In this guide we will outline the process involved to retrofit our mini h1 bi-xenon projectors into your reflector-based headlight housings. Even though we utilized reflector-based housings that accepted h4 halogen bulbs, the same basic principles can be applied towards retrofitting any of our projectors into any headlight assembly, including stock OEM projector housings.
- -small flathead screwdriver and phillips screwdriver
- -heatgun or an oven
- -dremel tool with cutoff wheel (optional; may not be required)
- -headlight sealant (silicone caulk or rubber butyl)
- -microfiber towel(s)
For this tutorial, we will be retrofitting a set of 1994-1997 Honda Accord Depo headlights. These headlights utilize h4 halogen bulbs stock, which are a perfect candidate for our mini h1 projectors which come included with h4/h7 adapter mount plates. We will demonstrate this in later steps.
The first thing you’ll want to do is remove all plastic/metal retainer clips that hold the two haves of each headlight together. These particular headlights have 5 metal clips around the perimeter where the body meets the plastic lenses. Next, we are going to heat the headlights to melt the stock sealant holding them together. This can be accomplished either with a heatgun or a household oven. For the oven method, place each headlight in an oven set at 300-350 degrees for periods of 5-7 minutes at a time. Make sure no portion of the headlight assembly is in direct contact with the oven components (to avoid melting), and always place them on top of sheets of tin foil. For the heatgun method, hold the heatgun around 5 to 6 inches from the headlights and careful heat the perimeter where the halves are held together. Get the headlights hot to the touch, but not to the point where they are burning. Be patient with this step. It is always better to heat then re-heat, then to overheat and potentially cause damage.
Once the headlights are sufficiently warm to the touch, carefully take your small flathead screwdriver and find the most ‘robust’ area to begin initial prying. Place the screwdriver head in between the lens and headlight body and very slowly begin separating the halves. At this point, the OEM caulk sealant should be melted and pliable…thus aiding you in your efforts. Work slowly, and do not force things. Re-heat accordingly, or when you feel like the OEM sealant has began cooling off and hardening. Once you have a section of headlight completely separated, it will become increasingly easier to separate the rest of the assembly.
Now you will want to remove all the stock bulbs from both headlights, as well as any rubber retaining boots. Next, turn each headlight around and locate the screw(s) holding in the stock lowbeam reflector glare shields in the rear (most likely directly under the headlight bulb socket). These may come in the form of regular phillips screws or hex bolts, depending on your application. Carefully remove the chrome glare shields, screws, and headlights…and tuck them away, as you will not be using them again. At this point you will be left with an empty hole where the headlight and glare shield used to reside. These holes are where we will be placing our mini h1 projectors.
Now take your mini h1 projectors and, looking at them from the rear, remove the 3 small phillips head screws holding the bulb retainer assemblies in place. These screws are very small and placed on well, so you will need to make sure to use the correct sized screwdriver and apply ample force to get them spinning freely. Take time on this step, and make sure to do this in a well-lit area, as the screws are extremely small and can be lost easily if not carefully. Once all 3 screws are removed, take off both the metal bulb retainer bracket, and unscrew the aluminum threaded locking nut (if already pre-installed).
At this point you will be left with just the projector assembly with a bare threaded section on the rear. Each of our kits comes with 2 pairs of large rubber washers in 2 different thicknesses. Select which size is best suited for your headlights (eyeing for clearance) and slide it over the rear of your projector threaded section.
Depending on your shroud shroud design, you will now want to install your shrouds onto your projectors. For demonstration purposes, we left this step off until the end, but for the mini gatling screw-on shrouds you will want to install them prior to mounting your projectors into your headlight assemblies. Carefully take each projector (rear of the projector is clearly labeled with ‘TOP’ for correct orientation) and ‘feed’ it through the now empty hole where your lowbeam bulbs used to reside. Be sure to also feed the ‘bi-xenon’ wires through the rear of the headlight as well. Since these headlights utilized h4 halogen bulbs stock, we are going to take the h4 metal adapter plates (included with the kit) and slide them over the threads on the rear threads of the projector assembly. This will essentially allow the projector to ‘screw’ into the headlight as if it were a bulb, ensuring perfect rotational beam alignment every time.
Next, take the aluminum threaded locking rings that you removed earlier, and screw them back onto the projector assembly as securely as possible. Make double sure the nut is completely tight by trying to ‘wiggle’ the projector assembly and checking for play. Tightening can be aided with some pliers or small wrench. Now re-install the bulb retaining holders and 3 small screws onto the rear of each projector.
Prior to re-assembling the headlights, you will now want to carefully inspect your projectors and shrouds for any dirt/dust/fingerprints and clean them accordingly. Be extra careful when cleaning shrouds, and always use a very clean microfiber towel with little to no pressure. NEVER USE ANY CLEANING SOLUTIONS ON THE CHROME! Using solutions or too much pressure can easily strip or mar the chrome finish. A quick tip for cleaning the projector glass lenses: use a clean piece of toilet paper. It is extremely gentle and does not generate much lint.
Finally, we will be applying new sealant to our headlight assemblies. We prefer to use either Clear RTV silicone or rubber butyl for this step, as they are the cleanest and easiest to work with. Apply a sufficient bead of the sealant solution in the crevices of each headlight where the old sealant used to reside. Be generous with it, but do not over apply, as the excess will ooze back into the headlights when re-assembled. Once the sealant is applied, carefully take the headlight lens and install it back onto the headlight assembly, applying good force to make sure the two halves are fully seated. Lastly, re-apply the metal retaining clips that you removed in the first step. Let the headlights sit overnight and let them cure (recommended).
Congratulations! You are now the proud owner of a set of mini h1 projector retrofitted headlights! No big mess; no drilling…these little miracles have truly revolutionized the retrofit game. Now just install your h1 bulbs into your projectors, secure them with the included bulb clips…and admire your work…and the incredible performance
In this article, we examine the many benefits of retrofitting your headlights with our quality bixenon projectors vs. utilizing conventional xenon bulbs inside your stock headlight reflector assemblies.
Besides being extremely aesthetically pleasing, a projector retrofit will not only dramatically increase the safety and visibility for yourself, but also the cars and people around you.
A PnP (or Plug n’ Play) kit is typically comprised of xenon (or HID “High Intensity Discharge”) bulbs and ballasts installed into a reflector halogen headlight housing. Simple logic would ‘seem’ to indicate that installing a PnP kit would result in a dramatic improvement in lighting performance due to the fact that HID bulbs have a typical output of around 50-90 lumens per watt versus only around 30 lumens per watt offered by halogen bulbs. HOWEVER, the underlying problem is that halogen reflector housings were neither designed nor optimized for xenon bulb optics.
“So what does this all mean to me?,” you ask?
Installing a plug and play kit into a halogen reflector headlight results in two major issues:
Scattered foreground lighting and ‘hot spots:’ Due to the fact halogen reflector housings were not designed around xenon bulb optics, this will result in extremely spotty foreground lighting. Users who install pnp hid kits in reflector based housings experience what are referred to as ‘hot spots;’ or concentrated areas where the intensity is much higher than the rest of the foreground light. This not only is extremely inefficient, but also extremely dangerous, as majority of your light is focused into a tiny area, while the rest of the road remains dimly lit…if not at all. You would probably be better off strapping 2 large flashlights on the hood of your vehicle and praying, especially in adverse weather conditions.
Deformed cutoff / excessive glare: We’ve all fallen victim before: traveling down a 2-way road only to be greeted by what appears to be an oncoming vehicle that forgot to turn off their highbeams, then later finding out it was nothing more than a terrible plug and play kit. Once again, due to the properties of halogen reflectors conflicting with xenon bulb design/optics, this produces an extremely annoying and highly dangerous glare due to stray light being projected above the cutoff line. This phenomena is easily demonstrated by parking any car with a PnP kit up against a wall. All that excessive stray light is being shot straight up and directly into the eyes of both oncoming drivers and the rearview mirrors of drivers ahead of you. This can easily result in severe and possibly fatal car accidents…not to mention catching the watchful eye of law enforcement and being cited for unsafe lighting equipment. There is nothing subtle about the dangers posed by these plug and play kits.
This is where projector retrofitting comes in. Utilizing any one of our bixenon headlight projector kits will not only dramatically increase road illumination and safety, but also improve the driving experience of those around you. Each and every projector we sell was specifically engineered and optimized SOLELY for xenon HID bulb optics. Using a combination of crystal clear glass lenses and high luster chrome bowl linings, these xenon projectors maximize each and every lumen discharged by HID capsules by ‘projecting’ all light directly forward and down onto the ground, where it should be. This means more powerful, wider, and uniform ground illumination that simply cannot be touched by any reflector housing (OEM or aftermarket). With their precision crafted internal cutoff shields, they are able to create a razor sharp horizontal cutoff that not only looks incredibly cool, but eliminates most, if not all, stray glare.
lluminating 8 or more car lanes is not a problem for most of our projectors. The most common theme derived from our customer feedback is simply: “wow.” Once you go retrofit you will surely never go back, as it is literally a night and day difference…pun intended.
What is the safety of you and your loved ones worth? With the price and ease of installation of our entry level mini h1 bixenon projector kits, there is simply NO excuse to keep driving dangerously at night!