2013 Maxima, time for new H11.should I try LED ??

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My car is approaching 4 years from new, I do notice the lights are not as bright from when I got the car. The low beams are H11 Halogens, lots of options for replacement but would you recommend I try the LED option ? My concern is that in Canada, the low beams are also the DRL bulbs at low power - not certain how this works with the aftermarket LED options. I do a fair amount of night driving, my strategy is to use the fog lights with low beams and turn the instrument panel lights to their dimmest setting = better vision for my 54 year old eyes. My wife has bad night vision, so she's riding shotgun after dark. Thanks in advance.
 
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From what I have read don't bother with those LED retrofits quite yet. People try to justify them that they would increase your visibility, save gas (less Alternater demand dragging on the engine increasing the economy in theory). What are good are trunk lights, Map, and Cabin festoon lights being upgraded so if you forget a map light or a trunk open by accident in the garage overnight your battery won't get depleted as much so you can at least start the car. That IMO is a lifesaver on my Fit as you can click on the Cabin light and it will stay on until your car battery is dead. The LED draws very little but the light has a colder colour temp if that matters to you.
 
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There is no drop in led bulb that will improve your lighting. The ones you will find are cheap illegal junk. Fog lights also don't help you see any further they just light up the foreground and give you a warm and fuzzy feeling while actually making it harder to see further. You could look into doing the H9 mod if you have good quality projector housings.
 

blupupher

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The H11 LED lights are not there yet. I have tried 3 different sets in my Scion over the past 2 years and they all have the same issue, tons of foreground light but distance lighting (where you want the light) is much worse. Overall brightness is also not as good as even halogen. Don't use the fog lights when driving in dry weather, it makes you night vision even worse. You want it dark right in front of you, and fog lights make it brighter and make poor night vision even worse. From Daniel Stern's website:
Quote:
But foreground light is far less safety-critical than light cast well down the road into the distance, because at any significant speed (much above 25 mph), what's in the foreground is too close for you to do much about. That is, at normal road speeds, whatever is close enough to be within the foreground light is too close for you to avoid hitting. If you increase the foreground light (such as by turning on the fog lamps), your pupils react to the brighter pool of foreground light by constricting, which in turn substantially reduces your distance vision—especially since there's no increase in down-the-road distance light to go along with the increased foreground light. This is also the reason why it is not appropriate to have fog lamps lit with the high beam headlamps: if you're going fast enough to need high beams, you definitely don't want to spoil your distance vision by overly lighting the foreground.
There is tons of good info on his site about lighting.
 

JHZR2

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Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
No, an LED will not improve your night vision. Your best no-mod upgrade is a Philips Xtreme Vision H11.
+1. Any other mod, including sham H9 retrofits, are illegal.
 
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Originally Posted By: JHZR2
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
No, an LED will not improve your night vision. Your best no-mod upgrade is a Philips Xtreme Vision H11.
+1. Any other mod, including sham H9 retrofits, are illegal.
Yes the legality is questionable about the H9 mod which is why it doesn't work in halogen reflector lenses because the H9 produces many more lumens with the extra 10w it pulls, it can be controlled with good halogen projectors and is one of the safest of the ways to increase the weak performance of a stock h11 setup. The filament precision and placement are identical which is one of the reasons why it can work well.
 
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Originally Posted By: The_German
From what I have read don't bother with those LED retrofits quite yet. People try to justify them that they would increase your visibility, save gas (less Alternater demand dragging on the engine increasing the economy in theory). What are good are trunk lights, Map, and Cabin festoon lights being upgraded so if you forget a map light or a trunk open by accident in the garage overnight your battery won't get depleted as much so you can at least start the car. That IMO is a lifesaver on my Fit as you can click on the Cabin light and it will stay on until your car battery is dead. The LED draws very little but the light has a colder colour temp if that matters to you.
I recently replaced the dome, map, and trunk lights with festoon LED bulbs and I would say it's the best and most functional modification that I've done to the car and probably worth the money. From the drivers seat I can see something much easier if I drop anything and also see what's on the rear seats much easier. I originally started with the trunk LED which allows me to see down into the wheel well for the spare...which might be considered a safety upgrade. I noticed right away that I could actually read the text on the papers lying in the trunk at night and know what they are versus the incandescent OEM bulb. Lot of pluses to this upgrade. I would agree that LED headlights aren't worth the cost and likely will change the lighting dynamic for the worse. I might change the brake lights and call it a day but I don't know many plug n play LED bulb options for brake lights that aren't considered illegal.
 
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I dont think the issue with LED is 100% the bulbs fault. LED's don't have an elongated filament wire producing omnidirectional light hanging out in front of a tuned reflector dish. LED's produce light directionally from a substrate so cannot benefit from a reflector designed for a standard filament bulb. I have a motorcycle and a new chevy truck that both have large hemispheric lenses to shape the light beam and they work very well. Of course the light color takes some getting used to.
 
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Of course it's not the bulbs fault. The bulb has to be engineered around the housing. If the manufacturer starts knowing they want to use an led light source and engineers the housing to meet the lighting code everything is good usually, although even oem led options have been having severe issues with glare even after getting the official rubber stamp of approval. None of this can be achieved in the garage using adhesives and hacksaws. These oem housings are subjected to specific vibration testing as well as dust ingress testing and once you open the housings they will never be able to achieve the same standards of quality over time. Add to this that most of what you would use to seal open a hacked headlight will off gas onto the inside of the lenses and reflectors this can cause even more issues with performance and durability
 
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Originally Posted By: 901Memphis
Yes the legality is questionable about the H9 mod...
Strictly speaking, the legality is not questionable. It's not the specified bulb and, technically, it's therefore not legal to use. Your further point is valid that, because the filament is in exactly the same location as an H11, it CAN work in some situations.
Originally Posted By: 901Memphis
The bulb has to be engineered around the housing.
It's the other way around. Lamp engineering software starts with the light source first, and then uses various optical strategies to achieve the desired result. The following video is a great watch for those interested in this stuff: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvY-SnhjXOQ One can clearly see the intricacies involved in optical design, how putting different light sources into a lamp housing can dramatically change the output, and why reverse-engineered aftermarket housings almost universally fall short of genuine OEM lamps.
 

KGMtech

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Thanks guys for your feedback! I will purchase H11 Halogens (HO Phillips if on sale) for the bulb change. Maybe in 4 years the LED or HID will be the better choice with easy plug and play.
 
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Put Osram Nightbreaker bulbs in the housings and build a relay'd loom to power them. Short of mounting floodlit ing on the roof this will be all the light you'll ever need. Maybe have your eyes tested and your lenses checked too?
 
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Originally Posted By: KGMtech
Thanks guys for your feedback! I will purchase H11 Halogens (HO Phillips if on sale) for the bulb change. Maybe in 4 years the LED or HID will be the better choice with easy plug and play.
Also, polish the lenses and check the aim. The latter's often forgotten. Road bumps can indeed mess up the aim over the years.
 
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Also turn down the interior instrument lighting if you haven't already. Most modern cars produce a lot of interior glare, rather detrimental to night driving.
 
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Originally Posted By: KGMtech
Thanks guys for your feedback! I will purchase H11 Halogens (HO Phillips if on sale) for the bulb change...
Please let us know how you like them.
 
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