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Old 01-21-2004, 07:30 PM   #1
Vidiotgamer
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Post question about 120w headlights...

i recently put these lights in my car and my question is about the box on the far left. I was told that i shouldnt put 120w bulbs in because stocks are 55w and it might melt a wiring harness. I am a car noob and not sure and thats wiy i am asking cuz im not sure. Although im sure they are cheap and silverstar is better i was using these till i can get my silverstars. Breakdown of my question is, are they ok to be in with stock wiring harness? They look good and work fine but couple friends keep telling me to take them out. Thanks for any advice you can give.

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Old 01-21-2004, 08:45 PM   #2
PARANOID56
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well, they will met the harness soon. as for the wattage, i am not sure what they are, there are two different listings on that case, i assume the lower one, but thats still a little hight for the stock harness.
Shane
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Old 01-21-2004, 10:15 PM   #3
sajohnson
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Vidiotgamer:

For reference --

Watts = Volts x Amps

so --

Amps = Watts/Volts

In your example --

Amps = 120W/12V = 10 Amps current draw.

What you need to know is what size wire is supplying the headlights. Typically, 10 Amps would require a minimum of 16 gage wire.

Also, while the wire may be large enough, the contacts sometimes have lower current ratings and will arc and get hot and eventually fail.

There are very good replacement lamps on the market that are inexpensive, long-lived, and made to OEM specs. The ones I use are GE 9007HO (high output). I bought a pair for about $18. The specs are as follows:

Typical 9007 lamp: 13.9 Mcd/sq.m -- 990 avg. lumens -- color temp. 3,120*K

G.E. 9007HO: 15.6 Mcd/sq.m -- 1040 avg. lumens -- color temp. 3,220*K

The blister pack is red and yellow. It says Xenon on it (as opposed to Halogen) but I think that is more marketing than performance.

Headlamps are one of those areas where you can spend a lot of money and end up with worse than OEM performance. Not only that, but many aftermarket lamps, especially the high-power 'HID look-alike' type, burn out quickly.

I think the 9007HO's (or something similar from Sylvania or Phillips) are your best bet short of going to HID's.

Last edited by sajohnson; 01-21-2004 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 01-21-2004, 11:00 PM   #4
Dougie01
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I've had 100W Hella halogen bulbs in my Miata for ages without any problems. It's just got regular 7" diameter bulbs, though, not these fancy modern plastic moulded things. Stock wiring.
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Old 01-21-2004, 11:09 PM   #5
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Take them out ASAP before you melt your harnesses. Seriously. The connectors and wiring can't handle much more than the stock 55W.
If you want brighter light from the stock housings go to the parts store and get a set of Sylvania Xtravisions which have more light output with the same wattage.
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Old 01-21-2004, 11:44 PM   #6
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If they really put out that much, they will melt your wiring harnesses. I have 130w Narva Rally bulbs in some Hella 500s, but I re-wired them with thicker gauge wires.
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Old 01-22-2004, 12:14 AM   #7
SubieStyle
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I don't think they are 120w/170w. They are the smaller (specified) watt number (80w/100w). That higher number they are showing you... is what the brightness is equivalent to. Get it? For example; I have high beam bulbs in my 04 that are the same acuall wattage (80/100) but = 120w brightness. As for my fog lights (H3) I have 100w but = 130w brightness. I also upgraded my low beams too but can't remember specifics. I've had these bulbs in my car for months w/ no problems what so ever! And I work in the evenings so I use mine every day/ night! Hope any of this helps.

Will.
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Old 01-22-2004, 01:07 AM   #8
Vidiotgamer
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Smile ok....

ok well im going to take out the 80 watt headlights and put in the oem lights again. Also, i put the falcons in my fog lamps which r the h3 55 watt. i wanted to know if those ones are ok to leave in and does anyone know the watts for fog lamp stock. thanks for any help.
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Old 01-22-2004, 01:38 AM   #9
sajohnson
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The fogs are 55 watt.
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Old 01-22-2004, 05:14 PM   #10
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They'll be fine.

Will.
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Old 01-22-2004, 08:41 PM   #11
sajohnson
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In addition to what SubieStyle said about actual wattage vs. "equivalent wattage", I would point out that you should take any such claims with a couple grains of salt.

If it were possible to make a lamp that would last at least as long as the OEM type, while at the same time putting out double the lumens with the same amount of wattage in -- don't you think the major automotive lighting companies would be doing so?

I'm reminded of the bad old days of home audio. It was typical to hear outrageous claims regarding amplifier power (car audio may still be this way). "5,000 WATTS of EARTH SHAKING POWER" -- then, in little tiny print: both channels driven, 20% distortion, for 5 milli-seconds with a 1 KHz test tone (after which amp goes up in smoke). The true rating would be something like 50 watts with 0.001% distortion from 20 Hz to 20 KHz.

A similar marketing trend is happening with lighting. Mfr's cheat (or outright lie) by measuring output at the 'hot spot' of the beam, while the majority of the output is dimmer than OEM for example. Or, they may actually be able to squeeze a few more lumens out, but at the expense of service life. I've heard that some headlamps only last 35 or 40 hours!
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Old 01-22-2004, 11:24 PM   #12
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So basically put them in, injoy them, keep an eye on them, but don'y expect them to last as long as OEM one's (which is just fine w/ me).

Will.
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Old 01-23-2004, 01:17 AM   #13
sajohnson
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Also, expect to get extra 'attention' from law enforcement. They seem to be drawn to anything that makes you stand out from the crowd.

Make sure the beam pattern is the same as OEM so you don't blind all oncoming drivers.

Finally, be aware that you are most likely wasting money that could be better spent on other useful mods.
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Old 01-26-2004, 12:03 PM   #14
ATX25RS
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i hate that brand...there was a seller on ebay selling those advertising "Real bulbs, not those fake ones going around Ebay that will damage your car." i sent him a question, saying "not fake" they are imitating Polargs, which are GREAT bulbs IMHO, and they are 80/100W that WILL melt the harness....the seller said he didnt know that...i 've never seen him sell them again...they are crap...if you want the real versions of those.... they are Polarg R types or something like that they are like i said GREAT bulbs....$$$$$ but goo dbulbs.....as for the other stock fog lights can handle a pretty high wattage....i had 100W bulbs in there for a while. it did discolor the reflector, but no wire damage.
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