Headlight Fix

Headlight Fix (14)

Although not big enough to warrant an Avant update, our wagon did need to have its xenon bulb ballast replaced. It started as a flickering when the headlights were used, until finally it gave out. Unfortunately, the headlight decided to give up right in front of a local police officer, which resulted in a fixit ticket. Oh well, we were not planning on ignoring it anyway. So the process is very easy, the bulb is held in with two wire pin clips, and is very easy to remove. First the plastic backing has to come off, and we strongly recommend that the light be unplugged. The voltages used in xenon applications are very high. (Don’t shock yourself, it won’t be pretty. You may die. No one wants to die over a light bulb. No one.) So after unplugging the offending light and removing the bulb, we gave it a visual inspection. It isn’t hard to tell if these things have gone bad, as a cloud appears in the center. Much to our dismay, our bulb was fine. This means only a few other things could be wrong. All of them, much more complex and annoying then just a bulb replacement. So realizing we were not going to make it out easy on this job, we looked at the ballast. Swapping it over confirmed it was bad. (Shit) Ballast for our cars are about 650 USD. So a new one was not really going to happen. The solution, was a good working used one, which we picked up for under 200. Still a pain, but not nearly as bad. The installation is very easy, remove the headlight housing first. There are 3 bolts. Two up top and one on the outer edge of the housing by the fender. (You will need a torx bit) Once the headlight is unplugged and free, you can see the ballast plate on the underside of the light. It will almost undoubtedly use a “secure torx bit”. Eh, whatever, we just used a small flat head and were fine. After that the ballast pops out, and you simply unplug that as well. The new one goes in the same way, in reverse order. Before you reset and bolt down the headlight to the car, make sure to test it. Otherwise, it will piss you off. That is really it, there is not much to this repair, so we would give it a two out of ten. Cheers and happy wrenching. Remember, don’t shock yourself.

-CA Staff

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