Lights too bright?

Discussion in 'Electronics' started by John, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. John

    John Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I've had cars with Xenons before but in the W211, I seem to get a few people ahead complaining I have not dipped my lights.

    Of course I can easily prove I have dipped my lights but I'm wondering if they might not be aligned correctly.

    What changed today is for the first time not only an on-coming vehicle flashed but an artic - which made me question it.

    It is soon to go in for a service but until then, I wonder if this is standard issue on a W211 with Xenons, or are these people just knobbers.

    They seem to be the right height when shining in the garage, and obviously being Xenons, they should be auto-levelling etc.
     
  2. andy27168

    andy27168 MB Enthusiast

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    Hi,
    When you first turn your headlights on do they both raise then lower then go up into position as decided by the auto levelling system? It is quite common for the suspension link in the levelling system to break disabling the levelling system with the headlights out of alignment.
     
  3. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    Funnily enough, I had to adjust my xenons before my mot yesterday because they were aiming too high.

    I thought they just self-levelled?
     
  4. corned

    corned MB Enthusiast

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    They should.

    If the system is working properly, as stated above the lamps will perform a little curtsey as they start up (but you'll only notice at ignition on, not if the car's already running and you manually switch the lights on afterwards).

    The auto levelling arms are on the o/s suspension struts. I think one front and one rear. Easy to look under the arch (with the car on full right lock) and look up to see if the front's all correctly in place, but you may need to remove a wheel at the rear.
     
  5. @MARK

    @MARK Active Member

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    On the first time I went out in mine at night, I was driving along and cars were flashing me but worse, on 2 occasions, cars actually pulled over to let me past as I came up behind them.

    A quick visit to the dealer whilst they put them on the headlamp alignment thing and I have not had any problems since. Took all of 5 minutes.

    My previous BMW was the same when new.

    I am not sure if this is something that should be done at PDI but in any event, just drop into your dealer and get them sorted. Misaligned xenon lights are not good for anybody.

    Auto levelling however is all relative to the actual alignment. If they are set to high the self levelling will not compensate
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011
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  6. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    That's nearly word for word what the tester said....
     
  7. Red C220

    Red C220 MB Enthusiast

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    I've had a few people flashing for me to turn my lights down also.

    This is the first car I've owned that have xenon lights and I'm conscious they seem to blind other drivers.
     
  8. clever dicky

    clever dicky Active Member

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    Can't you tell by looking at the pattern if you face a wall or shop window etc??
     
  9. @MARK

    @MARK Active Member

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    If people are flashing you it's probably because your lights are set too high.

    Pop into your dealer and get them sorted ASAP because for one, it's not fair on other drivers and also you don't need other drivers flicking to main beam in retaliation so you can't see either. The dealer will/should sort this without question.

    And finally, it's a moving vehicle offence and MOT failure. A police officer could pull you and give you a fine or at least a vehicle rectification notice which is not what you expect on a new car.

    With great lights comes great responsibility.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011
  10. renault12ts

    renault12ts MB Club Veteran

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    A good test...if you can light the tops of the hedges...too high.
     
  11. Red C220

    Red C220 MB Enthusiast

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    Mine are set just fine, they are just so bright.

    Couple this to driving on undulating country lanes, the nature of the road means you have a 50/50 chance of blinding the oncoming traffic even with correctly set lights.
     
  12. @MARK

    @MARK Active Member

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    Have you had them checked on a proper headlamp alignment rig?

    No matter how bright they are (remember I have the same lights as you and I do not get flashed any more) they should not be causing problems for oncoming drivers.

    If they are flashing you it's because you are blinding them.

    Please get them checked.
     
  13. Red C220

    Red C220 MB Enthusiast

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    It's quite obvious from the light pattern that doesn't even shine above the boot lid when following a car.

    Hit a bump or rise in the road and it doesn't matter how well your lights are set, it blinds on coming traffic.

    For the record this only happens on unlight local roads.

    Having never had a car with xenons previously maybe I'm just more aware of it at present.
     
  14. jefrs

    jefrs Active Member

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    Just a thought, if the vehicle has self levelling suspension, then the engine needs to be running when the beams are adjusted.
    The beam levelling also replies on the engine running.
    So if the beam is adjusted with the engine off, the beam rises when it is running.
    We see xenons flash then dim then brighten and rise when they are switched on.
     
  15. @MARK

    @MARK Active Member

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    If they are just below the boot lid when following a car then to a car coming in the opposite direction, until they get to within 10 meters of you, the light is straight in their face!!!

    The edge of a boot lid on most cars is higher off the road than your headlamps which means the beam of light is pointing upwards.

    The further away you are (e.g. oncoming car) the higher the beam so you are getting it right in the face until you get pretty close. Having super bright xenon lights just compounds the issue.

    YOUR LIGHTS ARE TOO HIGH!

    Please get them adjusted


    Correct!
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011
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  16. stroudwaterboy

    stroudwaterboy Member

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    Whilst on my way to our local town a couple of nights ago I had a car with obvious Xenons coming towards me, it's the type of light that gives it away.

    As all the traffic cars in our county have Xenons you tend not to flash them of course.

    I then spotted as it went past that it was a C-Class sport looking identical to the one I have on order. From the beam pattern on the road the alignment was spot on, it was just the light is so bright. This has concerned me since but nothing I can do about it now!
     
  17. OP
    OP
    John

    John Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Hmm, good question. I will try it tonight when I leave!

    Fortunately, Mercedes photochromics work incredibly well so it doesn't affect me but the fact they think they are on main beam when they aren't means it needs investimagation.
     
  18. evdok

    evdok MB Enthusiast

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    Mine just go up and stop:confused: none of this dance other xenons do!, night vision is good as normal.
     
  19. mr. shr

    mr. shr MB Enthusiast

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    Mine don't always do the dance. I think (will need to investigate this) that they DON'T do the dance if the car in on an incline at start-up.
     
  20. OP
    OP
    John

    John Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Well, I turned the lights on with the engine off and again with it on... nadder.

    I seem to remember my previous Saab's lights doing a small dance now.

    I'm none the wiser but it will be investigated shortly.

    I now suspect very much they are not right though as the Mini Cooper S I followed today will testify.
     
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