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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!

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Old 03-08-2010, 07:06 AM   #1
arich
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Zkw projector bowls shot

Hi I own a 2004 BMW 325i and I too am a victim of the burned out ZKW projector bowls. I was wondering if you could just simply purchase the AL Lenses with the brakets, then simply use the bulbs and ballasts that I already have? I really like to keep my car OEM as much as possible but if the swaping out the ZKW out with AL is not cost effective what are my options?
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Old 03-08-2010, 07:39 AM   #2
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You can try Bosch as well as they are OEM supplier.
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Old 03-08-2010, 11:29 AM   #3
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How much will they run me?
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Old 03-08-2010, 11:38 AM   #4
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The Bosch will not be a direct swap, the mounting holes won't line up, you need to do a retrofit. Check out theretfofitsource.com for more info
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Old 03-08-2010, 11:40 AM   #5
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There is no cost effective way out of this, here are your options
1 find different headlights from a later model from junkyard
2 diy retrofit Tfx setup 200$
3 pay for a retrofit from lightwerkz 650$
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Old 03-08-2010, 11:45 AM   #6
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If I were to purchase an item similar to the unit in the picture that is manufactured by AL, could i simply install that and use my ignitor ballast and bulbs from the ZKW set up?
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Old 03-08-2010, 12:02 PM   #7
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Well, the AL projectors are not going to be a direct bolt in to the ZKW headlights. The picture you have posted includes the frame as well as the projector. I am not sure if anyone has done research to figure out if the frames are interchangeable...that might be a good solution (if it works).

However, you can get the ENTIRE AL assembly (housing and everything). But I don't think the ballasts between ZKW and AL have the same mounting points so you want to buy an AL assembly that comes with ballast and igniter.

but yes, I think if you manage to get a ZKW housing with an AL projector the ballast and igniter will work, as the bulbs are the same between the two.

Last edited by ozymandias; 03-08-2010 at 12:06 PM.
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Old 03-08-2010, 12:52 PM   #8
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If you get everything pictured it will swap in just fine
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Old 03-08-2010, 01:13 PM   #9
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The ballast/igniter are different for the Bosch/AL setup so you'd need to swap them too. Sorry to say but there's no cheap way to do this unless you can do a custom retrofit yourself. I bought AL assemblies on ebay for $600 to replace my burned out ZKW's.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:38 AM   #10
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The ballast/igniter are different for the Bosch/AL setup so you'd need to swap them too. Sorry to say but there's no cheap way to do this unless you can do a custom retrofit yourself. I bought AL assemblies on ebay for $600 to replace my burned out ZKW's.
No, he doesn't. They both use the same bulbs so he can still use his old ballast and igniter.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:39 AM   #11
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If you get everything pictured it will swap in just fine
Wait, are you saying that if I get an AL frame and AL projector I can mount it in my ZKW housing without any issues?

If so that is definitely the cheapest and most hassle free solution to this problem.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:40 AM   #12
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The ballast/igniter are different for the Bosch/AL setup so you'd need to swap them too. Sorry to say but there's no cheap way to do this unless you can do a custom retrofit yourself. I bought AL assemblies on ebay for $600 to replace my burned out ZKW's.
the ballast and ignitor will work with any projector bowl, please stop giving wrong information if you do not know. as long as the bulb socket is d2s you can use any brand of ballast/igniter
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:55 AM   #13
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I was lucky enough to find a complete set of AL lights from a 03 sedan that was being parted out. I just swapped everything over and I was good to go. This route only cost me a couple hundred bucks and I now remember what it was like to be able to see at night.
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Old 03-09-2010, 10:04 AM   #14
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Well, you can find damaged AL headlights on ebay all day long. They have broken tabs and are missing parts, but the frame and projector are intact. So if these parts are interchangeable that is good news.

Ferrarix, can you confirm that the AL frame can be swapped into a ZKW headlight assembly?
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:12 PM   #15
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Ferrarix, can you confirm that the AL frame can be swapped into a ZKW headlight assembly?
If you guys have any more high res pics of that AL frame I can tell you 99.9% if they will fit . There are 3 mounting points. One on the outside top corner. One in the middle and one push in, in the middle by the bottom of the frame between the two bowls highbeam and xenon
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:40 PM   #16
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the ballast and ignitor will work with any projector bowl, please stop giving wrong information if you do not know. as long as the bulb socket is d2s you can use any brand of ballast/igniter
But the bi-xenon shutter wiring is different on the Bosch/AL and it's triggered inside the ballast. So please stop giving out wrong information, k, thanks. If the OP is going to swap the guts over just buy the whole assembly and swap everything over including the ballast. But that's not exactly going to be all that easy to do.

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Old 03-09-2010, 06:11 PM   #17
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zkw

Bosch


the bosch have three wires red(power) black(ground) green(weak ground)
zkw has two red and black

all you need to do is connect the wires from the zkw headlight housing to the bosch bixenon connector in the second picture if the connector doesnt fit. it will save you about 400$ per side on ballasts from bosch.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:06 PM   #18
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all you need to do is connect the wires from the zkw headlight housing to the bosch bixenon connector in the second picture if the connector doesnt fit. it will save you about 400$ per side on ballasts from bosch.
The ZKW uses a two pin connector so you can't plug it into the three pin Bosch connector. Here is some information about why it can't modified in the way you suggest without sacrificing reliability.

http://www.wolstentech.com/products/bixenon/bixenon.php
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:14 PM   #19
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tell me would you spend 500 dollars extra on ballasts because you think your bixenon shudder wont be reliable? this method that I suggested is the same method lightwerkz uses on their tfx retrofit that they charge over 650 dollars for you can tell them there wrong too for some person's home made chip with a capacitor in it
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Old 03-10-2010, 07:55 AM   #20
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tell me would you spend 500 dollars extra on ballasts because you think your bixenon shudder wont be reliable? this method that I suggested is the same method lightwerkz uses on their tfx retrofit that they charge over 650 dollars for you can tell them there wrong too for some person's home made chip with a capacitor in it
Lightwerkz is going from 3 wire to 2 wire, right? That is probably ok. I think he's saying it's ok to go from AL -> ZKW because you don't need the weak ground, but to go from ZKW -> AL you need the weak ground because of how the shutter is designed.

That being said, you can just get those adapters he linked for $16 a pair and be done with it....it's just a capacitor, diode and voltage regulator to create the lower signal needed for the 3rd wire.
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