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Uprated bulbs for H5 headlights

I'd like to upgrade my H5's with 55/100W bulbs, but it looks like they are NLA (at least from Pelican). Is there any reason for this? Do the H5's have problems handling the extra heat? I do plan on installing relays to protect the headlight switch.

I know the H4's are better, but I don't want the extra expense and rim painting hassles right now.

Thanks.

JP

1987 - Carrera Targa - 17k miles (steve wong chip, dansk premuffler)
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Old 01-16-2004, 10:44 AM
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The 55 100's might be ok with relays as long as you don't drive for long periods with the high beams on. I have heard off people with 80 100's melting their headlights' plastic bits.
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Old 01-16-2004, 10:49 AM
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H5's suck and H4's rule. Relays are a must either way. You don't have to paint the H4 trim rings. Leave them chrome. They look good with any color. H5's also get cloudy and have a lesser quality reflector. You can't polish a turd.
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Old 01-16-2004, 10:50 AM
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Richard, Don't hold back, tell us how you really feel.


I agree with Richard. My H5's barely let light through any more.
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Old 01-16-2004, 11:01 AM
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I don't know why it is, but I really do feel more strongly about H4's than just about any other 911 upgrade. I really wish they'd fit my 993. Did I mention H5's suck?
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Old 01-16-2004, 11:02 AM
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Did I mention H5's suck?


Thanks for the mention. I know know to get H4`s, and NOT H5`s

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Old 01-16-2004, 11:26 AM
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H5's can be cleaned... take them out and rinse with a tiny bit of cascade or other no spot dishwashing soap. Makes a big difference.
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Old 01-16-2004, 11:52 AM
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Thanks Magic, that's a great idea.
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Old 01-16-2004, 12:24 PM
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I installed a relay kit, cleaned my H5s, and installed 80/100 bulbs. See these threads:

Where / How To Mount Headlight Relays?
Problem Replacing H5 Bulb

There was a definite and pleasing improvement, and 'more light" went from near the top of my priorities to near the bottom. Sure, I'd still like H4s someday, but the improved H5s work nicely. I guess this is a personal thing - "how good is good enough". I don't do a lot of high-speed night driving, where I wanted better light is around town where you have the deaf pedestrians dressed in black.

I would use the 80/100w bulbs, PEL-H5-80100 at Pelican, instead of the 55/100w that are NLA. Reason: you use your low beams most of the time anyway.

I also put 100w bulbs in my H3 foglights. See this thread:
Put 100w Bulbs In Fogs
These bulbs are PEL-H3-7814 at Pelican.

Again, a definite improvement.

I've read lots of warnings about overheating the lights with these bigger bulbs and needing bigger relays etc. I think that, to be safe, you should assume that the 80/100w H5 bulbs may well melt themselves to the headlight socket, so that your next headlight upgrade will "have" to be H4s. And I think you should assume that running the 100w H3 foglights all the time may eventually damage the plastic housing. I figured that the original headlights / foglights were simply not adequate, so if I get a few years of adequate light through a cheap bulb upgrade before having to buy H4s and aftermarket driving lights, I haven't lost anything.
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Last edited by jyl; 01-16-2004 at 01:04 PM..
Old 01-16-2004, 01:01 PM
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One concern with higher-power bulbs is that some people put the upgrade relays in the headlamp bucket ... and that is a really BAD IDEA! If yours relays are in the bucket, MOVE THEM to the trunk!

If you are concerned about melting the socket for the H5 bulb ... install new, heavier 12 ga wires direct to the bulb from the relays, and use non-insulated Faston 0.187" crimped and soldered connectors! Be sure to use Dow Corning 111 or 112 Silicone Grease on the connectors. Draw a diagram with the color code and install it in the bucket underneath some laminating material.
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Old 01-16-2004, 01:28 PM
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Guys, thanks for the tips!

I'll do the 80/100W bulb and relay upgrade first and then chuck the H5's for H4's during the next spending spree.

JP

1987 Carrera Targa - 17K miles (steve wong chip & dansk premuffler)
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Old 01-16-2004, 05:45 PM
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Am I reading that right? Your car has 17,000 miles? Wow.

Quote:
Originally posted by rzepko6194
1987 Carrera Targa - 17K miles (steve wong chip & dansk premuffler) [/B]
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Old 01-16-2004, 07:07 PM
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Yes, it has only 17K original miles. Lots of cars stay garaged for a good part of the year, here in the Northeast. The Carrera stayed tucked away in the heated garage for the past week. Took the Audi Allroad out to play in the snow today. ;-)

JP

1987 Carrera Targa - 17K miles (steve wong chip & dansk premuffler)
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Old 01-16-2004, 07:20 PM
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I'm interested in upgrading my '87 also and waiting for the dual relay kit I saw on Rennlist. As for bulbs has anyone tried the Sylvania Silverstones? Put them in my wifes Corvette, a definite improvement, brighter and more of a HID color light, not the crappy blue tint you see on other wanta-be's. As for the cloudy '87 headlight fixtures I did the same, simply swabbed them out with window cleaner and a make-shift oversized Q Tip. So is 80/100W safe to use???
Old 01-16-2004, 11:29 PM
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I would not use the factory wiring for higher wattage bulbs. The headlight wire is pretty thin stuff!!! The higher wattage can overheat the wiring pretty easily. Beyond the relays, you want to install heavier wire (12 ga. like Warren said) to handle the bigger load of the higher wattage bulbs. I installed new wire from the fuse panel and beyond. I have no problems with my wires getting hot.

Extra insurance is not a bad idea in this case. Having your headlights crap out on you would be a real PITA under the right circumstances.

I did the heavier wire (Ancor marine grade), 4 Bosch relays, quality crimp-on terminals (some with heatshrink insulation where needed), a circuit breaker for each headlight power lead, protected/grouped all the wiring in PVC sheathing just like the factory does it in the trunk, and installed German Narva 90W/100W bulbs in the new H4 lights with black trim rings left unpainted.

Probably the best mod. i've done to my car. Very rewarding. Driving the 911 at night after riding around in the Laser is an amazing & amusing difference. The 911's lights are like flamethrowers! I love it. Especially since it's technically illegal.
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Old 01-17-2004, 07:21 AM
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Some Pictures of My Install......

Some of the stuff I used. Use 5 pin relays (grey one) if you only want to install two of them. I installed four 4 pin relays (black relay). Circuit breaker is 25A.



I didn't want to remove the old wiring in case I ever had to reinstall the H5. So I removed plastic H5 connector from wiring and shot some dielectric grease on them before heatshrink protecting them.



Pulled all my wire thru the PVC sheathing and routed it into the headlight bucket. First pic is the wiring from the fuse panel to the relays, which does not actually go into the headlight bucket.




Here's how I kept the old wiring in place and fed the new wires alongside



I put the headlight bucket grommets onto a 1/2" drive extension and warmed 'em up to stretch them out and make it easier to feed the two groups of wire through.

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Last edited by KTL; 01-17-2004 at 07:43 AM..
Old 01-17-2004, 07:40 AM
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Added a new ground location in the front passenger corner of the tub. The existing ground location near the battery is already pretty busy with other ground connections.




Routed all the wiring in the same location where all the other wiring is routed. Underneath the front edge of the trunk, over to the front passenger corner. I thought it'd be the best location for my relays since that's where my new ground location is place. Only thing I don't like is the long run of the power leads. The power leads have to go from the battery, across the front, and down to the relays.



Mounted the relays on the front of the tub as well. Preliminary mounting of relays with tape. Drilled and mounted with nuts & bolts later.




Finished installation:





I don't really like the location of the circuit breakers (yellow and red chunky things), but they do need to be somewhat accessible in case they're tripped and need to be reset. Everything else appears almost like a factory installation, so nothing really gets in the way of other stuff or clutters up the trunk. Overall it turned out pretty nice. Kind of a compromise as far as having to locate things in strange places. But at least it's not hacked together. I took my time and tried to make it the best quality installation I could do.

The workhorses:



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Old 01-17-2004, 08:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by KTL
IProbably the best mod. i've done to my car. Very rewarding. .
very nice
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Old 01-17-2004, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RoninLB
very nice
Thanks (again) Ron. Your assistance was very helpful during the search for supplies and ideas.
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Old 01-17-2004, 09:58 PM
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great photo help KTL.
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Old 04-02-2004, 01:59 PM
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