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    Thread: HID Parts - Ballast, Bulbs & Wiring

    1. #1
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      HID Parts - Ballast, Bulbs & Wiring

      To understand how a HID system works, got some HID kit parts for personal use.

      The main unit is the Ballast which converts 12v Car battery volt to 23Kv for firing the HID bulbs. There are 2 kinds DC (Direct Current output) & AC (Alternative Current ouptut). AC is rated better due to better light stability & bulb life.

      Below are sample Ballasts. The wireless black colour one is DC type which is the cheapest - it can come with wires too. The golden one with the wires is AC type.

      Click image for larger version. 

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      Most of the ballasts sold are 35w. The ballasts I bought are rated 55w but looks identical to the 35w ones in dimension. Their printed current ratings are higher.

      55w DC Ballast
      Working Volt = 13.5v
      Max Input Current = 10A
      Working Current = 4.2A

      55w AC Ballast
      Working Volt = 13.2v
      Max Input Current = 8A
      Working Current = 4.4A

      Only if one does an ampere load test can one verify the truth in the claims. Otherwise these could turn out to be re-badged 35W ballasts.

      Click image for larger version. 

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      Last edited by eapen; 22nd Nov 2013 at 11:34.
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      For the bulb part opted for H4 Bi-xenon type which replaces the H4 halogens & can be used in stock headlamp assembly. It has a shield on top which reduces the glare of upper side towards oncoming motorists.

      Colour temperature is 4300K. Below are the bulbs with a black plastic base. Don't know how durable these are at containing the heat. I believe the bulbs for 35w & 55w HID ballasts are the same. Higher rated bulbs for 75w & 100w HIDs have white ceramic base.

      Click image for larger version. 

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      Last edited by eapen; 22nd Nov 2013 at 12:10.
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      For the bixenon system to work a separate H4 wiring harness is required which taps into the stock wiring. Unlike halogens HIDs cannot be switched ON/OFF instantly eg: Hi\Lo continuous dipping & flashing of Hi . Hence Hi\Lo Beam switching is enabled by moving the inside bulb up & down by an extra control incorporated into the wiring.

      Click image for larger version. 

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      Look at the Philips bulb. It has the small black sliver of a shield attached to the bulb about 1 mm from the glass. It is this sliver that majorly prevents glare. The thick metal shield does prevent glare but not as much as the shield. I have experimented with the Philips bulb in various permutations and combinations and am sure about what I have written.

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      I got my 55W H11 3000K HIDs from XenonPro;. The ballasts are AC from a major Chinese Manufacturer.
      Last edited by sgiitk; 5th Dec 2013 at 13:25.
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      drpullockaran, I had a used Philips HID H4 Bixenon 6000k aftermarket kit with me - purchased for more than 15k from Philips India years ago which was removed from my cousin's Honda City. I passed it on to my b-i-l since Philips uses KET connectors, whereas most HID ballasts from China\Taiwan uses AMP connectors.

      Tapped into the OE wiring headlight wiring harness by sleeving & adding anotherfemale socket for H4 High \ Low control. The OE wiring socket goes into the behind the headlight. Didn't wan't the HID relay connection inside the headlight assembly.
      Click image for larger version. 

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      The HID ballasts are mounted behind the headlight domes.
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      Last edited by eapen; 3rd Dec 2013 at 14:33.
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      I hooked up both DC & AC Ballast to compare the performance difference between them.

      In the picture below on the driver's side (left of picture) it is DC Ballast & on the passenger side (right of picture) it is AC Ballast. The AC ballast is much brighter. Also which is not evident in the picture is the AC ballast gives truer 4300k yellower tint to the light whereas the same bulb gives a whiter 5000k tint with a DC ballast !

      Click image for larger version. 

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      Last edited by eapen; 3rd Dec 2013 at 14:48.
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      HID start-up video showing the difference between DC & AC Ballast w.r.t to the previous picture. The AC ballast comes 'ON' quicker & is much brighter. First in the video the normal 'parking' bulbs come on & then the HIDs.

      Last edited by eapen; 3rd Dec 2013 at 15:02.
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      I am having good low-beam but the high-beam throw has too much cut-off impairing long vision. Adding to it the driver's side headlight leveling motor is stuck at the lowest position.

      Contrary to what I thought the High beam glare shield of the H4 Bixenon bulb sits upside down proving than it is the light hitting the lower part of the reflector which blinds oncoming motorists.

      Click image for larger version. 

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      To improve the high beam, I'll have to get the headlight leveling motor rectified if possible for driver side or change the headlight. Then remove the glare shield 'end cup' of the HID bulb & try. The headlight already has a cup which prevents straight glare.

      drpullockaran , I believe you faced the same issue with H4 HID Bi-xenons.
      Last edited by eapen; 3rd Dec 2013 at 15:34.
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