WARNING: HID Bulbs Will Melt Subaru BRZ Fog Lights – Try These LEDs Instead!

Did you know HID lights will melt the fogs on your BRZ? We will show you what happened to our BRZ and show you 2 good high power LED options so you can STILL have upgraded fog lights.

 

brz

If you’re like us, we love the look and power of HID bulbs in our vehicles and will use them any chance we get. So when it came to updating the Subaru BRZ we went all out and put HIDs in the headlights and fog lights. The strength and intensity of HID lights make them a perfect safety upgrade in headlights and fog lights during poor weather conditions. However, we found out that HIDs were not an ideal choice for our Subaru BRZ fog lights. In the Subaru BRZ, the power of the HID bulbs was too great for the fog light housings; within a few days they began to melt.

burnt fog lightburnt fog light 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HID light sources provide the brightest illumination available and are considered the benchmark against which other forward lighting technologies are measured. HID light sources provide three to four times the light output of standard halogen light sources and promote better driving visibility by providing enhanced peripheral vision and improved down-road illumination. HID Bulbs use up to 65% less energy than conventional lighting and can last up to 10 times longer, but all of that light creates heat. I recommend never installing HID bulbs in Subaru BRZ fog lights. We had these 35w HIDs installed in the fog lights for 1 week until we noticed some bubbles forming on the lens. Then within another week we also noticed the chrome reflector starting to flake and melt. As soon as we could, we ordered new housings and replaced them with new LED lights instead.

So now what, are you stuck with dim, yellow light in your BRZ fog lights? Not to worry, we’ve found two great options from Top Line Group Automotive that will look great and keep your fog light housings intact.

Their first option is a 950 lumen 80 watt LED bulb from GTR Lighting. These bulbs will give you the crisp, white light of HID, with the long life and simplicity of LED bulb replacement.

led_fog_light_kit_level_1 2

Comparison of stock bulb and GTR Lighting LED Bulb in fog light housing.

 

Their second option is a complete LED Conversion Kit that boasts 2,200 lumens per bulb—that’s up to 2.5 times the output of standard halogen bulbs! Totally plug and play, this kit will give you the crisp, white 6000k look of HID without the higher HID price tag. Although the LED Conversion Kit doesn’t quite match the power level of HID, the LED Kit is a great choice where heat and melting issues arise. The LED bulbs in the Conversion Kit are molded from aluminum to conduct and dissipate heat through the bulb.  Also, an embedded fan in each bulb creates a forced-air cooling system to cool the bulb, prolong the bulb life, and protect your fog light housings.

 

LED bulb in housing.

LED bulb in housing.

Comparison of stock bulb and GTR Lighting  LED Conversion Kit bulb in a fog light housing

Comparison of stock bulb and GTR Lighting LED Conversion Kit bulb in a fog light housing

So if you want to update your Subaru BRZ fog lights, learn from our mistake and looking into these other great options. And if your looking to make any other upgrades to your Subaru BRZ, take a look at all the other BRZ specific options Top Line Group Automotive has to offer.

Custom LED Fog Light Install for the Fiat 500c

We recently came across this custom LED fog light install for the Fiat 500c and thought the results were great. The Fiat owner used the GTR Lighting 9W LED Projector Driving Lights and a GTR Lighting halo switch. Below are the step by steps for the install and the final product.

Re-posted from the fiat500owners.com Forum. Written by macavant

After considering the Fiat option fog lights for auxiliary lighting; I decided to go a different route and go with an LED setup. The other LED setups I have found were either square lamp units or rectangular. I wanted to stay with the “round” – “circle” theme that our lovable 500s currently posses.

Decided on the GTR Lighting LED driving lights. The lights are rated @ 9W, 600 lumens with a 6000K color rating.

The install required the front bumper to be removed. Bumper removal was done by following a guide posted by Tweak. Bumper removal instructions. (Thank you Tweak for posting this)

After removing the bumper (with 8 Pozidriv screws & 9 T30 screws) the blank foglight covers can be removed (attached by 4 tabs each). Once removed – A 2.5″ hole cutter was used to provide an opening for the new light units.

Removed bumper and removed wiring harness aftermath.

Removed bumper and removed wiring harness aftermath.

A mount was created from the rear of the foglight opening from aluminum plates and secured by 4 bolts. The foglight openings of the bumper only had 3 mounting holes, a fourth hole had to be created to provide a more stable mount for the aluminum plate.

Created an aluminum plate as a bracket.

Created an aluminum plate as a bracket.

Aluminum plate as a bracket.

Aluminum plate as a bracket.

The driving light units came with mounting holes @ the rear. I used M8 x 1.25 bolts to mount it to the aluminum plate – the length of the new bolt allowed depth adjustments. The depth is adjusted with the use of fender washers and 2 nuts that sandwich the Al plate.

Depending on the preference, the bolt (along with the light unit) can be moved forward or back.

Driver side.

Driver side.

Passenger side.

12V and ground were tapped from each of the stock DRL bulb holder / wiring harness. The wires needed are Orange (+) and Black (-). This retains the on/off functionality when the turn signals are activated. I did install an auxiliary switch to turn off the LEDs and allow the stock DRLs to stay on.

The LED unit with the lens optic up close.

The LED unit with the lens optic up close.

Completed install - on with DRL in the afternoon sunlight.

Completed install – on with DRL in the afternoon sunlight.

Completed install.

Completed install.

 

 

HID Headlight Solution for 2014 Ford Fusion

Many people have been trying to install an HID conversion kit into the new 2014 Ford Fusion and have been running into a bunch of HID issues. Most of the time what happens is after the install you will test the lights and they work fine, but then when you start the engine to drive the car the headlights no longer work at all. We have tried several different types of ballasts and none of them work except for the brand new GEN 4 CANBUS ballast from GTR Lighting. This new series of ballasts (The Hylux Series) features the newest CANBUS integration technology in the market and works as a plug and play option for the new Ford Fusion. It can be expected that the new GEN 4 CANBUS ballast from GTR Lighting will work for any new Ford vehicle with similar CANBUS issues.

HID Issues are Solved with the Hylux ballast from GTR Lighting

HID Issues are Solved with the Hylux ballast from GTR Lighting

We tried a ballast from Morimoto, the 3rd gen ballast from GTR Lighting, a ballast from DDM tuning and a cheap eBay ballast we had laying around and they all did the same thing, worked with the engine off and as soon as the engine was started they quit working. This happens because the CANBUS system is activated on these cars to start controlling and monitoring the headlights once you start the engine to drive it. The ONLY ballast that was totally plug and play, NO extra parts, NO splicing or cutting – just plug it in and go, was the new GEN 4 ballast from GTR.

GTR Lighting GEN 4 CANBUS Ballasts are called the "Hylux Series" and are plug and play on new Ford vehicles for doing HID Conversion Kits.

GTR Lighting GEN 4 CANBUS Ballasts are called the “Hylux Series” and are plug and play on new Ford vehicles for doing HID Conversion Kits.

Simple solution, buy that ballast and use it with any HID bulbs that fit your Ford for a no-hassle solution! Easy. The Hylux series ballasts come in a 25w, a 35w and a 55w version, you can learn more about these ballasts and purchase them for your HID install here. It is safe to say that ANY of the new Hylux ballasts will work seeing as they all use the same CANBUS module integration. This is great news because for a long time the only good CANBUS ballasts out there were only available in 35w and now you can get a really high quality CANBUS ballast in any power level from GTR Lighting.

How to Upgrade to 2006+ Style 350z Tail Lights

The Nissan 350z starting in 2006 came standard with really cool LED tail lights, so if you were “lucky” enough to get an older model (2003-2005) you’re stuck with the boring reflector/halogen style tail lights. In this writeup I’m going to show you how easy it is to convert your 2003-2005 Nissan 350z to use 2006-2009 style OEM tail lights.

First off I’ll tell you that I am NOT A FAN of using aftermarket tail light housings when something this good and easy to install exists. There are some cheap ~$150 tail lights out there for the early year cars that resemble the OEM LED tails, but they don’t fit as nice as OEM housings, they’re not as bright, and they surely won’t last as long! So, my first suggestion is to get your hands on some stock 2006 and up LED tail lights. Just make sure they have the wire harness coming out of them. I’ll explain more on this later.

1. You can see here a 2005 Nissan 350z with the stock tail lights, these lights are actually being lit up by LED bulbs, but I want to show you how to change the whole housing:

Here are the original 2005 tail lights that use an incandescent light bulb.

Here are the original 2005 tail lights that use an incandescent light bulb.

 

2. The first step is to take the tail lights off the car, and remove the bulbs and wiring from the tail light. To do this remove the three 10mm bolts on each tail light that hold it to the car and carefully pull the tail light off and away, then twist and pull the bulbs out of the housing:

There are 2 wire harnesses going into the housing. Twist and pull each one off and set it aside.

There are 2 wire harnesses going into the housing. Twist and pull each one off and set it aside.

3. Here are the LED bulbs we were using before doing the upgrade. If all you want are LED bulbs for your 350z, then these are a great option! We used the Reflex series 7443 LED bulb in red and the smaller bulb is the 5-LED T10/194 from GTR Lighting in red.

The larger one is the Reflex Series 7443 in red, and the smaller one is the 5-LED 194 in red, both from GTRLighting.com

The larger one is the Reflex Series 7443 in red, and the smaller one is the 5-LED 194 in red, both from GTRLighting.com

These are the best LED bulb replacements you can get to fit the old style housing.

These are the best LED bulb replacements you can get to fit the old style housing.

4.  The wiring to go from the old style (2005) to the new style (2006+) is plug and play. However, you will not need the smaller 2-wire connector that was holding the 194 bulb in place. Tape that up into the harness so it doesn’t short out or get wet:

Remove the 194 bulb from the smaller connector, and use electrical tape to hide it and keep it safe. It's not required on the new headlights.

Remove the 194 bulb from the smaller connector, and use electrical tape to hide it and keep it safe. It’s not required on the new headlights.

5. Next, don’t just remove the 7443 bulb, but remove the adapter plug that connects it to the wire harness. This is the one that will plug into the new 2006+ LED tail lights. This is what through me for a loop at first. I thought we were supposed to use the connector lower on the car and make that work somehow but that is definitely not what you want to do. This 3-wire connector uses an adapter: With the adapter it can use a 7443 bulb and fit the older style tail lights. Without the adapter it plugs directly into the new style LED tail light housings:

Here you can see the wire harness on the back side of the new tail light matches up perfectly to the disconnected 2005 wire harness. Make sure if you are getting a set of new style tail lights for your car that it comes with this little harness!

Here you can see the wire harness on the back side of the new tail light matches up perfectly to the disconnected 2005 wire harness. Make sure if you are getting a set of new style tail lights for your car that it comes with this little harness!

The bulb adapter comes off easily by pressing the plastic clip in the middle.

The bulb adapter comes off easily by pressing the plastic clip in the middle.

Here you can see that the 7443 bulb adapter and the LED tail lights use the same connection.

Here you can see that the 7443 bulb adapter and the LED tail lights use the same connection.

If you are trying to source a set of 2006+ LED tail lights for your Z car, make sure it has that round plastic cap on the back side of the housing, along with the 3 wire harness/connector that comes out of it. Without these parts built into the housing it is not a plug and play install!

6. Plug the one remaining harness in and mount it to the car just like the old tail lights! There’s really nothing else to it: The new style LED tail lights will fit perfectly and just the same as the old style housings with no modifications required.

Plug and Play Wiring

Plug and Play Wiring

Here you can see the OEM 2006+ LED tail lights on the left (driver's side) and the original older style 2005 tail lights on the right (passenger side).

Here you can see the OEM 2006+ LED tail lights on the left (driver’s side) and the original older style 2005 tail lights on the right (passenger side).

The new tail lights are beautiful, bright and very high quality!

The new tail lights are beautiful, bright and very high quality!

 

If you want to do other LED bulb upgrades to your car like LED rear blinkers, LED reverse lights, LED License Plate Lights or interior lighting on your 350z, check out Black Top Racing for all kinds of vehicle specific LED packages for your Z!

We only recommend GTR Lighting for high power LED bulb replacements because we only recommend the best!

We only recommend GTR Lighting for high power LED bulb replacements because we only recommend the best!

2013+ Dodge Ram HID Kit Install Guide

We just revamped our 2013+ Dodge Ram HID Kit Install Guide for download here. This revised installation guide tells you how to remove the headlights from your 2013 and 2014 Ram trucks, how to remove the dust cover, how to install the bulbs, test and do the wiring. There’s even a section in the install guide for troubleshooting at the end!

You can download the new revised install guide here:

http://www.12vlightingsales.com/Documents/2013%20+%20Ram%20HID%20Install%20Guide.pdf

Here's Step 1 of the install guide, to see more simply download the install guide!

Here’s Step 1 of the install guide, to see more simply download the install guide!

This install guide is very intensive, talks about which kits work and which ones do not. Also we explain in detail some things to watch out for when doing the install, and tips and tricks that will help to make this install much easier. If you want to do an HID conversion kit on your 2013 or 2014 Dodge Ram, you MUST read our install guide.

We show you how to test and wire the entire system and give you troubleshooting tips too!

We show you how to test and wire the entire system and give you troubleshooting tips too!

Even if you’re just curious about how to do the install the instructions we put together will give you a complete idea of what’s involved before even buying the kit.

The Install guide is listed here.

The HID Conversion Kits are listed here.

The Difference Between H16 and 5202 Bulbs

If you go to the PIAA.com website store and look at their H16 replacement halogen light bulbs for cars and trucks you will see this picture. PIAA, an automotive lighting superpower in the aftermarket world, is one of the few replacement light bulb companies out there who has gotten this right!

According to PIAA.com H16 is not the same as 5202!

According to PIAA.com H16 is not the same as 5202!

The H16 automotive light bulb is part of the H9/H11 bulb family and it is very similar to H8, H9, H11 and H15. It is characterized by having a traditional right-angled style connector input base, a large rubber o-ring below the metal tabs and 3 metal tabs spaced evenly apart around the base to lock it in place. The biggest difference between H8, H9, H11 and H16 are both the wattage levels that they run at and whether or not they have a painted on reflector cap at the top of the glass tube. H16 is most commonly used in fog lights, whereas the H11 is most commonly used in headlights. Therefore, you’ll see H11 bulbs that look almost identical to H16 bulbs but have higher wattages than H16 and they will also have a slightly different pin configuration, but with some manipulation you could swap an H16 and H11 around if you really wanted to.

So where did the confusion for H16 and 5202 bulbs come from? Well, first of all until very recently there were hardly any vehicles out there that used an H16 bulb in America. Then, I’m guessing some uninformed light bulb manufacturer in Asia somewhere one day decided that they didn’t know what a real H16 bulb was and there was some confusion. One thing led to another and they started classifying 5202 light bulbs as H16, 5202, 9009, etc… This is wrong!! You will never see a Sylvania or Philips or other OEM bulb labeled as H16 that looks like a 5202. Here are some popular LED versions of these different bulbs:

5202 LED Bulbs from GTR Lighting:

 

H11 / H16 LED Bulbs from GTR Lighting:

I hope you learned something new about different types of replacement automotive bulbs from this article and really the goal here is to educate people on different lighting products so you can make the right decision next time you spend your hard earned money. From an enthusiast standpoint, the last thing you need is to order a part for your vehicle, it shows up and it’s the wrong thing…. ugh.

So if you have a 2014 Toyota Tundra and you’re trying to find some cool LED fog lights for your stock H16 fog light bulbs, try one of these!

New LED Headlight Technology Explained

If you’re like most enthusiasts, you want to know what’s new and exciting coming to the marketplace and new headlight and fog light technology is no exception! I want to show you some information about a wild new product that I believe (within 4 years time or less) will revolutionize the automotive forward-lighting industry! Most car people have already heard of, and many have tried, the HID conversion kit available from many different places. Today they are commonplace at car shows and city streets. Until now an HID conversion kit has been pretty much the only product available for noticeably brighter headlights and fog lights, but just announced at SEMA in November of 2013 was the newest product in headlight upgrades. Introducing the LED headlight conversion kit!

LED Headlight Conversion Kits are Just Getting Started!

LED Headlight Conversion Kits are Just Getting Started!

Right now when this post is being made I have seen different types of LED headlight conversion kits that range anywhere from 4,000K – 7,000K and anywhere from 1,200 Lumen per bulb all the way up to 4,000 Lumen per bulb! This is a pretty stark array of options and one of the things to remember is that this product is quite new.  Right now most manufacturers only have one color available, but I think this year you’re going to see different places offering 5,000K 6,000K and possibly 8,000K as color options, but unlike HID kits there wills till probably only be one power level available for each style of LED headlight kit.

There are currently 2 styles of LED headlight conversion kits available: With Reflector and without Reflector. This (in my opinion) is the most important part of the whole product. Let me show you why:

The first style (the original type of LED headlight conversion kit) uses a giant LED chip on a flat surface and creates light in a chaotic and uncontrolled manner:

This LED headlight style with no reflector is an old model.

This LED headlight style with no reflector is an old model.

The new style of LED headlight conversion kits (released November 2013) are made by GTR Lighting and use a reflector around the large LED chip. What this does is focus the beam pattern and make it operate more like the original headlight bulb.

The new style of LED headlight has a hidden fan and a reflector around the LED chips.

The new style of LED headlight has a hidden fan and a reflector around the LED chips.

There are 3 main differences between the old style and the new style:
#1: The LED chips have an integrated rocker type reflector around each LED to help focus the light inside the housing, thus creating a more usable light. Just because an LED headlight kit is technically brighter than another due to having a higher Lumen rating, doesn’t mean it will work well. The trick is focusing the light – what use is a lot of light if it’s everywhere except where you need it?

#2: Hidden/Protected low profile fan – On the old style of LED headlight the fan was exposed and unsightly. On the new style from GTR Lighting you can’t see the fan, it’s hidden inside the heat sink and protected by a shroud. This makes them more reliable.

#3: The older style of LED headlights didn’t have a waterproof connection, and the new style does. Make sure whatever style you’re purchasing comes with a single waterproof connection! These things get mounted in places that likely will get wet!

You NEED to be using LED headlights with the reflector. Here's why:

You NEED to be using LED headlights with the reflector. Here’s why: