A rare car from the assembly line is equipped with lighting that would completely satisfy the owner of the car. Halogen lamps with a power of 50-100 W do not allow you to feel comfortable driving in the dark. If we add here wet asph alt that absorbs light, it becomes clear that the driver has no choice but to connect xenon.
Xenon and bi-xenon: what is the difference
Xenon lamps are much brighter than conventional halogen lamps. This is explained by the different principle of the appearance of the light flux. Nichrome filaments are installed in simple lamps. When heated, they begin to glow in an inert gas environment. In xenon, the glow occurs due to the passage of a high-voltage electric discharge through the gas, the distinguishing characteristic of which is stability.
Halogen lamps do not require anything other than 12 V from the battery to work. Xenon needs an ignition unit that creates a high-voltage pulse.
Due tostability of the gas discharge, the service life exceeds the limit of operation of conventional light bulbs. However, this stability has a downside: xenon cannot be made to shine brighter or reduce the level of luminous flux. This imposes a restriction on the use of gas discharge lamps in headlights, in which one block serves to create a low beam and a high beam. For such lighting fixtures, bi-xenon is used. Its principle of operation is the same - the glow of a high-voltage discharge in a gaseous medium.
What makes the luminous flux change? The developers placed an additional reflector inside the glass bulb, which, under the control of a magnet, changes its position. Thus, the beam of light changes its direction, and the dipped beam xenon lamps begin to shine far.
Which is better?
If you ask yourself the question: what is better xenon or bi-xenon, then such reasoning will be incorrect. It makes no sense to install xenon in the headlight unit, where one lamp simultaneously works to turn on the low beam and high beam, because the high beam will not turn on in this case. Here you need only bi-xenon. In the headlight, the body of which is divided into low and high beam optics, you need to put xenon.
What the law says about discharge lamps
HID lamps provide many benefits on the road. Therefore, replacing the headlights with xenon ones is so attractive. What does the law say about changing car lighting equipment?
There are regulatory documents (GOST R 41.99-99, UNECE No. 99),regulating the use of gas discharge lamps. They state that such devices can be used in headlights that were originally adapted for this. Such lighting devices have the letter D in their marking. In all other cases, the installation of xenon is prohibited. Moreover, the lamps themselves must have a certification that allows their use on the territory of the Russian Federation. Summing up, you need to list all the items that allow legal installation:
- Marking headlights.
- Optics must be equipped with an automatic corrector that allows you to change the angle of illumination depending on the load on the car.
- Headlights must have washers.
If any item is not observed, then the installation is prohibited. To obtain permission, you need to contact the traffic police, undergo an examination, which will issue a conclusion on the possibility of installation, after which a mark on conversion is put in the vehicle passport.
Punishment for illegal use of xenon
What threatens the owner of the vehicle in case of illegal installation of xenon? Part 3 of Article 12.5 of the Code of Administrative Offenses answers this question. The use of vehicles with optics that do not meet the established requirements is punished:
- driving license deprivation for a period of 6 months to a year;
- seizure of inappropriate lighting equipment.
The punishment is determined by the court.
The difference in lamp base
There are several criteria by which automotive lamps are classified. Therefore, beforehow to connect xenon, you need to decide on the type of base, which comes in three options: D, H, HB.
H type bulbs are available in sizes H1 to H13 and a color gamut covering the entire color spectrum from 3,500K to 6,000K. and also for fog lights.
Marking D indicates that a xenon lamp with a built-in ignition unit. This simplifies their installation - no need to look for a place in the engine compartment for the unit. By color, they go from 4,300 K to 6,000 K, depending on the manufacturer. For example, South Korean Sho-Me produces lamps with a warmer color palette than American or European manufacturers.
HB series plinths differ from H in narrower installation specifics. They are mounted in fog lights and high beam headlights.
It is subdivided according to the warmth of the shades, the temperature of which is expressed in Kelvin:
- 3 500 K has the warmest shade (close to yellow), good for fog lights.
- 4 300K shines in white-yellow, which is the most sought after as it gives the impression of being the brightest. Automakers install lamps of this shade on the conveyor.
- 5,000 K - neutral white shade.
- 6,000 K - white with a cool bluish tint.
- From 7,000 K and above - darker tones of the blue spectrum. Visibility of the road deteriorates, especially on wetpavement.
Xenon lamp manufacturers have different color palette standards. The same marking may have a different color. Which lamp is better is up to you. Before buying a specific model, you should familiarize yourself with the color shade in fact.
Over time, the shade of xenon lamps in different headlights may vary. This happens for the following reasons:
- Fusing electrodes that create an electric arc. The discharge goes to another part of the bulb, the hue of the glow changes accordingly.
- Reduces the transparency of the lens or the outer glass of the headlight. Modern automotive optics have plastic glasses, the melting of which can lead to a change in shade. In addition, depressurization of the case is possible. In this case, dust and dirt may obstruct the light beam.
- Failure of the ignition unit.
If over time one of the lamps fails, then both change. A new lamp will always be a different shade than the old one.
How to connect xenon with your own hands
The installation procedure does not take much time. Manufacturers of xenon kits have made sure that the connection is made using standard connectors.
Before you connect xenon, you should determine the type of car headlight base. To install lighting equipment you need:
- Open the hood and disconnect the battery.
- Determine the places where the ignition units will be installed. The wires connecting the lamps and the unit are no more than 50 cm long, so spars or mudguards in close proximity to the headlights will be the best installation location.
- Remove the plastic or rubber plugs from the headlights, under which the low beam lamps are located.
- Remove the electrical connector from the base, unfasten the retainer, remove the halogen lamp.
- Punch a hole in the headlight cap. This is necessary so that the wires from the lamp to the ignition unit can be passed through it. If the cover is plastic, then it can be drilled in the center, if rubber, then cut through the entrance with a clerical knife. The hole must match the diameter of the bundle of wires that will pass through it. Do not do any more, as moisture will penetrate through the cracks, which will lead to fogging of the headlight.
- Remove the xenon bulbs from the shipping case. This must be done carefully, without touching the glass bulb, as fatty traces will lead to overheating of the lamp. If it happened to touch the surface, then you need to wipe the glass with an alcohol solution after that, then insert the lamps into their original place.
- Connect the wires supplying voltage to the lamp with the wires going to the ignition unit. This is done using connectors. Xenon leader Sho-Me uses KET-02 and AMT pads. In addition to those connected, there is also a connector that supplies power to the ignition unit. It connects to the wires that were connected to the standard lamp. The connection is made according to the colors: red - positive, black - ground. To avoid confusion, in the body of the ignition unit,where the connector is inserted, there are corresponding marks.
The final step is to put on the covers that cover the lamps in regular places and securely fasten the ignition blocks with self-tapping screws.
How to adjust the headlights after installing xenon
Brighter lighting imposes responsibility towards other road users. Drivers who decide to connect xenon should adjust the direction of the headlights as soon as possible. You can do this in a simple way:
- Park the car in front of a vertical wall at a distance of 1 m.
- Turn on low beam and mark with chalk the brightest parts of the light spot. When the vehicle is against a wall, the marks will be approximately at headlight level.
- Reverse 5-8 meters away.
- Also, without turning off the headlights, compare where the beam of light is relative to the marks. With properly adjusted headlights, it should not exceed the previously marked height.
- If it is higher, use the adjusting screws to lower the headlight reflector.
- If the beam of light goes in the direction of oncoming traffic, then the reflector must be turned to the left until the light begins to capture the edge of the right shoulder.
It is important to adjust the headlights with screws, and not with a corrector, which must be raised to the top position before the adjustments begin so that the angle of light does not exceed the value obtained during the adjustment.