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Hi does anyone know if I can straight swop the halogen headlight bulbs in my 2015 Zoe, for the new Philips ultinon pro 9000. I have asked a bulb dealer for price etc, (they are £170, so I don’t want to make a mistake) but he says because of the year of the car I may need the CANbus, I don’t understand this bit.
 

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The attached FAQ may be useful. I assume you know as below -

4.1. Why is LED retrofit technology still not legal on public roads in the European Union (EU)?
Philips LED retrofit range has been designed for headlight units certified for halogen/conventional bulbs. EU member states have not yet adopted the legislation required to legalize LED retrofit bulbs, so they cannot be used on public roads in the EU.
 

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Don’t pay loads just get some compatible LED bulbs off amazon, worked fine and ours passed an MOT today with them in, so clearly no one cares about them technically being illegal
 

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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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Don’t buy cheap led bulb replacements unless you can be very sure they’re not going to ruin any beam control of the headlamp fitting. It doesn’t take the actual light source to be very far out of alignment from the bulb spec for the whole thing to work so badly that all you end up doing is dazzling other drivers and yourself. At worst you can end up with lots of light just in front of the car that makes it look as if things are brighter and better, but because the light isn’t being thrown as far forward, your ability to see hazards ahead at night is dangerously compromised. See this sort of thing on boy racer cars all the time and I find it genuinely frightening.
 

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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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I still think this is a terrible idea, but when led replacements refer to “canbus” what they usually mean is a resistor present that allows the car’s bulb test to pass, otherwise you’ll get warnings the lamp has failed. Been pretty standard on rear led replacements for a long time now.
 

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Don’t buy cheap led bulb replacements unless you can be very sure they’re not going to ruin any beam control of the headlamp fitting. It doesn’t take the actual light source to be very far out of alignment from the bulb spec for the whole thing to work so badly that all you end up doing is dazzling other drivers and yourself. At worst you can end up with lots of light just in front of the car that makes it look as if things are brighter and better, but because the light isn’t being thrown as far forward, your ability to see hazards ahead at night is dangerously compromised. See this sort of thing on boy racer cars all the time and I find it genuinely frightening.
nonsense, the cheap novtech bulbs from amazon have a perfect light pattern on zoe, just check out the old thread on here.
As I said mine passed an mot with them yesterday
 

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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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I think you’re putting a little too much faith in the MOT there dude....

Lights come on - good enough.

I had a car with literally no front brake pads pass an mot not that long ago. Brakes stopped the car - pass.

Halogen headlamps are designed around a light source that’s reallyquite small and in a very specific location in the lamp. It’s very hard to recreate this with an LED because to get the light output multiple diodes are used, usually a cob design. Philips have probably done this with a pair of LEDs back to back, managin to keep the light source in the specified location.

the cheap lamps absolutely do not achieve this and the result is random light spill all over the beam pattern causing the problem I mentioned. I’m sure superficially it looks fine, in fact it looks better, but you need to do some tests with things 100m down a dark road, can you still see them as well with then cheapo led lamps?
 

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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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As an example, this affordable option from Amazon. Look at the size of the LED
136522

Then compare the led layout to the philips


136523
 

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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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Some actual testing of the problem. This blog draws the same conclusion, that you can switch to led H7, albeit not legally at the moment, but it isn’t necessary better and the cheap options are downright dangerous.

 

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I think you’re putting a little too much faith in the MOT there dude....

Lights come on - good enough.

I had a car with literally no front brake pads pass an mot not that long ago. Brakes stopped the car - pass.

Halogen headlamps are designed around a light source that’s reallyquite small and in a very specific location in the lamp. It’s very hard to recreate this with an LED because to get the light output multiple diodes are used, usually a cob design. Philips have probably done this with a pair of LEDs back to back, managin to keep the light source in the specified location.

the cheap lamps absolutely do not achieve this and the result is random light spill all over the beam pattern causing the problem I mentioned. I’m sure superficially it looks fine, in fact it looks better, but you need to do some tests with things 100m down a dark road, can you still see them as well with then cheapo led lamps?
Beam pattern is part of MOT they park it up against a wall with the line on to check alignment...

Also quoting “research” by an auto bulbs reseller is hardly legit!

the factory fit LEDs of my ZE50 and the retro fit on the ZE22 have a very similar cut off with no light spill, obviously the Zae50 is better but it’s no less dazzling
 

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This boils down to a ‘do at your own risk’ mod.

An MOT test doesn’t cover whether a car is road legal or not, although it is a legal requirement to have a valid MOT if you’re using a vehicle on the road.

The issue, albeit a rare one, will come if your vehicle is involved in a serious accident, say, one where another driver/witness cites lighting as a factor.

Then you can be sure that investigators will crawl over your likely impounded vehicle to check. It could be ruinously expensive if your insurance company cuts you loose.

Just not worth the risk in my opinion, either convert properly and legally for headlamps and units type approved for the car, or just get some brighter road legal halogens.

A headlight alignment test at the MOT station doesn’t prove a setup isn’t going to be dangerously dazzling for other road users.
 

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Beam pattern is part of MOT they park it up against a wall with the line on to check alignment...

Also quoting “research” by an auto bulbs reseller is hardly legit!

the factory fit LEDs of my ZE50 and the retro fit on the ZE22 have a very similar cut off with no light spill, obviously the Zae50 is better but it’s no less dazzling
You criticise a post with a decent level of attention to detail, some actual measurements and a clear explanation of the problem, yet you seem to think the average mot does anything other than check the lights come on and don’t point at the sky.
I regularly see illegal lights and they’re immediately obvious. Beam pattern wrong, colour temperature wrong, they dazzle everyone and throw sod all light along the road. They’re dangerous precisely because the driver doesn’t realise how little they can see.

It’s physically impossible to replace a filament lamp with an LED without compromising the beam pattern. The question then is whether that compromise is acceptable.
As it stands it’s illegal so it doesn’t matter what you think, the answer is currently no.

You choose to break the law because you reckon you know better. a great many problems in this world are caused by that attitude but I’ll leave it there.
 

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You criticise a post with a decent level of attention to detail, some actual measurements and a clear explanation of the problem, yet you seem to think the average mot does anything other than check the lights come on and don’t point at the sky.
I regularly see illegal lights and they’re immediately obvious. Beam pattern wrong, colour temperature wrong, they dazzle everyone and throw sod all light along the road. They’re dangerous precisely because the driver doesn’t realise how little they can see.

It’s physically impossible to replace a filament lamp with an LED without compromising the beam pattern. The question then is whether that compromise is acceptable.
As it stands it’s illegal so it doesn’t matter what you think, the answer is currently no.

You choose to break the law because you reckon you know better. a great many problems in this world are caused by that attitude but I’ll leave it there.

Lol ok, it doesnt compromise the beam pattern, and they do check alignment on an MOT, as I’ve had a car fail for misaligned headlights. The beam pattern of retrofit LEDs is fine, plenty of videos looking and testing this on YouTube.

The only thing LEDs cant be fitted to is reflectors, most newish cars use projectors and LEDs work fine.

Morons often flash cars with stock LEDs so I cant see how you can tell the difference, its hardly going to attract any attention from the police, as nearly all cars have LEDS now and the older Zoe looks like it should anyway, 3 years and counting, its fine... stop trying to get on a moral high horse and dont bother commenting, retrofit LEDs are not an issue, end of
 
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