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Username Post: Low Beams need upgrade        (Topic#353081)
DenaliXL 
Contributor
Posts: 174

Reg: 02-25-07
09-18-18 03:24 PM - Post#2746581    

2003 Denali XL with the projector style low beams and reflector style high beams. Both take 9005. Low beams do not provide sufficient light for safety. High beams are fine (I have the mod with a couple inches of wire and a diode to keep both low + hi on when highs are switched on).

I’ve tried every hi performance 9005 halogen out there with the most recent being Philips Xtreme Vision. Still no luck. My housings are not hazy at all but may be slightly out of alignment as the adjusters rotted out.

My goal: Brighter low beams without looking obviously aftermarket. (I always feel too much of an aftermarket look catches a cop’s eye plus can appear a little ricer.). Also don’t want to spend too much coin (prefer $100 or less).

Do I...

- go with HIRs
- buy new housings, perhaps all reflector style, with functioning adjusters. If so, any recommendations as many get crappie reviews for quality?
- wire up a relay to get full battery voltage to low beam bulbs even though the factory harness has a relay for them right in the under hood fuse box. (If so, anyone make a plug and play no splice kit?)
- try to take apart the projector (would need to grind heads off rusty screws and hope to unscrew) in order to remove either upper &/or lower shutters
- something else?

Opinions or, better yet, real world experience?



Edited by DenaliXL on 09-18-18 03:29 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
someotherguy 
Senior Moderator
Posts: 29472
someotherguy
Loc: Texas
Reg: 08-01-03
09-18-18 03:35 PM - Post#2746584    
    In response to DenaliXL

HIR's allegedly do produce more light but you have to be careful what you buy as there are some knockoff products out there. For a 9005-compatible HIR replacement you'd need to buy a 9011 HIR; you can get genuine Philips for about $20-$22/ea. You'll still need to trim one of the key tabs a little bit - it's very easy with small diagonal cutters. See here -> https://sep.yimg.com/ca/I/yhst-91565365470 012_2267...

I *think* your truck already has relays supplying power to each headlight bulb but you may want to confirm that. The older generation trucks are the ones that route the power directly through the headlight switch and can benefit from an aftermarket relay harness setup.

New housings would be hit or miss as even brand new GM replacements may be China-made and in my experience with headlights for my 2006 Silverado, they are very poor quality. I paid a premium for "genuine GM" and got garbage. Adjuster broke on one the first time I touched it (the screw head literally shattered), the clearcoat is peeling on one after less than a year. Another set in our other truck is hazed, massively checked, and peeling on the clearcoat after about 2 years.

You could also try an HID retrofit though quality varies. To stick within OEM-style lighting color temperature, go with 4300K as that's the somewhat yellowish white light. 5000K is a nice white color without appearing ricey. DDM Tuning has good prices and a good warranty though you'll wait for China shipping on replacement parts if needed. There are more respected names like Morimoto but you'll pay for the name. HID's are easy other than having to find a convenient place to mount the ballast near the headlight.

Richard

06 Silverado ISS / 06 Silverado SS / 06 300C SRT8


 
DenaliXL 
Contributor
Posts: 174

Reg: 02-25-07
09-18-18 04:00 PM - Post#2746586    
    In response to someotherguy

I’ve heard same about HIRs but want to hear first hand experience vs a good standard halogen before I purchase yet another set of bulbs.

Yep, my factory harness has relays which is why I figured it was pointless.

Sux about the housings. I would love to be able to adjust mine
in case that was the cause for my projector style low beams to seem weak. Or have a good quality replacement option in case I break my OEM housings trying to mod the shutters or adjusters or something.

Those HIDs are cheap and have lifetime warranty. $107 + shipping for standard version and $137 + shipping for newer version with lower startup voltage that could hurt harnesses.





 
DenaliXL 
Contributor
Posts: 174

Reg: 02-25-07
09-18-18 05:08 PM - Post#2746594    
    In response to DenaliXL

Interestingly for years even with different bulbs I’ve noticed when pulling up to a wall, the D/S has a bright “hot spot” but the P/S doesn’t even when removing the pins and moving the housing around in every direction. I even downloaded some Lux measuring app and D/S puts out way more at 24” out. Both have 13.3 volts at the connector.



 
DenaliXL 
Contributor
Posts: 174

Reg: 02-25-07
09-20-18 03:43 PM - Post#2746790    
    In response to DenaliXL

Figured out one thing that might be of interest to members. Inside the passenger side low beam projector housing the reflective coating was all flaking off. These are both the original housings from when I bought the truck in ‘03. I blew out the housing and silver glitter was flying in the air. Pulling up to a wall in the dark I can now see a somewhat faint circle where the P/S beam hits. It’s not a bright hot spot like the drivers side. Driving visibility is better but still not great. Assuming this will continue to flake off and the drivers side will eventually flake, I guess it’s time for housings, but which? I want durability, visibility, and no in-your-face styling.





 
DenaliXL 
Contributor
Posts: 174

Reg: 02-25-07
09-27-18 03:57 PM - Post#2747360    
    In response to DenaliXL

Problem solved. New Spyder headlight housings from eBay and so much brighter using same bulbs. LED halos look modern but housing doesn’t look too Euro or Ricer. $110 well spent. Should have done this a few years ago when my visibility started getting bad.



Edited by DenaliXL on 09-27-18 03:57 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
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