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Old Oct 8th, 2009, 04:35 PM
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Bi-Xenon lights too low?

Hi,

I've just got a fantastic Mini cooper S (clubman) which came with Bi-Xenon lights. I love everything about the car about from these lights. The full beam is fantastic, but switch to dipped beams and the throw on the lights is appalling, downright dangerous in my opinion. I've spoken to the dealer and they say that although Xenons are brighter they have to be set lower in order to avoid blinding people. Seems MAD to me, whats the point in having a higher specced lamp if you just have to tilt it down further.

Am seriously considering 'downgrading' the lights to normal halogens.

I've also looked to see if I can adjust them myself, but they are self levelling and I can see no means of adjustments (2009 model)

Has anyone else found these lamps a problem??
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Old Oct 8th, 2009, 08:27 PM
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Hi,

I was thinking the same thing and I took it to bmw n they said its how it should be. I dont think they should be that low down, anyone know how to adjust them ? I am glad there are other ppl out there thinking they are pretty low down..

Always ready for a Mini adventure!!
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Old Oct 8th, 2009, 11:15 PM
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Halogens are terrible seriously avoid them!


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Old Oct 9th, 2009, 01:02 PM
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Whats terrible about them? The visibility when dipped? My old car (renaul clio) had halogens and I never had a problem with them at all. These new Xenons make me avoid driving in the dark!
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Old Oct 9th, 2009, 04:29 PM
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Can't say I've noticed a problem on our mini. The Bi-Xenon dipped beams on the mini seem about as effective as the dipped beams on the 58 plate Golf we had with standard lights, but give off a nice white light instead of yellow.
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Old Oct 9th, 2009, 04:52 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by ajwt2 (original)
Whats terrible about them? The visibility when dipped? My old car (renaul clio) had halogens and I never had a problem with them at all. These new Xenons make me avoid driving in the dark!

Put it like this if you think the xenons are bad then you'd be terrified with halogens. You can see about one car length in front (if that) with halogens dipped. They're truly terrible!!! Dim, may as well use a candle. The Xenons are a lot better!!! Have to say I've been in minis with the xenons dipped and they seemed fine to me


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Old Oct 9th, 2009, 05:27 PM
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I am willing to let you have my halogens if you give me your bi-xenons hahah yeah right... stop complaining, there the best thing about the car! Bi-xenon's are sweeeeeet!
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 09:47 PM
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Thanks for the feedback people. Sounds like mini just have an issue with their headlights full stop. I took the car for a drive around some country lanes, scared me half to death with the dipped beams on. No chance of seeing a deer, cyclist or anything else on the road!
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 09:57 PM
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If they're really that bad I'd get them checked! Of course dipped beams are for towns / when there are other cars, but you should still be able to see!


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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 10:00 PM
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I have just got a Clubman D with Bi-Xenons and spots. On full beam it could light Wembley Stadium! On dipped beam the cut-off is set strictly on the limit, but the light is very different to halogens and reflective signs are still clear despite being above beam height. I really do like these lights

On my previous MINI that had Xenons, I had a similar problem to yours. MINI wanted to set the beams up slightly too low, however after another visit to the workshop I got them setup how I wanted without them blinding oncoming traffic.

Seriously, I don't think that there is a design problem. Just go back to your dealer and tell them what the problem is. Ask them to set them as high as they can. If my Bi-Xenons are great, so should yours be too.

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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 10:06 PM
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Good plan thanks Apial, after reading your post I shall not give up!

I have also found that putting the fog lights on throws out a bit more dispersed light, and they dont seem to be a problem from a dazzling point of view.
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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 10:12 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by ajwt2 (original)
Good plan thanks Apial, after reading your post I shall not give up!

I have also found that putting the fog lights on throws out a bit more dispersed light, and they dont seem to be a problem from a dazzling point of view.

Be careful with fogs if there are not the conditions required for their legal use, ie fog, rain , snow that reduces visibility to less than 100m. Plod wil stop you and issue a ticket if they have nothing else better to do.

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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 10:13 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by ajwt2 (original)
Good plan thanks Apial, after reading your post I shall not give up!

I have also found that putting the fog lights on throws out a bit more dispersed light, and they dont seem to be a problem from a dazzling point of view.

Foglights are the worst thing you could do for a number of reasons

1. You look like a fool who cannot control a car properly.
2. Its illegal when its not foggy - you can/will get fined.
3. Fog lights reduce overall visibility. A fog light is designed to work when visibility is incredibly reduced. As a result, the light is VERY bright, and set to throw light short distances. This means that there is a lot of light within a short distance of the front of the car (what you want in fog), but little further ahead (what you don't want when there's no fog). The bright light close to the front of the car creates an illusion, which tricks your eyes into thinking there's more light than there is. Your pupils contract, therefore making you see less


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Old Oct 10th, 2009, 10:31 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by M.O.S (original)
Put it like this if you think the xenons are bad then you'd be terrified with halogens.

Seconded. Clearly the basic Mini headlights were designed by the 'stylists' to look good stationary - illuminating the road ahead cannot have been a design objective.

But then there seem to be plenty of Mini owners on this forum, perhaps a majority, who appear to share exactly those priorities.

As others have said, simple halogen headlights can be perfectly satisfactory but they do need to be designed to work as lights not decoration.

Alternatively it may have been BMW's intention to make the basic equipment work so poorly that people choose to pay for overpriced extras. Certainly their pricing of options is at best cynical ("pay us extra so we don't disable the computer that we fit anyway").

So it's almost comforting to hear that even the Xenon option may not be the answer to life, the universe, and everything...

Andrew
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Old Oct 13th, 2009, 08:21 PM
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i have an 07 hardtop, so i dont know if the bixenons r manufactured similarly. there is an adjustment screw for the level. i found pictures of it here on the forum somewhere some time ago, but dont kno if it's available still.


its a white screw at the rear of the housing, which faces up towards the bonnet, not the firewall. the screw facing the firewall adjusts the beam left and right.

i did about 5/8ths of a turn, which brought the beam to shoot about 15 ft farther in front than when i received the car from the dealer. so in total its about 30-35 ft total distance. much better than the meager 10-15 ft it use to have.
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