Thread: HID option
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Old 02-19-2017, 01:59 PM   #13
Household6
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Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 21

2007 Outlook XR
Default Re: HID option

Post 9, 1st sentence stated they are HID's. :-)

Regarding them being HID Low beams, evidently they're what's referred to as a HID HI/Low bulb as both regular and bright light usage comes from this single bulb.

For future reference as to identifying OEM factory HID's, I was also able to "hear" the lights doing some sort of adjusting when I turned on the brights. (Not sure if halogens do this, but I wouldn't think so.

Another tidbit I found regarding the actual bulb in the webs:

"The tube is filled with both gas and metal salts. The gas facilitates the arc's initial strike. Once the arc is started, it heats and evaporates the metal salts forming a plasma, which greatly increases the intensity of light produced by the arc and reduces its power consumption."

"Factors of wear come mostly from on/off cycles versus the total on time. The highest wear occurs when the HID burner is ignited while still hot and before the metallic salts have recrystallized. At the end of life, many types of high-intensity discharge lamps exhibit a phenomenon known as cycling. These lamps can be started at a relatively low voltage. As they heat up during operation, however, the internal gas pressure within the arc tube rises and a higher voltage is required to maintain the arc discharge. As a lamp gets older, the voltage necessary to maintain the arc eventually rises to exceed the voltage provided by the electrical ballast. As the lamp heats to this point, the arc fails and the lamp goes out. Eventually, with the arc extinguished, the lamp cools down again, the gas pressure in the arc tube is reduced, and the ballast can once again cause the arc to strike. The effect of this is that the lamp glows for a while and then goes out, repeatedly."

The last sentence in the quote being what I sincerely hope is going on.

Bottom line for anyone else in my predicament is that, once you've pulled out the bulb do the best you can to visually inspect the wiring, mainly near the connectors, and look for melted or frayed wiring. If this exisists, you will need to replace the entire wiring harness. (Keep the bulbs and ballasts currently in use as they likely are ok, and worth waiting due to the added expense.)

Then, as suggested by previous post, only absolute way of testing bulbs and ballast is to find someone else with properly functioning factory OEM HID's, and ask if they will run your bulb for a bit of night driving (in my case around 30 - 45 minutes) and chance getting a ticket. (This would surely make them a good friend!) Then do the same for the ballast.

Could take the parts to Autozone or such for testing, but considering my bulbs do not start the process until it gets warmed up, I'm not sure this would produce a faulty reading during a 10 second test.

Next option is to replace the bulb (highest quality you can get your hands on - it makes a difference) and see how things go. In case you're wondering, the silver box on the bulb is called the "igniter." (May be a way to purchase bulb only and insert into ignitor, but I'm not willing to spend the time or chance it.) If there are still issues, time to change out the ballast.

I've done some extensive researching trying not to have to shell out full price on the ballast. Seen everywhere from $250 for used to $700 for new. This leads me to believe the dealership may be the best place to go.

I'll follow up with our results.

...
2007 Outlook XR AWD
Dark Blue, Tan Leather, 2nd row Captains Chairs
Fully Loaded
Engine Replaced by dealer at 100k, Evidence of new(er) transmission
(Purchased in Feb 2017 with 165k miles)

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