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Thread: Accord headlights are weak

  1. #1

    Default Accord headlights are weak

    Hey folks! I have a 1992 Honda Accord that the headlights leave something to be desired, especially the low beams. (9006 type) I think the last time I replaced them I just threw in the cheap Napa generics. I've been reading up on some options, and am wondering if anyone has any input.

    Out of standard 9006 bulbs, it seems like a couple types are the most popular. Sylvania Silverstars have a lot of followers, but I don't like the idea of the blue tint. GE NightHawks had a couple of good recommendations. One poster on a different forum noted that the Nighthawks were the only bulbs that Consumer Reports recommended as significantly better.

    Another option I'm considering is modifying the 9005 high beam bulbs and putting them in place of the low beams. The 9005s run at 65 watts emitting ~ 1700 lumens compared to the 9006s using 55 watts and emitting ~ 1000 lumens. I found the mod here. Pretty attractive and easy.

    However, I'm guessing this mod is probably not legal. It sounds like most people that do it have great results and doesn't seem to bother many people. A couple forum posters warned that it could be dangerous and cause extra glare.

    A couple questions...has anyone tried doing this? Would running the 65w lamps in place of the 55w lamps cause any circuit problems? Would I run the risk of getting pulled over or endangering other drivers?

    Thanks for any input. I've learned a lot from this forum. I'll try to take before and after pictures once I've decided on a solution.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Have you considered a pair of low-mounted auxillary driving lights? I have the OE driving lights on my Audi (e.g. conservative) and they really "brighten up" my driving field. And, they're legal.

    I've tried screwing around with the regular driving headlamps before; can't say they improved visibility much unless I was really banging on the night vision of other drivers.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Are they similar to foglights? I wonder if they would be easy to install on my Honda. Maybe I'll look for some kits.

    Part of my goal is to keep costs low, so I'm certainly not looking at HIDs or anything. =)

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* turbodog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    On a car that old your outer lexan (the front part of the light assembly) may have 1)gotten misaimed through the years and/or 2)gotten cloudy and/or 3)gotten scratched.

    Check these things.

    But if you're looking for an excuse to put in bulbs that will blind oncoming drivers, possible endangering them, their children, and yourself, I can't help you there.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    I put hid's in my s-10 truck which used crappy sealed beam head lights. Made a huge difference. I know you said you didn't want to spend that much but i don't see any regular bulb coming close to it. I got mine for $150 through a connection but I have been seeing them lately for around $200-250 now which isn't that bad.

    But if you insist on trying to make yours work you should buff out your plastic outer lens. If its pitted, scratched or dulled it makes a huge difference. I did that on my girlfriends corolla and it got twice as bright. I would try that first, its cheap and it will help any bulb you decide to put in. In my experince changing to different brands of hallegen bulbs didn't make a huge difference. Usually just change the color of the light.

    Also you might want to compare your lights with another accord. Maybe something is wrong with your circuit or electrical system where you are not getting enough juice to the bulbs and causing them to be dim. Also honda made OEM fog lights for your year you might want to look into. But generally fog lights are pointed low and have more spill than throw so if your looking to project farther out its not going to improve that much.

    Hope this info helps alittle.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    I've used the Silverstars on several vehicles. They are not blue and significantly improve lighting. You can also look for H3 replacement bulbs/lights from manufacturers like Hella. Not sure though if they would have applications for an Accord but worth a try. I replaced stock lights in my Jeep with them and they were awesome.
    Too many lights! Stop me!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Start the car, turn on the lights
    Measure the voltage on the battery (should be around 14V)
    Measure the voltage on the lamp when it is turned on

    Most likely the voltage at the lamp will be 5-15% lower om the lamp than on the battery, and that kills ALOT of light! If you rewire using suitably thick wires and relays getting the power straight from the battery you should get a pretty big improvement.

  8. #8
    *Flashaholic* greenLED's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    I used Silverstars in my car a couple of years ago. Yes, they do improve output significantly.

    The only complaint I have is they burned out within a few months of installing them (yes, I kept my paws outta the glass, etc.). I reverter to the stock headlights, which have been going "strong" for more than 6 years now.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Thanks for the thoughts, guys. I'll definitely start with buffing and see what happens from there. Too bad I don't have a buffer right now and it's dark, cold and rainy outside. Winter seems to be coming early here in Portland.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    OK, first some simple things to check -- clean the bulb and socket contacts, be sure that the wiring is intact and not corroded from 15 years of use and weather, and check the ground wiring. Failing relays and alternators can also be a problem. Remember that it's an old(er) car, right?

    As for high wattage bulb replacements vs. the DOT reg's, check the DMV laws (there's probably a copy of the condensed DMV laws at your local library -- give 'em a call).

    Going with higher output would be my second or third choice after at least first making sure that the lights were properly aimed and also thinking about cleaning and polishing the lenses. Higher output bulbs that are poorly aimed just tick off other drivers. Higher output bulbs that are behind cruddy lenses waste your money and tick off other drivers. So do overly white and/or blue bulbs.

    Ah, well, the lenses are cleaned, the lights are aimed, the wiring and contacts are good. They are still dim. Can you live with it? If not, go to the library and research headlight comparisons (somebody should have done one, right?). There are better bulbs and then there are bulbs that are whiter or bluer. I'd look for better. Also, how hard are you driving a 15 year old car? I have an old car and like to have as much light in front of me as I can, but I also realize that it wasn't a Ferrari even when it was new so I admit that I do just settle for some things about it.
    Last edited by chmsam; 10-02-2007 at 07:25 PM.
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  11. #11
    Flashaholic* TOOCOOL's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by brent878 View Post

    But if you insist on trying to make yours work you should buff out your plastic outer lens.


    Hope this info helps a little.
    The Honda is all glass

  12. #12

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Flummo View Post
    Start the car, turn on the lights
    Measure the voltage on the battery (should be around 14V)
    Measure the voltage on the lamp when it is turned on

    Most likely the voltage at the lamp will be 5-15% lower om the lamp than on the battery, and that kills ALOT of light! If you rewire using suitably thick wires and relays getting the power straight from the battery you should get a pretty big improvement.
    +1, and aim your lights properly. Go to danielsternlighting.com or rallylights.com for a kit if you're not electrically inclined. Stay away from any bulb that has a coating on it, a coating will only reduce light output.

    Last edited by Diesel_Bomber; 10-05-2007 at 04:36 PM.
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    I'll second that vote for Daniel Stern lighting. I bought some Cibie lights and Narva bulbs from him. Narva bulbs are fantastic.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    josiah, you might want to try HIR bulbs (halogen infrared reflecting). http://www.hirheadlights.com/ they reflect infrared back causing the filament to get hotter and output more. 55 watts, but about 50% brighter. developed for john deere combines to avoid the cost of HID. one "tab" has to be modified slightly(look online)to fit the housing. 9005 uses HIR1(90011). 9006 uses HIR2(90012). the bulb has a bulge in the middle like a marble. bought mine at a deere dealer for $10 each. the part number is 1-AH211917. i also have a honda. hope to try them soon.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by spock View Post
    josiah, you might want to try HIR bulbs (halogen infrared reflecting). http://www.hirheadlights.com/ they reflect infrared back causing the filament to get hotter and output more. 55 watts, but about 50% brighter. developed for john deere combines to avoid the cost of HID. one "tab" has to be modified slightly(look online)to fit the housing. 9005 uses HIR1(90011). 9006 uses HIR2(90012). the bulb has a bulge in the middle like a marble. bought mine at a deere dealer for $10 each. the part number is 1-AH211917. i also have a honda. hope to try them soon.
    what kind of modification does one have to do? I am confused. Does this bulb produce more light?

    How about PIAA bulb 9000 series bulb? it produce a lot of light similar to HID.
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    hello picard. the piaa 9000 bulbs are standard halogen with a "blue" coating to look like hid lights. by standard, i mean their wattage is about the same as the ones in your car. never tried them, but they are expensive. the hir bulbs are reasonable and claim to be 50-70% brighter. since i haven't put mine in yet, i cannot comment on the actual improvement. the mod is to trim one of the three alignment tips on the bulb so it will go in your socket.
    http://shnu.us/HIR%20Trimming%20Stock.htm this should show how to do it.
    if, i can find the time, i will try to do the mod this weekend.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by turbodog View Post
    On a car that old your outer lexan (the front part of the light assembly) may have 1)gotten misaimed through the years and/or 2)gotten cloudy and/or 3)gotten scratched.

    Check these things.

    But if you're looking for an excuse to put in bulbs that will blind oncoming drivers, possible endangering them, their children, and yourself, I can't help you there.
    DITTO!

    On the lexan cloudiness, I've seen many solutions to this problem, including some auto detailing places that will polish them up for you. I think they're worth it.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Contrary to marketing hype, Sylvania Silver Stars (and all other bulbs with blue-coloured glass) do not improve headlamp output or seeing ability. They tint the light. That's all they do. The legal ones (like Silver Star, TruView, CrystalVision, etc.) don't tint it deeply enough to violate the allowable range of "white" light — even though the light is tinted blue, it's lightly enough tinted that it's still legally considered "white" — but the fact is, whenever you add a filter to the optical system that alters the visible SPD, you are blocking light that would otherwise reach the road and help you see.

    For reference, here's manufacturer data, from internal engineering databases, for output and lifespan at 13.2v for standard-wattage H1 bulbs. The numbers here are a composite of values applicable to the products of the big three makers (Osram-Sylvania, Philips-Narva, Tungsram-GE). Each manufacturer's product in each category is slightly different but not significantly so. I picked H1-type bulbs for this comparison, and while the absolute numbers differ with different bulb types, the relative comparison patterns hold good for whatever bulb type you consider. Lifespan is given as Tc, the hour figure at which 63.2 percent of the bulbs have failed.

    H1 (regular normal):
    1550 lumens, 650 hours

    Long Life (or "HalogenPlus+")
    1460 lumens, 1200 hours

    Plus-30 High Efficacy (Osram Super, Sylvania Xtravision, Narva Rangepower, Candlepower Bright Light, Tungsram High Output, Philips Premium):
    1700 lumens, 350 hours

    Plus-50 Ultra High Efficacy (Philips VisionPlus, Osram Silverstar, Narva Rangepower+50, Tungsram Megalicht, but not Sylvania Silverstar):
    1750 lumens, 350 hours

    Plus-80/90 Mega High Efficacy (Philips Xtreme Power, Osram Night Breaker):
    1780 lumens, 340 hours

    Blue coated 'extra white' (Osram CoolBlue, Narva Rangepower Blue, Philips BlueVision or CrystalVision, Tungsram Super Blue or EuroBlue, Sylvania Silverstar or Silverstar Ultra, which is just a rebrand of the Silverstar product, also PIAA, Hoen, Nokya, Polarg, etc):
    1380 lumens, 250 hours

    Now, looking over these results, which one would you rather:

    (a) Buy and drive with?
    (b) Sell?

    The answer to (a) depends on how well you want to see versus how often to change the bulb. If you want the best possible seeing, you pick the Plus-50 or Plus-80/90. If you don't care as long as it works and you don't want to hassle with it, you pick the long life.

    The answer to (b) is determined by how rich your company's shareholders want you to be, and is obvious: You want to sell the bulb with the shortest lifespan, highest promotability and highest price. That'd be the blue unit, e.g. Sylvania Silverstar.

    Depending on the bulb format in question, there are sometimes better options than the Plus (30-50-80-90) bulbs. H7, HB4/9006 and HB3/9005 all have more effective, longer-life upgrades available than the plus-bulbs. The HIR 9011/9012 bulbs already mentioned in this thread are the ones to pick for upgrading most high and low beam headlamps, though contrary to the hirheadlights guy's claims, they are not suitable for any/every application that originally calls for 9005/9006. Some lamps' optics are poorly focused and cannot candle the extra light effectively; you wind up with too much glare and backscatter. They're also often not a wise choice in fog lamps for the same reason.

    The $10 John Deere price is old info; you can't get that bulb at a John Deere dealer for less than about $30 these days. Candlepower has them for under $24. Make sure you're getting Toshiba-made bulbs; the others on the market (IPF and a bunch of no-namers out of China) are junk. The tab modification isn't difficult; see here for dimensional diagram and instructions.

    And the advice to check bulb operating voltage is right on target, too. Usually you can pick up a lot of headlamp performance when you stop starving the bulbs.

  19. #19
    Flashaholic* Daekar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by CM View Post
    DITTO!

    On the lexan cloudiness, I've seen many solutions to this problem, including some auto detailing places that will polish them up for you. I think they're worth it.
    I found some stuff by Meguiar's that did pretty well for my headlights. It didn't get them perfect, mind you, but vastly improved, for a very low price. I think it's worth giving it a try if you haven't done anything else to the lenses.

    @ Scheinwerfermann:

    Thanks for all that information! I have Silverstars in my car right now, and it's weird because they seem brighter to my eye - I can actually see deer on the road further away now - but numbers don't lie, I guess it's a function of the color temperature. I'm getting a multimeter for Christmas (hopefully) so I'll be able to test the voltage outputs at the bulbs and see if there's any improving to do there. When these bulbs burn out (which from your information will be a fairly short time) I guess I'll switch to... well, whatever you guys would recommend for 9007 combination High/Low bulbs and 9006 fog lamps. I don't mind changing the headlights every now and then, but I would like to minimize cost while getting near-maximum output. Any suggestions? I have a 1999 Subaru Legacy Outback, if that helps...

  20. #20

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Daekar View Post
    Scheinwerfermann: Thanks for all that information! I have Silverstars in my car right now, and it's weird because they seem brighter to my eye - I can actually see deer on the road further away now
    No...actually, you can't. I don't doubt that you think you can, but in fact you cannot. The market success of Silver Stars (and the blue-glass bulbs like them from other makers) rests on the fact that the human visual system is a very poor judge of its own performance. It's very easy to create situations in which we feel our ability to see is much better or much poorer than it actually is. Within a certain range of intensity, artificially increasing the apparent CCT of a light source is a simple and cheap way of making it appear "brighter". However, "bright" is like "loud": both are subjective judgements with little correlation to the underlying quantities, which are intensity and sound pressure, respectively.

    I guess it's a function of the color temperature.
    See above. "Color temperature" / "Kelvin rating" (correct terminology: CCT) is of course a real phenomenon, but its use in the advertisement of automotive lighting products is largely fraudulent. Blue-glass bulbs, contrary to misinformed and disinformed advertising hype, do not produce light "closer to natural daylight" and do not help you see better in any way. They do, however, produce significantly worse seeing performance in inclement weather. All higher-CCT light does is change the appearance of the operating headlamp and, outside of a very small range created by different surface luminance characteristics of different legitimate bulb designs, increase glare and reduce total and usable light output.

    I'm getting a multimeter for Christmas (hopefully) so I'll be able to test the voltage outputs at the bulbs and see if there's any improving to do there.
    Make sure to test with all bulbs connected and powered. Testing the voltage at the unplugged socket doesn't tell you anything useful.

    When these bulbs burn out (which from your information will be a fairly short time)
    Maybe and maybe not. Many of the "Wow, the headlights are so much whiter, and I don't know what you're talking about on short life; they've lasted over a year so far!" types of reactions to Silver Star (etc.) bulbs come from people with cars on which there's significant voltage drop across the headlamp circuit. The blue glass bulb covers up the brownish output of a starved bulb. Remember, bulb life changes with input voltage exponentially to the power negative 13, and light output changes with input voltage exponentially to the power 3.4.

    whatever you guys would recommend for 9007 combination High/Low bulbs and 9006 fog lamps. I don't mind changing the headlights every now and then, but I would like to minimize cost while getting near-maximum output. Any suggestions? I have a 1999 Subaru Legacy Outback, if that helps...
    As a Subaru owner myself, I can tell you a few things about the lamps on that vehicle: (1) They're starved by very marginal headlamp wiring, and (2) Subaru took a bunch of money out of the Legacy headlamps for the 1998 model year. The same-size/same-shape '96-'97 headlamps were a more costly, better-engineered design with considerably greater performance potential when fed properly and equipped with carefully-selected (H4) bulbs.

    The best 9007 bulbs on the market at the moment are GE Night Hawk and Philips Vision Plus, both of which have untinted (colorless) glass.

  21. #21
    Flashaholic* Daekar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Scheinwerfermann View Post
    No...actually, you can't. I don't doubt that you think you can, but in fact you cannot.
    I was afraid of that...

    Make sure to test with all bulbs connected and powered. Testing the voltage at the unplugged socket doesn't tell you anything useful.
    OK, will do... would you suggest piercing the wire with a probe?

    Maybe and maybe not. Many of the "Wow, the headlights are so much whiter, and I don't know what you're talking about on short life; they've lasted over a year so far!" types of reactions to Silver Star (etc.) bulbs come from people with cars on which there's significant voltage drop across the headlamp circuit. The blue glass bulb covers up the brownish output of a starved bulb. Remember, bulb life changes with input voltage exponentially to the power negative 13, and light output changes with input voltage exponentially to the power 3.4.

    As a Subaru owner myself, I can tell you a few things about the lamps on that vehicle: (1) They're starved by very marginal headlamp wiring, and (2) Subaru took a bunch of money out of the Legacy headlamps for the 1998 model year. The same-size/same-shape '96-'97 headlamps were a more costly, better-engineered design with considerably greater performance potential when fed properly and equipped with carefully-selected (H4) bulbs.
    So... it sounds like bulb life decreases a lot faster than output increases? I think? I guess the first thing to do is rewire the headlamps... that should be pretty inexpensive I would think. I bet Deoxit on the contacts wouldn't hurt either.

    The best 9007 bulbs on the market at the moment are GE Night Hawk and Philips Vision Plus, both of which have untinted (colorless) glass.
    Do you have any recommended place you suggest ordering those from, or do you think pretty much anybody will have them?

  22. #22

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Daekar View Post
    OK, will do... would you suggest piercing the wire with a probe?
    Naw...if you're bound and determined to measure, you can backprobe the sockets by straightening-out a few small metal paperclips, inserting them alongside the wires going into the back of the socket, and using them as contact points. But you only need to measure if you're interested in actual voltage drop numbers. If you're trying to determine whether there's significant voltage drop, the answer is yes.

    So... it sounds like bulb life decreases a lot faster than output increases?
    Yes. What to do with that info is up to you. Some people never want to have to change their headlamp bulbs. OK...long-life bulbs on high-loss original circuitry is the way to achieve that. Beam output is piss-poor, but the bulbs last forever. Some people want to see as well as possible and don't mind changing bulbs oftener than is considered usual in North America. OK, good bulbs on low-loss circuitry is how you do that.

    I guess the first thing to do is rewire the headlamps...
    Depends on your priorities and your budget. If minimal expense is required, then yeah, keep your present headlamps and install relays along the lines of this writeup together with good bulbs. Make sure to run your large-gauge wire for both feeds and ground on each side of the car, and try to get good (preferably ceramic) headlamp sockets. The junk from the parts store, prewired for your "convenience" with 18ga wire, will not get the job done.

    If you can find a good used set of '96-'97 headlamps you can afford, it'd be worth your effort to swap those in, because the components needed to wire them in won't cost you any more than the components to wire up your existing lamps. www.car-part.com lets you search for used auto parts across all of North America. Search results are in descending-price order and the "new" items are Taiwanese-made aftermarket units. The (uncatalogued but existent nonetheless) Osram 70/65w or 85/80w high efficacy H4 bulbs make a good choice in the '96-'97 lamps with good wiring and relays.

    If your top priority is best possible seeing, spare no expense, then drop $650 or so on a Morette kit (Hella quad-beam projectors for the '96-'99 Legacy) and wire those up correctly.

    I bet Deoxit on the contacts wouldn't hurt either
    My preference is for Stabilant-22a, but yeah.

    Do you have any recommended place you suggest ordering those from, or do you think pretty much anybody will have them?
    They can be tough to find. Canadian Tire has them in Canada...Amazon.com has them in the US...do a web search. If Philips would ever get around to releasing the Xtreme Power 9007 they've been promising for awhile now, that'll be the one to pick.

  23. #23
    Flashaholic* Daekar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    WOW - I looked at how much it would cost to order those Morette lights for my car - came out to like $950! While they would be great I'm sure, I think I'll do the relay fix... I e-mailed Daniel (he seems to have a lot of good information that's used over in the forums at subaruoutback.org) about a custom relay kit, recommended bulb upgrades, and suggestions for a pair of driving lights. We'll see what he says!

    EDIT: Well, I got a response from Daniel over at DanielSternLighting.com (very prompt) and he gave me quite a bit of information, similar in some ways to what has already been posted. I think a lot of CPFers would benefit from the relay installation he talks about, and the nice thing is, I asked for a quote on a kit for my car and he offered options: I could either buy the kit, get the wire locally, and assemble it myself, or for around $150 he could just make up the entire new wiring harness himself and send it to me, ready to install. I'm short on time and expertise, so that's what I'm going to do. Well... I'm tossing around the idea of getting those Morette lights if he can get it for me for $650 like you said, but... well you know how flashaholism is...

    If I'm pleased with how the new harness works on my car, I'm going to get one for the girlfriend's Jeep Cherokee too... she does lots of night driving and I worry about her. I looked on Osram-Sylvania's website and I didn't recognize the headlamp bulb type though, it said, "H6054"... do you know any equivalent bulbs?
    Last edited by Daekar; 11-22-2007 at 07:08 PM.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Daekar View Post
    WOW - I looked at how much it would cost to order those Morette lights for my car - came out to like $950!
    Yeah...this is not a fun time to be spending US dollars internationally :-(

    If I'm pleased with how the new harness works on my car, I'm going to get one for the girlfriend's Jeep Cherokee too... she does lots of night driving and I worry about her. I looked on Osram-Sylvania's website and I didn't recognize the headlamp bulb type though, it said, "H6054"... do you know any equivalent bulbs?
    Those are cruddy sealed beams. See my comments in this thread .

  25. #25
    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    We replaced our Accord's (1997) stock bulbs with Silverstar Ultras. The Ultras are supposed to be brighter and last longer than the regular Silverstars. (they should, considering they cost more) We've noticed a huge improvement in brightness and the beam is now white and bright, not yellow and dim. We probably replaced them about 6 or 7 months ago and they're still going strong.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Trashman View Post
    We replaced our Accord's (1997) stock bulbs with Silverstar Ultras. The Ultras are supposed to be brighter and last longer than the regular Silverstars. (they should, considering they cost more) We've noticed a huge improvement in brightness
    Unfortunately, the "improvement" is an illusion. Your headlamps are now producing significantly less light than they would with a brand-new set of uncolored bulbs. See posts earlier up the thread.

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    Flashaholic* TorchBoy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by Scheinwerfermann View Post
    Unfortunately, the "improvement" is an illusion.
    Is that even with some allowance for the old bulbs being somewhat blackened and so underperforming compared to new bulbs of the same type?
    No, a torch does not always mean flames.
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  28. #28

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    Quote Originally Posted by TorchBoy View Post
    Is that even with some allowance for the old bulbs being somewhat blackened and so underperforming compared to new bulbs of the same type?
    C'mon, now, we have to keep it realistic. Comparing old bulbs to new bulbs would be like comparing engine performance with an old set of NGK spark plugs vs. with a new set of Champions, and from that "test" deciding that Champions are superior spark plugs. Or removing a bald set of Michelin tires and replacing them with a new set of Costco's private-label Chinese-made trash, and from that determining that the Costco tires are better.

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    Flashaholic* TorchBoy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    I'm not saying that they are better quality, but it might help explain why people think that moving to new bulbs, even if they're blue, look like they're better than the old bulbs they were using. Simply because changing to any new bulb would be an improvement.

    Even moulded mud tyres, when new will probably perform better than completely bald tyres, especially in the wet, but they still wouldn't qualify as a better make and model of tyre.
    No, a torch does not always mean flames.
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  30. #30

    Default Re: Accord headlights are weak

    OK, yeah, I see what you were getting at. It's an interesting question. Reputably-made standard and high-luminance tungsten-halogen bulbs are routinely quoted at ≥90% lumen maintenance over their whole lifespan, and I think that's a reasonably accurate figure in the absence of extenuating circumstances (undervoltage e.g. DRL operation causing envelope staining). If we assume this ≥90% figure is accurate, then a standard middle-of-spec 9006 bulb producing 1000 lumens when new would produce ~900 lumens when old. but our blue-glass bulb is producing somewhere in the neighborhood of 860 to 920 lumens, so...naw, I really still think the "Wow, these are way better than my old bulbs!" claims are primarily down to marketeering psychology and color tint.

    Now, if we're talking about replacing old long-life tungsten-halogen bulbs with new blue-glass ones, I think you win the argument. Long-life TH bulbs carry on growing dimmer and dimmer and dimmer long after standard or high-luminance TH bulbs would've failed.

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