Advice on vehicle headlight bulbs

namzsteve

Expert Member
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Oct 12, 2012
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1,270
#1
Hi people, I need some advice on headlight bulbs. I replaced the h11 low and high beam halogen bulbs of my 2014 fiesta, it has the project housing headlights. I bought the bulbs at midas and replaced them during the day and didn't test them in the dark thinking everything was fine.
Yesterday driving home in the night, I drove through a dark area and noticed there is really no light output

Low beam
Screen Shot 2018-04-16 at 2.53.40 PM.jpg

High beam
Screen Shot 2018-04-16 at 2.53.28 PM.jpg

Surely this is not normal.
Can someone please share some knowledge on this.
 

znh

Well-Known Member
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Feb 10, 2011
Messages
350
#4
The issue could be that the beam is aimed too low.
The angle of the beam can be adjusted.

Or are you claiming that the bulbs are not bright enough? Phillips nightbreakers have a nice white light, but will not make any difference to the visibility if the angle is too low
 

Geoff.D

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Aug 4, 2005
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7,076
#5
There are regulations that specify the maximum rating of car light bulbs.
One issue I have noticed though is that it is possible to install bulbs incorrectly, which will lead to low visibility, so make sure the bulbs are correctly oriented in the fittings, and that they are properly seated as well.
After that it could be headlight adjustments being incorrect. But that should be unlikely, unless you removed the fittings completely for some reason.

There should be a section somewhere in the car manual about how to go about making adjustments to the settings. Sounds easy but not alwys the case.
 

The_Traveller

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#7
As znh suggested, get your beams aligned first and take it from there . Go to a dealer as they have the aligning mirror thingy but I would ask them to raise it a few mm higher just to be safe. Too much higher will blind on coming vehicles so be wary of that.
 

Lord Farquart

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Nov 27, 2012
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#8
You were not convinced by the salesman to buy LED or something funny? Lots of people replace with LED, thinking it will give better light. In fact it only looks good from the outside and blinds oncoming traffic.
 

namzsteve

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#9
As znh suggested, get your beams aligned first and take it from there . Go to a dealer as they have the aligning mirror thingy but I would ask them to raise it a few mm higher just to be safe. Too much higher will blind on coming vehicles so be wary of that.
Didn't touch anything to do with alignment, I took the vehicle to Ford, after making me wait, those guys just said the output looks fine, they wanted to charge me to take the headlights out bla bla.

You were not convinced by the salesman to buy LED or something funny? Lots of people replace with LED, thinking it will give better light. In fact it only looks good from the outside and blinds oncoming traffic.
Actually the bulbs they sold me are made by Hella, normal halogen h11 bulbs. I don't think LED would fit in my car without some modification. I bought phillips nightbreakers yesterday, still same light output. Could probably be something wrong in the electrics, or just the headlight housing

I am thinking of getting an HID kit, would this be a bad idea?
 

namzsteve

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Oct 12, 2012
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#11
Question, why did you replace the original bulbs?

I wonder how a side by side comparison with my Figo would be.
For a while I noticed they weren't as bright like before, maybe I have bad eyes now, they were brighter. Now the light doesn't throw further as it used to.
 

Geoff.D

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Aug 4, 2005
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7,076
#15
No one has suggested that you verify the voltage on the car battery yet. May be a good idea to check that the voltage is 12Volt or slightly higher.
 

namzsteve

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Oct 12, 2012
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#16
Took the vehicle to ford in fourways, they said I should pay R950 for a check up so I drove around looking for other places. Found an auto electrician in rivonia, they adjusted the headlight aim and beam pattern with an allen key.

They also did a manual test on the battery then hooked up their multimeter got a reading of around 13 volts with the engine on.

They suggested I get brighter bulbs, something brighter than 55watts apparently - how true is that? :confused:
I'm leaning a lot on converting to HIDs.
 

Geoff.D

Executive Member
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Aug 4, 2005
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7,076
#17
Took the vehicle to ford in fourways, they said I should pay R950 for a check up so I drove around looking for other places. Found an auto electrician in rivonia, they adjusted the headlight aim and beam pattern with an allen key.

They also did a manual test on the battery then hooked up their multimeter got a reading of around 13 volts with the engine on.

They suggested I get brighter bulbs, something brighter than 55watts apparently - how true is that? :confused:
I'm leaning a lot on converting to HIDs.
I think the regulations state that the maximum legal wattage for headlights is 55 Watts. Hopefully someone who knows can confirm please.
 

supersunbird

Honorary Master
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Oct 1, 2005
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42,843
#18
I think the regulations state that the maximum legal wattage for headlights is 55 Watts. Hopefully someone who knows can confirm please.
You are correct.

Maybe the OPs nightsight has deteriorated, I can't say, the OP pictures doesn't mean much.
 

catman37

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Apr 8, 2012
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1,170
#19
Are they LED. Apparently led's don't work properly in a projector housing

The projector housing needs 360 degrees of light to work properly. The led on gives 180 degrees
 

supersunbird

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Oct 1, 2005
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42,843
#20
Took the vehicle to ford in fourways, they said I should pay R950 for a check up so I drove around looking for other places. Found an auto electrician in rivonia, they adjusted the headlight aim and beam pattern with an allen key.

They also did a manual test on the battery then hooked up their multimeter got a reading of around 13 volts with the engine on.

They suggested I get brighter bulbs, something brighter than 55watts apparently - how true is that? :confused:
I'm leaning a lot on converting to HIDs.
Cheaper to test your eyes.
 
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