning when installed in a lamp unit.
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