Headlights – PiP base preformance……..

Discussion in 'Gen 1 Prius Plug-in 2012-2015' started by 34Hupp, Oct 5, 2013.

  1. 34Hupp

    34Hupp 1934 Hupmobile - Americas 1st Aerodynamic

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    The days are getting shorter, the deer are running, and these headlights just don't get the job done. Anyone else having issues with the headlights on the PiP Base model????? I previously had a 2006 Prius with HIDs that were wonderful. But these projector beams on my 2012 PiP base do not go down the road very far. Just this week, I’ve had several "close encounters" with deer along the side of the road.

    The “low beam” does not seem to go down the road very far, and has very little spread off to the side. The deer on the side of the road do not become visible until you are dangerously close; much too late if they were to make a “poor decision”. The “high beam” (reflector) has great coverage, but the “low” beam (projector) I believe is dangerously inadequate.

    Anyone aware of any “mods” that can be done to increase the projector beam performance?
     
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  2. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    Aftermarket HIDs or do a retrofit to HID projectors.
     
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i use the high's whenever possible in deer country, which is 50% of my commute. even so, with 40 mph back roads, a 'bad decision' on the part of a deer is probably gonna be unavoidable.:eek:
     
  4. zhenya

    zhenya Active Member

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    Your problem won't be solved by more light output from HID's as the projector will still cut it off short. You need to check your beam aim and perhaps adjust the passenger side lamp up and perhaps out a bit.
     
  5. rockerdan

    rockerdan PiP Rocks!

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  6. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    Agree. Just put a set of Morimoto 4300k HIDs in the OE headlights and have them aimed properly. A full retrofit would be even better because the really outstanding projectors have a much greater beam width than the OE projectors which would allow you to see much further off to the side of the road. Retrofits are expensive though ($400-$1000).
     
  7. kenmce

    kenmce High Voltage Member

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    Do you have deer whistles?
     
  8. zhenya

    zhenya Active Member

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    So I drove a longer trip a couple of nights ago and do have to agree that the stock low beams are not so great. About as good as our newer Volvo with halogen reflectors, but nowhere near as good as my old Volvo with high quality bulbs with their very large reflectors. My previous headlight experience makes me wary of HID drop ins, and a quick check of my usual reputable sources confirms that the same basic issues exist whether one has projectors or reflectors. The focusing system is designed for a particular type of light source and not meant to be retrofitted.

    Fortunately the problem here is simple. The H11 bulb has a fairly miserable output of ~1350 lumens, probably chosen because of the long expected lifetime of ~2000 hours. The solution is to use H9 bulbs which can be done with a quick snip of one tab on the base of the new bulbs. These bulbs are rated at ~2300 lumens, although with a lifespan of ~500 hours. I've ordered the new bulbs and will post impressions once I receive them.
     
  9. iluvmacs

    iluvmacs Member

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    I'm in the same boat... just replaced my '06 that had HIDs with a PiPB. Drove one night; hated the OEM halogens. Ordered and installed XenonSupply HID kit the next week. Big improvement.
     
  10. Jonny Zero

    Jonny Zero Giggidy

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    H9 is 65 watts instead of 55. The extra heat might cook the housing.

    SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 ? 2
     
  11. zhenya

    zhenya Active Member

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    I'm aware. The change from 55 to 65 watts is marginal, and translates to only 0.5 amps. This is a common substitution, and comes directly from some of the most reputable sources in the automotive lighting business.
     
  12. Jonny Zero

    Jonny Zero Giggidy

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    The root cause might be the sharp cut off rather than lumen output. I had no problem with the 9006 based reflectors on the 2002 Camry. 9006 bulbs are only 1000 lumen each.

    Projectors are optimized for city and not rural traffic, to reduce blinding. Even with LEDs, I find the range disappointing, I use high beams as often as I can on the back roads.

    SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 ? 2
     
  13. zhenya

    zhenya Active Member

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    I agree. But for $20 on some bulbs I'm willing to find out.
     
  14. ny_rob

    ny_rob Senior Member

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    The low beam output on the Base PIP is very poor.
    I tried to live with the stock halogen's, but after about a month I went with HID's.
    I started with the common 35 watt HID's but eventually settled on the 50 watt Morimoto Elite system which puts out plenty of light.
     
  15. Jonny Zero

    Jonny Zero Giggidy

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    Let us know how it works out.

    When I first got the Five I remember thinking damn there are two worlds in front of me. Awesomely lit foreground, and pitch black in front of it, especially if I was coming down a slope. The old reflectors have crappy foreground lighting, but bleeds more into the distance so at least I get a little preview of what is ahead.

    Then I realized if I am that concerned with what is ahead, just flick on the highbeams. :)
     
  16. mrbigh

    mrbigh Prius Absolutum Dominium

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    Are you satisfied with the Morimoto's 50? doesn't it heat up the headlight nice person'y to much? had you observed any plastic's deformation?
    Thanks
     
  17. Rav

    Rav Member

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    FWIW, I have the same issue with my Advanced LED's. Toyota claims they are "auto level control" but they are not. I've brought up the issue several times to the Service dept only to be told that the lights are leveled correctly. It is too bad.
     
  18. ny_rob

    ny_rob Senior Member

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    Yes, completely satisfied.
    No heat buildup or plastic deformation, the longest I've had them running continuously (the 50 watt HID's and ballasts) was a bit over 60min so there would have been ample time for heat buildup if it was going to happen.
    They were a big upgrade over the 35 watt HID's, and a huge upgrade over the OEM halogen bulbs.
     
  19. Jonny Zero

    Jonny Zero Giggidy

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    They are auto level. They level themselves on start up then lock. Put some weight in the back seat then turn the lights on and watch them dip. Turn them off. Remove the weight, turn them back on, and watch them raise.

    It is the projectors and the sharp cut off. They are intended for city traffic, not rural.
     
  20. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator
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    They are auto level. Many have posted and there are threads on here discussing raising the default level a bit because they come aimed a bit low from the factory.

    I've never had an issue with them in both my Prius that had led headlights, but I live in the city where headlights don't matter as much as in the country. Perhaps you should try adjusting the default aim to aim a bit higher following those threads.
     
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