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-   -   Xenon Bulb Replacement (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=964383)

mrbill 01-07-2013 06:16 PM

Xenon Bulb Replacement
Hello- I have an 04 330i (sedan). I can see the headlight projectors so I believe this automagically means I have Xenons (low beams). I can hardly see at night. There's definitely light... its just dim. From what I've read here, this usually means bulbs are going. So as a first step, I ordered Philips D2S Xenon HID Headlight Bulbs part number: 85122C1 - The 'C1' threw me so I called Philips and they said its the same as the 85122+, just updated part number.

2 questions:
- Did I order the right bulb (I'm pretty sure I did)
- Could anything else be causing this? I had to pickup a part at the dealer and they suggested the ballasts as well, but I sort of find that hard to believe.

Thougths? Thanks!

Solidjake 01-07-2013 08:27 PM

Yes, those are the correct bulbs.

Install the bulbs (DO NOT TOUCH THE GLASS) and make sure to level the lights properly using the black wheels on top of the headlight. Then report back. Pics always help.

mrbill 01-07-2013 08:56 PM

Hey- Thanks for the info. I' ll post before and after shots. Never re- leveled so ill look for the article on that.


Solidjake 01-07-2013 08:59 PM

Just park on a flat surface with a nice clean wall ahead of you and adjust them. Check out my vid to see what it should look like afterwards

Look at the first few seconds of this one



mrbill 01-07-2013 09:09 PM

i forgot to mention i have self leveling. totally spaced.


mrbill 01-09-2013 01:34 AM

Is it me or are the low beam bulb boots\covers hard as heck to get on and off? I just did the driver side and wound up having to loosen and pop out the headlight unit. Is the best way to do this involve removing the entire headlight unit? I have a 2004 330i with self leveling lights.


mrbill 01-09-2013 10:18 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Hello Again- Ok, I have an image to share. Changed the drivers side last night- Wow! I'm accustomed to older BMWs... lots of plastic and things are tough to access in this car. But have to admit, the engineering is superb!

Anyway, after wrangling the boots for about 45 min, I have the drivers side working. Wanted to share what it looks like and get your opinion on the light spread. Enclosed is a picture. Its MUCH brighter than the passenger side. But are the 'hot spots' normal? Let me know what you think.

Thanks for all the help. I'm an older BMW guy and working to get up to speed on the complexity of these new machines :).

Solidjake 01-09-2013 10:20 AM

mmmm, those hot spots don't seem correct. I'll take a pic of my output tonight after work

mrbill 01-09-2013 11:00 AM

Ya, didn't seem normal to me either. Thanks for taking a look.

Rudy540 01-09-2013 12:11 PM

My dads 325i lights also are extremely weak for some reason, I tried a new hid bulb but not much difference, did u change ballast?

mrbill 01-09-2013 01:29 PM

I only changed 1 bulb and already notice a huge difference. Haven't touched the ballasts.

mrbill 01-09-2013 11:00 PM

Quick update

Removing the entire headlight assembly is clearly the way to go when changing the bulbs on a 2004 self leveling hid system. Far easier. Now that i've seen how the bulb is supposed to align within the sockets, i now know the driver side bulb is incorrectly installed. The passenger light pattern is spot on and bright. Ill fix the drivers tomorrow and upload picts.

Solidjake 01-09-2013 11:02 PM

yea, I figured the bulb was not seated properly. Post some pics when both are installed.

mrbill 01-16-2013 03:49 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Hello- Ok, finally have before and after photos. Big difference. BTW- As I mentioned before, its far far easier to change the bulbs via removing the headlight units. Only takes about 5min per side this way.

All I did was replace the factory bulbs with new factory bulbs. Nothing upgraded. Much better.

Leanwidit 09-14-2013 10:10 PM

Having the same fkn problem!
Thanks guys, i now have a solution!

Btw, does anybody knoe which bulb i should get for my 325i 2004 xenon? Any help will be appreciated.. ^___^

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