Why can't you retrofit xenon headlights?

Discussion in 'Body Work and Exterior Lights' started by l33th3tr33, Jul 25, 2017.

  1. l33th3tr33

    l33th3tr33

    Messages:
    598
    Location:
    Black Diamond Gang
    Car:
    197 UR
    Hey guy's I have searched and can't find an actual answer as to why you can't retrofit xenon headlights. I assume it's the auto lights and self leveller, but surely you can wire them up and use a manual adjuster from a set of halogen/projector lights? Obviously this would not make them legal but I just want to know if they can be fitted and made to work correctly and how if possible

    Any help is really appreciated, it's horrible knowing a 1*2 inside out and having another RS that you're totally alien to!
     

  2. Antti O

    Antti O Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,503
    Location:
    Mikkeli, Finland
    Car:
    Clio 197 Ultra red 2007
    You can buy projector headlights and use aftermarket xenon set. It is not legal, but it is one solution.
    My solution was projector headlights + osran nightbreakers. Legal and good light power.
     
  3. turkie172

    turkie172 Paid Member

    Messages:
    994
    Location:
    N. Ireland
    Car:
    197
    Yea projector headlights have the same look on the front of the car and good road legal bulbs are fine it's only the dip beam that is xenon I drove a 172 with xenon lights for 12 years and the projector with bulbs like nightbreakers is perfectly fine and equal in my opinion but as I did have a problem with the area of coverage of the projected dip beam and was my fault the H1 bulb is hard to fit while on the car and was rotated a few degrees out in the holder which cut the area of the beam dramatically on correction of this fitment error and caused by the lack of access and visibility when putting bulbs in.
    upload_2017-7-25_11-0-1.png
     
  4. l33th3tr33

    l33th3tr33

    Messages:
    598
    Location:
    Black Diamond Gang
    Car:
    197 UR
    Thanks for the info guys, I'm aware of the projector solution, I was just looking for a specific answer as to why you can't fit them, as I can't find one anywhere other than people just saying you can't. I'm guessing it's due to legal reasons as I can't find an solid answer as to why you can't.


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  5. jimfacebinface

    jimfacebinface Paid Member

    Messages:
    267
    Location:
    South Wales
    Car:
    RB 200
    I would focus more on the beam pattern, so by fitting the projectors, you're concentrating the beam of light in a more direct way than scattering it with a reflector and blinding people. That should get you through an MOT at least anyway. I didn't have issues with aftermarket xenon kits in halogen projectors.
     
  6. Antti O

    Antti O Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,503
    Location:
    Mikkeli, Finland
    Car:
    Clio 197 Ultra red 2007
    It depends mot station. In my city mot stations they always check that height adjustment works automatically.
    Like in E46 BMW beam goes up/down when you start car to prove that your automatic height adjustment works.
    Because that it is instant mot failure with aftermarket bulbs here.. :/
     
  7. l33th3tr33

    l33th3tr33

    Messages:
    598
    Location:
    Black Diamond Gang
    Car:
    197 UR
    I'm not talking about fitting xenon kits or hid/led kits, I'm wanting to know what is stopping you from fitting OEM xenon headlights and having them working in a non xenon car. I know you won't have the auto levelling and washers. I just want to know if you can fit them and light them up. It seems that no one actually has an answer other than 'no it won't work' without any actual evidence.


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  8. BrooksMCR

    BrooksMCR

    Messages:
    29
    Car:
    Clio 197
    I would say anything is a possibility, the coding dealing with the communication between the level sensors and the level motor/actuators would simply be disabled.

    The reality would appear to be the impracticality of purchasing and fitting the projector headlights, xenon ballasts, level sensors (in the correct location), bumper complete with washer jets and all additional piping.

    If you really were dead set on fitting an OEM and legal Xenon set up, it would work out far cheaper throwing the extra cash at the a car that came with it factory fitted.
     
  9. l33th3tr33

    l33th3tr33

    Messages:
    598
    Location:
    Black Diamond Gang
    Car:
    197 UR
    But could you plug the oem xenon headlight in with the existing loom or would you require a different headlight loom?


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  10. BrooksMCR

    BrooksMCR

    Messages:
    29
    Car:
    Clio 197
    You would have to modify the existing loom as the Xenon ballasts and loom would have to be spliced in line.

    You then have the issues around fitting the auto level sensors and making them communicate with the level motors.

    Personally, you have 2 realistic options in front of you:

    1. Buy a set of projector headlamps (I bought a pair for £89 from Ebay which required a quick polish up), buy an aftermarket Xenon kit and fit this. You can then use your headlamp aim adjustment to knock the beam down and avoid the inevitable flashes you will receive. (Please note, this setup would still be classed as illegal due to lack of auto-level and washers)

    2. Buy a set of projector headlamps and grab yourself some Osram Nightbreaker Xenon-Look bulbs. I personally think these look great and when you pair them with Osram Nightbreakers for your full beam you will never struggle for light.
     
  11. l33th3tr33

    l33th3tr33

    Messages:
    598
    Location:
    Black Diamond Gang
    Car:
    197 UR
    Excellent, thank you for that info! I've had nightbreakers multiple times and not really rated them tbh. While they're better than a standard bulb they still don't provide the output I'm looking for so I'll look into a xenon retrofit kit.
    Thanks for your help!


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  12. link

    link Gold Member

    Messages:
    375
    Car:
    Clio 197 RB
    I've got some more info for you, nothing is impossible but it might take some time and effort... As already mentioned you will need the headlamps, ballasts, loom, ecu, level sensors, height adjusters, washer pump etc.

    p1.jpg
    p2.jpg

    Looking at the schematics it just looks to be one main loom at the front of the car you need, even the rear level sensor comes back to this although it's difficult to tell if it runs through the car or underneath it...

    S1.jpg
    S2.jpg
    S24.png

    Also I'm not convinced that the schematics show all the wiring for the xenon's unless the ballasts are integrated into the headlamps somehow, ive not had a good look at mine to see how it's all wired up exactly...

    0155_A3.jpg
    0121_A3.jpg

    The indents for the majority of components are:
    • #226 RH headlamp
    • #227 LH headlamp
    • #537 LH height adjuster
    • #538 RH height adjuster
    • #989 Discharge computer (ecu)
    • #1372 Rear height sensor
    • #1373 Front height sensor
    If you came across a donor vehicle with a rear end shunt I dont think it would be a huge job to hash it together, the ecu needs tapping into the CAN and it would need programming via CLIP. You would probably get away without needing auto lights (after all it can be deactivated from the stalk), hope this answers your query but as most people have said there are some quite easier alternatives...
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2017
    BrooksMCR, Big Ben and DS197 like this.
  13. Doogle

    Doogle Winner - POTM March 2018 Paid Member

    Messages:
    722
    Location:
    Plymouth
    Car:
    BMW e46 330cd
    To add my two pence to this, although legal requirement is headlight washers, levelling sensors, etc I find the levelling sensors are shite. I am also in the process of blanking the headlight washers with Megacarbon blanking plugs. Ive swapped the washer bottle for non xenon one and got rid of all the hoses. Most MOT places dont care about headlight washers and my car is always clean. The levelling sensors are more important to be fair.
     
  14. Shannon larmour

    Shannon larmour Paid Member

    Messages:
    45
    Car:
    197
    I know it's old post..
    But I'll add to it,
    My 197 came with normal lights and my ex boyfriend fitted a set of xenon headlights to the car
    they work perfectly and they auto height adjust.
    At first they could be adjusted with the scroll button the normal lights used but he changed them to auto after a while.
    The cornering lights don't work when turning they come on with high beam..

    He said he could make them work but was not worth the hassle
     
  15. Doogle

    Doogle Winner - POTM March 2018 Paid Member

    Messages:
    722
    Location:
    Plymouth
    Car:
    BMW e46 330cd
    I dont get how you can have auto levelling lights without the sensors retrofitted? The lights dont have any form of gyroscope or level to be able to work out which way is up or down. Doesnt surprise me they work with the level roller on a dash though, its probably a more user friendly way of adjusting them.
     
  16. Shannon larmour

    Shannon larmour Paid Member

    Messages:
    45
    Car:
    197
    He says u just need 2 gyros and an lcm its plug n play
     
  17. turkie172

    turkie172 Paid Member

    Messages:
    994
    Location:
    N. Ireland
    Car:
    197
    The xenon headlights can be retro fitted but the engine bay loom needs changed the lighting control computer needs fitted the headlight will have three connectors the self leveling you need the front and rear level sensors and the underside sub loom. Activate the option using the Renault clip and you should be good to go but to be legal you need the headlight washer jets fitted which means the washer bottle needs changed to the one with two pumps. Now saying all that I think a genuine xenon headlight can be fitted with a standard headlight adjustment motor and the cornering lights connected but only if you already have them working now it would not be legal and no auto adjustment you might get through MOT because the headlight has all the xenon igniter stuff hidden inside but you would be blinding oncoming and cars in front so be prepared for some road rage. Now the only thing I think that cuts down the work is if your car has working cornering lights already and projector headlights it should be a straight swap but again not legal.
     

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