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  #1  
Old 02-11-2003, 08:06 PM
So.Cal_Benzo
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Question Xenon bulbs causing problems?

The E320 has been in the dealership for 2 weeks due to electronical wiring problems. They just called me up and said that the cause of the problem was because i used aftermarket fake xenon bulbs. Could that be the real main cause, or is the dealership making excuses again because they can't find the reason why the car is having problems?
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  #2  
Old 02-11-2003, 08:41 PM
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Yes, if the amperage is out of spec, this could cause problems.
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  #3  
Old 02-11-2003, 08:42 PM
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That's funny but I don't buy that reason.

Unless maybe the fake HID bulbs are overwattage bulbs.

Were they like 100/150W bulbs or something outrageous like that with stock wiring?

What electrical wiring problems were u actually facing anyway?

You should find an independent to do this. People here recommend a guy called Enrique for those in CA.

Good luck
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  #4  
Old 02-11-2003, 08:43 PM
So.Cal_Benzo
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the bulbs are 100Watts. I guess it could be the problem. But i've known people who have used it for a longer period than i have and they didnt get any problems whatsoever.
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  #5  
Old 02-11-2003, 08:47 PM
So.Cal_Benzo
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Quote:
Originally posted by Holson Adi
That's funny but I don't buy that reason.

Unless maybe the fake HID bulbs are overwattage bulbs.

Were they like 100/150W bulbs or something outrageous like that with stock wiring?

What electrical wiring problems were u actually facing anyway?

You should find an independent to do this. People here recommend a guy called Enrique for those in CA.

Good luck
The electrical problems i faced is that it said "Low Battery charge".. I've been to the dealership many times regarding this problem... And 2 weeks ago which was the 7th time i came in to the dealership for the same problem. And this afternoon they told me all the problems were due to the aftermarket bulbs. If they call themselve a dealership, shouldn't they find out when i came in THE FIRST TIME? I don't get it...
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  #6  
Old 02-12-2003, 12:04 PM
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NO!!!

You presented a hidden modification to the vehicle, and only experience with others doing the same in the past would give them a clue where to look. The specs for the car are indicated in the owners' manual, and you ignored them and did not inform the dealer of this. Suppose you had put 10W single-grade oil in the engine, would you expect them to automatically guess the cause of your high oil consumption and plugged cat as that?

It is your vehicle and your right to do with it as you want, but do the techs and yourself a favor - document everything you do that is not a specified action to the car, and show the list to the service manager. Don't assume to know whether what you did is causing the problem or not, and don't make them second-guess you. If it were my shop, I would charge the full labor rate for however much total time was spent.

Steve
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  #7  
Old 02-12-2003, 12:59 PM
So.Cal_Benzo
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Quote:
Originally posted by sbourg
NO!!!

You presented a hidden modification to the vehicle, and only experience with others doing the same in the past would give them a clue where to look. The specs for the car are indicated in the owners' manual, and you ignored them and did not inform the dealer of this. Suppose you had put 10W single-grade oil in the engine, would you expect them to automatically guess the cause of your high oil consumption and plugged cat as that?

It is your vehicle and your right to do with it as you want, but do the techs and yourself a favor - document everything you do that is not a specified action to the car, and show the list to the service manager. Don't assume to know whether what you did is causing the problem or not, and don't make them second-guess you. If it were my shop, I would charge the full labor rate for however much total time was spent.

Steve
Pheeww! Thank god it wasn't your shop!

BTW.... My advisor is nice, so he didn't charge me anything. I don't have starmark on the vehicle, but i've been to that dealership many times.
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  #8  
Old 02-12-2003, 03:36 PM
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Sorry if I seemed harsh, but having managed electronic repair facilities at times in the past, this is exactly the sort of customer-induced problem that is way too common. It is not usually apparent to the customer why their action has caused their problem, and diagnosing using documentation from the manufacturer causes frustrating false leads. It is astounding how often a can of WD-40 turns out to be the weapon of choice for ANY problem folks encounter.

Please understand your service manager was being nice to you - the problem was not his fault, nor the lengthy diagnosis. Someone, though will have to pay for the techs' time spent on your problem, as in higher service rates.

Steve
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  #9  
Old 02-12-2003, 04:01 PM
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If you simply replaced the "aftermarket fake xenon bulbs" with the "recommended" bulbs, would this not quickly determine whether the "aftermarket fake xenon bulbs" were the source of the problem or not?

Haasman
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  #10  
Old 02-12-2003, 04:07 PM
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Is your car one of those years with type 9004 bulbs?

Those, and the type 9007, are notorious for having badly designed connectors which sometimes melt down even with standard wattage bulbs if the connecting metal parts get the least bit corroded. saabnet.com is full of great weeping and gnashing of teeth from people who switched even to 70/80 watt bulbs on classic 900 cars with USA headlamps, although I have used them for years on Ford products with no problems as long as I kept the contacts clean with TV control cleaner spray and dialectic grease to keep the crud out. It's far better, though, to switch to euro light units which take H-4 bulbs and appropriate connectors.
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  #11  
Old 02-12-2003, 05:42 PM
So.Cal_Benzo
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Quote:
Originally posted by sbourg
Sorry if I seemed harsh, but having managed electronic repair facilities at times in the past, this is exactly the sort of customer-induced problem that is way too common. It is not usually apparent to the customer why their action has caused their problem, and diagnosing using documentation from the manufacturer causes frustrating false leads. It is astounding how often a can of WD-40 turns out to be the weapon of choice for ANY problem folks encounter.

Please understand your service manager was being nice to you - the problem was not his fault, nor the lengthy diagnosis. Someone, though will have to pay for the techs' time spent on your problem, as in higher service rates.

Steve
No problem! Thanks for clearing it up and explaining it all....
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  #12  
Old 02-12-2003, 07:31 PM
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The 94-95 W124's have the Euro-look DOT headlights with 9003 (H4) bulbs.

I used to spend hundreds of $$$ buying funky blue lights for my dad's W124 back home. All sorts of wattage and didn't tell him. His comments were always "what's wrong with the headlights.. i cant see anything and he'd turn it on and off..."

he was also surprised to know that the Crown Vic he drove had crappy headlights when he came here. (He's really really picky when it comes to lighting...but he doesn't know what the differences are)
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  #13  
Old 02-13-2003, 03:49 PM
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Unless there is some kind of short (which will blow a fuse) or other fault in the bulb itself (i.e. one that keeps the light circuit open without passing current through the filament), it is hard to see how they could cause general electrical problems.

"Fake xenons" are nothing more than standard halogen bulbs tinted blue to raise the color temperature (from yellow to white or bluish-white). They actually put out less light, abeit much whiter light.

As an amateur photographer, I perform this same trick with cheap 500W halogen work lights, changing their very yellow output color to white by placing a light blue gel in front of them, which works well, but dramatically cuts luminosity.

My understanding is that true xenon lights use an electric arc to raise a xenon atom's outer electrons to a higher orbital state and, when they come back down, photons are emitted causing the very bright, white light. A current flowing through a wire simply cannot do this and fake xenons, even though I use them as well, are purely aesthetic. They are indeed whiter, but not at all brighter, no matter what that EBay seller claims to the contrary.
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Last edited by EricSilver; 02-13-2003 at 03:56 PM.
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  #14  
Old 02-13-2003, 04:06 PM
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"Unless there is some kind of short (which will blow a fuse) or other fault in the bulb itself (i.e. one that keeps the light circuit open without passing current through the filament), it is hard to see how they could cause general electrical problems. "

The issue isn't the luminance nor the color of the light - it is the electrical consumption of the aftermarket lamp compared to the original. The alternator is usually sized for the electrical demand of the stock vehicle, under average driving conditions. Night lighting is one of the most demanding states for an alternator to cope with. Double the lighting current consumption, and sit idling in rush hour traffic every night, and the conclusion of the dealership is very reasonable. There are other possible causes, but as Haasman pointed out, an easy diagnostic would be to replace the lamps with the originals and see if the electrical system now comes up to par.

Steve
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  #15  
Old 02-13-2003, 04:24 PM
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Hi Steve,

I understand and agree, and my comments on color/luminance were simply by-lines.

I am a sill puzzled by their diagnosis -- even the so-called 100W fake xenons are actually 80W -- same as standard bulbs -- with 100W referring to equivalent light output.

So.Cal_Benzo also said he has been experiencing the problem a lot, but did not specify whether it began before or after he installed the bulbs and, if after, how long. We'll have to wait until he chimes in again.
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------------------------------------
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