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LED Headlight Conversions

Discussion in 'Modified 2011- 2019 Explorer Sport Tuning' started by cobra671, October 12, 2015.

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    1. expoman55

      expoman55 Elite Explorer

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      SO with all you experienced xploder guys do you think the LEDs are on par or above HIDs at this point? I did the HID conversion and love em but if the LEDs are brighter I could be convinced to move on perhaps..
       
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    3. Theitalianjob76

      Theitalianjob76 New Member

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      Hello everyone I'm new to this I just bought yesterday a 2013 Ford Explorer Sport and I'm not sure should I go hid or LED and what are the pros and cons of both of them thanks in advance
       
    4. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Whatever you decide keep in mind the following;
      Headlight reflectors and lenses are designed for a bulb of a specific output, size and shape. Altering any one of those elements may result in a different beam pattern that could stun, blind and annoy other road users.
      http://www.caradvice.com.au/278125/headlights-explained-halogen-v-hid-v-led-v-laser/
      A proper conversion to HID would entail changing the entire housing in order to get a perfect focus which impossible with just a plug and play kit since the Halogen projector wasn't designed for HID bulbs. LED housing are made of a stronger and more durable material to withstand the heat generated at the base of the bulb.

      Peter
       
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    5. expoman55

      expoman55 Elite Explorer

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      Italianjob.. Peter is absolutely correct done wrong and done right will make a huge difference for you but MORE importantly others coming at you.. We did a Diode Dynamics HID conversion to the 2015 reflectors ( to peters point NOT designed for HID) however we rotated the bulbs to the directions of DD and are very pleased over the last 2 yrs.. ( YES I have toyed with thoughts of LED) only because I am a tinkerer. I do do worry about what I do having an effect on others.. SO done right yes can be done without maga expense. DD were very affordable.
       
    6. champco

      champco Active Member

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      Operationally the led are far superior.
       
    7. bnewt

      bnewt Member

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      If I'm not mistaken, the 2017 explorers have separate bulbs for low beam & high beam. If that is correct, when I make this switch, I need to purchase the ones that only have 1 "beam".....correct?
       
    8. Argentimage

      Argentimage Active Member

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      They have for many years, correct process is to look in OG or on line what your vehicle requires and buy that number.

      Very pleased with result for my 2005 with dual LEDs, I got the newer technology 4 sided version.
       
    9. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      The 2011 - 2015 Explorers only had had single bulb that was used for both low and high beam by way of a shutter that moved up for high and down for low. In 2016 they went to an LED low and halogen high beam.

      Peter
       
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    10. bnewt

      bnewt Member

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      Is there a way to tell if your vehicle is equipped with can bus? If it is, doesn't that mean that you can't just plug in a new LED bulb without installing all of the extras that come with the conversion kit?
       
    11. xxghostxx

      xxghostxx Member

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    12. EWIII

      EWIII New Member

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      I picked up a 2017 Explorer for a work vehicle yesterday. I was pretty upset it didn't come stock with a garage door opener. Also, I want to replace the high beam with an LED bulb, but there doesn't appear to be much room. Has anyone done this? And, if so, can you post some pictures of your install?
       
      Last edited by a moderator: December 29, 2017
    13. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Are you getting a display on the Sync screen?

      Peter
       
    14. xxghostxx

      xxghostxx Member

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      I have had the Diode HID conversion on my sport since I purchased it. The halogens just don't cut it as we all know. Easy install, great product, customer care. I have had issues with the ballasts and have changed at least three now. I am currently waiting on two ballasts and leaning toward some LEDS and have been researching this thread and think I am going to convert to some OPT7 Fluxbeam X and call it a day. I may upgrade headlights while I am at it.
      Factory Style Black Clear Reflector Lens Projector Headlight 11-15 Ford Explorer | eBay
       
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    15. deadlyapp

      deadlyapp New Member

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      Just purchased the Opt7 X and will report back when I receive them. I think there are a handful of users who already have converted to the previous generation (non-X) and have posted pictures. Would love to do a full HID conversion but if I can save $300+ and my time and get a comparable product (and more reliable) then I'll be happy. I do very little night driving and most is on already well lit roads (Los Angeles). Will later install a light bar or similar for backcountry driving where I'd like more light.
       
    16. Rob A

      Rob A New Member

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      How are the Op7 X's? Everything fit behind the dust cover or did you have to modify it?

      I'm getting ready to pull the trigger on some LED bulbs to replace the halogen in our 2015 - ideally something that fits unmodified behind the dust cover. Looks like the options are pretty limited and hard to tell which ones do or don't fit and I'd rather not have to buy, return, etc multiple times to get what fits.

      Anyone else having luck with theirs?
       
    17. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Welcome to the Forum Rob.:wave:

      Peter
       
    18. deadlyapp

      deadlyapp New Member

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      I like them, however they do have some bloom in the stock projectors. You can fit them under the stock dust covers, but with the wire tail you pretty much have to cut a slit or leave the bottom portion of the cover not fully tight. I live in southern California so I'm not too concerned about leaving the covers partially off.
       
    19. SurrealOne

      SurrealOne Elite Explorer

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      So was it pretty much plug and play? And do you have a link to the same thing you got?
       
    20. Rob A

      Rob A New Member

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      Alright, thanks for the update dead - since they don't completely fit under the cover I ordered some other ones that looks to be pretty compact and all in one. Once installed, and tested, I'll report back on fit, lighting, etc.
       
    21. Andy.J

      Andy.J New Member

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      I purchased these 9005 LED's 3 weeks ago and highly recommend them to anyone who's considering replacing their miserable dangerously dim unsafe for driving and night fireflies in a jam jars stock halogen bulbs in their projector headlights.

      Pros:
      Amazingly bright, also a very minor con.
      Totally plug and play, no cutting off tabs, no flicker or reverse polarity issues etc..
      Cheaper than Silverstar Ultra halogens.
      Dust covers fit perfectly, no cutting needed or wires sticking out.
      Cut-offs seem very good, some light seep on the extreme far right side, but nothing on the left.
      Not what I would consider a 'conversion' just a simple bulb swap.
      I have not (yet) been flashed by any passing motorists.

      Cons:
      Amazingly bright (almost too bright)
      Very slight blue hue, only just, but it's there.
      You can now see how pitted my headlamp lens' are from stone chips.
       
    22. Rainlord

      Rainlord Elite Explorer

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      I will just note that after testing many LED headlights, I recommend you either leave the dust covers off (but don't do that if you drive a lot on dusty roads or sand etc) or make a modification to it so that the back of the LED light that contains the fan can blow out the air. If the air is blocked by the dust cover, things will get super hot. Those "twist in" LED replacements generate an absolute ton of heat and compared to those installed "factory" they are not designed to be in an enclosed environment without access to getting rid of that hot air. I've seen people complain about warped or melted plastic and other issues caused by putting them in and putting all the "lids" back on. For one idea on how to modify the covers, here's a video. But do note that should the rear of the light get super hot, you risk melting the dust cover.
       
    23. Rob A

      Rob A New Member

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      Went with these - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01H8VILD6 - as they seemed compact and I wanted to try out a set that was relatively cheap and compact to see if I liked the LED switch.

      Very bright and throw slightly better than stock. I'm going back and forth on whether to return and trying out a higher lumen set, but so far I'm quite happy. Everything fits behind the dust cover as it's an all in one unit and the heat sink isn't huge.

      I drove around for almost 2 hours yesterday, running errands, etc. with the longest stint over an hour without shutting engine/lights off. When returning home I checked the dust covers and they weren't even warm to the touch. I have a road trip coming up in about a week and half where I'll be driving for about 6 hours - I'll make sure to check out the heat situation and report back.

      EDIT - for my own peace of mine I did some quick research on heat from led vs stock/halogen and came across this article with heat tests -

      How hot do LED headlight bulbs get? - Better Automotive Lighting

      Conclusion from their test -
       
      Last edited: March 15, 2018
    24. bnewt

      bnewt Member

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      Tried to install my led lights today...couldnt get my hand in place to remove driver side. Finally gave up. Any suggestions
       
    25. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Find someone with smaller hands. Seriously, unless you wish to remove the entire fixture. I tried reaching mine on the driver's side just out of curiosity and also couldn't reach it. Since mine is a lease and I'm perfectly happy with the lights the way they are, I just left it.

      Peter
       
    26. stillmarried

      stillmarried Member

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      Attached is a link to right angled needle nose pliers that I use to rotate the bulb housing. TEKTON 10 in. Long Reach 90-Degree Bent Nose Pliers-34406 - The Home Depot
      The technique that I use is to press in the bulb housing with one hand and use the other hand to rotate the bulb housing with the right angled pliers.
       

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