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2006 STS-V
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Discussion Starter #1
So I have a very common problem with my STS-V, headlight condensation that I let get so bad that it has hazed the lens to the point where just getting the water out isn’t an option since the other headlight looks like new. I have done a ton of research and found that I have a few options that I was hoping to get some opinions on. I already have the bumper off and headlight out so that work is done. I can..

1) Take my original headlight apart by baking it, fix the interior and exterior of the lens and reseal. (If so, after taking all of the electronics out, how do I “bake” these headlights?)
2) I can order a new halogen headlight assembly because they are significantly less expense. If I do that, has anyone done the conversion of a halogen STS headlight to HID with all the OEM HID parts?
3) I can just suck it up and pay the $1k and get an all new HID headlight even though the one I have works but just looks God awful.

Any help on what I should do, better yet, how each would be done, would be greatly appreciated. Again, I already have the bumper off and headlight out, just not sure what to do next.

Thanks!
 

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2006 STS-V, 2004 Pontiac GTO, 2008 Pontiac G8 GT, 1999 Chevrolet Suburban LT 4x4
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1) You can do that. It is a project though.

2) Yes. Many do this on many halogen headlight setups. I did it on my high beams on mine and every other non-HID equipped vehicle in my driveway has a HID conversion done with a DDM, Morimoto, or other kit (Usually DDM Tuning though), to the low beams and fogs. A word of caution though, a halogen projector and a HID projector aren't necessarily the same, so doing such my cause a light focusing issue and in particular aiming it high... You'll sometimes hear it referred to as "Squirrel Finders" because the aim of the light may shine a portion of the beam up high. A HID projector will have a block off to keep the light focused down some... This focusing can also be an issue with oncoming traffic, temporarily blinding them.

3) Look used on Ebay, Car-part finder, etc...
 

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2008 Escalade, 2007 SRX
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It would really depend if the lens is just fogged up inside or if the lens is actually damaged. I don't know the type of adhesive used to seal the lenses on these headlamps but I took apart headlamps from my Mercedes C55 using a heat gun and a putty knife to pry them apart. Some can't be done that way though but baking them incorrectly can also cause damage to the housing or lens.

I don't think I would buy the halogen lights and put aftermarket HIDs in them, I'm sure the output won't be nearly as good as the factory projectors.

Keep an eye out. When I needed one for my car, I happened to find a brand new one on eBay. There are also the wholesale web sites like parts.com or gmpartsdirect.com that will sell to you less than list price.
 

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2006 STS-V
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Discussion Starter #4
I have been looking on parts sites, ebay included but cant seem to find just the plastic assembly to put all of the OEM HID parts that I have that work perfectly fine. It looks like if I went the route of just buying new, I am just going to have a whole headlight full of duplicate HID parts. $800~ brand new, $400~ used. If I bought a used one and a few months later the same thing happened, I would be furious.

I think the halogen conversion with my OEM HID parts isnt going to work, so thats out :/

I wouldnt mind the project of taking it apart and reworking the lens inside and out but I can find clear instructions on how to bake our specific headlights. If I found those, and knew of someone else who it worked for doing it a certain way, I would give it a shot and if I messed it up, well then I would just have to buy a new one anyways :)
 

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2007 STS-V
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I've seen a thread on here about drilling some holes in the housing to ventilate them and stop the moisture/condensation from building up. Hopefully someone who knows about this will chime in.
 

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I don't think I would buy the halogen lights and put aftermarket HIDs in them, I'm sure the output won't be nearly as good as the factory projectors
Actually the opposite. Taking away the blocker that creates the horizontal 'cut-off' in the HID projectors to focus the HID beam properly and not errantly (as doing a HID conversion would do), would allow for maximum lumen output. I often find myself getting into my Caddy and lamenting that I can't see as much as I can in my Suburban, Chrysler van, Impala and especially my GTO (as I'm running a 55w setup there), because of that 'cut-off' in the factory HID projector of the Caddy. Again, not saying it's the proper way to do it, but it does work and I think it works better than OEM.

However, this is my field of vision with factory low HID (all I did was convert it to a 6k D1S bulb), and a 6k 9005 HID retrofit on. The reason I post this is because all that distance (as well as the high lighting), is courtesy of the HID retrofit in the high beams. The regular halogen are no where near that;


I think the halogen conversion with my OEM HID parts isnt going to work, so thats out :/
Why? It's simple plug and play for a 9006 setup (or 9005 high beam).

I've seen a thread on here about drilling some holes in the housing to ventilate them and stop the moisture/condensation from building up. Hopefully someone who knows about this will chime in.
Most OEM housings already have a vent/vent tube on the backside somewhere. I want to say I saw a small 90* rubber outlet, but I may be confusing headlight assemblies seeing as though I have worked on so many out there.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
While I understand that getting a whole new after market HID kit and putting it into a halogen STS headlight will work, I was hoping that I could buy a less expensive halogen headlight assembly and utilize my current working OEM HID pieces from my current headlight in it. If I did that, I wasnt sure how that would work or how difficult it would be to do. It seems finding individuals that have done aftermarket conversions is easy but I havent seen anyone that has converted a halogen headlight to HID with their existing OEM HID pieces if that makes sense.

If I cant do that, I may attempt to bake the headlight, crack it open, bring it to a pro to brighten it up and put it back together. If that is the case I just dont know what temp, and what the process has been where others have done that.

The only other thing to do besides that is buy a used one and hope that the same doesnt happen to that one.
 

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08 STS4 V8 1SG & 04 SRX4 V8 & 01 Monte SS
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While I understand that getting a whole new after market HID kit and putting it into a halogen STS headlight will work, I was hoping that I could buy a less expensive halogen headlight assembly and utilize my current working OEM HID pieces from my current headlight in it. If I did that, I wasnt sure how that would work or how difficult it would be to do. It seems finding individuals that have done aftermarket conversions is easy but I havent seen anyone that has converted a halogen headlight to HID with their existing OEM HID pieces if that makes sense.

If I cant do that, I may attempt to bake the headlight, crack it open, bring it to a pro to brighten it up and put it back together. If that is the case I just dont know what temp, and what the process has been where others have done that.

The only other thing to do besides that is buy a used one and hope that the same doesnt happen to that one.
The reflector inside the headlight behind the projector lens is held in place with 2 Phillips head screws. This is also the lamp holder for the bulb. You should easily be able to swap this out between the two housings (non HID and HID) without disassembling the housing. I'd expect it to be quite simple to do.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The reflector inside the headlight behind the projector lens is held in place with 2 Phillips head screws. This is also the lamp holder for the bulb. You should easily be able to swap this out between the two housings (non HID and HID) without disassembling the housing. I'd expect it to be quite simple to do.
Awesome! I am going to try that out this week, thanks!
 

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SDo are the low beams HID and highs Halogen on our cars? I just noticed the other day that my low beams are nice crystal white illumination and when I went to high beams they put out yellow like Halogens do. BLEH!
 

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SDo are the low beams HID and highs Halogen on our cars? I just noticed the other day that my low beams are nice crystal white illumination and when I went to high beams they put out yellow like Halogens do. BLEH!
Yes. High beams are halogen and lows are HID.
I can't suggest using HIDs in the highs as they take too long to heat up to usable light. And while I feel that LEDs aren't a good aftermarket lamp yet you might be ok to use them in the highs but I'd also expect lower than desirable output but it would give you the color you're looking for.
 

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OEM setup;

Low: D1S 4,300k, 3,300 lumen, HID
High: 9005 3,200k, 1,700 lumen Halogen.

So yes, the low beam HID's DO have a more "white" appearance to them based on the Kelvin rating alone. But they also have nearly twice the light output vs. the high beam halogen (3,300 lumen vs. 1,700 lumen). Lumen output is the actual measure of light being projected out.

I have the HID's in my highs and while it DOES take a little bit to fully warm up, once on, they're nothing short of amazing. Since your low beam HID's are still on, you aren't running blind anyway, so... If one needs highs, usually you put them on and have them on for some time, so it's not that big of a deal. And if you have to turn them off, say for oncoming traffic, once they pass, and you turn them back on, the warm-up period is almost nill because they're already warmed up more or less.
 

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They are useless for any flash to pass functionality though. Especially in daytime if you need to signal someone like a semi that they are clear to get over in front of you.
 

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In my 30 years of driving, I have NEVER used my flash to pass feature, flashed my brights at oncoming traffic, or to signal a semi that he is clear to move over in front of me.
 

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CMNTMXR57 said:
Most OEM housings already have a vent/vent tube on the backside somewhere. I want to say I saw a small 90* rubber outlet, but I may be confusing headlight assemblies seeing as though I have worked on so many out there.
There are actually two of these per lamp assembly.

Also, for anyone that has and uses IntelliBeam, HID conversion of the high beams will not work correctly and is a bad idea.
 

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They are useless for any flash to pass functionality though. Especially in daytime if you need to signal someone like a semi that they are clear to get over in front of you.
Around here the semi's just cut everyone off so no need to bother letting them know they can get over. I do occasionally use my flash to pass to let people in the left lane know they need to get back over though...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
FYI All,

I ended up completely dismantling my headlight and it looks amazing!!!

I removed the bumper, took out the headlight, took a heat gun to the edges, slowly pried up on it and removed the lens. Once I had the lens off I took a 3M headlight restoration sanding kit (i used the power drill adapter) and did both the inside and outside of the lens. I also took soap, water and a tooth brush and scrubbed both the original seal location around the whole headlight (the leak was coming from one of the top corners) as well as the ridges along the outside edge of the inside part of the lens itself. When taking the lens off, the chrome section of the headlight is essentially plastic welded to it, so you will need to heat and slowly snip that away. Have super glue available for when you put it back together though. I did notice when I took the side door off the headlight that whoever changed a bulb last put the cover back on but didnt make sure the gasket was in place properly so water very well could have been getting in back there as well, so I used gasket sealer on that as well. I put it all back together, put the front bumper back on and the result is a brand new headlight!!

To do all of this all I needed to buy was:
- gasket sealer - $8
- heat gun $20
- tooth brush ( I used an old one of mine)
- super glue $5
- 3M headlight restoration kit - $15

The biggest pain was getting the bumper on and off by myself, I would recommend having 2 people help with this. If you have any questions feel free to ask!
 

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There are actually two of these per lamp assembly.

Also, for anyone that has and uses IntelliBeam, HID conversion of the high beams will not work correctly and is a bad idea.
I have TQ5 and have never had issues, but then again, I override the auto headlight function on mine every time I drive, so moot point I suppose.

How would this impact usage of a HID conversion? All the intellibeam system is doing is turning the highs on/off automatically based on input from the ambient light sensor on top of the dash and a couple other criteria. It is no different than the operator turning them on/off on their own via the stalk. Unless the issue is, the additional lumen output fools with the sensor and it is constantly turning them off.

Since we have low beam HID's on ours, they stay on with the highs on, so there is no loss of light (other than fogs going off) experienced. The only issue is the short time for them to come to full power, that is the only drawback.
 

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I have TQ5 and have never had issues, but then again, I override the auto headlight function on mine every time I drive, so moot point I suppose.

How would this impact usage of a HID conversion? All the intellibeam system is doing is turning the highs on/off automatically based on input from the ambient light sensor on top of the dash and a couple other criteria. It is no different than the operator turning them on/off on their own via the stalk. Unless the issue is, the additional lumen output fools with the sensor and it is constantly turning them off.

Since we have low beam HID's on ours, they stay on with the highs on, so there is no loss of light (other than fogs going off) experienced. The only issue is the short time for them to come to full power, that is the only drawback.
The variable voltage sent by the dimming function of the auto high beams will damage your ballasts and likely you may only have one activate or it may flicker like a strobe lamp and trash your HID lamps.

If you pay attention to the auto high beam system with halogen lamps installed there are times when the system is unsure of the viability to use the highs so it will ramp the voltage up to fade the light in and in some cases ramp the voltage down to fade the light out.

It is likely that the increased output of HID highs will cause the system to disable the highs more frequently due to flashback/glare from street signs.

The ambient light sensor on the dash plays a very small role in the system (i.e. Is it dark enough to have headlights on is all it does). The main sensor to determine activation is the large box that hangs behind the mirror next to the lane departure camera and rain sensor cover.
 

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I guess I never paid attention to a variable function lighting due to variable voltage levels. So yes, if you leave it in auto mode, then I wouldn't put a HID conversion in.

That isn't a problem for me though because again, I NEVER leave it in/use auto mode, so... The first things I do once I start the car, is turn the auto lights off, put the car into competitive driving mode, put my seat belt on.
 
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