F30POST
F30POST
2012-2015 BMW 3-Series and 4-Series Forum
BMW Garage BMW Meets Register Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
BMW 3-Series and 4-Series Forum (F30 / F32) | F30POST > Technical Forums > Cosmetic and Lighting Modifications (exterior & interior) > Projector Retrofit into Halogen housings -- DIY in progress
European Auto Source
Post Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
      03-09-2015, 02:31 PM   #1
jeebus
New Member
4
Rep
23
Posts

Drives: e90 m3
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: United States

iTrader: (0)

Projector Retrofit into Halogen housings -- DIY in progress

I've started to "attempt" to retrofit projectors into the stock, crummy, halogen housings. I'll document it here as I progress and hopefully finish...

1. I purchased a used halogen housing on EBay since I didn't want to muck up the factory lights or have any downtime. This cost me ~$100 for a single housing. (I will buy #2 if I'm successful with this one)

2. I purchased a Morimoto Bi-Xenon H1 kit with E46 shrouds, Canbus H7 connectors, and sealant. http://www.theretrofitsource.com/com...l#.VP3fWjTF-TI

3. I baked the headlight at 250 degrees for 15 minutes.



4. I tried and tried and tried and cursed and got angry as I tried to pull the housing apart. I put it in the oven a few more times. Each time I made some progress, but I also kind of made a mess of the housing...I was truly hoping to do this without damage, but this made me really glad I didn't do this on the housings that came with the car!

5. Eventually, with some slight cutting and more cursing, I did get the housing apart. It should still be able to go back together and seal with enough sealant.




6. There are two obvious clips that you can access with a screwdriver to pop the lens off.




7. Pop the bulb deflector thingy off.




8. I mounted the projectors and noticed they stuck out a tad further than I'd like. So I trimmed the small piece of plastic inside the reflector so I could mount the projector further back.




9. The shroud also doesn't fit perfectly. The left side near the highbeam needs to be trimmed and the bottom needs some trimming as well. This pic pre-trimming.




10. But, with a bit of patience and a lot of plastic dust, it was able to get it to fit ok and test close the light.





I still have some more trimming to do, some more cleanup, then of course wiring, etc. IF this comes out well enough, I'll buy a passenger side light and repeat the process...well, hopefully I learned something and do it better. I will update this thread as I progress.
Attached Images
       
Appreciate 4
      03-09-2015, 02:42 PM   #2
tboooe
Lieutenant Colonel
tboooe's Avatar
157
Rep
1,707
Posts

Drives: F36 428i GC, E36 M3 - gone :(
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: The OC!

iTrader: (0)

Thanks for this! I love reading these kinds of DYI!
__________________
My build thread

2015 428i GC - Alpine White - Coral Red - M Sport
Appreciate 0
      03-09-2015, 02:46 PM   #3
ji99lypuff
Second Lieutenant
17
Rep
240
Posts

Drives: 2014 bmw 328xi
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: NY

iTrader: (0)

Wow this is looking great so far! Finally someone is attempting to tackle this project. Look forward to seeing your work in progress.
Appreciate 0
      03-09-2015, 03:32 PM   #4
1lyfe
Major
1lyfe's Avatar
Canada
38
Rep
1,235
Posts

Drives: AW F30 328i Xdrive
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Toronto

iTrader: (1)

make sure you apply a uv protective coaitn on the clear plastic.
my experience with retrofitting is once you bake the headlights, the plastic will turn yellow in the sun cause the uv coating "burned" off during the baking process
__________________
Current Mods: JB4 , H&R Rear Sway bar, Front Strut Bar , 19" M5 Reps Staggered, JBL MS8 Amp, NBT, 6WA, PDC retrofit
Appreciate 0
      03-09-2015, 03:37 PM   #5
Mike_L
Tech Guy
Mike_L's Avatar
United_States
167
Rep
1,949
Posts

Drives: 2015 335xi GT M-Sport MPPK
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: New York City

iTrader: (2)

I used to do these years ago on the Pontiac Grand Prix's headlights. SO glad I'll never have to do it again. You're lucky, the projector actually fits the F30 housings. I had to open up the top and bottoms of the housing to get them in. What a PITA.
__________________
2015 335i xDrive Gran Turismo M-Sport MPPK
Black Sapphire Metallic on Black Leather with Anthracite
Premium, Tech, Driver Assist, Driver Assist Plus, DHP, M Brakes, 400M

Previous BMWs: 2002 Dinan 540i M-Sport, 2012 X5M, 2011 750Li xDrive
Appreciate 0
      03-09-2015, 06:15 PM   #6
jeebus
New Member
4
Rep
23
Posts

Drives: e90 m3
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: United States

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1lyfe View Post
make sure you apply a uv protective coaitn on the clear plastic.
my experience with retrofitting is once you bake the headlights, the plastic will turn yellow in the sun cause the uv coating "burned" off during the baking process
interesting. Good to know!
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 11:30 AM   #7
squidlyboy
Lieutenant
squidlyboy's Avatar
United_States
44
Rep
492
Posts

Drives: 2014 Alpine White 328i M-Sport
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Chandler, Arizona

iTrader: (0)

subscribed! Thanks for this contribution to the community. Man, I've been waiting for this DIY for awhile. You did what everyone wants to do, but is afraid to do

For some reason, when it comes to halogen headlight retrofits, there's always a teaser that comes out from someone, then they just disappear off the face of the earth. Or the finished product looks good, but the price is so ridiculously expensive, that its not even worth considering.

I've been thinking about the DIY route for awhile, but just don't have the confidence to pull the trigger without some guidance.

Some questions...

1) What kind of sealant did you get? Is it butyl rubber?

2) When you say you made a mess of the housing, did you end up scratching it? or are you talking about the warm perma-seal goo and getting it all over the front lens?

3) Any special tools you used to pry it open after baking it.. flat-head screwdriver? plastic trim tool?

Thanks!
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 01:21 PM   #8
jeebus
New Member
4
Rep
23
Posts

Drives: e90 m3
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: United States

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by squidlyboy View Post
subscribed! Thanks for this contribution to the community. Man, I've been waiting for this DIY for awhile. You did what everyone wants to do, but is afraid to do

For some reason, when it comes to halogen headlight retrofits, there's always a teaser that comes out from someone, then they just disappear off the face of the earth. Or the finished product looks good, but the price is so ridiculously expensive, that its not even worth considering.

I've been thinking about the DIY route for awhile, but just don't have the confidence to pull the trigger without some guidance.

Some questions...

1) What kind of sealant did you get? Is it butyl rubber?

2) When you say you made a mess of the housing, did you end up scratching it? or are you talking about the warm perma-seal goo and getting it all over the front lens?

3) Any special tools you used to pry it open after baking it.. flat-head screwdriver? plastic trim tool?

Thanks!
1. I got the butyl rubber, yeah.
2. The front lens is fine but the rear plastic got bent and scraped and uglied...it was a royal pain getting that thing apart.
3. a few flat heads...then I started using a razor blade to cut some of the sealant.


I'm with you on the whole retrofit frustration. No guides, expensive options from vendors... That's why I just said screw it and decided to try it out for myself.

I can't promise that I will be done in a day or two, I'm just working on this as I have time, but I figured I'd document the process as I go, hopefully it helps someone else out there.
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 02:04 PM   #9
squidlyboy
Lieutenant
squidlyboy's Avatar
United_States
44
Rep
492
Posts

Drives: 2014 Alpine White 328i M-Sport
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Chandler, Arizona

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeebus View Post
I can't promise that I will be done in a day or two, I'm just working on this as I have time, but I figured I'd document the process as I go, hopefully it helps someone else out there.
Thanks jeebus! take your time and do it right haha i'll be following along enjoying the ride...
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 02:44 PM   #10
Dippydo
Major
40
Rep
1,163
Posts

Drives: 2012 BMW F30
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Eden Prairie

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2012 BMW  [0.50]
I'm not that brave.
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 03:27 PM   #11
IndotagSwizz
Second Lieutenant
IndotagSwizz's Avatar
8
Rep
284
Posts

Drives: F30 320i
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Miami

iTrader: (0)

I've never retrofitted a projector lens but I have opened almost every headlight of the cars I owned in the past to take out the ugly orange reflector. I've never had neither fog condensation nor yellowing of the plastic here are a few tips I remember.

1) try not to bake to open the housing, instead use a heat gun and be patient. Work your way around the seal with a flat head, it takes time but it will open.

2) if you must bake it: wrap it in aluminum foil, this will keep the lens from yellowing and wont let the rest of the housing melt.... of course if you leave it long enough you will ruin it either way.

3) Heat it up to where the silicon in the seal is soft and then pry open but don't remove the silicon so you can reuse it. The one that comes from the factory is always way better than the auto parts one.
__________________
Appreciate 0
      03-10-2015, 04:15 PM   #12
squidlyboy
Lieutenant
squidlyboy's Avatar
United_States
44
Rep
492
Posts

Drives: 2014 Alpine White 328i M-Sport
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Chandler, Arizona

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dippydo View Post
I'm not that brave.
I'm not that brave either... that's why i purchased a spare set of headlights rather than mess with the ones on my car which are mint. i was able to pick up a pair for about $200 off Ebay. With a little bit of polishing, they look like they are brand new.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndotagSwizz View Post
3) Heat it up to where the silicon in the seal is soft and then pry open but don't remove the silicon so you can reuse it. The one that comes from the factory is always way better than the auto parts one.
man... there was a dry spell for like 6 months, and then this huge explosion of information in the last couple of days i heard that some varieties of perma-seal can be re-used but that the one BMW uses to seal is designed to be permanent and can't be easily re-used. i know some replace it with butyl rubber in case they need to re-open again at some point. My biggest fear of doing this delicate operation is, like you mentioned, to make sure the housing is 100% sealed so that condensation is not a problem afterwards. i heard some people use a smoke machine to check for leaks, but i don't even know what that looks like.
Appreciate 0
      04-10-2015, 12:44 AM   #13
CharlieVu
Private
10
Rep
57
Posts

Drives: 2013 328i AWD RED
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Denver

iTrader: (0)

Nice!!!
__________________
Charlie Vu
2013 328i Melbourne RED
Appreciate 0
Post Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:47 PM.




f30post
f30post
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
1Addicts.com, BIMMERPOST.com, E90Post.com, F30Post.com, M3Post.com, ZPost.com, 5Post.com, 6Post.com, 7Post.com, XBimmers.com logo and trademark are properties of BIMMERPOST