2000 Mercury Grand Marquis headlight options

noname456

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Hello CPF. I am once again asking for your assistance in lighting the path away from this
dark ignorance. I have a 2000 Grand Marquis LS for which I can't find OEM headlights anymore. The originals are extremely yellow, and I can only find TYC and Keystone NSF-certified ones. What is my best route to go here, polish the originals (I've never had good luck with different clear coats lasting for long), go TYC or Keystone, or something else?

My main concern is proper low-beam and high-beam performance when driving on the highway from the DFW metroplex to rural areas that are several hours away and vice-versa. After performing the upgrades suggested here on other cars I am a believer and hope I can achieve a similar level of nighttime clarity and safety with this car.
 

lightfooted

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When I used the Turtle Wax headlight kit and followed the directions mine came out to almost brand new results. Mine was a VW Passat from 2001. They were still very clear after 2 years or so when I was able to replace the entire assembly on both sides.
 

kerneldrop

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@noname456 - I would have zero concern going with the TYC or any other aftermarket brand as it relates to a $25 headlight assembly.

At least with Ebay you have 100% buyer's protection and have zero risk in being out $$ (outside of the return time and fuel) if they don't work.

 
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kerneldrop

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TYC or DEPO if you *must* (when the OE lamps just aren't available), but there are PLENTY of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad aftermarket brands out there and you should have TONS of concerns using them.

I edited my response to be more specific to the headlight assembly.
 

noname456

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When I used the Turtle Wax headlight kit and followed the directions mine came out to almost brand new results. Mine was a VW Passat from 2001. They were still very clear after 2 years or so when I was able to replace the entire assembly on both sides.
you used the coating that came with it only? or did you add/go with another type of coating?
 

noname456

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TYC or DEPO if you *must* (when the OE lamps just aren't available), but there are PLENTY of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad aftermarket brands out there and you should have TONS of concerns using them.
Would it be justified/pretty recomendable in trying to add in aux lighting at this point as well?

Not trying to just go overkill, but I very much want good nighttime driving performance. What's your opinion?


Edit: Another question: 9007 Philips Xtreme vision or some +150 ones from Daniel Stern? (if he has them still)
 
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-Virgil-

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Hello CPF. I am once again asking for your assistance in lighting the path away from this
dark ignorance. I have a 2000 Grand Marquis LS for which I can't find OEM headlights anymore

Are you sure? Because I think you can...

My main concern is proper low-beam and high-beam performance when driving on the highway from the DFW metroplex to rural areas that are several hours away and vice-versa. After performing the upgrades suggested here on other cars I am a believer and hope I can achieve a similar level of nighttime clarity and safety with this car.

Go jump on those new genuine headlamps I linked, and get a relay harness and good bulbs from Dan Stern, whose aiming instructions you should also follow closely.
 

noname456

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Are you sure? Because I think you can...



Go jump on those new genuine headlamps I linked, and get a relay harness and good bulbs from Dan Stern, whose aiming instructions you should also follow closely.

Will do! Tbh, I wouldn't have guessed ebay would have them when a bunch of big online Ford parts sellers and dealerships didn't have them, as well as the usual array of popular online car parts stores... I even used the shopping search on Google while entering the oem part number! Egg on my face, but it was an honest mistake ... honestly.

Thanks again as always (you're the man, Virgil)
 

turbodog

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And thanks from everyone on the road for your effort in finding proper working lights. I'm sure plenty of MVAs can be traced to degraded lighting.
 

kerneldrop

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Will do! Tbh, I wouldn't have guessed ebay would have them when a bunch of big online Ford parts sellers and dealerships didn't have them, as well as the usual array of popular online car parts stores... I even used the shopping search on Google while entering the oem part number! Egg on my face, but it was an honest mistake ... honestly.

Thanks again as always (you're the man, Virgil)

Would my answer above carry more weight if I admitted to running a service company that has a fleet of over 200 trucks with my own in-house repair shop...and that we buy the cheap headlamp assemblies off ebay?

None the less, at least you are aware of other options.
 

Alaric Darconville

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Just a side note: Daniel Stern's opinion doesn't seem to factor in how your light looks to oncoming cars.
While Daniel Stern doesn't care if your headlighting looks cool (or kewl) or spiffy or anything, he does care about your headlighting giving you the ability to see well without blinding other drivers.

You can put a fancy LED that shoots 10 beams of light and you will do nothing but blind oncoming cars if your assembly isn't designed for those lamps.
And there are no assemblies designed for such a 'bulb'. When a lamp assembly is designed they *first* pick the lighting source, then design the lamp around it. Of course this "fancy LED" won't work in any lamp assemblies until someone decides to build a lamp based on its emission pattern.

Get those off Ebay, put some good Autozone bulbs in them and rock on.
AutoZone don't have their own brand of bulbs, and they carry a wide range of bulbs from various manufacturers. It can be very easy to get very terrible bulbs that way. Do it the easy and sure way by ordering them from Daniel Stern.
 

kerneldrop

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What do you mean by this?

I deleted that post so I didn't muddy this thread and go off topic, or go deeper than I cared to go.

Here is what I meant.
First paragraph of that link he says the beam pattern isn't important.
I have found it to be important. I guess we all vary.
I put LEDs into my Silverado and all it did was blind oncoming cars. I couldn't see any better.
My current truck has a headlight assembly with a different beam pattern.
The results are completely different.

Maybe I took what he said out of context, but I have found a beam pattern to be important. Otherwise it's like aiming a mule.

At work we aim lights on bay doors...it's not the gold standard but it works for us.
 
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kerneldrop

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AutoZone don't have their own brand of bulbs, and they carry a wide range of bulbs from various manufacturers. It can be very easy to get very terrible bulbs that way. Do it the easy and sure way by ordering them from Daniel Stern.

Yes, I meant bulbs sold off the shelf at an auto parts store.
I'm going to go ahead and bow out of this thread. I stepped into a passionate sub-niche I did not realize existed.
I was just trying to provide an affordable solution to the OP...the same solution that works fine for my fleet trucks.
 

-Virgil-

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Daniel Stern's opinion doesn't seem to factor in how your light looks to oncoming cars. First paragraph of that link he says the beam pattern isn't important. Maybe I took what he said out of context, but I have found a beam pattern to be important. Otherwise it's like aiming a mule.

So, you're claiming that Daniel Stern said that beam pattern doesn't matter? That is literally the opposite of literally everything I have ever seen or heard the man say on the subject, so let's read the first paragraph of his aim page together and see what it says:

No matter how good (or bad) your headlamps and fog lamps might be, they'll work effectively and safely only if they're correctly aimed. Lamp aim is by far the main thing that determines how well you can (or can't) see at night—it's even more important than the output and beam pattern of the headlamps themselves. Here's a real example of how crucial it is: if you're using the shine-on-a-wall method, aiming a low beam just 2.3 cm (0.9 inch) lower than it should be cuts 26 m (85 feet) off your seeing distance at night!

And your takeaway from this is "He says the beam pattern isn't important"? Um...dude...no.

I would have zero concern going with the TYC or any other aftermarket brand

But that doesn't mean there are no concerns, it just means you don't know/care about them. Here are some concerns worth having: it's well documented that even the "best" of the aftermarket headlamps are significantly inferior to genuine OE lamps in terms of performance (beam pattern; less seeing light and more glare and backscatter); construction (quality of build and materials, fit and finish), and durability.

At least with Ebay you have 100% buyer's protection and have zero risk in being out $$ (outside of the return time and fuel) if they don't work.

"Don't work" isn't the question at hand. There's a big stretch of distance between a headlamp so poorly made that it doesn't even fit the vehicle, doesn't hold the bulb securely, etc (not very common)...and one that fits and accepts the bulb but doesn't come close to OE performance/durability (very common).

I put LEDs into my Silverado and all it did was blind oncoming cars. I couldn't see any better

Right, because "LED bulbs" do not work effectively or safely in halogen headlamps. They mess up the beam pattern, because they're the wrong kind of light source. for the optic.

My current truck has a headlight assembly with a different beam pattern.
The results are completely different.

These kinds of opinions you're putting out are excellent examples of why headlamp performance can only be really measured objectively. Subjective opinions are usually wrong, because human eyes aren't the right tool for the job. And LEDs are the wrong kind of light source for halogen headlamps. That is going to change eventually, as technical standards are being developed in parallel with development of legitimate LED retrofits for halogen lamps...but that's still in the future. For now, "LED bulbs" aren't effective, safe or legal.

At work we aim lights on bay doors...it's not the gold standard but it works for us.

Depending on your actual procedure (how far is the truck from the bay door, how flat is your floor, are you measuring or just kinda sorta pointing them so they look about right, etc) this may or may not be better than nothing.

Would my answer carry more weight if I admitted to running a service company that has a fleet of over 200 trucks with my own in-house repair shop...and that we buy the cheap headlamp assemblies off ebay?

Sounds like typical fleet priorities: minimum repair price and shoptime, so buy cheap headlamps and toss 'em on with a repair standard of "space on front of the truck is filled, lights light up on low and high beam". Why would that make your answer carry more weight when the question at hand is maximizing the driver's ability to see?

put some good Autozone bulbs in them

No such thing. For your education on how much bulb choice matters (hint: a lot) see here and here.

I was just trying to provide an affordable solution to the OP...the same solution that works fine for my fleet trucks.

I'm sure you really believe it "works fine" for your fleet trucks, probably because nobody's drawn the connection between cheap, off-brand lights with cheapo Autozone bulbs (or "LED bulbs") and sloppy aim, and the crash involvement rate in your fleet. But aside from that...the OP of this thread didn't ask "Help, I need to get my 2000 Mercury put back together for as cheap of cost as possible".

Headlamps often make the difference between life and death; flashlights usually don't. So...kind of a little strange how you don't seem to care a feather or a fig about the difference between a good headlamp and a crappy one, but in other sections of this site you seem to care deeply about it when the topic is flashlights.
 

alpg88

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@noname456 - I would have zero concern going with the TYC or any other aftermarket brand as it relates to a $25 headlight assembly.

At least with Ebay you have 100% buyer's protection and have zero risk in being out $$ (outside of the return time and fuel) if they don't work.

Unfortunately it is not as simple as it sounds, there are new type of scams on e bay. You pay for the item, and it does not come, then 3 - 4 days later you get the whole tracking history, and it says your package was delivered days ago, but it was not. Claiming to Ebay that you did not get it, will get you no where, since the seller has tracking proving it was delivered, paypal and ebay will be on his side since he has the proof, but there is a way around it. pm me if you want to know details, do not want to derail the whole thread.
 

kerneldrop

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So...kind of a little strange how you don't seem to care a feather or a fig about the difference between a good headlamp and a crappy one, but in other sections of this site you seem to care deeply about it when the topic is flashlights.

I deeply care about high quality nutrition, too, over there in the cafe section.
And lifting heavy weight, cardio, quality tires and limo tint.
I'm going to reach out to Dan and order some bulbs for my truck. I want to see the difference.
 
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bykfixer

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I've had success using the 3M lens restore kit. The drill kit makes doing the job a lot quicker. But the non drill kit works just as well, so long as you don't mind rubbing and rubbing and rubbing and rubbing some more. However that one is "safer" around edges for lenses that set flush or somewhat submerged.
Old crusty, dim lenses look brand for about $15. Rub on some Plasti-X when done for added protection and a wee bit more shiney looking lenses. Do it twice a year for best results.

The 3m kit used to be a 4 stage job but they stopped including the 500 grit pads. The 3 stage kit made my yellow lenses of a 2004 Lexus look brand new using the rub on kit.
10AE54FB-E63A-4830-B349-6B0FF1C45044.jpeg

Before

C8056386-9E86-48A5-A49E-83361AC417A5.jpeg

After

Much improvement is vision at night after restoring the lenses.
 

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