Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help




Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes ShopForum > Technical Information and Support > Tech Help

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-15-2002, 02:25 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 788
High wattage relay headlights

We've all heard about the constant back and forth with these H4 headlight bulbs. Stock, not stock, Xenon look, SuperWhite and so on. I am thinking about putting a high wattage relay kit on mine from Berg Werks. This will give me TRUE high wattage bulbs. Anywhere from 110/85 to 160/130. Won't these undoubtedly be better than any stock wattage aftermarket bulb can give me?
__________________
'86 420SE Euro
904 Midnight Blue, Gray Velour
Dad bought it new, now I own it.

"A Mercedes-Benz is like a fine wine, it only gets better with age."
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-15-2002, 03:12 AM
JCE's Avatar
JCE JCE is offline
Down to the Wear Bars
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: So Kalifornia
Posts: 2,189
Not necessarily. Wattage is only one of many lighting factors. Any wattage bulb is only as good as the reflector and lens of the headlight unit. A crummy reflector and lens are going to waste much of the light as scatter (and attract Police attentionand road rage as well). Adding just the large wire relay kit will give you an improvement with even just your stock wattage bulbs (less resistance in the new larger wires than in the factory wires means more current to the bulbs, and more light output). Changing to a redesigned +50 Philips bulb will focus the improved light even better than a regular bulb, again without drawing any extra amperage. Using Euro light fixtures focuses everything very precisely for max lighting, without drawing more power. (Mid - late 90s US MB lights are basically late 80s Euro lights with minor mods).

Power draw is the key here. When adding higher wattage bulbs, especially if you have some high watt items (like an amp/sub, use the rear defroster/power seat adjusters a lot, etc.) then you have to make sure the alternator is up to the current draw demands. A pair of 110 watt bulbs is going to draw an extra 9 amps out of your 60+ amp alternator. The 160 watt hi beam pair are going to suck about 18 amps!!! That doesn't leave much to charge the battery, run the ignition system, 400 watt stereo amp, AC, and rear window defroster. MB didn't install an alternator with super stereo amps and aircraft landing lights in mind. With a stock alternator, and a heavy guage wire/relay kit, I wouldn't go over 85 watt hi beams, and would keep the low beams at 55. Otherwise think about an 85 amp alternator and deep cycle battery.

The above assumes you are just trying to get the maximum useful light on the road without getting tickets, blinding oncoming drivers, or damaging your battery/electrical system.
__________________
John

2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

Click to see 87 300E
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-15-2002, 03:45 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,469
Wattage and lights

I have a W123. I upgraded to Euro lights. I have no problems with wiring with 100/80 bulbs. 80watts is plenty, but like it was said in the previous post, the reflectors make a big difference. Mine are in pretty good shape, and the glass is clean. Be careful when cleaning reflectors because you can wear away the aluminum vaporization coating.

I didnt put relays in my car because I havent had any problems with melting wires yet. lol.

PIAA bulbs say they put out higher wattage with lower current, but that doesnt make sense with physics. They wrap the coil less times, so it appears brighter, but I dont think it is. I have regular OSRAM blubs, and I like them.

Good luck on your lights. Try consulting this web page

http://lighting.mbz.org/

See you later,

Austin
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-15-2002, 09:06 AM
Matt Crooke
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Shame, its totally illegal to do this in the UK, shame though, as it would come in Handy on some of these country lanes we have!
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-15-2002, 12:02 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 788
Thanks for all the info. The Berg Werks kit says is draws the power straight from the battery, would that make any difference? Also, if I go with stock wattage, what would be a good upgrade bulb without getting caught in all this blue/white gimmick crap that ends up worse. I have heard many times, incl. on that lighting link, that some of those bulbs light worse than these PIAA or Hella. Should I just go with a bone stock bulb, or is there an actual decent upgrade that will light better?

By the way, I do have euros. One more thing....one of my lenses broke in shipping (new one on the way) and the reflector got dusty. I hear they are really sensitive (and as omegabenz said about the coating), so what would be the best way to clean them w/o damaging them?
__________________
'86 420SE Euro
904 Midnight Blue, Gray Velour
Dad bought it new, now I own it.

"A Mercedes-Benz is like a fine wine, it only gets better with age."
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 05-15-2002, 12:49 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,469
Euro lights/reflector/blubs

For bulbs, I would use OSRAM 100W/80W bulbs, or I would use Hella optiplex blubs, they are pretty good.

when you put on a relay kit, you are going to have to do a lot of soldering if you dont want to drill holes through your cover in your euro lights. Putting relays on your lights will help a lot. If you look at the webpage I posted it tells you how to do it.

Reflectors. I have heard about doing this, but I havent tried it, but you can. Get three gallons of distilled water. In one of them put a few drops of dish soap and mix it up. It would be better to stir it than shake it. Get another bottle and put some jet dry in it, and mix that. Leave the third bottle as is.
1) pour the soap mixture on the reflector, then rinse with distilled water.
2) pour the jet dry mixture on the reflector, and then rinse that off

Then blow air over the reflector with an air compressor.

I have done this method too, but you have to be extremely careful not to rub off the coating.
1) get zep glass cleaner and put it on the reflector, just mist it on
2) wipe it with paper towels

if your reflector turns brown, it wont reflect light very well, and you will notice that the light on the road is worse than when you started with a dirty reflector.

Hope this helps you,

Austin
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-15-2002, 02:47 PM
JCE's Avatar
JCE JCE is offline
Down to the Wear Bars
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: So Kalifornia
Posts: 2,189
Relay kits which draw directly from the battery through heavy gauge wire are the way to go. Some kits draw from the alternator, increasing the voltage to the bulbs for increased light output. But this also allows surges and spikes to hit the bulbs as well, shortening life. Look for 10-12 gauge wiring from battery to relay kits - the larger the wire gauge, the less restriction to current flow.

I also like the Philips Vision Plus http://www.powerbulbs.com/ which tested out at the top for 55 watt bulbs. I can see the difference.
__________________
John

2003 Firemist Red/grey leather SL 500
2015 Palladium Silver/black mbtex GLK 350
1987 Smoke Silver/burgundy mbtex 300E Sportline (SOLD)

Click to see 87 300E
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On




All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:30 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2011 Pelican Parts - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page