How to Install HID Yipieeeeee
Hello all, I wrote this paper to try and
contribute back to the vette community. You folks have helped me many
times and I wish to return the favor.
Ok a little education; fear
not there will be a recess. HID stands for High Intensity Discharge. It
works similar to those florescent tubes at your work. There is no filament
like a regular light bulb, just a gas that burns evenly. The advantage of
not having a filament is a longer life span (700hrs vs. 7000hrs) and it is
very resistant to vibration.
system is quite simple.
The headlight: self-explanatory.
The Igniter: This unit has 2 sets of wires on it. The input set
from the ballast (brown and orange) and the output set to the headlight
(blue, black and a special black). The special black wire is actually very
similar to the ignition wires on your distributor (but smaller). The
reason is because the igniter sends (briefly) a 25,000-volt charge to the
headlamp upon initial startup. After startup the headlamp consumes only
about 3.5 volts. The special black wire cannot be cut/changed in any way.
�Why do I care about changing the special black wire chad?�
let me tell you, the wire length from the headlamp to the igniter is about
7 inches (some units are 14� but not many) and once you account for popup
headlight movement your mounting options are very limited.
wires can be cut and extended/shortened as needed.
simply put this converts the electicity into a different format. I could
go into more technical detail but that would bore you worse than the Anna
harness: just a simple 30 or 40 amp 12volt relay, and 30-amp
Ill go into brand name recommendations and what groceries
list you will need at the end of the paper.
Step one LOCATION,
LOCATION, and LOCATION
You must decide where to mount the parts.
The headlights� well that should be obvious. If it is not I suggest you
stop reading and stay away from sharp objects.
The ballast can be
easy to mount if you are not afraid of extending/shortening wires. Your
options are wide open. Don�t be afraid to think outside the box, you could
mount them underneath the drivers seat if you wanted. I chose the
passenger side near the upper A-arm. I do not have the factory radiator
overflow tank installed, so I have some choices.
The tough one is where to mount the igniter. 7� inches is not a
lot to work with (just ask my girlfriend LOL!) I chose the only place
available to me.
the low beam headlight there is a small piece of real estate. I chose a
metal mounting location for stability.
Where to get power? With any
HID setup I suggest getting a direct feed from the battery, or tie off
from the positive post of the altinator. I chose the latter.
runs. Id advise to think ahead and �map� out where you plan to run your
wires. My set up was fairly complicated, and I decided my wires should
follow the factory path as much as possible.
There are 2 relays in
this setup. I hid mine in a secret place by the ballasts (I did this cuz
A/C will eventually go into my car and I will have to move a few things).
You have flexibility on where you can put them, but bear in mind heat,
water, dust and access to replace if necessary. The more you think ahead
and map out the easier the installation will go.
Installation of the headlights/ igniters. First remove the lower grill for
The turn signal bulb should �twist lock� and come out of
remove the headlight bezel. Remove the 4 screws (2 small and 2 medium)
then massage the bezel out. I usually turn it downwards and slowly coax it
out. Don�t get frustrated you can do it. Just remember how you do it so
you can get it back in later.
rest of this install is what I did for my car. Your install may be
different. Season to taste.
Step 3 Igniter install
some hard core industrial Velcro I cut and glued to the bottom of the
igniter. I used a Rubber lined clamp loom as a bracket. Both of these
items can be found at your local Home-de-Pot. I used the Velcro mainly to
hold the igniter in place while I screwed in the nylon lock
Step 4 nose wiring
For my car I had to extend the
Orange and Tan input wires from the ballast to the igniter. I extended
them by about 6 to 7 feet each. I also tapped in my yellow relay �trigger�
wire into the �low-beam� circuit.
I then routed the 3 sets of wires (left headlight, right headlight and one
yellow trigger wire) up the driver side of the car. Following the factory
Vacuum lines that power the pop up headlights. It comes in between the
wheel well and radiator support (be mindful of the heat). I followed the
vacuum lines into the engine compartment.
Step 5 Engine
For my application I already had a wire loom
(the black plastic shielding you see) running across the front of my
engine for my electric fans. The wire routing I chose for the HID was the
you wish to keep a �clean� look I suggest routing the wires in this
Find a suitable clean location for your ground. (Mine
was off of the radiator support)
Step 6 Install Power
Disconnect the battery (bye-bye radio presets). Connect
the power feed to the alternator (or battery if you decided to make a
fresh run) with fuses. Run the wires as you see fit to your Relay/Ballast
Step 7 Ballast /Relay installation
an example of the wiring diagram for the HID system. The Relay codes
should be correct and the wire colors may be accurate. Please look closely
at your equipment for veferication of color codes (if your color blind,
then pay someone to do the job)
up to you, but the last man who was perfect ended up being nailed to a
cross. With that in mind before installing the relays and ballasts, just
connect the wires and let the relays/ballasts drape across the fender.
Vefery that you made the right connections and proper grounds. Then power
up your lights to see if there are any problems. This stage it�s easier to
troubleshoot problems than when the gear is stuffed into the
OK if every thing works and there is no fire, clean up your wiring
and install the ballasts/ relays.
you have installed the Relays and Ballasts vefery your work again. Check
for clearances and no wire rubbing.
Keep in mind that the equipment
that is in the nose of the car is subject to a harsh environment. Heat,
rain, extreme wind, vibration ect.ect. If you plan ahead this setup will
last a long time
you can see the factory High Beams Pale in comparison to the �LOW� beam
Now I�m ready for a night cruse.
Ok for the parts you need.
I bought a supposed
complete kit from HID4LESS.COM. Worst mistake in my life. Awful company,
awful customer service.
I could have bought the stuff A-LA- Cart and
saved $150 bucks. My mistake your gain.
Here is what you
New glass headlamps that will fit an H4 style of bulb.
[url=http://www.cibie.net/]http://www.cibie.net/[/url] sells the glass
headlamps that will drop right in.
MODEL# 5.75-HCR 5 3/4\” E-Code
Halogen Low/High Beam – Cibie H4 – $55.00
Warning, I have spoken to
the owner (seem like a really nice guy) but I have not done business with
him. I cannot vouch (good or bad) his business practices. My gut feeling
says good but don�t hold me to it.
Second Warning: I have tried 3
aftermarket headlamps and NONE of them will work. The ONLY one I have
found (through extensive and expensive research) is made by a European
company called Cibie.
A HID System
There are several
after market companies that sell an H4 drop in HID system. They�re around
200 bucks or so. The 2 major makers are Phillips and Sylvania. I have no
facts on quality of either but I�ve heard some good things about the
Phillips. Either system should work. When you research into this you may
find some units that have the Ballasts and Igniters combined as one. There
is nothing wrong with that but keep in mind that may make the unit bigger
and MABIE sportier to install (remember the 7� limit
Relays 12volt 30/40 amp
I like Hella Products, but
Botch (sp?) makes a good product also. I suggest you spend good money and
get quality products. The �light bulb� of a HID is $100 by itself; don�t
blow it by putting a cheap 75-cent relay on it. I suggest looking for a
�weather� proof model that comes with a wiring harness. I think they are
about $20 apiece.
Simple to get. Again get the good
stuff. There are weatherproof units out there also.
Wire you can get at most electronics stores. I
suggest after you determine witch wires (if any) you will extend, make the
effort and color match and proper gauge the wire. It will save you hours
of troubleshooting in the future.
estmated cost=around $400
This installation is not hard, but it is a small ballenceing act.
If dealing with a fist full of wires makes you nervous, dont fear. I
allways suggest you take your time and write down the color codes several
good luck Jedi