E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > Tuning & Tech > Lighting Forum

Lighting Forum
Angel Eyes, DDEs, lighted rings, Clear Turn Signals, LEDs, Xenon, HID, or Bi-Xenon. If it lights up and you want to discuss it, post here!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 07-06-2014, 10:38 PM   #1
Qtonic
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 52
My Ride: M3
Xenon bulb going out sporadically

Is it normal for a Xenon bulb to slowly go bad? My driver side bulb recently was out and the dash warning light came on to indicate it. I looked up bulbs and was just about to order some.

Then the next time I drove it was working fine and no light on the dash. Later it didn't work. Another time it did and so on. Been this way for about 5 days.

I'm happy to order new bulbs if that's what I need, but I don't want to do it if this behavior indicates that isn't what's at fault.
Qtonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 07-06-2014, 10:47 PM   #2
cscracker
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Michigan
Posts: 28
My Ride: 2004 330Xi
This is normal for a bulb failure, you'll also notice them being very flickery and the color being off and dim (usually purple or reddish). It can also be caused by the ballast going bad, though.
cscracker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 10:50 PM   #3
Qtonic
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 52
My Ride: M3
Thank you!
Qtonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-06-2014, 11:32 PM   #4
cvx5832
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Walnut Creek, CA
Posts: 2,220
My Ride: 325Ci, 325Cic, C300
Normal failure mode for xenons when they get old. Google "xenon cold start failure". Replace with QUALITY units.
__________________


cvx5832 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2014, 04:34 PM   #5
Solidjake
Zero. Oil. Leaks.
 
Solidjake's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 22,521
My Ride: 2002 330i
Just make sure it's the bulb. I would swap the bulbs around and see if it persists with the bulb. If not you might have an ignitor and ballast issue. If it is the bulbs then you can get Philips 85122+ bulbs from theretrofitsource.com and if you want the best and can afford it there are the Osram CBI (which I have)
Solidjake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-07-2014, 05:32 PM   #6
Qtonic
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 52
My Ride: M3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Solidjake View Post
Just make sure it's the bulb. I would swap the bulbs around and see if it persists with the bulb. If not you might have an ignitor and ballast issue. If it is the bulbs then you can get Philips 85122+ bulbs from theretrofitsource.com and if you want the best and can afford it there are the Osram CBI (which I have)
The Osram bulbs look nice. What color temp do you recommend?
Qtonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 03:35 AM   #7
bkina
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Orange County, California
Posts: 55
My Ride: E46 330Ci // E36
I currently have the same issue, I switched the bulbs around but the issue remains the same. It turns on after I turn the car off and on again, might look into one of the other fixes mentioned..
bkina is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 06:16 PM   #8
Solidjake
Zero. Oil. Leaks.
 
Solidjake's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 22,521
My Ride: 2002 330i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Qtonic View Post
The Osram bulbs look nice. What color temp do you recommend?
For a real xenon bulb there's only 4300k or 5000k. 4300 is yellow/white while 5000k is more pure white. It depends how much you want to spend $95 or 180 but the brightness of the CBI are a bit more.
Solidjake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2014, 03:13 AM   #9
Qtonic
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 52
My Ride: M3
I decided to be different and went with Philips' new 85122 XV 'xtreme vision' bulbs. They're supposed to compete with the Osram CBI's in that they give ~5000k light that's about as bright as 4300k. Same price range as CBI, fyi.

Unfortunately I'm not too impressed with them in my 03 M3. I think it's the combo with the lenses, but they give off a distinct green light. It's brighter for sure, but I just find it ugly through the e46 projectors. Bummer. Wishing I had purchased the CBI's I guess.

Anyway, I just wanted to follow up. Maybe I'll try to sell them. I bet they're better in other cars.

Last edited by Qtonic; 07-12-2014 at 03:15 AM.
Qtonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2014, 03:50 AM   #10
Solidjake
Zero. Oil. Leaks.
 
Solidjake's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 22,521
My Ride: 2002 330i
The glass on your projectors are frosted with a line going through them? If so swap out to ZKW lenses

Solidjake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2014, 11:02 PM   #11
Qtonic
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 52
My Ride: M3
Looks like I'm headed down the rabbit hole with this project. Sigh. Ok I'll order the ZKW lenses. Thanks for the recommendation.

While I'm in there I think I'll add some angel eyes. Any opinions?
Qtonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:45 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use