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Old 10-03-2014, 12:28 PM   #1
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Default 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

My S series has 2 adjustments on each headlight, but I can only find 1 per side on the LW series, and that screw does not really move the assembly at all!
Maybe I need to pull them out and look in the daylight? The lights are aimed too low right now.
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Old 10-03-2014, 06:32 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

It must be the exact setup that are on the LW300's, correct?
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Old 10-03-2014, 09:45 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

You are correct, only one (vertical) height adjustment per headlamp. No horizontal. I never read my manual about aiming when I replaced my low beam lamps and puzzled at the hex screw set up. I believe it's an internal adjustment and won't be noticed unless you park 25 feet away from a wall to use for aligning each headlamp at dusk or dark. If your low beams are using projector light housings, you'll see a very distinctive horizontal cut off as if the light beams were rectangular.
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Old 10-03-2014, 10:21 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Thanks Fdryer, I kept counting full turns and had a finger on the lens assembly where its near the grille but never felt any movement. Who knows if maybe they don't contact anything below. I will pull the lens and see.
My manual has no mentioning of headlamp aiming.
As far as aiming, here, its always difficult with any car. Rolling hills of Virginia and on a farm with no garage or overhead doors anywhere. Guess there is always Walmart's blank wall over by the automotive area after that dept closes @ 730pm!
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Old 10-04-2014, 12:13 AM   #5
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Here are two drawings from the service manual.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg head light aiming.jpg (145.1 KB, 44 views)
File Type: jpg head light aiming 1.jpg (29.9 KB, 33 views)
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Old 10-05-2014, 02:28 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Fdryer, each has 1 adjustment screw as you said, however; the screw drives/turns another dial that has a magic marker scribe on it and I just aligned that mark....will see what darkness brings.

Also, has anyone ever replace the H11 low beam with a HID kit as on Ebay?
They go for like under $30 for both sides. Do they produce a lot of heat that might be bad for our headlamp assembly plastics? Any one know or had experience in HID for H11?
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Old 10-06-2014, 03:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Quote:
Originally Posted by toggenburg View Post
Fdryer, each has 1 adjustment screw as you said, however; the screw drives/turns another dial that has a magic marker scribe on it and I just aligned that mark....will see what darkness brings.

Also, has anyone ever replace the H11 low beam with a HID kit as on Ebay?
They go for like under $30 for both sides. Do they produce a lot of heat that might be bad for our headlamp assembly plastics? Any one know or had experience in HID for H11?
My Advice HID requires more wiring kits not just a simple headlamp bulb switch. So anyone doing this better plan ahead of time. And $30 for the HID H11 kit is way to cheap what does it say for the light code if it isn't 3300 rating forget it and for True HID you can expect to send close to ~ $200-$300 for the kit and those coils are metal house not plastic to dissipated heat from the HID. 3300 is basic daylight HID anything higher is just for show that what a Street Racer friend of mine told me he told me don't believe all those color light about 3300 are just for show not for driving.
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Old 10-06-2014, 06:18 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

^^ Right, that's why I said an HID KIT; complete with slimline electronic ballasts and pigtail jumpers from the existing H11 low beam connector. All current headlamp lenses are plastic.
My headlamps do not seem to adjust no matter what I do with that screw. I can easily drive with hi beams on all the time and not blind anyone. Forget the lo beams, they don't throw the light up high enough to light up the road.
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:10 PM   #9
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

What's the wattage for your low beams? Mine are 55 watt halogens in stock projector housings. This is what my low beam projectors look like from behind the light assembly; http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho....php?t=180196#. One clear pic shows the cut off plate inside. No mods needed if I decide to adapt H11 HID'S to these stock projector housings. All I would have to do is completely disable DRL's by removing the DRL relay and maybe a fuse. This would disable the automatic headlight feature and force me to manually turn on headlights.

Here's another link to someone doing an HID conversion to his L200; http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...ies+hid+lights
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:34 PM   #10
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

And..... my stock projector lights using 55w halogen lamps have the same cutoff as seen in beensmoked's conversion. The cutoff plate allows a low beam to light up the road without blinding anyone as a high beam would (no cut off plate). A HID lamp put into a light housing without a cut off plate inside is just a cheap high beam, blinding everyone in front no matter what anyone says.
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Old 10-06-2014, 10:15 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Nice pictures & labels.
I also used sylvania, but put in the Ultras like I have had in my S-series for 3 solid years. Great light in that car, but not yet in the LW200.

I see your adjustment mechanism has a scribe line at about the 4 o'clock position....mine is at midnight and seemingly no matter where it points to, the light still does not do anything but point out about 15-20' on low....might as well strap a flashlight to the hood for light.
I will agree, the DRL is on the outer H11, low beam, whereas my S series is definitely DRL on high beam.
I will look to see if there is a cutoff plate on my H11 side, is so, are you saying that an H11 HID conversion bulb/kit would NOT blind oncoming traffic due to that plate?
If I cannot adjust this assembly, i might try some creative shims or something. It is too much money to replace assemblies if indeed mine are not adjustable.
I've only had the car since July and up until now have not had much night travel.
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Old 10-06-2014, 11:05 PM   #12
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

I discovered by accident my low beams are projectors but use halogens because of the strange wiring set up to run both low beams in series for DRL's without needing a resistor to reduce current. Halogens run just as bright in series as when they're running in full power parallel mode when the auto lighting system changes from DRL to night lighting. Since no one can see bright or slightly less low beam lights in daytime driving, halogens are long life for DRL use. When I researched how HID lights operate, I found out about the cut off plate to eliminate the upper half of the light to eliminate the same glare as if this were a high beam light. The cut off plate allows HID lamps to light up the road with more light while cutting off the glare with the cut off plate.

I cannot tell you which way to go as I don't know how your low beam light housing is designed, whether its a true projector with a cut off plate inside or a regular light housing using purpose designed reflectors to concentrate as much light down while holding glare to a minimum. You'll have to remove your light housing to examine it. The only clue to knowing if you have projectors for low beams and regular reflectors for high beams are the two distinctive shapes; low and high beams on plain lights are large diameter while projectors are very small in diameter and cannot show the lamp as they're well hidden in the narrow housing. If you look at the front of my light housing, the inner larger diameter light shows the lamp while the projector is just a small round cloudy lens. Projectors focus the brighter light output to maximize lighting and unfortunately lose almost half the light from cutting off the upper half of the light. In effect, only half of my 55w halogens are used. And I cannot say for certain if I try an H11 HID lamp in my projector to throw a better light while cutting off the upper beam. I have not spent the time to search dimensional data to compare an HID lamp against halogens for correct placement since they're bayonet style fitment.

What I do see in your wiring diagram is a resistor wired in series as the ground connection for parallel wired low beams in your LW200 for DRL's, automatically switching out the resistor for night lighting. Your set up, if your low beams are projectors and an H11 HID fits correctly, would be removing the DRL relay and resistor to allow manually turning on low beams. Eliminating the DRL set up by bypassing the resistor will allow full power to each HID ballast to drive each HID lamp. OR use DRL's but wire a bypass jumper around the resistor to have your cake and eat it - having DRL's and night time low beams with HID lamps. All speculating for now until you find out whether or not your low beams are projector light housings.

Last edited by fdryer; 10-06-2014 at 11:12 PM.
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Old 10-07-2014, 08:01 AM   #13
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Wow, you have done a lot of research and present it clearly....thanks.
My thoughts were that the only difference between a 2003 LW200 and LW300 were the 4cyl vs 6 cyl engine tranny arrangements. Guess not.
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Old 10-07-2014, 12:10 PM   #14
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Car electronics has changed dramatically and one way to stay abreast and not drown from advances in technology was to buy my service manual for my L300. Researching for accurate information separates armchair quarterback guesses from anyone willing to search for pertinent info directly related to a topic. Your wiring for headlights is different from mine and without wiring to view, I couldn't comment accurately.

Btw, if you cannot adjust your headlights for correct road illumination, any other mods being considered, like HID's would be pointless.

Last edited by fdryer; 10-07-2014 at 12:15 PM.
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Old 10-07-2014, 12:40 PM   #15
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Right. I knew that about the aiming. I am going to get these aimed correctly somehow, however; the ultras that I just put in are yellow color, not the white blue tint that I have with the ultras in the SW2. They are not the 4300-4800K that I thought when I purchased cheaply on Ebay. So that's why I was looking at HID, for the more powerful and white light. I am mostly in the country, and need the light (don't like to have deer surprise me) and yet don't want to blind oncoming drivers either.
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Old 10-07-2014, 01:44 PM   #16
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

In your case, according to wiring diagrams for L200's, just wiring a jumper across the resistor allows you to keep the DRL mode. Whether or not you want daytime HID lights is your choice (and most likely the main reason for 'angel eyes' lighting on European cars, to lengthen lifetimes of HID lamps). Disabling DRL's is just a matter of removing the DRL relay. You may or may not get the DRL indicator flashing a few times at ignition on time as a warning that something's wrong (modified wiring) and can ignore it. Another issue you may have to ask yourself is if you keep the DRL feature and use HID lamps, you run the risk of more use of HID lighting that may result in burnouts sooner than anticipated. It might be wise to find HID lamps that are replaceable along with their ballasts - a well known brand to find down the road if a lamp or ballast is needed. Of course, the cheap HID light kits may work where the cheaper ones last long enough that they're throwaways when replacements are needed. Not using DRL's changes the lifetime longevity. I'm not familiar with lifetime stats comparing stock HID lighting against aftermarket.
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Old 01-03-2015, 01:55 PM   #17
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Finally, I got the headlights adjusted.
It took about 30 full turns to get them UP level.
It appears the torx adjusting screw moves something internal to the assembly, rather than moving the assembly itself. Like the lights pivot inside the housing. Weird. This adjustment is unlike any other car I've ever owned.
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Old 01-03-2015, 03:00 PM   #18
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

30 FULL TURNS!? No wonder mine didn't move. I tried a small adjustment, one or two turns, expecting the light to point up into the sky or down to the ground. I can't twist that many times without getting a limp wrist.

Thanks for the tip. Next time I decide to meddle with my lights I'll steal someone's electric screwdriver or use a drill with a screwdriver/torx bit, a la Tim the Tool Man! Now I can blind opposing traffic or drive blind (lights pointing down).
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Old 01-05-2015, 02:17 PM   #19
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Actually, I rounded it to 30 turns.....it was actually 90 partial wrist twists and I guesstimated it to 30 full turns on BOTH sides. Seems good on the road now and no one flashes lights to me unless I go to high beams.

The 2003 L car really has a weird setup tho....too bad it was not addressed in the owners manual.
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Old 10-01-2020, 06:42 PM   #20
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Default Re: 2003 LW200 can't adjust headlights

Quote:
Originally Posted by toggenburg View Post
Finally, I got the headlights adjusted.
It took about 30 full turns to get them UP level.
It appears the torx adjusting screw moves something internal to the assembly, rather than moving the assembly itself. Like the lights pivot inside the housing. Weird. This adjustment is unlike any other car I've ever owned.
toggenburg, do you recall which direction you turned the screw moved the beam up? I have a 2003 L200 with the same problem. Its setup appears similar to Picture ID 40113 herein, but as I recall, the screw is hex, not star in my car. Thanking in advance...
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