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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Finally did it today and wanted to share my experience with my board pips. Unfortunately I couldn't find any detailed pics or videos online on how to remove headlights from 2002 Rav4. The whole job took 3 hours and half of that was thinking how not to screw up and break anything. My Rav4 is old and rusty but this upgrade was meant to improve night visibility for my wife so forgive me the rusty spots on my car. The biggest problem was with removing the lower panel just below the radiator and above the bumper. The 4 plastic bolts, 2 on each side drove me CRAZY!!! I found no easy way to remove this panel without damaging these bolts, lol. I think in the near future I will have to replace the whole panel along with new bolts, but I am done for now. Both headlights I got from Amazon for $98, and LED kit also from Amazon. The LED Kit i chose was with the Copper Heat Sink rather than fan due to a very little room behind the headlamp. These LED's were little different as they were designed with a little nud on the bottom side of the bulb covering the low beam from bottom side of the reflectors minimizing the glare for the upcoming traffic (will see if its true tonight).
Headlights are clean and bright. Although they didn't fit perfectly, bigger gaps around headlight comparing to the stock. As mentioned in some posts I didn't have to remove the whole bumper, only the screw on top of the bumper cover next to the fender and then just pulled the top of the bumper cover down without removing bottom screws. I used 10mm wrench for all the screws and to adjust the headlight 8mm one. Can't wait to see the light pattern on the street tonight. Will update with new pictures. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
OK, now after the night drive I can say that I found couple of problems in my new mod. First, my passenger's side headlight points way to the right and I am nor sure how to correct this? No horizontal adjustments behind the lamp. I may have to remove the headlight again and maybe use some kind of washers on the right side of the lamp to point more to the middle. Any ideas?
Second, the LED light pattern is all-over the sky, lol. Definitely much brighter then halogen and the light color is white not yellow. Unfortunately light is not focused on the road only but also is spreading to the sides in strange ways. I'll take the car tomorrow on the expressway and see if I get anyone flashing me on, hehe.
 

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if you still have the faded headlights, you might try a polishing kit on that. It'll be night and day. The problem is keeping it like that. I've polished mine several times (first time didn't do anything after, and it yellowed up again). The second time, I applied Bluemagic Headlight Lens Sealer. It seemed to make it last longer, but started to yellow again.

This last time, I polished it then sealed it with a 50/50 mixture of Minwax Helsman Spar Urethane/Mineral Spirits. Hoping this will last a long time.
 

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It will be very hard to not blind the on coming traffic with the LED kit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
if you still have the faded headlights, you might try a polishing kit on that. It'll be night and day. The problem is keeping it like that. I've polished mine several times (first time didn't do anything after, and it yellowed up again). The second time, I applied Bluemagic Headlight Lens Sealer. It seemed to make it last longer, but started to yellow again.

This last time, I polished it then sealed it with a 50/50 mixture of Minwax Helsman Spar Urethane/Mineral Spirits. Hoping this will last a long time.
I've done this as well, several times but each time the kit cost me $15-$25 and after month "cataract" reappears again. That's why I decided to buy the new headlamps. Also, I am not sure if that is the age of the car but the plastic on the old headlights has many micro cracks/lines like may be due to the exposure to the sun and weather over the years. Changing it was the next step eventually anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It will be very hard to not blind the on coming traffic with the LED kit.
Agree, that is why I am looking into changing to HID Kit along with the extra Aluminum Anti Glare Shield for the HID bulb from ebay to reduce the glare. Thinking to get this: '55w Kensun HID Xenon Conversion Kit "All Bulb Sizes and Colors" with Digital Ballasts - H4 (HB2) (9003) Bi-Xenon - 5000k' from Amazon. Any idea if HID would work better with reflector headlights?
 

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HID would most likely much worse than LEDs. Bet best is to stick with Stock bulbs. If you really want to upgrade the headlights, then a proper HID or LED retrofit is the only option. You can of course just throw a HID or LED kit into the stock lights and be happy, but no matter what, you will always be blinding oncoming traffic.
 
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Why are you interested in color? Almost always, a higher color temperature means less light. The exception is true designed for purpose HIDs. Usually, an interest in color temperature indicates poseurs who want to look like they have HIDs, and will trade good night performance for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Why are you interested in color? Almost always, a higher color temperature means less light. The exception is true designed for purpose HIDs. Usually, an interest in color temperature indicates poseurs who want to look like they have HIDs, and will trade good night performance for it.
I am interested only in White color and 5000K or 6000K would give me the closest color to true white possible, i guess? The whiter the light, the brighter the road in front of me would be. I also like the looks of it but my main goal is to get most visibility possible using my stock reflector headlights.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Installed today: DRL

Had to remove the whole front bumper cover to install the brackets and run the wires behind the bumper cover. Again, my goal was to be more visible to other drivers on the road. The DRL and the DRL Relay Harness I got from Ebay; DRL, JDM ASTAR 2pcs Universal High Power 3-LED White Daytime Running Light Lamp Kits and the NEW Reduce CAR light LED DRL Relay Harness Automatic On Off Dimmer for $38. It took me 3 hours to install it. Little longer than I expected due to the bumper being removed.
The led's dim after the headlights go on and stay on for an extra 30 seconds after the engine is turned off. Great as this gives my wife some light for safety after she exits the car at night. Also, I put new led bulbs inside the car as well as for the reverse light. Wow, when switching to reverse, a good 30 feet of the road behind lights up! I like it, again easier for others to see me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
No, it doesn't work that way. Read this.
Mike, all this article talks about is the blue bulbs that some people put on their cars to look "cool". Nowhere it says that the whiter the light is, the 'darker' the road in front of me will be. I think you've missed my point. I am talking about light colors in range of 5000k -6000k which puts them closest to the pure white there is. I've never used the 'blue' bulbs myself and I am not a fan of it either. I am using 6000K LEDs to get my road in front of me brighter not 'bluer'. Thanks for trying to help tho.
 

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Name a halogen bulb which puts out 6000K naturally, with no filter. I note that you mention color temperature, not lumens, as a measure of brightness. That's incorrect.

Now you're bringing up LED bulbs, which if used in a lamp designed for a filament bulb, means more glare to other drivers and a degradation of beam pattern.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Getting ready to do the whole Headlight retrofit in the next month or so. I will be using TheRetrofitSource.com for all the components. Not sure about the size of the projectors that would be the biggest that could possibly fit into the housing (BI-XENON: MORIMOTO MINI D2S 3.0?). I will also be putting an Angle Eyes behind the shrouds as DRL. Anyone have any ideas on the best components choices for this retrofit? Any help would be very appreciated. Thanks
 
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