"To HID or Not to HID"

I've heard so many stories about HID lights i cant seem to make up my mind because i don't know if their going to be a good investment or a nightmare.

1. If i do decide to buy some which ones are the best?
2. Why do people get warning lights come up on the dashboard?
3. Are they easy to install yourself?
4. Regardless of the brand you purchase are they just so temperamental it's not even worth it?
5. Do the bulbs blow quite frequently or do they last just as long as halogen bulbs?
6. If i don't like them are they easy to remove?
7. How longs a piece of string?

Car: Audi A4 1.8T (B6)
 

simon.m

Registered User
id say its a must have mate i cant say what ones you should or should not buy but if you have full DIS then you need some that state they do not make error codes there are loads of us on here who have them with no probs at all and im thinking a few well pop on here soon with what ones they have and are good. if you dont like them very easy to undo it all mate
 

jbcalvin

Registered User
Everyone has their own opinions on HID's and no doubt this thread will turn into the usual for and against arguments on legality etc.....

I fitted a set earlier this year, slimline ballasts (can-bus specific so no error codes) from e-bay, plus 2 complete new OEM headlight units.

I then followed Woorlord's fitting guide so they are completely OEM with the ballasts fitted in the recess under the unit, and all the cabling inside.

After fitting I then had them set up at a MOT centre.

WHAT a difference, why Audi didn't fit all B6's with Xenons is a mystery because the difference is night and day, yes I am aware that they will fail an MOT test in theory next year, but worse case scenario, I just put standard H7 bulbs in for the test....

I parked my car next to a friends new M3 and there was no difference in light output/beam pattern in the 2 cars....

That's my two-penneth worth...
 

jd26

Registered User
Im selling my kit if its any use as im considering selling up and lazy so not got round to fitting
 

quattrojames

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
1. If i do decide to buy some which ones are the best?
"Best" is always a subjective argument, I bought a cheap set from the Far East over 3 years ago and they've never given me any problems, maybe I was lucky. There are lots of UK based suppliers (although the kits probably come from the same place...) and going on the principle of you get what you pay for it's probably worth looking there first.

2. Why do people get warning lights come up on the dashboard?
They're either a bulb out warning as the HID isn't Canbus compatible with built in resisitors, or the electrical energy of the ballast mounted too near other sensors can cause ABS warnings etc.

3. Are they easy to install yourself?
Depending on your ability then yes, headlights out and then you need a hole saw to cut a hole in the cover on the back. Beyond that it's just wiring, and mounting the ballasts. I've just zip tied mine to the aircon pipes up near the bulkhead (and I do wonder if thats been some of the aecret of my success), or you can follow Woorlords guide and do a near oem style install with them under the lights.

4. Regardless of the brand you purchase are they just so temperamental it's not even worth it?
I'd say yes, doubtless some would say no. CMD......!

5. Do the bulbs blow quite frequently or do they last just as long as halogen bulbs?
They're gas bulbs not filament ones, so there's nothing to 'blow'. I'm sure they have a lifespan but in general they're much longer lasting.

6. If i don't like them are they easy to remove?
Removal is the reverse of installation! You might need two new headlight caps though.

7. How longs a piece of string?
Twice the length of it's half.
 

simon.m

Registered User
tells you it you have lights out mate ie front life light out and things like how many mpg you are getting not sure what othere bits its says as i dont have it
 
Everyone has their own opinions on HID's and no doubt this thread will turn into the usual for and against arguments on legality etc.....
Sorry mate im not trying to start any HID wars on this forum i just genuinely haven't got a clue whether to buy some or not.

I fitted a set earlier this year, slimline ballasts (can-bus specific so no error codes).
Ok so these are the ones to get if i dont want any warning lights showing up on my dashboard?

yes I am aware that they will fail an MOT test in theory next year, but worse case scenario, I just put standard H7 bulbs in for the test....
Sounds like a good idea to me.

I parked my car next to a friends new M3 and there was no difference in light output/beam pattern in the 2 cars....
Wow.

That's my two-penneth worth...
Thanks mate two pennys are better than no pennys.
 

jbcalvin

Registered User
Cheers BlackRhino...

Don't worry about starting a HID war, it always ends up as one anyway rofl....

the ones I went for on e-bay were slimline so I could do an OEM mount, unlike quattrojames, ultimately it depends on how much time/effort you want to put into it, my headlights were quite badly chipped, hence the new units and I could take my time with the install to make it good..

All B6 A4's have a can-bus wiring system so unless you want warning lights on the dash, get can-bus specific ones, I think mine came with a 3 year guarantee as well...
 
2. Why do people get warning lights come up on the dashboard?
They're either a bulb out warning as the HID isn't Canbus compatible with built in resisitors, or the electrical energy of the ballast mounted too near other sensors can cause ABS warnings etc.
OK so "Canbus compatible with built in resistors" is the only way to go?

3. Are they easy to install yourself?
Depending on your ability then yes, headlights out and then you need a hole saw to cut a hole in the cover on the back. Beyond that it's just wiring, and mounting the ballasts. I've just zip tied mine to the aircon pipes up near the bulkhead (and I do wonder if thats been some of the aecret of my success), or you can follow Woorlords guide and do a near oem style install with them under the lights.
Have you got a link to Woorlords post?

5. Do the bulbs blow quite frequently or do they last just as long as halogen bulbs?They're gas bulbs not filament ones, so there's nothing to 'blow'. I'm sure they have a lifespan but in general they're much longer lasting.
That's good to know because for some mysterious reason i thought they had a shorter lifespan.

7. How longs a piece of string?
Twice the length of it's half.
Quality mate!:lmfao:
 
Im selling my kit if its any use as im considering selling up and lazy so not got round to fitting
Judging by what quattroJames and jbcalvin have just told me i want "slimline ballasts" (can-bus specific) 8000K. What ones have you got for sale?
 

quattrojames

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Woorlords thread is in the DIY guides sticky, there's loads of info in there check it out!

http://www.audi-sport.net/vb/a4-a4-...imline-hid-ballasts-now-fitted-headlight.html

And don't forget uprated main beam bulbs and LED sidelights....

I imagine that slimline ballasts are pretty much standard these days, however you intend to mount them it's worth making sure:

Ballasts002.jpg
 
Woorlords thread is in the DIY guides sticky, there's loads of info in there check it out!
"WOW" that thread is a monster. Thanks for the link!

And don't forget uprated main beam bulbs and LED sidelights....
James your going to give me a nervous break down in a minute (Lol). Do i have to buy a HID kit for those lights to or is it just new bulbs i need?
 

quattrojames

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
HID kit will do the Dipped lights.

Most people want a nice white LED bulb for the sidelights to match, I use the 15 LED one's listed here, and they've worked well to good effect:

Welcome to Ultraleds.co.uk

The main beams are H7 fitment, and it's nice to have a brighter whiter bulb to match the HID's, there's lots of choices, something like Nightbreakers are quite good:

H7 [499] 55w OSRAM +90% NIGHT BREAKER PLUS Headlights | eBay UK

It makes sense to swap all the bulbs at the same time while the lights are out so that when you take it to an MOT station to get the lights realigned you only need to do it once.
 

jbcalvin

Registered User
Not everyone does slimline ballasts, got a set from HIDSDirect and had to return them as they wouldn't fit the recesses, just do a search on e-bay and you should find the company with the 3 year warranty...

Agree with quattrojames on changing the other bulbs at the same time, I also have the 15 led sidelights, and nightbreaker plus in both the mainbeam and foglights...
 

paul20v

Audi fanatic
One more thing dont go any higher than 6k for useable light output
ideally 4.3- 5k thou
Paul
 
I was going to get 8000K but don't you recommend them? If so why?

Too blue in colour and as Paul says useable light output, my two pnneth worth would be go for 4300k as they are as close to the 4500k of the oem ones you will get from aftermarket ones.
 

paul20v

Audi fanatic
Light output is too blue and you get a lot less useable light on the road and what we want is useable light :)

KelvinChart.jpg
 
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paul20v

Audi fanatic
Too blue in colour and as Paul says useable light output, my two pnneth worth would be go for 4300k as they are as close to the 4500k of the oem ones you will get from aftermarket ones.
I went from 6k to 4.5k and even that was an improvement .
 
Too blue in colour and as Paul says useable light output, my two pnneth worth would be go for 4300k as they are as close to the 4500k of the oem ones you will get from aftermarket ones.
Oh so OEM Xenon's are 4500K? What are my lights at the moment?
 

simon.m

Registered User
dont think you can tell what the standerd ones as they are **** lol i have 6k and like them alot have a slite tint of blue very slite though
 

jbcalvin

Registered User
4300k in mine, OEM spec, again helps with MOT tests (don't look blue) and best amount of light.....
 
4300k in mine, OEM spec, again helps with MOT tests (don't look blue) and best amount of light.....

This thread has completely changed my mind im longer getting 8000k. I'm not sure what K im getting but i know it will be allot lower from what i wanted originally.
 
dont think you can tell what the standerd ones as they are **** lol i have 6k and like them alot have a slite tint of blue very slite though

Yeah Simon i agree that's why i want to change them. Have you got any pics of yours on?
 

quattrojames

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
I've got 6000k in mine, they get bluer over time too. I'll shortly be upgrading to 4300k or 5000k depending whats available at the time.

6000K is the absolute maximum you should get in my opinion.
 

S3 GAZ

Registered User
fitted some 6000k HID last month to my 2004 1.9 Tdi Quattro. My car has full colour DIS. Initially i had the usual ballache of the "BRAKE" ABS & ESP warnings on the dashboard. I have since mounted the ballasts at the rear of the engine bay. Drivers side is up next to the airbox/wing and passengers is attached to the Brake lines going into the abs unit. Since moving them there i have had not 1 single error noted either on the DIS or on VCDS.

Result. Oh and there is a hint of blue from them. This was putting me off at my mot so i just popped the H7 halogens back in for the mot took 10mins to do so.

Im gonna keep my eye out for some 4300k bulbs.
 

j033y

Registered User
I was in the same predicatment a few months back regarding whether to get HIDs or not.

Anyway i ordered them from a reputable site, slimline full non error version etc etc.

Fitted them in the OEM position.

Had the worst two weeks of my life with them. Firstly wrong bulbs sent, so this effected light output, but that was not what bothered me the most.

Constant errors from dash (not bulb out errors, ABS errors, Brake errors etc)

The last resort for me was when i turned them on while driving home on the motorway, my speedo died, dash lit up like a christmas tree and my car lost all power.

They ended up in the bin. never again for me.

Just my 2 pence worth!
 
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