- 10-02-13 11:01 PM #1
My daughter is complaining about the brightness of the low beam headlamps (bluish color) on her '04 SLS. I see that someone installed a Xentec HID kit. The reviews are not good. http://www.headlightreviews.com/xentec-hid-kit-review/. Not sure what this damned kit is supposed to do, but it ain't doing it. I plan on removing it, but I'm not sure if I need to replace the bulbs as well. Do I just remove this ballast or did they replace the factory ballast with these? Do I need new ballasts or should the factory ballasts still be there? It has the projector lamps. Anyone know anything about them or have any advice? I want to put it back to OEM.
- 10-02-13 11:31 PM #2
Did it have factory HIDs to begin with? Not sure they were even available on the SLS. I don't remember the RPO code, but look at one of the headlights, right over the projector. Is D1S embossed into the lens? If so, the car had factory HIDs. Factory ballasts are very hard to find used (and working), and new ones are silly expensive.
If the car didn't come with factory HIDs, either convert back to halogen, or get a quality kit with 4,300K-5,000K bulbs ( www.theretrofitsource.com ).
If the car did have factory HIDs, and the ballasts are missing, finding a quality kit to replace the crappy units there now will be a little tricky. The problem is that the housings use D1S bulbs, which is not a bulb type that most quality aftermarket kits use. Short of having to buy 2 non HID headlight housings to use a standard 9006 HID kit with, you might try buying a quality set of bulbs for the existing ballasts. Theretrofitsource sells what is considered the best D1S bulb available for about the same price as the crappy parts store ones - ~$100 each.
- 10-02-13 11:36 PM #3
Xentec HID kits SUCK, that was the first kit I purchased for my '01, absolutely god awful...I replaced it with a kit from DDM Tuning, much better quality IMO. Cabbage is right on the money, if you see "D1S" etched in the outside of the headlight it came factory with HIDs, why anyone would replace it with Xentec crap is beyond me. My bet is they are a standard 9006 bulb converted to HID...Replace everything, bulbs and ballasts as the Xentec ballasts WILL fail, I replaced two via their warranty. Stick with what Cabbage stated, 4300k (OEM) to 5000k, anything higher will just get worse, especially at night in the rain.
- 10-02-13 11:38 PM #4Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
- Automobile(s): '98 STS (RIP @ 206,xxx miles)
- Join Date
- Sep 2003
- Metro ATL
Follow the wire harness backward from the ballast and you should find a connection that 'used to' plug into the 9006 bulb connector. Simply remove the ballast from that connector, remove the ballast connector and HID bulb from the headlamp, and the HID kit can be removed.
Install 9006 bulbs in the proper connector and install that in the headlamp.
IF someone has replaced a factory HID install with an aftermarket kit, you are charting fresh waters.
- 10-02-13 11:39 PM #5
HID lights were an option -
so it would have come with 9006 halogens -
the HID kit comes with adapters -
the original headlight plug - plugs into the ballast -
then the HID headlight bulbs also plug into the ballast -
and replace the 9006 bulbs -
to convert back -
remove the headlight assembly - 2-10mm bolts -
unplug the headlight plug from the ballast -
remove the HID bulb -
install the 9006 - install the plug -
you might want to replace all the bulbs while the headlight is out -
re-install the headlight -
another thought would be to go with a better HID kit/bulbs -
- 10-03-13 10:51 AM #6
OK guys, I just went out and checked it. Above the projector is HB4. So if I understand correctly all I have to do is unplug that garbage and remove it. I'll have to check and see what type of bulb is in it now. Being a bluish color I doubt it is the 9006. That's not a problem as I have a bag full of bulbs from my recent trips to the Men's Mall. Thanks for the explanations and help. Much appreciated.
- 10-03-13 10:55 AM #7
Yup, you have a standard halogen setup. you can just remove the HID kit and install some 9006 bulbs.
9006's are not HID bulbs, so that's definitely not what's in there now.
I know these cars were criticized for so so halogen lighting when new. It'll probably be worth upgrading to some PIAA's instead of standard halogens.
- 10-03-13 11:25 AM #8
Thanks MC. I'm sure I have some 9006's so I'll try that first and see how she likes them. Personally I hate projector lamps.
She just left so I'll tackle it in a few hours.
- 10-03-13 11:33 AM #9
Yeah, it's an HID bulb with a 9006 socket...I found the OEM halogen lighting very lackluster, hence the switch to HID. But hey, if she's happy with it after tearing the HIDs out then why complicate things, leave it stock
I did notice a difference between cheaper Sylvania 9006's and the spendier Sylvania Silverstar line, if I ever have another car with halogen lighting I'll stick with those. I do see PIAA's recommended a lot too.
- 10-03-13 11:50 AM #10
FWIW, The upscale halogens ARE brighter - by 25% over the stock bulbs. Upscale bulbs burn at about 4100K while the stock bulbs are 3100K ...... BUT the upscale bulbs are not cheap and will not last as long - I've had my PIAA Intense White bulbs for 5 years + though, and still going strong. The Sylvania Silverstar Ultra bulbs (in the trucks) have a life comparison graph on the package.
As an aside, one of my sisters is an art conservationist (fixes old paintings). She says the 4100K fluorescent bulbs in her studios show true colors as opposed to dull 3100K or blue-white 5000K+ bulbs. Poor old Michaelangelo and the candle on his forehead ...........
- 10-03-13 09:12 PM #11
Worked as advertized. Simply unplugged and removed the kit and the bulb (never saw an HID bulb before). Replaced it with a 9006. It looked better even in the driveway in the daylight. I'm sure she will be much happier. Thanks again.
The Xentec kit is where it belongs............................. in the trash. Anyone want the bulbs?
- 10-03-13 09:20 PM #12
Never seen an HID bulb? Before you get rid of them, take a look inside. See that little whitish grain? That's the ball of metal salts that gets evaporated into the plasma that (along with gasses) produces the light.
- 10-03-13 10:49 PM #13
Low beam halogens on Seville are complete garbage. I never tried a brighter light for my STS but the BMW wiped the floor with it's halogen setup. The brights weren't so much better for me. The Deville has improved, yet terrible, low beams while I find the high beams to be excellent. Going with either the PIAA Sub recommended or the Sylvania.
- 10-03-13 10:54 PM #14
I have no complaints at all about my DHS lights, but thankfully they are not projectors.
- 10-04-13 10:45 AM #15
Curious - my 2002 has the projector lows (with PIAA 9006 bulbs) and I have no complaints - very bright white.
Like halogens, if there are fingerprints on the HID bulb glass either trash them or clean them WELL with denatured alcohol.