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Retrofit fog lamps (Very first retro project)

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  • Retrofit fog lamps (Very first retro project)

    Hi all, after reading many threads and searching all over hid planet and checking out all the cool retros. I thought i finally join and ask questions specific for my own SUV, i got a Chrysler Aspen 07 with HiLow H13 Headlight and 9145/H10 Fogs. Im wanting ton retro my fogs as my headlights are really expensive ($160 on Amazon) and the Fogs are like $30 for a pair and much easier for me to work on. HIDs are horrible in them and halogens are useless which is why i wanting to put in projectors. Ive seen the look of them in fogs and they look awesome and for an SUV being taller than cars. And so the Fogs are higher off the ground (About 2ft or more from what i can tell) i think it would throw great distance. Looking through all threads on here before becoming a member, i came across some great options and well i dont want to spend that much money as i cant. so looking for a budget type project but willing to spend enough to get great performance. And there are some great projects i found and really cool output shots of differ projectors and you guys really know your stuff so i hope i can get a lot of help as im a very visual learner and kinda need step by step ways to figure out what the heck im doing hehe.

    Ive seen BMW X5 LED fog lamps and they look good but not great, and hearing them putting out only 1200 lumens seems kinda weak for me. Then the XB LED from TRS, which btw wish i found TRS sooner as DDM tuning kits ive been using seems like shit vs TRS and Morimoto. So now im looking to save up money and do business with TRS instead of DDM, and well ya as for the LED lamps they done make any and wont for my SUV. The Universal one looks like more work to get them to fit which i dont know what to do and dont know if i could void any warranty so ya. And with LED being plug and play i thought it be easier wiring wise but since i have a HID kit anyways (Yes i know PnP in reflector housing sorry i know) im ok with not using LED as i cant change bulbs. Now the best i found is the Fusion fogs and i wanted to know how great all these in your guys opinion and what other options do i have besides those. As well as i ran into earlier and people mentioned these on this forum a few times is the Chrysler 200 Fog lamps. I saw the Ford Fusion Fogs online on Amazon $60 a lamp, and the Chrysler 200 pair lamps for $62. So i find them to be cheap and wanted to know how good is the output from the 200 if anyone knows or has output shots i appreciate to see. The 2011-14 Fog lamps in chryser are older ones and $20 a lamp, but the other pair look newer and are for the 15-16 200. I assume the newer ones would be better, and with the Fusion ones i here being awesome with HIDs, which is what i want to put in them. is the Chrysler 200 ones the same? i would prefer these for the price and because its for newer Chyrslers i could get luck and find little modifying to do for my Aspen.

    If you look online you find someone showing the color flicker of hids in the chrylser 200 fog lamps, and i know with halogen projectors are not for HIDs but some like the Fusion do really well with them which is what im looking for. So what you guys recommend and bigger question is how do i do the retrofit like how to bake and open the fog lamps and how to put the projectors into there and how do i make them stay in the housing like ive seen people just use this epoxy glue JB wield stuff or what? How do i align them right and horizontal and make them stay and stuff. And these fogs are sealed from weather and water so i assume i dont have to put the lens back on from my stock fog Lamps? I looked at differ threads and how to but need specfic help on my truck so ya. sorry for long post i had a lot to say and lots of questions so what you guys think i can do? My final result im looking for is the functional projector with HID along with it being smaller and not filling the Fog lamp hole. So ill attach some how a shroud to fill it up with and wanting to spray paint it black to give it a nice clean look. So ya i think thats enough for me to ask right now and see what you guys think of. Great to be on this forum too and it is my first so sorry for all Noob questions and thank for any help

  • #2
    What is the depth clearance of your foglight housing?
    With ground clearance that is higher than most sedans, mounting low beams in the foglight position might work.

    What do you mean by "not filling the Fog lamp hole"? It has to fit, but you want some margin around it? Look into the dimensions of TRS' Mini D2S 3.0; if that doesn't work, you'd have to resort to Mini H1 7.0. I wouldn't go smaller than that (e.g. with the Matchbox Mini) for primary low beams.
    Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

    3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


    • #3
      Im not sure as i have never taken it out but if this helps by what it looks like.

      And by not filling meaning if i were to use something like the Ford Fusion OEM Projector fog lamps, its smaller than my fog lamps. About 2 inch or less diameter of the projector lens vs my Fog lens and housing appears to be about 4 Inch. So if i mounted a smaller projector it would leave lots of open space around it which i was not sure it being safe from the elements. And if it is then i can just put a big Projector shroud around it to make it look good. Also i dont want to do the D2S as it would require me to get the differ bulb and im trying to spend not too much money. And the MH1 and D2S are very pricey which is why i find getting OEM fogs from the Fusion or Chrysler better but i wanted your guys opinion on that.

      Also i saw this and would this be a good option or the other two be better?


      • #4
        ALso forgot to mention TRS new Acme Projectors the regular and the Super, how great is the output on those and if anyone has any output shot of those be nice too. It seems like i can directly put it through the bulb hole of the Fog lamp and mount it like that which seems really nice. But what do you guys think?


        • #5
          Originally posted by Rogue1
          ALso forgot to mention TRS new Acme Projectors the regular and the Super, how great is the output on those and if anyone has any output shot of those be nice too. It seems like i can directly put it through the bulb hole of the Fog lamp and mount it like that which seems really nice. But what do you guys think?
          Our boy HK just added the super to his Hyyuge projector shoot out thread. They look pretty good.

          Ps to easy ill find them in this thread they are updated to the last page also

          The Hyyuge Projector Full Beam Gallery


          • #6
            Originally posted by Rogue1 View Post
            Im not sure as i have never taken it out but if this helps by what it looks like.
            Not very deep, but the space behind it is also important to know.

            Originally posted by Rogue1 View Post
            Also i dont want to do the D2S as it would require me to get the differ bulb and im trying to spend not too much money.
            It really depends on what your goal is. If I understand correctly, you want to have a better low beam, right? Low, high, and fog beam patterns are very different. If you replace the OE fogs with another foglight, you won't get the proper distance lighting that a real low beam unit can provide. That is why I recommended the Mini D2S 3.0, as a balance of size, price, and low beam performance. In that sense, it is not expensive. The Acme and Super ones are H1 based. H1 based projectors can achieve the same theoretical beam performance as D2S ones with a slightly smaller overall size, but is more prone to beam pattern inconsistency due to bulb placement.

            If you look around threads in HIDP, you will see more H1 related bulb alignment issues than D2S, even when restricting it only on the TRS projectors with TRS bulbs. That is not to say that all H1 are guaranteed bad of course. But if the size allows (from your retrofit fitment pov), I'd pick the D2S.

            Going for a lower price point, say, by choosing foglight units, will give the appearance of a brighter road, only because of the increase in foreground lighting. But when driving in the absence of other lighting, you most likely won't be better off than with the OE low beams. With the Mini D2S 3.0 (or at least the Mini H1 7.0 or 6.1, if the bulb happens to line up well), you will get low beam distance and width where it actually matters.
            Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

            3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


            • #7
              Originally posted by Pklemm View Post
              Our boy HK just added the super to his Hyyuge projector shoot out thread. They look pretty good. Ps to easy ill find them in this thread they are updated to the last page also The Hyyuge Projector Full Beam Gallery
              Thank you for the link its awesome, and so many to look at my eyes starting to get overwhelmed, it looks really good and seems like something im considering of using now. And thanks to the person posting all that its really helpful.

              And satrya i understand what you mean now, and for the space behind the fog lamps is pretty big as the bumper of the truck is big and has a big gap between the fog lamp and the stuff inside the car. So i have quite a big room inside the bumper area, atleast 1ft directly behind it from what i remember when removing the headlight to get to the fog light bulb. But i could be wrong as i kinda remember there being little bit of room right behind where the bulb goes but im sure its not a problem.

              Also now i understand what you mean and really im trying to get good distance and still have functional fog lamps as for the rare fog and sometimes rain for us over here in SoCal. I just liked the OEM fog projectors such as Fusion because of that sharp flat Cut off instead of the "Step" cut off from low beam projectors. Also didnt want the Fog lamps to overshadow the PnP or Halogen Low beam either. i assume that wont happen with proper alignment of the Fog right under the Headlights? And i does remember now reading about the D2S being better for bulb seatment but i dont know if i want to spend right now to get the D2S bulbs which is expensive but would you say the Morimoto H1 bulb would be better to get vs the Acme one they are offering with the Super Mini projector? then again i saw the Acme D2S standard projector, anyone know if that is better than the MH1 Super? I did not see its output shot in the link you guys gave me just the Super one.

              Thanks for the help too as i would have been clueless on all this.


              • #8
                If I understand your requirements correctly, you would like to:
                (1) add something in the foglight spot that could give you low beam distance most of the time
                (2) also work as a fog light some time

                In general, achieving those two is impossible. However, if by fog light you mean having some foreground light to use in the rain, while at the same time not blind others, a decent low beam projector mounted where the fog lights are in your vehicle, could achieve both. Just make sure that the foreground limiter is either nonexistent or not too aggressive. Most projectors give out some amount of foreground light. So, in a way, something like the Mini D2S 3.0 is kind of both... kind of.

                To illustrate, here are two low beam HID outputs with and without foreground limiter. They're different projectors (same model 35W ballast and bulbs), and the one with FG limiter is actually a DIY limiter. But for your purpose, perhaps the one without the FG limiter gives you the foreground lighting and the side light you wanted from a foglight.

                As for the flat vs stepped/sloped cutoff; the reason low beams don't employ a flat cutoff is to maximize distance light reach while at the same time minimizing glare to oncoming traffic. Foglights can get away with a flat cutoff because it doesn't need to be aimed far (as its beam potential doesn't have enough intensity to reach far ahead in the first place), and its mounting position is traditionally lower than low beams.

                As for the cost of D2S vs H1 bulbs, while you will be able to find inexpensive bulbs, the minimum I would get is TRS' bulbs imho. And since both their D2S and H1 bulbs are priced the same, I'd rather go with the D2S due to its better stability and alignment quality. Getting a bargain on bulbs beyond that would net various negative things like poor color, poor brightness, etc. If a D2S retrofit can be done, you can always upgrade to OE bulbs later and get an easy "instant" upgrade. You could suppress the cost by getting good projectors and ballasts in the closeout; those may have some blemishes or need some time tuning, but otherwise would help with total dollar cost. I say this because I've seen well intended retrofits that cut cost beyond those thresholds, only to realize later that it was a waste of money.

                If you've done a few retrofits before and/or are interested in tinkering, you could add another shield that, unlike the regular low/high beam shield, is flat and normally switched to move away from the operating plane. You'd have to wire a separate set of switch that when activated, flips this flat cutoff to mask the standard low/high beam shield. In effect, this lowers the highest beam pitch, shortening the reach of the beam. This means that the solenoid for the "fog light" mode has to remain active when in that mode, but I assume that you'll have cooler temperatures to help manage the heat.
                Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

                3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


                • #9
                  Honestly i never done a retrofit or anything like it so for me to figure out where to find and remove the foreground limiter will be something. And i dont want to mess with it too much either as i dont want to break anything. However im willing to sacrifice some foreground for distance as in a SUV i cant really see things right infront of me as well being higher up in a truck. Same with in the rain which we dont get a lot of, its kinda useless having the light hit the floor right infront of the truck and bounce around everywhere. The only function i have for the fog light is for others to see us in the fog or rain/dark, and since i dont want to retro my headlights because im just a beginner and dont want to mess up anything with these expensive headlights. i thought i try doing it to the less expensive fog lights.

                  Really looking for good distance and width, and i understand i cant get a lot of both. Along with just more usable light i guess, but a good not to hard retrofit. So i was looking through the TRS and if i should use a D2S Projector i was thinking of using the Acme D2S standard Projector and by the Morimoto D2s bulb. What do you think about that one and how good it is in the fog light area, and if it will fit well in the spot without cutting and being able to lock it in with the locking nut as the plug and play it says it can be. I could upgrade to Philips or CBI bulbs later on too, and the Projector seems to be something i can afford with the bulb and then going to buy new fog lamps too to do them in. i will get new fog lamps ordered soon so i can measure everything and see how it will all fit.

                  Im trying to see which projector i should use and that acme D2S seems good, how the install should go and what other tools i need. Then actually do the retro and see how it goes, and i ya. Dont know if im making sense but hopefully i am.


                  • #10
                    Not the Acme D2S. Those are TRS' Mini D2S 2.0 (i.e. prior version). If I had that price constraint on the projectors, I'd personally choose either one of these::



                    The G37 sedan biXenon are OE projectors, which doesn't come with a threaded back (& the locking nut), plus it comes with OE lens that is not a clear lens. But it will be much more usable than the D2S 2.0 in terms of low beam distance and everything else.

                    From a first retrofit point of view, the Acme D2S may make sense (my first retrofit was with the Mini D2S 2.0). And while I thought I was happy with the output compared to my OE halogen low/high beams, I ended up with EvoX-R as my daily "real" low & high beams now. Those pictures above are comparing EvoX-R and D2S 2.0. They don't look that different in the photo, hence why I was initially happy with the D2S 2.0. But in the absence of ambient lighting, the difference is very big.
                    Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

                    3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


                    • #11
                      I gotcha, and i did see the D2S 3 in the closeout but was skeptical of the skuffs and scratches it will have. However all in all im looking at these for the Fog which if i can make this right. Will just be for an upgrade over stock w/out projectors and running PnP hids in the reflector which is useless. And get something budget friendly done, im not looking for the fogs to overshadow the headlights. As for the actual headlights i will leave the Pnp hid in that (Sorry its not that bad of glare but ya) until next year. As i will get a retro done by a pro dealer i have nearby, and it seems like it will cost as i was quoted $800 for something like the D2S 3.0 or maybe the 4.0 coming out. But it will be later for tax season, and only getting it done for these headlights because of how big and expensive they are and i dont want to try it on m own like that.

                      For a car that i plan on getting i will possibly do something on that as i believe anything i get the headlights are going to be way cheap to get online brand new. so which is why im aiming for the ACME ones but do you think the ACME one D2S is any good? i mean i know they not going to be the best but can still hold its own like the company claims right? Also if i could add even if i were to use something like the G37 Projector or TL 4G or any of the big good projectors. I have to cut to make it fit ok thats a given but how the heck to i make it stay solid in the assembly? how so i make a custom bracket or what does the JB weild do permanently stick it like glue or what? Sorry very noob questons haha.

                      And thats what im leaning toward the ACME MH1 Super or D2S or if i had the money the Morimoto current version. is because of the ease to install by just locking it in with the ring and nut, i find i will mess something up trying to cut or custom fit it in. But even with these i might have to make the hole in the fog lamp bigger for it to fit MAYBE, but ill have to order new fog lamps this week and get them in soon to measure everything of how the projector will fit. I just feel that if i have to take the reflector bowel out and custom fit something how do i do that. But thats later for headlamp work not Fog lamps, do you think which one will be better the ACME MH1 or D2s as far as output and well the D2S will work better as you say for proper bulb fitment or seating but will After market XB D2 bulbs make similar problems?


                      • #12
                        I see.

                        For projectors without a threaded back, yes, a retrofit will likely mean fabricating some form of a mount that can be adjusted for aim.

                        For the ACME D2S; as I mentioned, my first retrofit was with TRS' Mini D2S 2.0, which should be that ACME one or similar. It's not bad, but compared to EvoX-R, and in the absence of other light source, it looks quite pitiful.

                        Between the ACME H1 vs D2s; the ACME H1 should be TRS' Mini H1 6.0, which is quite good. The challenge is that when dealing with H1 type projectors, it seems that alignment is more of a gamble. Also, it means you're committing to an H1 set, in terms of the bulbs and ballasts. You can minimize the impact quite a bit using TRS' XB ballast, where you can buy the D2S igniter later, and just swap that igniter cable. That means at least your ballast won't go to waste later when you go with a proper projector and bulb.

                        As far as whether or not XB H1 is better than others; I'm not sure as I don't use H1. If anything, the challenge with H1 is in large part due to the design itself. In order for it to be small (to conform to the dimensions of a halogen H1 bulb), the HID capsule is held onto the plastic base with little support. That makes the capsule placement less reliable. In turn, the HID arc (i.e. the light source) may not be where it should be. That can make a big difference in whether or not the light is useful. I'm not saying that H1 is an unreliable choice, but in this forum, I think I see more H1 alignment issues than D2S.

                        Alignment chances aside, between Mini H1 6.0 and Mini D2S 2.0, if both get well aligned bulbs, H1 6.0 has a more useful low beam than the D2S 2.0.
                        Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

                        3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


                        • #13
                          I got it all, and thanks a lot for mentioning all this so i dont have to deal with that alignment issues with the H1. I believe i rather go with the D2S ACME so i dont have too much problem with the alignment as well as if i later wanted to i can upgrade from the XB D2s to a Philips or Osram one for more light. I see that the Evo X is going to be way better but for the money and customizing i rather save a project like that for later on headlights for true low beam spot. And again thank you for the help as i fully get that the rebased bulbs can be a pain to align more so over the D2s.

                          Now i am kinda considering going for a Gamble with the D2s 3.0 from the closeout section but i dont want to receive it in a condition that i cant fix or improve on and with no DOA warranty it can be a pain. Now with the D2s 2.0 vs the MH1 6.0 you say the MH1 will have more usable low beam, i still might not want to go with the MH1. So will the D2S have more Foreground?

                          Lastly i will be buying new Fog lamps this week, and when i get them ill start measuring everything and slowly get everything i need piece by piece. Besides the Projectors and bulbs i assume i will need a shroud for it? And i will by a Amp to D2S adapter and will use the DDM slim ballast i still have. What else should i buy as for this project? Should i get that epoxy jb weld stuff or whatever else i need?


                          • #14
                            Before you go too far.

                            Once you choose a projector, better bulbs won't get you better beam pattern, just a brighter one. In the case of the previous gen D2S (i.e. TRS' Mini D2S 2.0, sold as ACME now), the low beam distance and width doesn't have that much of an intensity.

                            Knowing what I know now, I see two options:

                            Get the B-stock D2S 3.0 and hope that the shield etc. can be aligned properly. B-stock might have defects that might be difficult to repair, optics wise. I'm not sure. As long as nothing is bent/warped, and the bowl is pristine, a little crack on the lens or scratch won't do much. But it really depends on the units they have on hand. Best check.

                            Get the ACME H1 (Mini H1 6.0) with ~3 pairs of H1 bulbs in the hopes that 1 pair is decent. And I won't even go to unknown vendors online for a better H1 bulb deal, because in addition to the H1 tolerance challenges, I won't have enough info to know whether their salts etc. are good quality. Those affect the beam intensity and color.

                            As for foreground, it can be remedied in most projectors by inserting a sheet as an FG limiter. Look at one of my links in my signature for an example on an EvoX-R. But if you want to retrofit something in the foglight position that can have a good low beam (to replace the OE low beams) and at the same time light up sides & road somewhat in front, you can leave the foreground illumination as is for the time being.

                            In most cases, you will need a shroud. Either that or make your own (I did).

                            If you want to use an existing aftermarket ballast, I assume most use AMP. So, yes, you need an adapter if you choose a D2S projector/bulb combo. Don't forget a proper wiring harness.

                            Other useful things to have:
                            A choice method for opening the housing. Either the oven method or the heat gun method. Heat resistant gloves etc around that operation would be useful.
                            Aluminum tape. I think this is the duct tape equivalent for headlight retrofits.
                            Butyl rubber. This is to replace the existing sealant.

                            As for everything else, it really depends on whether your existing tool set has commonly used tools for retrofit or not. Going through build threads and try guessing what tools were used for the steps described in those threads may help. Iirc, TRS have some pdf document guides that also list recommended tools.
                            Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

                            3-way quad wiring; foreground limiter; squirrel finder;


                            • #15
                              After thinking about it, i will got for the M D2S 3.0 over any of the ACME as for the price i might as well spend $120 for the Projectors to get the 3 yr warranty and stuff. As well as not wanting to gamble from the closeout section, and get Shrouds for it from the list or from the closeouts as i dont want to make my own right now. So getting the Brand new not deffective one would be better peace of mind, and the shroud with the Amp to D2S adapter. ALso being buying the XB D2S bulb @ 4500k, and the Butyl rubber you said ill get too which i assume is for resealing the fog lens back on?

                              As for the other stuff i can get the aluminum tape and i think the oven method i may try, just wanting to know if thats safe sticking the lamp in the oven and then the projector in the oven too. and other tools ill have to see as i will get a drem tool and anything else i may need for cutting or trimming. Thanks for all your help too, and well do you think its a good choice getting everything above? And not really wanting to make the Fogs take over as a low beam only to make it better lights and not blind people and make it usable light. But would still function as a fog lamp in fog or rain weather?