Hello folks, first time poster here looking for some much needed help with an issue I am experiencing with my SUV.
As the title suggests, I've got a 2002 Infiniti QX4 with the factory HID's. I've had the truck since day one and have never had any issues with the lights (never even changed them) until last summer when my driver's lamp began to "flicker". It would come on and stay on for 10 minutes or so and then it would go off. It would consistently go off every time I drove somewhere but the point at which it ceased to work would vary. Not knowing exactly what the problem was, I decided to replace both bulbs and go from there. After removing the battery and the air box (a total PITA just to change the light bulbs) I put the new bulbs in and all seemed to work....for a year.
This past week the same problem has resurfaced. The light will come on and stay on for an unpredictable amount of time and then it will cut off. This is only happening on the drivers side, and I've never had an issue with the passenger lamp. This time I think it's something other than the bulbs especially since this occurred last year. Is it the ballast? If the ballast is fried and gone bad, the light wouldn't work at all, would it? Conversely, if the bulb was bad...it wouldn't work at all, either..correct?
Without removing the airbox on the drivers side I managed to check every connection I could see to make sure something wasn't being jarred loose. Unfortunately I couldn't find any problematic areas. I then popped my hood up and turned the lights on...and I could hear the driver's side ballast "whining" and then the noise would stop...and the light would go out.
I'm somewhat perplexed as to what I need to do. Last year I didn't turn the lights on without the car running to see if the ballast made that "whining" noise...but replacing the bulb worked for a little more than 14 months. Should I replace the ballast and go from there? I'm not that automotive savvy, and especially when it comes to lights or more specifically, HID lights and ballasts. I could probably replace the ballast myself but if that doesn't seem to be the culprit I'd rather not bother.
FYI...the oem ballasts for my car are Matsushita hlb351d12-7 (gibberish to me). The dealer wants and arm and a leg for a replacement ballast plus labor. The entire headlight assembly is $1k plus installation...so that's not even an option. Heck, if I had to replace both of them from the dealer I might as well buy a new car!
Any and all help appreciated.
Tags: 2002 QX4, Infiniti, matsushita hlb351d12-7, HID problems, ballast