Toyota RAV4 Forums banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys first post here as a member!! I was wondering if you could help me decide whether to get HIDs or LEDs for new headlights as mine are very dull now? I have an 07 base model 4wd. I drive at night a lot and down some poorly lit backroads!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,477 Posts
if the only problem is that they are dull, lots of good ways to make them like new for not a lot of money... compounding, wetsanding, spar urethane...
 
  • Like
Reactions: lgleason

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
if the only problem is that they are dull, lots of good ways to make them like new for not a lot of money... compounding, wetsanding, spar urethane...
They are not very bright and it is becoming dangerous because I cannot see at night w these ones.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
Dull head lights will stay dull with any light source. Start polishing them first, you can find a lot of (cheap) DIY's on Youtube.
As far as I know all 4.3 head lights are made from plastic, so polishing is not a to hard job, and it gives you showroom result.
Dull head lights partail reflect the light back inwards and/or spreads the light unequal.

When changing to another alternative light source (step2) HID is most common and reliable when choosing the known brands.
I should advise HID's with a light color of about 4300K. They give the most Lumen output and have a minimum reflection on rain drops.
LED light's are quite new, and a lot of crappy stuff is for sale to. LED's produce more light per consumed Wattage, and do not get a got as HID's. When searching around on the net to find your perfect set, focus on heat management of the LED's, and only choose LED's with a seperate driver/power supply.

But do your self, and even more important, your fellow drivers a favour when the HID's or LED's are in; check and adjust the beam so you can't blind up coming traffic. The lens shaped head lights are perfect for HID's or LED's but new light sources have a nother light spreading, so this needs to be adjusted.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,427 Posts
But even with known brands like Morimoto being "most" reliable, they are still not 100%.
After dealing with retrofit projectors in my Tacoma for the last 4 years, I finally pulled them and went back to halogens in the OEM housings.
They seriously are a pain in the butt with ballast and harness quality issues, and they are very sensitive to proper grounding.
These were good quality units and I went through 6 ballasts in 4 years. It got to the point that I ordered a complete spare system so I would not be forced to drive "one eye" while I waited for a warranty replacement.

On your old lights, if the lamps are old, they too may need to be replaced. When the filament is lighted, it is being consumed. Normally, lamps will burn out before they dim, but I've had quite a few (though mostly sealed beam) that simply got darker and more yellow.
But you first need to de-fog the surface of the housing, or simply replace them, and keep the new ones sealed/waxed when you detail the car.

If you do decide to go with HID, please please please do not buy the "plug and play" kits that replace the halogen lamps.
The reflector in the housing was designed for a halogen filament, not an HID arc, and the light will produce a lot of irritating and dangerous glare to oncoming traffic and those in front of you.
The only way to do HID safely is with a projector retrofit. You split your housings and install the projector and shroud. They look great and work very well, aside from reliability issues that are a problem with all aftermarket HID systems.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,427 Posts
But do your self, and even more important, your fellow drivers a favour when the HID's or LED's are in; check and adjust the beam so you can't blind up coming traffic. The lens shaped head lights are perfect for HID's or LED's but new light sources have a nother light spreading, so this needs to be adjusted.
It is not possible to adjust a reflector housing (that was not designed for HID such as Mercedes) so that it will not produce dangerous glare.
You can put the cutoff at 20ft a foot below where it should be and they will STILL blind drivers ahead of you, while your cutoff will be so low that YOU won't be able to see anything without using your high beams.

I played that game on 3 different vehicles for almost 10 years and I wish I could personally apologize to every driver that I irritated with them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,447 Posts
yeah if you go with HID or LED you really should only do so with projector housings...i would first buff out your headlights and try some new bulbs...HID lights are great but must be done properly...and one other thing to consider is getting your eyes checked out...if driving at night has become dangerous then maybe your eyes are the real culprit...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
I have a EU RAV4.3 with lens shaped projector housings, and my HID Xenon aftermarket kit works perfect since the last 3 jears now.
After the HID kit was placed, my Toyota service point told me that they had to do a mechanical adjustment in the light beams, but for the rest the lights produce a perfect beam which is approved by road laws.
Over here we have the projector head lights which give an extra wide beam on the right side, so the right part of the road is extra visible. This works twice as good with HID Xenon compared to classic halogen bulbs. Extra safety for pedestrians and cyclists.

About stories that the 4.3 projector head units which should not be used for HID Xenon I can only say this is half true.
It's a matter of buying a quality HID Xenon set, and re-ajust the projected beams so it can not blind and gives no glare.
The plastic mirror inside the projectors will survive HID for sure as they do not become as hot as classic halogen lights.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,427 Posts
About stories that the 4.3 projector head units which should not be used for HID Xenon I can only say this is half true.
It's a matter of buying a quality HID Xenon set, and re-ajust the projected beams so it can not blind and gives no glare.
The plastic mirror inside the projectors will survive HID for sure as they do not become as hot as classic halogen lights.
OP has a base USA model 2007.
He does not have projectors.

Yes, HIDs can be retrofit into the factory projector housing and adjusted for proper operation.
This is not the case for USA-model reflector housings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
That's a fact I did not understand, or probably missed when reading the first post.

Personally I hate drivers with HID Xenon or LED in their custom halogen head lights.
It's practicly almost impossible to get proper and not blinding light with HID's or LED.
When you still want to juse HID or LED, than change head lights in to projectors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,447 Posts
Hi guys first post here as a member!! I was wondering if you could help me decide whether to get HIDs or LEDs for new headlights as mine are very dull now? I have an 07 base model 4wd. I drive at night a lot and down some poorly lit backroads!
this is what my HID projector retrofit produces....

 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top