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Headlights dimmer than other cars?

Discussion in '1994-2004 V6 Mustang Tech' started by HumanSVD, Nov 18, 2018.

  1. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    New to the forum here. Have a question about headlights.

    My headlights always seem dimmer than the other cars on the road. No matter what bulb brand or color rating I use, everyone's bulb appears brighter than mine. I have a new pair of headlight assemblies, so it's not that the lens are old.

    I'm going to try the following to get them brighter:

    Check grounding wire and clean it.

    Check battery connectors and clean them.

    Check belt tension by measuring the length of pull at the pulley. Was told if its more than 13 to get a new serpintine belt.

    It still has stock connectors but they're old.

    Use high watt 9007s 80w/100w and use high temp sockets to compensate (yes, not road legal but cops here don't care unless the color is crazy different or out). Current bulbs are gp thunder 7 k whites 55/65w, which are stock output I think.

    Realign the bulbs. For proper beam dispersal.

    Also notes:

    Alternator is a reman BBB industries that is stock 105amps and 3 years old. Everything appears to be powering just fine. No other signs of lost alternator power. No power loss can be seen anywhere else. I don't think a high amp one is needed.

    Battery is 2 years old walmart group 58 but no other signs of lost output. I'll check it with my bluetooth obd 2 live scanner with Dash command but I'm certain it's within limits.

    Is there anything else I can do?
     
  2. Serpent

    Serpent Active Member

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    mustang headlights are notoriously dim. halogens help. I have used the sivlerstars before and got better output.
     
  3. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    So pretty much nothing I can do other than convert to high output bulbs.
     
  4. Serpent

    Serpent Active Member

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    what i had to do.
     
  5. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    Well, looks like that's my option. Already ordered replacements. Orderd off road Nokya 7k high watt bulbs. Will swap to Hella high watt off road bulbs if that doesn't work. Ordered Standard Motor Tech Smart plug and play connectors.

    I'm also going to inspect the other points mentioned. I'll post before and after photos if there's any improvement.
     
  6. six gun

    six gun Active Member

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    Light color matters too for being able to see. The lower on the kelvin scale, like a 3000k, 4300k will produce a more practical light. Anything less yellow and more blue, like 6000k or higher will be less desirable, especially in bad weather or rain. Personal experience.
     
  7. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    Well shoot, now that throws the bulbs I bought into question. I at least have reg halogens that came with my headlights .
     
  8. six gun

    six gun Active Member

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    Keep in mind too, headlamp technology e.g. projectors, hid, led, has improved a lot over the past 15 years, so in comparison the older stangs like my 1999 just won't work like they do.

    What I ended up doing to keep up with the times was retrofitted HID projectors in my lamps. Huge pain to do but there are also aftermarket alternatives with projectors as well. World of difference, even if you do go with a halogen projector.

    Assuming you have a 94-04 stang.. The wiring for the headlamps is a smaller-gauge than probably what should be there, and what a person could do is get a universal headlamp wiring kit, maybe rated 30 amps or so, that uses a relay - that way, your old headlamp wires going to your bulbs would instead become a signal to turn on the relay that uses bigger wiring, rather than having the factory wire sending all the power straight to the lamps themselves. This will allow more power to go to your bulbs and this give them a little more brightness, especially if you're putting in higher wattage bulbs over factory.
     
  9. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    I bought a plug and play high temp socket set that's 14ga wire size. Though, Dorman has a 12ga one. Is this enough? I was told 18 ga was the old ones.

    Do you have a specific link to a product you recommend?
     
  10. six gun

    six gun Active Member

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    14-16 gauge wire should be okay.

    I don't have a link specifically, however a universal headlamp wiring harness, with a relay or two, may be available at parts stores. The ones I keep finding online are for fog lamp circuits right now for some reason, but as long as they have 9007 input and output plugs on them, then that should do.

    Or, you can also build your own harness if you have the time and knowledge of relays.
     
  11. six gun

    six gun Active Member

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  12. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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  13. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    Well, the parts came in and I swapped them out. They are brighter but drivers side high beam will no longer work with these bulbs, passenger side is as bright as can be. Low beams work on both.

    Any ideas why it's shorting?
     
  14. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    Well, I figured out the issue. Stock headlamp socket high beam wire is lose. It has to be replaced. I'm just going too install the wiring harness as it keeps going in and out.

    Since I'm going to use 100w bulbs, I have to use 40amp relays and install an inline fuse to the Putco relay harness that Six Gun linked to ensure it can handle the higher amps safely.

    My question is do I install the inline before the relays or after the relays and the headlight sockets?
     
  15. six gun

    six gun Active Member

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    Always put the fuse nearest the battery; the first thing in the circuit.

    Instead of replacing the factory headlamp socket, you can instead cut that end off, paying attention to the order of the wires of course, and hardwire them to your new harness.
     
  16. HumanSVD

    HumanSVD Member

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    I did everything you suggested, I bought the headlight relay harness you linked. Then I bought the inline fuze holders and added them in the order you specified.

    I also bought 40 amp relays so I could use the higher watt bulbs. Added with the 40 fuzes, the lights are SIGNIFICANTLY brighter! Success! Thanks everyone for your advice and recommendations. Very much appreciated.
     
    six gun likes this.