2012 Rav4 V6 Low-Beam Headlight Bulb - Page 3 - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#21 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 01:47 PM
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[QUOTE=shortshooter;947791]
I also hope that your hypothesis is correct and the lower temperature HIDs will work better on your RAV. However, as I mentioned earlier, I just finished a 28 hour drive and there were several behind me with 3000k HIDs; they were very blinding. It was so bad that even though I was driving faster, I moved to the right lane and slowed down just so I didn't have to be ahead and blinded. I knew they were HIDs because the color resembled 3000ks and the high beam wasn't on. [QUOTE]

3000K? That would provide a quite yellow looking light. I haven't yet seen anyone using these around here. The ricer kids seem to think the hight the K number the better and tend to use blue to purple K.
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#22 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Jaspher View Post
I agree with you that retrofit is the best solution but I cannot endup with leaky or moisture in a headlight of a nearly new rav4. It's hard to seal a headlight back to factory once its opened.


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Jaspher, if you use oem headlight sealant then you will not get condensation. I've been driving through heavy rain, 2 degree F weather and snow and there has been no condensation in the headlight housing. I was initially scared of the same thing, but I took the extra precaution and used the oem headlight sealant most headlights use to seal them back up. Better than new!
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#23 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 08:35 PM
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Thanks for the idea. The morimoto kit you suggest looks great but is $270. Many folks would say that is not "cheap".

If you consider opening up and resealing the covers and making irreversible changes to the housings, making it impossible to go back to the original 9006 bulbs to be "little or no modification" I must disagree. All the mods I have made to my new rav are reversible with the exception of the sub I put in the back door.

My intention is to project the original lights on the side of my barn and mark with masking tape the points I measure with my spot photometer, then compare the readings to measure the glare and beam distortion. If I see any increase in the glare that I cannot reduce, I will use them for camping lights. I was a professional driver for years, and I have no desire to cause other drivers problems just to increase my own visibility.

When they call these lights "3000K" what they are doing is drawing a line on the color chart perpendicular to the Planckian locus and saying the lights are somewhere on that line. If the CIELuv co-ordinates are further from the locus than .05 units (and they are) the color temperature is invalid and different manufacturers bulbs can be different colors and still they will call them 3000K. Some bulbs could have more blue than others and still be called 3000K by this method. They would probably cause more glare than the ones with less blue. I may have to wait until it stops snowing to make the measurements so it could take awhile.

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#24 (permalink) Old 12-30-2012, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by bob-o View Post
Thanks for the idea. The morimoto kit you suggest looks great but is $270. Many folks would say that is not "cheap".

If you consider opening up and resealing the covers and making irreversible changes to the housings, making it impossible to go back to the original 9006 bulbs to be "little or no modification" I must disagree. All the mods I have made to my new rav are reversible with the exception of the sub I put in the back door.

My intention is to project the original lights on the side of my barn and mark with masking tape the points I measure with my spot photometer, then compare the readings to measure the glare and beam distortion. If I see any increase in the glare that I cannot reduce, I will use them for camping lights. I was a professional driver for years, and I have no desire to cause other drivers problems just to increase my own visibility.

When they call these lights "3000K" what they are doing is drawing a line on the color chart perpendicular to the Planckian locus and saying the lights are somewhere on that line. If the CIELuv co-ordinates are further from the locus than .05 units (and they are) the color temperature is invalid and different manufacturers bulbs can be different colors and still they will call them 3000K. Some bulbs could have more blue than others and still be called 3000K by this method. They would probably cause more glare than the ones with less blue. I may have to wait until it stops snowing to make the measurements so it could take awhile.
Good luck with that method, and I truly hope it works. I'm not a "projectors only" nazi and vouch for any other method that works without compromising others' safety.

Actually, if you already have HIDs, the mini H1s costs only $120; you can get it for $60 if you get the value version. That, my friend, is very very affordable and cheap, considering aftermarket bulbs run around $20 or more per bulb. The $270 price you see contains the mini h1s AND the HID relay harness, ballasts and bulbs.

The mini h1s are designed to fit the original housing without modification; it is meant to fit inside the headlight assembly's existing bulb hole without any cutting. Look up videos and you'll see that the mini h1s are simply plug and play. The only thing you'd be doing is opening up the headlights, which can be sealed back up. With that being said, there are exceptions and some headlights require little modification. And when I say "little", I mean that there is no need to cut up the reflector housing like larger projectors require.
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#25 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 04:18 PM
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Thanks much for the info. As it turns out, I found a very good reason not to use HID bulbs in my reflector housings. IT'S ILLEGAL. Even if I get the results I am after it will still be illegal. I don't understand why it is even legal to sell them on Ebay specifically for our cars, without a warning they can only be used off-road. They need to be DOT certified to be used on the highway, and they are not. The $35 a pair setup will be great for camping.

FMVSS 108 covers lights. Manufacturers SELF-CERTIFY that their product meets the standard. I could not find anywhere that the Murimoto projector retrifits are self-certified to meet this standard, so they are illegal too. Even if they did meet the standard, the installation must be certified for them to be legal.

Does anybody know of a retrofit projector for my 2012 that meets FMVSS 108?

Several years ago when the aftermarket tail light/lens first became popular, there were many versions and most of them did not comply with FMVSS 108 even though the packaging said legal in 50 states or DOT approved. The products also have DOT numbers imprinted on them. These letters/numbers indicate certain parts of the product are compliant such as rear lens, rear color, rear reflector, side reflector, side lens, side color etc. There were DOT numbers on many of these aftermarket lenses but usually all of the numbers were not present. This indicates that parts of the lens were not compliant.

HID headlights-If it has a transformer (ballast) it is an HID light. A true HID light casts a white light (looks like light blue tint). There are cheap imitations which are a plain bulb with a blue coating and these cast a blue light. When some cops stop a car with suspect headlights they hold a piece of white paper in front of the light. If the paper turns blue, that is illegal and the driver gets "Norked" (gets a ticket). See the following NHTSA Interp letter at http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/...18.ztv.html-It says, "SAE J578c defines white by blue, yellow, green, red and purple boundaries within a chromaticity diagram. Thus, it is possible to design a headlamp that emits a light that approaches the blue boundary and is perceived as having a blue tint but which nevertheless remains within the boundaries that define "white"".

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Last edited by bob-o; 12-31-2012 at 04:52 PM. Reason: additional information
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#26 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 02:39 AM
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hate to break it to you, but retrofits are not dot approved. even if you purchase oem projectors, adding them into oem headlight assemblies meant for use with reflectors are illegal. unless a car is equipped with projectors straight from the factory, retrofits are illegal. people do it regardless, however.
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#27 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 01:48 PM
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I should have done more research in advance. I foolishly assumed that if they were being sold without an "off road only" label and the seller had extensive listings of cars with no off road capability, that Ebay would not let them sell such an obviously illegal and fraudulently represented product. I was wrong.

The seller has a 99% plus rating, but I learned that Ebay's ratings system is totally bogus. If an unsatisfied customer gets their money back, they cannot leave negative feedback. This means 90% of their customers could be unhappy and as long as they give a refund there is no consequence to their seller rating. The buyer still loses.

Somebody can send you a bag of dirt when you paid for a fur coat. Ebay buyer protection will get you back the original transaction price including shipping, but only after receiving the tracking info that shows you returned it, and the BUYER still has to pay for shipping the bag of dirt back.

The last thing I need is a brightly illuminated sign on my car that says "please pull me over and give me a ticket". I don't drink so that's not the issue. I just am not willing to do it.

I believe that if I get a set of Lexus projectors with the housings and the leveling sensors and have the installation certified that it would be legal. It looks like it will cost over $500, so I will make absolutely sure of that before I proceed.

I also believe putting illegal lights on my car with 2000 miles on it would substantially reduce the resale value. I love the car but I haven't driven it much in the snow and that's where I'll decide whether to keep it. I just put Blizzaks on it and am heading up tomorrow

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#28 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by bob-o View Post
I should have done more research in advance. I foolishly assumed that if they were being sold without an "off road only" label and the seller had extensive listings of cars with no off road capability, that Ebay would not let them sell such an obviously illegal and fraudulently represented product. I was wrong.

The seller has a 99% plus rating, but I learned that Ebay's ratings system is totally bogus. If an unsatisfied customer gets their money back, they cannot leave negative feedback. This means 90% of their customers could be unhappy and as long as they give a refund there is no consequence to their seller rating. The buyer still loses.

Somebody can send you a bag of dirt when you paid for a fur coat. Ebay buyer protection will get you back the original transaction price including shipping, but only after receiving the tracking info that shows you returned it, and the BUYER still has to pay for shipping the bag of dirt back.

The last thing I need is a brightly illuminated sign on my car that says "please pull me over and give me a ticket". I don't drink so that's not the issue. I just am not willing to do it.

I believe that if I get a set of Lexus projectors with the housings and the leveling sensors and have the installation certified that it would be legal. It looks like it will cost over $500, so I will make absolutely sure of that before I proceed.

I also believe putting illegal lights on my car with 2000 miles on it would substantially reduce the resale value. I love the car but I haven't driven it much in the snow and that's where I'll decide whether to keep it. I just put Blizzaks on it and am heading up tomorrow
proper retrofits benefit the driver and causes no harm to others on the road, neither should it attract attention from cops. If there is no glare, your car would appear as bright as any other vehicle that comes with oem projectors.

I've never heard of getting a retrofit legally certified. You can find a lot of info on hidplanet.com; this is where I got the bulk of my information. As I stated earlier, even if you get oem projectors, any retrofit installed on a car that did not originally come with projectors are illegal.

BTW, Lexus projectors are $190 on TRS. Most installers do them for over $500, so you're looking at paying over $700. Especially since you're mentioning "leveling sensors", which I don't think you can do for the RAV. Even if you can, you're looking at spending at least $1000, including projectors. Again, do your research and google all this stuff; it's very pricey, which is why I did the retrofit myself.

And I don't think you can blame the seller for selling you an HID kit, especially since it was only a 35 watt system. I've yet to see anyone label their HID kits for "off road only" usage, unless it's something higher, like a 75 watt system. I think you should admit that you're half to blame here, buddy; if you had done research, you would've discovered that HIDs aren't street legal unless it originally comes with the car. In the ideal world, everything would be labeled, but it's not. For example: 6 years ago, I bought an aftermarket cold air intake system from autozone. California is strict about smog laws, but I figured that since the part is sold at autozone then it shouldn't be illegal. I got randomly pulled over (probably because of my ostentatious paint job) and received a ticket for the car being too low and and it contains an aftermarket intake pipe. Found out that the intake was suppose to be stamped with a smog certified label. It was my fault and I didn't know. It sucks, but you learn from your mistakes and make the best of it.

Aftermarket projectors are no big deal and hardly does anyone get pulled over for it if properly aimed; that is, unless there is a yearly inspection on vehicles where you live.
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#29 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 02:45 PM
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The first thing I said in my post was "I should have done more research" so please don't make it sound like I am placing all the blame on the seller. Ebay has a policy that illegal items cannot be sold. These are illegal. That was the point I was trying to make. Ebay does not care about the legality of products sold there if they don't think any of the fallout will get on them. I do care. We don't get to pick and choose to obey just the laws we like.

Why do you think that an HID projector setup from a Lexus would not be legal if properly installed on my RAV? Do you have a source for this? The leveling sensors are simple and I am a EE so I can probably handle it. I have not found anywhere that a DOT approved system is not legal on whatever car it is installed in but I have just started the research.

In studying the Oregon law, it appears that you can legally modify the headlight system as long as the parts meet the federal standard:

10) Headlights that are required under ORS 816.320 (Lighting equipment required for motor vehicles) and 816.330 (Operation without required lighting equipment) and any part for such headlight that tends to change the original design or performance must be of a type that complies with standards adopted by the department under ORS 816.010 (Authority to adopt and enforce standards for lighting equipment).

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Last edited by bob-o; 01-01-2013 at 03:58 PM. Reason: new info
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#30 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 10:51 PM
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I also have the morimotos retrofitted for couple months already.
At first there WAS moisture build up not from rain (during summer) or snow (winter) but from the car wash. I was suprised it held up well since I rushed seal it back together.

I eventually sucked it up and re sealed the right headlight because it was so bad water was DRIPPING in the headlight. Resealed with more butyl glue and now it is perfect,both. no regrets and looks awesome.

Also i have 3000k hids in my fogs....amazing.

Also even though it is technically illegal to do a retrofit and could be pulled over for illegal headlight modification, i think the having tinted front side windows are more common than retrofits...as any tint on front is considered obstruction of view in or out. not to mention tinted tails....

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