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Old 12-01-2018, 08:22 AM   #1
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Replacement headlight bulbs

The headlights on our Thor Hurricane seem super dim. Can anybody make a recommendation for a brighter replacement halogen or LED lamp?
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Old 12-01-2018, 08:58 AM   #2
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I know there are many LED's available but I went with Superbrightleds.com It was a simple bulb change and I'm much happy with the improvement.
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Old 12-01-2018, 11:28 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fairfieldwiz View Post
The headlights on our Thor Hurricane seem super dim. Can anybody make a recommendation for a brighter replacement halogen or LED lamp?
Fairfieldwiz,
One of the first places to start when analyzing a dim headlight issue on motorhomes is a voltage check at the headlight socket. You see, in many cases, there are wiring looms that are unilateral to many coaches, no matter what differences in length, construction and more. What that means is, you may have a considerable amount more wiring leading to your headlights than is needed. When that is the case, you have more voltage loss due to extra length wiring.
And, also in some cases, the wiring for the headlights, is also routed THROUGH the headlight switch which, is a switch that is not rated to handle high amperage draw. So, what happens is, smaller wires are used for the headlight system so the switch can handle the draw. But, smaller wires and, extra length wires, amount to not enough voltage reaches the headlights.

So, the answer, many guys will actually either shorten the wiring to the headlights, (if that's the case) and, also will re-wire them using a larger gauge wire that, will be powered by an adding a relay that is triggered by the wires from the original headlight switch. In the end, their headlights are considerably brighter due to sufficient power and voltage now getting to each headlight bulb.

Now, that's just some potential answers to your issue. If you do a voltage check at the headlight sockets, with without the engine running, and find say, oh, at least 13V, you should be good in terms of available voltage. Of course, the more the better. It's amazing how much brighter a bulb gets with even small increments in increased voltage.

If your voltage is sufficient, then maybe it's time to look at higher efficiency bulbs. LEDs are being advance each and every day. But, a word of caution, don't just purchase the first ones you find, especially since there's lots and lots of cheapo junk LED bulbs out there. This truly is one of those things where you get what you pay for. Superbrightleds has been mentioned and, I've also used them for years and have been totally satisfied with any and all LEDs I've purchased from them. It's a great site. They'll walk you through any questions, ideas and more and guide you right to the correct LED for your needs. Good luck.
Scott
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Old 12-01-2018, 11:54 AM   #4
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I tried replacing the bulbs with LED units. They had a great spread out to about 50', then nothing, my fog lights were better.
Replaced them with some of the brighter standard type bulbs which are much better.
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Old 12-01-2018, 03:42 PM   #5
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Fairfieldwiz,
One of the first places to start when analyzing a dim headlight issue on motorhomes is a voltage check at the headlight socket. You see, in many cases, there are wiring looms that are unilateral to many coaches, no matter what differences in length, construction and more. What that means is, you may have a considerable amount more wiring leading to your headlights than is needed. When that is the case, you have more voltage loss due to extra length wiring.
And, also in some cases, the wiring for the headlights, is also routed THROUGH the headlight switch which, is a switch that is not rated to handle high amperage draw. So, what happens is, smaller wires are used for the headlight system so the switch can handle the draw. But, smaller wires and, extra length wires, amount to not enough voltage reaches the headlights.

So, the answer, many guys will actually either shorten the wiring to the headlights, (if that's the case) and, also will re-wire them using a larger gauge wire that, will be powered by an adding a relay that is triggered by the wires from the original headlight switch. In the end, their headlights are considerably brighter due to sufficient power and voltage now getting to each headlight bulb.

Now, that's just some potential answers to your issue. If you do a voltage check at the headlight sockets, with without the engine running, and find say, oh, at least 13V, you should be good in terms of available voltage. Of course, the more the better. It's amazing how much brighter a bulb gets with even small increments in increased voltage.

If your voltage is sufficient, then maybe it's time to look at higher efficiency bulbs. LEDs are being advance each and every day. But, a word of caution, don't just purchase the first ones you find, especially since there's lots and lots of cheapo junk LED bulbs out there. This truly is one of those things where you get what you pay for. Superbrightleds has been mentioned and, I've also used them for years and have been totally satisfied with any and all LEDs I've purchased from them. It's a great site. They'll walk you through any questions, ideas and more and guide you right to the correct LED for your needs. Good luck.
Scott
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Old 12-02-2018, 07:22 AM   #6
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Right! Hadn't thought about the possible voltage drop thing. I'll check that out first. Thanks a lot.
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Old 12-02-2018, 08:19 AM   #7
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Also, the aim of the headlights should be checked with a normal load. Mine were way off from the factory. after correcting the aim, I got HIR bulbs (halogen infrared). You have to nip one tit of the base of the bulb so it will go into the socket. HIRs are brighter, and don't give of excessive heat that will damage the headlight buckets. They were OEM in Dodge Vipers and some John Deeres ... don't know other normal applications. Check out Dan Stern's website for a great education in potential headlight problems.
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Old 12-02-2018, 08:49 AM   #8
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X2 on Daniel Stern's website and also checking the voltage at the headlight. We had dim head lights and a smoking hot switch on the dash. Voltage at the lamps was around 11 volts with the engine running. I installed a relay kit from Daniel Stern and got the voltage up to near 14 at lamps. Brightness is nearly twice the lumens with the stock lamps, and the light switch on the dash now stays cool.



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Old 12-02-2018, 09:02 PM   #9
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I tried replacing the bulbs with LED units. They had a great spread out to about 50', then nothing, my fog lights were better.
Replaced them with some of the brighter standard type bulbs which are much better.
This can happen when the LED emitter isn't placed exactly correctly to leverage the reflector's focus. Lots of LED choices. Few are good, many are inexpensive.

A Bi-Xenon setup is going to be brighter (now assuming we are comparing top quality of each type). But, not as reliable and does have some warm up time.
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Old 12-06-2018, 07:59 AM   #10
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Can anybody tell me, with the bulbs in my Hurricane, what relay kit you'd recommend. Looks like there are lots of choices and picking the right one would make it plug and play.
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Old 12-07-2018, 01:04 AM   #11
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Can anybody tell me, with the bulbs in my Hurricane, what relay kit you'd recommend. Looks like there are lots of choices and picking the right one would make it plug and play.
Take a picture of the bulb connector and send it to the www.retrofitsource.com and they will provide the right relay kit. Inexpensive too and high quality (what?).
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