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Old 11-17-2018, 06:28 PM   #1
Pete28
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1998 SL2
Default Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Hey folks hope everyone is enjoying their Saturday. So the repairs and upgrades to my daughters 98 sl2 continue. It runs like a dream now so time to move on to some other stuff. The headlight assemblies are absolutely shot. There is just too much oxidation. So I'm going to purchase new assemblies. So I guess my two questions would be where would be a good place to order the assemblies and bulbs? I don't want the yellow normal bulbs that come with it as they are simply not bright enough for the country roads where we live. I really want the bright white ones if that makes sense. Thank you for any information and help.

Pete

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Old 11-17-2018, 07:11 PM   #2
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

I live in the sticks, and I replaced my 98 SW2 assemblies with ones from PARTSGEEK.com. ~ $65 for both.
Then used the Sylvania Silverstar Ultra 9005 & 9006 bulbs for all 4.
Some have said here that their bulbs burned out within a year, however; my experience using these bulbs on at least 5 different vehicles is that the original set has been in for over 100,000 miles and nearly 5 years without failures. Similar results on the other 4 cars too.
Ebay is the best place I have found the Ultra (2 packs) on their auction tab.
Bought all 4 bulbs for under $50, and have enjoyed bright white light....far better that the 3 sets of different LED manufactures bulbs, far better.
The LEDs seems really bright when viewed head on, but while driving, I could not get the distance out of the in side by side comparisons with the Ultra bulbs.

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Old 11-17-2018, 07:15 PM   #3
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1997 SL2
Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

If you want a brighter bulb, you could try using a pair of 9011 and 9012 bulbs. They require a little bit of modification to fit into the housing but the plug is exactly the same as the stock 9005/9006 bulbs.

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Old 11-17-2018, 07:29 PM   #4
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

I also did that 9011 and 9012 mod on the 2003 LW200 I had. But even those did not help that car's system. It was a dog from the day I titled it, until I sold it for scrap.

All said, I actually had forgotten about the HIR 9011 conversion on these other cars. I ended up on 1, with the Ultras (9006) for low beam (less extra glare with the SW2 lenses than the 9012 HIR during mists and rain) and the 9011 HIR instead of the 9005 for the High beam.

True, there is about a 500 lumen gain with the HIR, but that extra light seems to bounce or hit funny in the saturn lens that it because of the different filament structure that causes the HIR to hit areas that usually don't get that much light. The increased light of the HIR bulb bounces around these enclosures and it spills into areas of the lamp that were never intended to focus a beam pattern. Some side effects of these internal hits are unwanted external reflection outside the headlamp. I tried the 9012 bulb. In clear weather things were just fine..lots more output etc. But any misty or snow, rain, and I had too much reflection to call it good.

Last edited by toggenburg; 11-17-2018 at 07:43 PM..

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Old 11-17-2018, 08:11 PM   #5
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Tell those "UltraStar" and "Ultrabright" fools to take a long walk off a short pier.

Get off-road 9005 & 9006 bulbs as well as a dedicated harness for them, aimed properly they won't bother anyone anymore than the stock lights while you get a ton more visibility without any of that marketing hype that doesn't translate into anything useful.

Used 100/80w bulbs with a dedicated harness on my old Forester, were rated for 400hrs use but I got nearly 1000 out of the driver side and ended up scrapped the car with nearly 1300hrs on the passenger bulb. Actually did piss off a local state cop...high-beamed them from the back while they were parked (scanning for speeders) 2 nights in a row then on night #3 they were spun around the other way and high-beamed me!

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Old 11-17-2018, 08:28 PM   #6
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

I replaced mine last year with TYC brand assemblies from RockAuto (very satisfied). I think I paid less than $70 for the pair. I also went with a set of Philips HIR bulbs from eBay. Almost twice the lumen count as standard bulbs without any extra current draw. You have to trim the plastic mounting tabs on the bulbs to get the HIR bulbs to fit the assemblies, but they're a drop in replacement otherwise. Well worth it.

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Old 11-18-2018, 08:17 AM   #7
Pete28
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1998 SL2
Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Thank you everyone for the great suggestions and information! I found a set for $58 bucks shipped and I'll buy the 9011 and 9012 separately. Thanks again.

Pete

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Old 11-19-2018, 09:06 AM   #8
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

OK, Fetch.
Then what bulbs would you recommend to brighten up a vehicle that can only accept the H1 bulb base?

My 2005 Malibu Maxx has an aftermarket assembly having only H1 fittings.

The HIR 9011/9012 base cannot be modified to ever work in an H1 base, seeing that there is only a single separate jumper wire.

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Old 11-19-2018, 10:22 AM   #9
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Careful eBay searching will produce LED replacements that are equivalent to a 200-250W halogen bulb and a 6000K color temperature. They draw about 35 actual watts so the wiring will be quite happy.

These basic units are adapted to all the different common bulbs. https://www.ebay.com/itm/9007-500W-5...53.m1438.l2649

They work just fine as long as you have the clearance behind the housing and can figure out how to install them.

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Old 11-19-2018, 11:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Quote:
Originally Posted by toggenburg View Post
OK, Fetch.
Then what bulbs would you recommend to brighten up a vehicle that can only accept the H1 bulb base?

My 2005 Malibu Maxx has an aftermarket assembly having only H1 fittings.

The HIR 9011/9012 base cannot be modified to ever work in an H1 base, seeing that there is only a single separate jumper wire.
These (if you click on the 2-pack it's nearly $3 cheaper than 2 single box's):
https://www.amazon.com/HELLA-H1-100W.../dp/B0002M9URU

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Old 11-20-2018, 02:01 PM   #11
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

Fetch; 2 issues. Neither the lens housing nor the existing wiring would safely support those nice 100w bulbs. I would melt the housing and wiring; and blind oncoming drivers right into me

OldNuc; might be a possibility IF I wanted to really tear out the H1 metal housing and somehow retrofit in those LEDs.

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Old 11-20-2018, 02:49 PM   #12
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Default Re: Headlight assembly question 98 sl2

A dedicated headlight harness will assist even stock bulbs to be at their brightest and you can either buy one for under $40 or make one for under $30 (or even less if you're a scrounge like me and keep random connectors, wires, relays and fuses from junk cars).

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