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Old 02-21-2020, 09:55 AM #1
JohnnyxRex JohnnyxRex is offline
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Modern Headlight and Bulb Options for 03-05

Hey, what do you guys think is the best options for the 03-05 headlights? I’ve sanded down and clear coated my headlights twice at this point - guess I didn’t do a great job, and I’m looking to either fix or swap to something that looks similar to factory on the cheap.

I’m also tired of replacing the bulbs constantly. I’d like to do a HID, HIR, or LED swap. HIRs look particularly easy to swap out, but will they last? Are you using any modern, cheaper HIR/LED options that are still for sale? I’ve found several threads linking to products that don’t exist anymore.

Current headlight condition:





LATEST UPDATE: HIR bulbs, 3M film, and refresh kit ordered. Looking for HID kit recommendations.

Last edited by JohnnyxRex; 02-27-2020 at 01:12 AM.
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Old 02-21-2020, 10:37 AM #2
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im running TYC oem replicas, and eventually putting Auxbeam LED bulbs in. the TYCs have held up great for 6 mos of moderate wheeling and bad weather in the northeast crud.

does anyone who sees this run Auxbeams and which low beam bulbs?

i want these ones but having trouble with auxbeams website vs amazon part #s, i want to only get them from Amazon.

Amazon.com: Auxbeam LED Headlights F-S2 Series 9006 HB4 HB4U LED Headlight Bulbs with 2 Pcs of Led Headlight Bulb Conversion Kits 72W 8000LM COB Led Chips Single Beam: Automotive
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Old 02-21-2020, 11:44 AM #3
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I do a lot of my driving in the dark on rural highways with lots of deer so light output is very important to me. I just did a HID retrofit. I went with Morimoto Mini H1 7.0 and ordered from Lightwerkz but The Retrofit Source is another good option. I ordered from Lightwerks since they were cheaper. So far, I'm very happy with the improvement in light output.

Before that, I ran HIR bulbs. With HIR bulbs, the improvement was very minimal and the bulbs burnt out after 1 year (I use my headlights about 3 hours/week).

I would recommend doing a HID retrofit. I purchased an OEM replica set of headlight assemblies off of Ebay for less than $80 and retrofitted the HID projectors into those. If you decide to go with a retrofit, my best advice is to take your time and be patient. There are tons of good threads that you can find or I can link for you if you decide to go the HID retrofit route.
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Old 02-21-2020, 12:36 PM #4
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Simply refreshing the lens to clear makes a BIG difference to light on the road (where it was engineered to be, not after being scattered through a cloudy lens.
I once had a Civici with the early MiniH1's from TRS installed, intense light for sure on the road, but not a "night and day" difference.
I think I actually prefer the OEM halogen + highbeams when going through elevations/mountains. (Scattered light via halogen vs lazer sharp cutoffs + bixeonon hibeams on the retrofits)

Do yourself a favor and try a $10 fix by applying clear film to the headlights once you get them buffed out properly. Search the 4th gen for my recommendations.
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Old 02-24-2020, 02:34 PM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSRP. View Post
Simply refreshing the lens to clear makes a BIG difference to light on the road (where it was engineered to be, not after being scattered through a cloudy lens.
I once had a Civici with the early MiniH1's from TRS installed, intense light for sure on the road, but not a "night and day" difference.
I think I actually prefer the OEM halogen + highbeams when going through elevations/mountains. (Scattered light via halogen vs lazer sharp cutoffs + bixeonon hibeams on the retrofits)

Do yourself a favor and try a $10 fix by applying clear film to the headlights once you get them buffed out properly. Search the 4th gen for my recommendations.
Do you have a brand that you prefer? I see Laminx but they want $60 just for the film. Do I just buy a roll of 3M?
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Old 02-24-2020, 02:37 PM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkim7 View Post
I do a lot of my driving in the dark on rural highways with lots of deer so light output is very important to me. I just did a HID retrofit. I went with Morimoto Mini H1 7.0 and ordered from Lightwerkz but The Retrofit Source is another good option. I ordered from Lightwerks since they were cheaper. So far, I'm very happy with the improvement in light output.

Before that, I ran HIR bulbs. With HIR bulbs, the improvement was very minimal and the bulbs burnt out after 1 year (I use my headlights about 3 hours/week).

I would recommend doing a HID retrofit. I purchased an OEM replica set of headlight assemblies off of Ebay for less than $80 and retrofitted the HID projectors into those. If you decide to go with a retrofit, my best advice is to take your time and be patient. There are tons of good threads that you can find or I can link for you if you decide to go the HID retrofit route.
I think where I'm currently at is that I want to buy some new headlights, seal them up with silicon, and then either drop in LEDs or modify for HIDs.

My two questions are this:
1. Why go the HID route over LED? Aren't LEDs straightforward, basically plug and play?

2. Does this generation need resistors in-line with the LEDs for the headlights, or does hyperflashing only happen on the turn signals?
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Old 02-24-2020, 02:51 PM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyxRex View Post
I think where I'm currently at is that I want to buy some new headlights, seal them up with silicon, and then either drop in LEDs or modify for HIDs.

My two questions are this:
1. Why go the HID route over LED? Aren't LEDs straightforward, basically plug and play?

2. Does this generation need resistors in-line with the LEDs for the headlights, or does hyperflashing only happen on the turn signals?
1. When you're talking about LEDs, are you simply talking about installing an LED bulb or an LED projector, like this? Bi-LED: Profile Bi-Lens LED 2.0

2. I do not know much about LED wiring/hyperflash. I believe hyperflash does refer to only turn signals though.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:29 PM #8
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Stay away from LEDs.

Since you have reflectors, I would go with HIRs.

Maintains cutoff and doesn't blind people, but definitely a massive improvement over the stock bulbs.

Could always do the upgrade to 06-09 projectors and run HIDs.
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:45 PM #9
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Hyperflash issues are turn signal related.

No resistors needed for the headlights.
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Old 02-24-2020, 05:32 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JONBOY345 View Post
Stay away from LEDs.

Since you have reflectors, I would go with HIRs.

Maintains cutoff and doesn't blind people, but definitely a massive improvement over the stock bulbs.

Could always do the upgrade to 06-09 projectors and run HIDs.
Why stay away from LEDs? They seem like the best combo - they last and are plug and play.

Honestly Iím considering the 06-09 projector upgrade. I like the look better, I just donít know where to buy the painted trim piece that goes under the light.
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Old 02-24-2020, 05:55 PM #11
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What do you guys think of just buying an all in one HID and headlight assembly kit? Iím seeing some around $200 online, and then I could either just drop them in place or swap to the 2006-2008 versions.
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Old 02-24-2020, 06:12 PM #12
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Proper retrofit or just get brighter halogens.
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Old 02-24-2020, 07:55 PM #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyxRex View Post
Why stay away from LEDs? They seem like the best combo - they last and are plug and play.

Honestly Iím considering the 06-09 projector upgrade. I like the look better, I just donít know where to buy the painted trim piece that goes under the light.
They fit the socket, but aren't "plug and play". They spray light all over the place and blind other drivers.

HIRs is your best bet without upgrading housing or doing a retrofit.
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Old 02-25-2020, 12:36 PM #14
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I've been reading a bunch of threads and learning a lot. I found a XenonDepot HID kit for my 2005 headlights that are only like $115. So now I am considering either:

1. Buying some 03-05 ebay OEM replicas and installing the XenonDepot kit in them. That would put me all in at around $210 for clear, bright headlights

2. Swapping to the 06-09 projectors and installing LEDs (or a similar HID kit). This would cost slightly more ($250 at least), and the main holdup is finding a painted (silver) trim piece that goes under the light. I probably like the design better, though.

Thanks for all the responses so far - I'm glad I posted, otherwise I would have blinded people. Any thoughts on the options above?
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Old 02-25-2020, 01:19 PM #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyxRex View Post
I've been reading a bunch of threads and learning a lot. I found a XenonDepot HID kit for my 2005 headlights that are only like $115. So now I am considering either:

1. Buying some 03-05 ebay OEM replicas and installing the XenonDepot kit in them. That would put me all in at around $210 for clear, bright headlights

2. Swapping to the 06-09 projectors and installing LEDs (or a similar HID kit). This would cost slightly more ($250 at least), and the main holdup is finding a painted (silver) trim piece that goes under the light. I probably like the design better, though.

Thanks for all the responses so far - I'm glad I posted, otherwise I would have blinded people. Any thoughts on the options above?
If you go with HIDs (in either 03-05 or 06+) you need to retrofit an HID projector as well to focus the light and not glare oncoming drivers. If it's the XenonDepot kit I'm thinking of, those do not include HID projectors. The XenonDepot kit just include the bulbs, ballasts, and wiring. You need HID projectors. TheRetrofitSource and Lightwerkz sell complete HID retrofit kits that include HID projectors.

From the threads I've read, it's a decent amount of work to swap 03-05 headlight housings to 06+ housings. The cost/time investment would be similar to doing a proper HID retrofit into 03-05 housings.
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