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Installing BI-Xenon Projectors Low on vehicle

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  • Installing BI-Xenon Projectors Low on vehicle

    Hello everyone, I have a 2016 Malibu and the headlights on it are horrible and it doesn't offer fog lights as an option. I was thinking of doing an HID retrofit but that takes a lot of time and with permasealed headlights and the complex assembly of them I'd rather not do a retrofit (multiple companies told me that they wouldn't do it and the ones that said they could said it was a huge risk and couldn't guarantee anything) Anyways I have spoken with a few other companies and they said that they could install bixenon projectors for me under the DRL strip. I would have the projectors aimed perpendicular to the ground rather than 1.3 degrees downward like a typical low beam because of how low they are and I want them to shine as far as possible. I was thinking of using FXR's or Morimoto matchboxes but I am not 100% sure what projector to use. Anyways, I would also put a 35w HID kit in my low beam projectors ( I know, bad idea) and I would put the same kind of HID kit into the new set but 50 watt so that the colors would match. Anyways, what are your guys' thoughts on this? What projector do you guys recommend that I use? Any concerns with this project? I have very limited knowledge with this type of stuff so any advice would help me. Thanks

  • #2
    Nothing that low will be useful.
    2000 Celica GTS 'slowest gts evar'
    1998 Mazda 626 FS-DE/CD4E 'mom-mobile'

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Bitter View Post
      Nothing that low will be useful.
      Not trying to be rude or anything but why does being low make them useless? And the lights would be about a foot off the ground.

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      • #4
        lights shine down and out, being about a foot above the ground means they won't be able to shine down and out over anything, every dip and bump and rise or ramp will block your headlights and shorten their range to a useless distance. not to mention the hot spot will be smeared across the road too close to you to do any good lighting up anything at a safe distance.
        2000 Celica GTS 'slowest gts evar'
        1998 Mazda 626 FS-DE/CD4E 'mom-mobile'

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        • #5
          Because you want the headlights a bit high off of the ground so they can eventually hit the ground and point the hotspot on the ground at a specific distance to illuminate the road ahead. Usually headlights are somewhere around 3 feet off of the ground.
          If they are mounted lower and aimed parallel to the ground the hotspots will never hit the ground and therefore your distance vision will be compromised. Also keep in mind that mounting anything that low will get damaged quicker due to more contact with road debris. And matchboxes are not really recommended for low beam use.
          Sorry man, unfortunately the best bet is to bite the bullet and retrofit the headlights. Maybe there are some aftermarket headlights that use butyl?

          EDIT: Bitter beat me to it

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          • #6
            Best bet is to look for a second hand pair of headlights for your car.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Nuvolari View Post
              Because you want the headlights a bit high off of the ground so they can eventually hit the ground and point the hotspot on the ground at a specific distance to illuminate the road ahead. Usually headlights are somewhere around 3 feet off of the ground.
              If they are mounted lower and aimed parallel to the ground the hotspots will never hit the ground and therefore your distance vision will be compromised. Also keep in mind that mounting anything that low will get damaged quicker due to more contact with road debris. And matchboxes are not really recommended for low beam use.
              Sorry man, unfortunately the best bet is to bite the bullet and retrofit the headlights. Maybe there are some aftermarket headlights that use butyl?

              EDIT: Bitter beat me to it
              I was unable to find any aftermarket headlights for my car. And I have already had a headlight replaced at the dealership and it was nearly $1,300. And if rather than having the new lights aimed parallel to the ground what if I were to aim them slightly downward. And plus I would already have a PnP HID kit in my low beam projectors.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Atruc68 View Post
                I was unable to find any aftermarket headlights for my car. And I have already had a headlight replaced at the dealership and it was nearly $1,300.
                Does it look like this? Appears to be quite a bit less than US$1300 (at least at the time I looked at the link)
                http://www.ebay.com/itm/2013-2016-Ch...1YqvIt&vxp=mtr

                Originally posted by Atruc68 View Post
                And if rather than having the new lights aimed parallel to the ground what if I were to aim them slightly downward.
                At the foglight location, that wouldn't help with your low beam distance lighting issue

                Originally posted by Atruc68 View Post
                And plus I would already have a PnP HID kit in my low beam projectors.
                I assume this means you agree that the PnP HID doesn't help with the low beam distance output; replacing one particular light source (e.g. halogen bulbs) with another (say, HID bulbs or PnP LED) is very likely going to cause the beam pattern to be different. A halogen bulb's filament, an HID bulb's arc, and the emission of the LED emitter have 2 main differences. The obvious one is the overall intensity. The not so obvious one is the pattern of that intensity. With a reflector-bowl-and-lens combination in a projector, even moving the originally intended bulb by a fraction of a millimeter (from its intended position) would alter the beam (to a less useful one). It is not surprising that in many cases, PnP HID in that projector wasn't productive.

                I think one thing that makes it hard to believe, is that many easy solutions appear "brighter" than the original solution. Yet they rarely improve distance lighting, which is really important for freeway driving.
                Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

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

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by satrya View Post
                  Does it look like this? Appears to be quite a bit less than US$1300 (at least at the time I looked at the link)
                  http://www.ebay.com/itm/2013-2016-Ch...1YqvIt&vxp=mtr


                  At the foglight location, that wouldn't help with your low beam distance lighting issue


                  I assume this means you agree that the PnP HID doesn't help with the low beam distance output; replacing one particular light source (e.g. halogen bulbs) with another (say, HID bulbs or PnP LED) is very likely going to cause the beam pattern to be different. A halogen bulb's filament, an HID bulb's arc, and the emission of the LED emitter have 2 main differences. The obvious one is the overall intensity. The not so obvious one is the pattern of that intensity. With a reflector-bowl-and-lens combination in a projector, even moving the originally intended bulb by a fraction of a millimeter (from its intended position) would alter the beam (to a less useful one). It is not surprising that in many cases, PnP HID in that projector wasn't productive.

                  I think one thing that makes it hard to believe, is that many easy solutions appear "brighter" than the original solution. Yet they rarely improve distance lighting, which is really important for freeway driving.
                  I 100% agree with you about the PnP not improving much. The only reason I would have them would be for aesthetics.

                  And the headlight that you found is for the 2015 and the 2016 "limited", not the 2016.

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                  • #10
                    As for doing a retrofit I have been turned down by many companies because of how the headlight is setup. I don't know the exact terms but it has something to do with the projector being mounted to the alignment brackets making it super dificult to fabricate custom brackets.

                    I have however spoken to one company which recommended that we keep the current projector, put a clear lens on it and tune it. What are your guys' thoughts on this?

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                    • #11
                      So your projectors sit at approximately 28" from the road surface, as-is from the factory (if you really really care about the math I did to figure that out... PM me). Your fogs, which are unfortunately only offered as a DRL option, are a hair above 12" from the ground. You would need a projector with an extremely aggressive foreground limiter to prevent foreground lighting from making too large of a foreground contrast and hindering your distance vision. Like others have said, headlamps at 12" from the ground are a bit less effective. Could you put something there that adds value? Yes, but it would take a bit of tuning, especially with a foreground limiter (can actually be done off the car).

                      Regarding permaseal, that's unfortunate that Chevy went in that direction, if it's true. Lightwerkz and a few other retrofitters on here will work with permaseal, but you definitely pay to play. If you're mechanically inclined and the price is really out of your budget, you could always do it yourself and follow the guides on here, Lightwerkz, etc. on how to work with permasealed headlamps. We'd recommend buying a second set of headlamps since that might not be a weekend job (or you might destroy your only set).

                      Maybe "alignment brackets" refers to the joints that allow for vertical and horizontal alignment. If so, these aren't impossible to work with, but some aren't as easy, like if they're difficult to access (like ball joints). Otherwise, I'm clueless what an alignment bracket is, in this case.

                      Clear lens + "tuning" will likely not give you any real noticeable distance vision. Clear lenses only un-diffuse the light from your frosted/dimpled/fresnel lens, and you gain about 3-6% in light intensity on the road... not much, and now you paid $$$ for someone to open your permaseal headlamp for a small increase in light performance. The better way is to retrofit in a known performing projector into your headlamp, if it's going to be opened up.

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                      • #12
                        What about a sealed low beam solution mounted in the center grille opening? It would look obvious that it is added on, but at least it will have the proper height to be effective. (if aimed properly)
                        Jul 2012 ROTM (3-way quad headlight) ; Sep 2015 ROTM (custom muli-lens 7" fogs)

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

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by satrya View Post
                          What about a sealed low beam solution mounted in the center grille opening? It would look obvious that it is added on, but at least it will have the proper height to be effective. (if aimed properly)
                          Unfortunately that would not work because that is where the adaptive cruise control sensor is on my car.

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                          • #14
                            Would the non limited lights physically fit and be easier to retro? My car has the wrong lights so I could retro them.
                            2000 Celica GTS 'slowest gts evar'
                            1998 Mazda 626 FS-DE/CD4E 'mom-mobile'

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bitter View Post
                              Would the non limited lights physically fit and be easier to retro? My car has the wrong lights so I could retro them.
                              The ones that I have, the non-limited ones, are super dificult to retrofit apparently.

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