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Discussion Starter #1
I received my Morimoto EVO-X 2.0 projectors to swap into the factory housing.

I've done some searching and see in other threads that the Hella Gen 3 ballast will work, but can someone explain how everything is wired in?
Do I need a wiring kit, or do anything custom, or is it plug and play into the factory halogen wires? Cant seem to find the answer to this anywhere.

Want to make sure I understand everything I need to make this work right.

Thanks!
 

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I just did this exact refit on my '05 CDI, which originally came w/ halogens. Didn't have a camera handy to take pictures, unfortunately, but what you do is this.

First you do *not* need a "wiring harness". What you do need is to program your car and set XENON=PRESENT so your car doesn't say, "wrong current draw, DANGER WILL ROBINSON DANGER!!" and start flashing or shut down your headlight. You would do this with STAR Diagnostic System, or if you don't have an SDS, the dealer can program it. It's pretty easy to do.

Here's how.

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/w211-e-class/2879561-how-set-xenon-present-star-diagnostic.html

Turns out the XENON=PRESENT setting works just fine with halogens, too. Makes me wonder why M-B even bothered to make two settings....but I digress.

Next, take a power pigtail with that 9006 connector on it, and plug it into the +12V power input on your ballast. This is a standard plug (9006 is very common for this), and it should snap right in; if it doesn't, it's the wrong one. Here's a picture of a Hella Gen 3 ballast with the power pigtail. There's the thick wire with the D2S bulb connector, and there's the other one with the two thin wires. Here's a picture.



In this picture, the red one is +12V, and the brown one (can also be black, BTW) is ground (GND).

Either crimp or solder some standard male spade connectors (available at any Radio Shack) onto the ends of the pigtail if they're not there already.

Before you actually install anything into your headlight assembly, I strongly recommend testing out your setup to make sure everything works. To do that, I put the bulb into the projector, hook up the ballast to the bulb, and then touch the power pigtail leads to a 12V battery. The light should come right up. Also, touch the solenoid leads briefly to the 12V battery and make sure the solenoid works. It'd really suck to have installed all this stuff and then discover that something ain't workin', wouldn't it? :)

Now that you know everything's working, it's time to assemble things. Go ahead and plug the power pigtail's spade connectors into the H7 low-beam headlight connector. The polarity for the headlight connector is as follows:

- yellow = +12V, and
- brown = ground (GND).

That'll get your low beams going.

Now, you want to wire up the solenoid for the low/high beam shield. What I did was simply splice them into the high-beam circuit. Since it's a solenoid, polarity doesn't matter for this part. Get some heat-shrink tubing for that gauge of wire (20-gauge, if memory serves) and a soldering-iron setup with standard rosin-core solder for electronics. If you're not comfortable with soldering, then small twist-type wire nuts will also work well.

Since my ballasts did come with the square plastic grommet, and since that grommet does have snap-in tabs in it, I cut out a hole in the bottom of each headlight assembly and sized the hole so the grommet snaps right into it. If you have a heat gun, cutting this hole with a utility knife becomes easier, but if not, you can also use a drill bit to get things started. Just be careful, as always with any tool.

You could also drill out a hole for the power pigtail wires, just large enough to fit the spade connectors. This is what I did, and to keep those wires from chafing under the car's movement, I used a rubber grommet for that pass-through hole.

BEFORE you reassemble the headilght assembly, test-fit it to make sure everything works. That means high beams, low beams, turn signals, all that.

Once things work, then put things back together and enjoy the brightness. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks for the help, it’s a little confusing with what I need...

So I’d need two of these:
https://m.ebay.com/itm/Original-HID-CONTROL-UNIT-HELLA-Xenon-Ballast-D2R-D2S-For-1997-2003-BMW-5-Series-/152437863287?hash=item237e013377:g:E3YAAOSwCU1YpCdg&_trkparms=pageci%3Af9eea91c-b80e-11e7-b4f0-74dbd180ffdf%7Cparentrq%3A4a0ee8bf15f0a9c4f0525105fffe9715%7Ciid%3A6

Then pigtail adapters like these?
https://www.theretrofitsource.com/wiring/pigtails-adapters/oe-ballast-to-9006-female-adapters.html
Either off the plug or fashion an adapter so it looks nice...and this is what goes to the factory H7 wiring?

Plus a D2S bulb, swap high beam wire into new projector and I am ready to go? (For bench testing)

EDIT: would an aftermarket ballast be another choice? If I’m not too concerned about warm up time

https://www.theretrofitsource.com/hid-parts/hid-ballasts-aftermarket/d2s-morimoto-xb35.html

Or this connector for direct hook up?
http://www.ddmtuning.com/Products/H1-9006-Adaptor-Pair
 

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Thanks for the help, it’s a little confusing with what I need...

So I’d need two of these:
https://m.ebay.com/itm/Original-HID-CONTROL-UNIT-HELLA-Xenon-Ballast-D2R-D2S-For-1997-2003-BMW-5-Series-/152437863287?hash=item237e013377:g:E3YAAOSwCU1YpCdg&_trkparms=pageci%3Af9eea91c-b80e-11e7-b4f0-74dbd180ffdf%7Cparentrq%3A4a0ee8bf15f0a9c4f0525105fffe9715%7Ciid%3A6

Then pigtail adapters like these?
https://www.theretrofitsource.com/wiring/pigtails-adapters/oe-ballast-to-9006-female-adapters.html
Either off the plug or fashion an adapter so it looks nice...and this is what goes to the factory H7 wiring?

Plus a D2S bulb, swap high beam wire into new projector and I am ready to go? (For bench testing)

EDIT: would an aftermarket ballast be another choice? If I’m not too concerned about warm up time

https://www.theretrofitsource.com/hid-parts/hid-ballasts-aftermarket/d2s-morimoto-xb35.html

Or this connector for direct hook up?
DDM Tuning: HID and LED Lighting
The connectors from DDM Tuning are exactly what you need.

Those eBay ballasts, though, are coming from China. I wouldn't trust that, because the Chinese are known to take OEM cases and substitute cheap-o electronics in them.

You can get the genuine article from HIDProjectors.com. I've ordered some from Tom, and so far, he's been pretty stand-up. He will include power pigtails if you ask him to.

https://www.hidprojectors.com/collections/ballasts/products/hella-gen3-ballasts-35-watt-used

For this price, I'll go OEM (Hella, in this case) over aftermarket. Tom's customer service has been pretty good, too; I had ordered two pairs of ballasts, he accidentally sent me only one, I let him know, and he put the second pair in the mail the next day, no fuss, and with his apologies.

For bulbs, yes, you will need D2S bulbs. I've used three types so far, and all work pretty darn well.

- Jahn D2S, 4300K
- Osram 66240 CLC "Classic"
- Osram 66240 CBI "Cool Blue"

Of these, I think the Osram 66240 CLC "Classic" is the best bang-for-the-buck; some careful shopping got me a pair of these for $60, and yes, they are genuine. They're rated officially at 4,150K color distribution, but they look more like about 4800K, pretty close to the CBI's. I installed these in my best friend's 2000 S500 (my former project car), with new Morimoto Bosch E46-R projectors inside of new Depo headlight assemblies. Light output is excellent; she has gotten flashed several times by oncoming traffic thinking she had her high-beams on! I had to aim them down a bit further to avoid that. :)

Next up would be the 66240 CBI "Cool Blue". Comparing them to the CLC, the CBI's really are not much brighter; while it's there, it's barely noticeable. They're just a shade more toward the blue side than the CLC's, for those who prefer a little more blue. These are installed in my E320 CDI. As with my best friend's S500, I had to aim these down a little bit more than normal to avoid people flashing me.

Finally, the Jahn D2S's, which I use in my S600 TT, are another fine choice. They're a little less blue than either of the Osrams, and perhaps not quite as bright as the CLC's. But they definitely light up the road well, and I'm not at all sorry I bought them. Jahn's are used in BMW's, much like the E46 projectors and the Hella Gen 3 ballasts.

Which one of these bulbs? If they were all the same price, I'd go for the 66240 CBI's, by a hair. However, for $60/pair, those 66240 CLC's are a really good bargain, and that's what I'm going with for the rest of my retrofits. They're way brighter than the Internet forums gave me the impression that they'd be.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Perfect - I think I’m understanding how this all works now better.

Now is probably the time to go get myself the star c3 system. Already have the dell laptop ready to go...just need to find a reputable seller for the hardware and hard drive to drop in the laptop...

If I don’t get the star system right away, will the lights function and just give me a warning light, or will they flicker and have running issues?

My 2008 came factory with headlamp washers which is nice, but halogen lights. Can’t wait to get this upgrade completed as the stock lights are horrible...all halogen are IMO.
 

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You will get the flashing. All of my cars did unless either A.) I programmed XENON=PRESENT, or B.) I used a CANBUS module like the Hylux 2A88 AMP ballast has.

For any setup, you basically need just four things:

1.) HID bulb,
2.) HID projector,
3.) HID ballast, and
4.) power to the HID ballast.

That's it. Anything else is fluff and not necessary. KISS principle. My rule of thumb is, "if you don't know why you need it, then you probably don't need it."

Now, for your STAR system. Reputable sellers, there's one on AliExpress that's gotten good reviews. I used them for mine, and so far, what they sent me has been pretty solid. I forget off the top of my head which one it is, but remind me to look that up tonight, and I'll take a look.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Got everything in. I decided on basically everything Morimoto including the bub (5500k). I figure the really nice bulbs are out of my price range right now, so this gives me time to test out inexpensively, then upgrade later as I please. Decided with canbus adapters if this doesn't work, I'll have to get it programmed with STAR, but I didn't want to feel rushed to buy one so hopefully this will function fine.

So my parts list:
Bi-Xenon: Morimoto EvoX-R 2.0 $120.00
D2S: Morimoto XB Ballast $110.00
Morimoto Canbus Adapter: 9005/9006/9012/H10 $30
D2S: Morimoto XB 5500K $50.00
2x pairs of 9006 H7 adapter from Ebay $7/each ($14 total)
Total: $317

Bench tested everything and works good on the floor.

I just realized the high beam adapter that comes with the EvoX-R projectors is 9006, so I am going to order another 9006 to H7 adapter, then I literally have everything plug and play, and zero wire splicing required. Everything will look factory and can be fully disassembled if needed :)

 

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Good. You've figured out the basics for what you want to do. Now, it's a good idea to test-mount things in the headlight housing, plug that ballast into your housing's low-beam H7 connector, hook said housing up to the car, and see how well things light up and hopefully stay up. With the CANBUS adaptor, things should be fine, but it's a good idea to do this test.

BTW, for SDS, the vendor I used was Shen Zhen OEMScan Tool Co., Ltd. They treated me well.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
That’s the plan. Still waiting for the aftermarket headlight covers to come in from China before I have everything to start baking the headlights etc. before I popped the hood I wanted to be sure everything functioned.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Plugged into car today and no BOL lights, seems to turn on OK.

Going to look into finding some 5500k daytime running lights to match the HID's. Can't wait until my headlight covers arrive so I can get started. Since they are coming from China, I don't want to get started until they arrive to be safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Finally got the new headlight covers. Look good.
I purchased some Krylon UV-Resistant Clearcoat that I am going to spray multiple layers.

Going to get removing the bumper and get it all installed during the week!
 

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Good idea. Be sure you put some plastic-friendly primer on there first, to promote good adhesion of the clearcoat.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Got the bumper and both headlights off. Took about an hour so pretty easy.

Baked the headlights at 200F for 10mins and the old covers came off ok. Installed one of the new projectors and it mounted up perfect. Going to look at the best way to wire everything up tomorrow.

I did find one of the tabs on the headlight housing is broken - is there something that will adhere to the housing well to glue it back on somehow?
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Trying to test everything. Low beams work. I cannot get the high beams to stay on though. When I actuate with the ignition on, the solenoid flickers, but won't stay open.
Tested solenoid again on 12v battery and it stays open. Once plugged into the high beam circuit, it just opens/closes immediately. Won't stay open at all.

Any ideas?

EDIT: Is this because I am not splicing the factory high beam bulb in tandem with the projector so the system is noticing the reduced load and shutting it off?

Other notes, the new covers look fantastic. The old one (left) you can see even though I've sanded it, still looks a lot duller than new. Once I figure out why the high beams wont stay open, I can throw it back in the oven and move onto the other headlight.

 

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Are you plugging the bi-xenon wiring plug directly into the new projector's solenoid? If you are, then that's why the shield's flicking and then going straight back to to low-beam mode.

Turns out the factory mechanism is a three-wire system. There are two wiring coils in the factory solenoid, one for actuating it and lowering the shield, and another one for keeping it there (we'll call it the "holder coil"). The one for keeping it there uses considerably less current than the actuator coil. When you hit the high beams, the actuator coil gets just long enough of a pulse of juice to lower the shield. The holder coil also gets juice and is solely for maintaining position. Your new Morimoto solenoid only has one wiring coil, not two, so it's just getting the actuator pulse.

Why do it that way? Well, the less current going through a solenoid coil, the cooler it runs, and the longer it's likely to last. Basically, M-B is again overengineering something simple, because Zey Are Germans und Zat Ees How Zey Do Szings, Ja. :)

That's why you need to either:

1.) move the M-B factory solenoid to your new Morimito projector,
2.) splice the new solenoid into the high-beam circuit, or
3.) pick up one of those 3-to-2-wire adaptors for this plug.

On my S600 refurb, I went with the first option because I still had the original, burned-out bi-xenon projector. Two two minutes to swap, if that. On the E320 CDI, though, that was different since my car originally came with halogens, and thus I had neither a factory solenoid nor the bi-xenon plug that I could find in the wiring harness. Here, I went with the second option because my soldering iron was handy. On cars that have the bi-xenon wiring in the harness, I'd probably just get the adaptor (option 3), as it's pretty affordable.

And yep, I can see the difference in lens covers. New will always be...well, new. You did a good job on the refurb, though. After the final baking, the gloss clearcoat will make it look even better.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Got it all buttoned up. I need to find a H7 male to H7 female / H7 female splitter to get the bixenon's running in the high beam circuit. Couldn't find one at quick search, but will spend more time looking that up later.

I purchased some Philips LED 194 bulbs for the daytime running, but they flicker unfortunately, so I need to find some 194 bulbs that are 5500k color.

Waiting for tonight to test the lights. Cant wait!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Can say the difference is night and day to halogens! Overall I am extremely pleased. The 5500k color is perfection. Super crisp white, but when it reflects off white objects, you can see the tiny hint of blue.

One question...It seems like I have a bit of a "hot spot" where its focusing. Is that normal, or does it seem like I need to adjust the left/right spread?
The second photo when it got really dark shows it better. Just want to compare to what you are seeing. You can see the "hot spots" where its reflecting off the road paint.



 

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Discussion Starter #19
After some driving and research I’ve got a few things.

First I don’t think the lights are level. When I go back to this photo I believe I can see the lines are not parallel. I think I was overwhelmed by the massive change in light now I can spot a things I can improve. I believe I can resolve this by putting some washers under the lowest mount closest to the grill.

Second is the hotspots. Research is telling me this is most likely the bulb not seated correctly or it’s misaligned from the factory. I’m guessing it’s the later due to the price. It says I may be able to re-center by pressing in the metal tabs carefully, or “shimming” the bulb in its holder using a little aluminum tape to basically center it using the holder rather than re-centering the bulb in its own housing (if I understand it right...)
The glare off the road is too much to be acceptable as I need to raise the hotspot up.

To get all this done, I may have to remove the bumper again to get everything just right, but it’ll be worth it
 

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You've got the same "problem" that I have, i. e. you have very bright headlights now. Awwww.... :D

The hotspot looks like it's in the correct location, actually. The right-side cutoff line is a little tilted, just slightly clockwise from level. That's an easy fix.

It might be a good idea to widen the spread just a little, but I don't believe it's really that necessary as long as you're seeing the sides of the road well enough. But yes, I did adjust left-right so that they're as close to exactly parallel as I could.

Nice work! Ain't it grand to be able to see on the road like this?

EDIT: Actually, thinking about this some more, I can understand the concern. When you're on flat ground, that won't bother people, but when you crest over a hill, they'll get nailed with the full brunt of that hot spot. You should have maybe half of it visible when the low-beam shield is up. In that very situation, I've been flashed by people thinking I have my high-beams on. My bulbs are the Osram 66240 CBI's (also 5,500K like your Philips's), and your headlights look very much like mine do.

So, looks like we both might be doing a bit of shimming here.
 
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