Jump to content


Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse
 

Photo
- - - - -

replacement headlight bulbs


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 buzzcon

buzzcon

    Subermaniac

  • Members
  • 158 posts
  • Granite Falls

Posted 21 January 2013 - 06:46 AM

I'm trying to find a decent replacement bulb for my 2000 Impreza. I've tried Phillips H4 X-tremeVision and they lasted a little under a year. They're pretty bright and pretty expensive. Any recommendations are welcome. Also where to purchase, for a descent price. Thanks

~Myles~

#2 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,823 posts
  • Texas

Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:31 AM

you might consider narva +30 or +50 if available in that size. Haven't had mine long enough to comment on longevity but, the seem slightly brighter.

maybe an HIR type bulb too.

or read-up at danielsternlighting.com .

short of an HID install, there's not much in the way of brighter bulbs that won't come with shorter lifespan or the risk of melted wires/housings.

and, there are ways to re-polish the yellow, pitted lenses on older cars that will help with brightness.

#3 jseabolt

jseabolt

    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 54 posts
  • Tri-Cities, TN.

Posted 22 January 2013 - 03:49 PM

you might consider narva +30 or +50 if available in that size. Haven't had mine long enough to comment on longevity but, the seem slightly brighter.

maybe an HIR type bulb too.

or read-up at danielsternlighting.com .

short of an HID install, there's not much in the way of brighter bulbs that won't come with shorter lifespan or the risk of melted wires/housings.

and, there are ways to re-polish the yellow, pitted lenses on older cars that will help with brightness.


I tried some Sylvania Silverstars in my 03 Baja. I liked the white light they produced but they would only last about three months then blow. After replacing about 3 bulbs at $20 a pop, I put the original bulbs back in. About a month or two ago, the PS low beam finally blew.

The Silverstar high beams are still in there though. I figured since they were not used as much as the low beams they should last longer than 3 months.

I handled the bulbs by the metal portion, not touching the glass. Is it OK to handle the bulbs as long as you don't touch the glass? Or do I need to be wearing rubber gloves even if handling the metal portion of the bulb?

I've installed many H4 headlamps in my other cars by simply handling the metal portion and they have been in those cars for years.

#4 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,823 posts
  • Texas

Posted 22 January 2013 - 11:22 PM

just keep skin oils and any other debris/substance off the glass and you should be OK. If you do touch the glass, it should be cleaned before installation, alcohol would be my guess as to a solvent.

#5 edrach

edrach

    RIP 6/28/14

  • Members
  • 12,326 posts
  • Bothell, WA

Posted 25 January 2013 - 11:55 AM

I tried some Sylvania Silverstars in my 03 Baja. I liked the white light they produced but they would only last about three months then blow. After replacing about 3 bulbs at $20 a pop, I put the original bulbs back in. About a month or two ago, the PS low beam finally blew.

The Silverstar high beams are still in there though. I figured since they were not used as much as the low beams they should last longer than 3 months.

I handled the bulbs by the metal portion, not touching the glass. Is it OK to handle the bulbs as long as you don't touch the glass? Or do I need to be wearing rubber gloves even if handling the metal portion of the bulb?

I've installed many H4 headlamps in my other cars by simply handling the metal portion and they have been in those cars for years.

It might be time to check the voltage coming out of your alternator. If the voltage regulator does cut off the voltage at 14.5VDC max, you stand the chance of burning out the bulbs pre-maturely. Any voltage above 15VDC is definitely a sign of a bad regulator. Test the voltage at idle and see how high it goes when you rev it to 5K. Easy test if you have a digital voltmeter.

#6 edrach

edrach

    RIP 6/28/14

  • Members
  • 12,326 posts
  • Bothell, WA

Posted 25 January 2013 - 11:56 AM

I'm trying to find a decent replacement bulb for my 2000 Impreza. I've tried Phillips H4 X-tremeVision and they lasted a little under a year. They're pretty bright and pretty expensive. Any recommendations are welcome. Also where to purchase, for a descent price. Thanks

~Myles~

www.competitionlimited.com

#7 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,859 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 26 January 2013 - 01:23 PM

I tried some Sylvania Silverstars in my 03 Baja. I liked the white light they produced but they would only last about three months then blow. After replacing about 3 bulbs at $20 a pop, I put the original bulbs back in. About a month or two ago, the PS low beam finally blew.

The Silverstar high beams are still in there though. I figured since they were not used as much as the low beams they should last longer than 3 months.

I handled the bulbs by the metal portion, not touching the glass. Is it OK to handle the bulbs as long as you don't touch the glass? Or do I need to be wearing rubber gloves even if handling the metal portion of the bulb?

I've installed many H4 headlamps in my other cars by simply handling the metal portion and they have been in those cars for years.

This is the nature of Silverstar bulbs. I've been through quite a few of both the standard silver star and the ultras. Great light output, the ultras are godawful expensive, and they only last about 4-6 months. Same story in all 5 of the cars I've used them in.

#8 Gloyale

Gloyale

    It's a sickness

  • Members
  • 9,281 posts
  • Corvallis, OR PNW

Posted 26 January 2013 - 01:59 PM

Best first step is to build a Relay circuit, for both the Pos and Neg wiring to the headlights.

I recently built a setup, using 4 relays. Triggered by the factory lighting.

The overall circuit length for the headlamps is now about 4 feet....direct from battery (fused) and a solid body ground. The light from my stock headlamps is now much "whiter" and shines at least 20-40 feet further down the road

I took pics, will post them later.

It's a double win too. Even if you then choose to upgrade to brighter bulbs, You now have a circuit that can handle it. Those extra bright bulbs don't like the high resistance in the factory circuit, and that's why they blow so quickly.

#9 nickb21

nickb21

    Subaru Fanatic!

  • Members
  • 558 posts
  • Hunterdon County

Posted 27 January 2013 - 03:54 PM

I had pretty good luck in a family car running Sylvania XtraVision's (9007XV2 or something like that). Good brightness and decent life, got at least 2-3 years out of them. Not sure off-hand if they make it in other sizes like H4.

Upgrading the wiring and relays and running some of the "+" bulbs daniel stern offers would be a good idea, maybe just a hotter "high beam"? Are there any limits with the plastic headlight lenses we have?

#10 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,859 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 27 January 2013 - 09:24 PM

It's a double win too. Even if you then choose to upgrade to brighter bulbs, You now have a circuit that can handle it. Those extra bright bulbs don't like the high resistance in the factory circuit, and that's why they blow so quickly.

Higher resistance limits current, which would cause them to burn cooler. How does increasing current, and there-fore lamp temperature, (by lowering resistance) lengthen lamp life?

#11 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,823 posts
  • Texas

Posted 28 January 2013 - 09:22 AM

Higher resistance limits current, which would cause them to burn cooler. How does increasing current, and there-fore lamp temperature, (by lowering resistance) lengthen lamp life?


there's a point at which the 'cycle' inside halogen lamps doesn't work. Some kinda tungsten/halide/quartz magic is happening that re-deposits metal vapor onto the filament (I probably have the details wrong), but only if it's hot enough. But i suspect they can still operate at lower power since that's how DRLs operate.

there's probably some kinda curve that shows the optimum temps or a lower limit.

not sure it that's what gloyale was referring to.

#12 buzzcon

buzzcon

    Subermaniac

  • Members
  • 158 posts
  • Granite Falls

Posted 28 January 2013 - 01:12 PM

I've read that Sylvania doesn't meet any set standards in building their bulbs, so it's a hit or miss deal. Phillips has a contract, with the auto industry, to meet certain standards, at least in the bulbs they supply to the auto manufacturers. The relay sounds good. For now I'm using one of my old bulbs. How about LED headlamp bulbs? Just wondering...

~Myles~

#13 presslab

presslab

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 867 posts
  • N. California

Posted 28 January 2013 - 01:30 PM

there's a point at which the 'cycle' inside halogen lamps doesn't work.


You got the gist of it, I'm impressed. The halogen cycle does work over a pretty large range, and below that it doesn't matter as much.
http://en.wikipedia....p#Halogen_cycle

At much lower voltages, the bulb temperature may be too low to support the halogen cycle, but by this time the evaporation rate is too low for the bulb to blacken significantly. There are many situations where halogen lamps are dimmed successfully. However, lamp life may not be extended as much as predicted. The life span on dimming depends on lamp construction, the halogen additive used and whether dimming is normally expected for this type.


That's precisely why DRL circuits add resistance or PWM the bulbs, to extend their lifetime, but as mentioned above there are many factors.

#14 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,823 posts
  • Texas

Posted 28 January 2013 - 02:25 PM

here's a cool video of how the cycle works to clear the glass of tunsten deposits;





#15 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,859 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:48 PM

:) I shouldn't be surprised that you guys actually posted useful links! (but I am for some reason) I haven't read about "halogen cycle" before. Time to do some more research...

So the basic idea is that these are designed to perform best when steady voltage and current in the proper range are applied to the bulb, to keep the tungsten in the filament from depositing on the glass and eventually degrading the filament to the point that it breaks.

And the effect of low voltage could be further detrimental to the bulbs if there are other problems with the electrical system, such as a poorly functioning alternator causing dimming of the lights when there is a load placed on the system?

#16 mikaleda

mikaleda

    1000+ member!

  • Members
  • 1,329 posts
  • priest lake, Idaho

Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:57 PM

:popcorn: cool thread.

#17 mikaleda

mikaleda

    1000+ member!

  • Members
  • 1,329 posts
  • priest lake, Idaho

Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:04 PM

Best first step is to build a Relay circuit, for both the Pos and Neg wiring to the headlights.

I recently built a setup, using 4 relays. Triggered by the factory lighting.

The overall circuit length for the headlamps is now about 4 feet....direct from battery (fused) and a solid body ground. The light from my stock headlamps is now much "whiter" and shines at least 20-40 feet further down the road

I took pics, will post them later.

It's a double win too. Even if you then choose to upgrade to brighter bulbs, You now have a circuit that can handle it. Those extra bright bulbs don't like the high resistance in the factory circuit, and that's why they blow so quickly.

Cool setup
I always thought the wiring subaru used for their headlights was too light duty

Edited by mikaleda, 28 January 2013 - 05:11 PM.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users