Automotive Brighter headlights for 2015 Subaru Legacy

dalocan

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My son has a 2015 Subaru Legacy Premium with whatever the ordinary headlight assemblies are, and he has complained for some time that the lights are dim. They certainly are dim compared to the stock LED headlights on our new car.

He talked to a shop that wants to sell him Putco Silver-lux low-beam bulbs. They also wanted to sell him a set of fog lights that they insisted would lower the backscatter in blowing snow if he turned them on in addition to the normal headlights. This clued me in that the shop knew nothing and it was time for some research.

I've read through enough of this forum to understand that what they proposed to sell him was a bad idea. Any suggestions on what he can do to improve his lighting? We did replace the bulbs last year with Philips CrystalVision Ultra bulbs, which did not improve matters.
 

Alaric Darconville

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He talked to a shop that wants to sell him Putco Silver-lux low-beam bulbs.
Wow, no. He doesn't want Putco (Where the Putz Goes!TM​).

They also wanted to sell him a set of fog lights that they insisted would lower the backscatter in blowing snow if he turned them on in addition to the normal headlights. This clued me in that the shop knew nothing and it was time for some research.
Yep, you saw too that it was impossible to add lights to the front yet *reduce* the backscatter, seeing as they can't subtract the backscatter from the original headlamps.

I've read through enough of this forum to understand that what they proposed to sell him was a bad idea. Any suggestions on what he can do to improve his lighting? We did replace the bulbs last year with Philips CrystalVision Ultra bulbs, which did not improve matters.
For the high beams, an HIR1 with a base modification is the way to go. The low beams, if projector halogen, may be able to take an H9-- if using reflector halogen lamps, the best H11 is the Philips X-Treme Vision.
 

-Virgil-

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Welcome to the board!

Your '15 Legacy projector low beams orginally have an H11 bulb (1350 lumens). They can safely be replaced with an H9 bulb (2100 lumens) for much better seeing without unsafe glare, the only downside being shorter bulb life. Buy a good H9 bulb, such as this one.

The high beam upgrade would be this one, trimmed as described here. The headlamps (and fog lamps, if the car has them) must be aimed correctly, very important.

They certainly are dim compared to the stock LED headlights on our new car.

Well, depending on how much better he wants to be able to see and how much extra money is in the wallet, he could swap in the complete factory HID headlamp assemblies. Expensive proposition, though.

He talked to a shop that wants to sell him Putco Silver-lux low-beam bulbs. They also wanted to sell him a set of fog lights

Blech. Good for you for recognizing they were full of baloney.

We did replace the bulbs last year with Philips CrystalVision Ultra bulbs, which did not improve matters.

Correct, these put out less light than standard bulbs.
 

64.5vette

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Your son will be much happier with Philips standard h9 low beams, and Philips standard 9011 high beams, I know I was. Follow -Virgil-'s advice!
 

jzchen

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Just wanted to get something in the air:

BoBotechnic is the seller and shipper of the H9 bulb listed. Is it safer to buy from Amazon, for about $1 more, as a seller and shipper?
 

64.5vette

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Just wanted to get something in the air:

BoBotechnic is the seller and shipper of the H9 bulb listed. Is it safer to buy from Amazon, for about $1 more, as a seller and shipper?

Almost always safer, but I have heard stories of shipped and sold by amazon items occasionally arriving fake.
 

jzchen

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Amazon provides an A to Z guarantee on items sold and shipped from other sellers. I bought a Pokémon Go Plus from a fraudulent seller from Japan that never came. Amazon refunded my money, but it was a pain. I’ve heard that Amazon itself sells fakes as well, from here and WeatherTech. But the Sylvania ZEVO Fog DRL that I bought shipped and sold by Amazon was confirmed by Sylvania to be genuine, even though signs all pointed towards fake/seconds/faulty etc. The benefit of Amazon as seller is that it backs up the product with great customer service. For the dollar more I’d always choose them. They will pick up the problem item at Amazon’s expense. If you have a business you can create a business account and have free two day shipping on orders $49 or over. (Not exactly sure whether it is $49 and over or over $49). I use my parents’ company and take advantage of this.

Just wondering if anyone knew first hand if they (BoBotechnic) were safe to buy from....

Here’s a bunch of choices:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003YMPN3A/?tag=cpf0b6-20
 
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jzchen

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We did replace the bulbs last year with Philips CrystalVision Ultra bulbs, which did not improve matters.

Unfortunately the marketing of bulbs has come to favor those who want “white” light. Even my wife, a pediatrician, sometimes complains the lighting in the house is not white. If you look at the details of the bulbs very very carefully, you may note how they reference Xenon, which one would relate to HID brightness, but in actuality to get the matching color they tint the bulb blue, a color that does not go well in the eyes, plus the tint decreases light output.

I personally have not experienced a new car with lighting issues. The times I had issues were when the car was bought/leased with some miles on it/used. If there is a problem with lighting, I would try to have it aimed first. My used iQ’s lights must have been shooting at the stars, when I had to drive it home 400 miles from Sacramento. First thing that came to mind was come here and ask for a bulb upgrade. The upgrade was an H9, with proper aiming. Since this is a safe upgrade, the bulb output must be similar enough to H11 that I should be able to aim it first, minus some light “bending” I learned about in physics, it should be pretty close even when I switch to H9. Even though my parents’ land slopes downward from front to back, meaning I had the car sloping downwards from left to right, I have some nic(er) lighting now. Where before I didn’t have any foreground lighting, now I have a good amount.....

There are some new Sylvania zXe Gold and FogVisions out, probably for another thread.....
 
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