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Old 09-21-2001, 01:12 AM
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Quick Cibie question.......

I found the Cibie 7" H4 lights on sale at a volvo parts supplier that I use for my 850 for $50 and I think I want to get them because everyone here seems to agree that they're superior to my sealed beam Sylvanias. My question is, what are "city lights?" Everywhere that sells these lights has the "city lights" option and I just wanted to know what they were and if I needed them or could use them. Thanks

Alex
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Old 09-21-2001, 03:02 PM
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Lightbulb City lights

City lights are small (i think 10 watt) bulbs that mount inside of the housing near the H-4's, and go on when you put on the parking lights and head lights. On original european cars, these were the "running lights" ....on EU cars, the corner ambers are used only for directionals, and do not go on when you put the parking/running lights on. On an EU car, the blinkers are always in the on-off mode when blinking, same during day and night (with headlights on)

On a US car, the corner ambers are used as running lights. when the directionals are used, the blinkers operate in the "bright-dim" mode, as compared to the EU "on-off" mode.

I put european headlights on my 85 300 D, used the original US directionals, and wired the city lights to go on with the corner "running lights"

I hope your head lights have socket connectors as the OE connectors may not fit the new lamps. This is because the US connectors do not have a slot for the wire to the city lights.

Generally, EU headlights also come with EU corner directionals, and installation requires that you move the "running light" wire from the corner lamps to the head lamp city lights (in such case corner lamps will only operate as on-off blinkers, and not as running lights) If you want corners to operate in US mode (running lights and bright-dim blinkers), keep your original corner lamps, and run an extra wire from the running light terminal in the corner lamp to the city light terminal in the headlamp. Then when you turn on your running lights, both the corner amber and the white city light will be illuminated.

The other function of the city light is in case a headlight goes out, an oncoming driver will still see a dimly lit lamp from the city light...remember, on a EU car, amber lamps are not used for running lights, so this city light feature is a real safety feature on an EU car. Otherwise, with one headlight out, an oncoming driver would see only one lit headlight, and would not know which side of this light the car is at.
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Old 09-21-2001, 03:16 PM
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Lightbulb EU head lights

A couple more comments about your EU H-4 replacements.

The light pattern is very different from your sylvanias. The low beams show a discinct horizontal cutoff straight ahead and to the left so light is kept on the road and not in the eyes of on-coming drivers. Toward the right side, e.g. toward the shoulder of the road on the right, the cutoff extends up so as to better illuminate the curb/sidewalk to the right ...this is a safety feature which improves your ability to see a pedestrian or bicycle rider. High beams are generally straight ahead.

Do not use high wattage H-4's unless you modify your setup...you will need to run larger guage wires to high and low beams directly from the battery, and run through a standard relay which is engaged by your original high and low beam wires.

Finally, DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT buy those blue tint bulbs that are advertized as "brighter white". NO NO NO!!! Blue is not white...these blue lights are dimmer than OE lamps, and worse, blue light causes glare and induces squint response in human eyes!

Stick with the orginal (cheap) 55-80W bulbs unless you want to re-wire the lamps (fairly easy) through relays with higher guage wire. The higher wattage bulbs are illegal in the US, but I see plenty of new Mercedes with their OE super bright Xenon lamps.
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Old 09-21-2001, 04:38 PM
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Thanks so much for the info! I will order the Cibie's without the city light then. The concept sounds kind of neat but I'm just too lazy to deal with the minor modifications.

Alex
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