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1998 Mercedes Benz C230
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I bought these w202 projectors, and from the exterior and interior looks I was quite happy with the production; however FUNCTIONALLY, i was not disappointed...
Also, I did not buy them from ebay, and I spend about $316.00 USD. I bought them at "ilovebodykit" site.



Specifically with adjustments and hours of playing around, the cut-off the projector lens is horrible! my right side is blinding the cars who are on my right.
I tried adjusting doing minor things to the headlight itself but it still does not work out....



Any tips or advice? Does anyone else have this problem on a w202 with the same set of headlights? Anything would be great! I'm so close to just going back to OEM headlights, which I don't like because I can't use proper HIDs on it without blinding anyone.

Also Retrofitting new projectors to the OEM headlights can be crossed off. I dont have the time since I'm 2nd year university RN student!
 

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2010 E350, 2005 Tundra Sold the 1998 C230
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322 Posts
About ten years ago I worked at a company that designed and manufactured headlight assemblies for cars and trucks, they called it "forward lighting". I was not in the engineering end of things but did have quite a bit of exposure to what the engineers had to go through to design lights that met a long list of sae and dot specifications so that they would adequately light up the road but not blind oncoming drivers. These headlight designs included the back reflector, front lens assembly and were SPECIFIC TO THE BULB USED. So substituting a different model of bulb would change the optics and the resulting light pattern produced.

Even back then, there were aftermarket manufacturers producing these lighting assemblies for much cheaper dollars than OEM manufacturers since they were copying the engineering from existing assemblies and having molds cut and injection molding parts and putting them together far offshore. Were they the same quality as what originally came with the car? You tell me. We spent lots of time and effort on QC which added a big cost to our products. All testing that was done on each design was done by the manufacturer themselves and it was up to them certify that the light met all the SAE and DOT standards. If they didn't, they stood to loose the contracts with the auto manufacturers and that was very big money.

These chinese manufactured lights aren't produced in the large continuous runs and the only customers are folks that want to make the car look "cool" and have no clue or concern that they are blowing away the night vision of everybody coming in the opposite direction. And oh by the way, they "ceritify" that their lights meet SAE and DOT standards; after all, who is going to complain or even know if they dont? This of course is done in the same country that copies dvd's and sells them without any regard to paying royalties to the studio that made the film.

And if you thought about swapping out an HID light for the original bulb in the original headlight assembly, go back to what I said about the lamp reflector and lens design being specific to the model of bulb. The light pattern is totally hosed and generally way too bright and glaring and again, folks coming in the opposite direction suffer for it.

The fact that you realize what these lights will do to oncoming motorists is great. Too many people don't give a damn, as long as they light up the front of the car like its high noon. Unfortunately your only resolution is to probably go back to the original lights with the standard halogen bulbs. You could try silverstars or some other premium type bulb, but I think that would be about it.
 

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2010 E350, 2005 Tundra Sold the 1998 C230
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322 Posts
BTW, I'm not sure about later models, but on my c230, the headlight lenses are GLASS. Glass lenses were always a high end feature. They cost more to make but unlike plastic lenses are much more durable.

Plastic lenses have to be sprayed with a special clear finish called "hard coating" to protect the lens from stones that will chip the plastic and ruin the lens. Over time, that hard coating is what starts to yellow and cloud up due to the UV from the sun. When you buff and polish the lens with one of the kits designed to brighten up the lamp, you are removing that coating down to the plastic. Always a tradeoff I guess. Glass lenses will stay pretty for the life of the car unless they get broken by a big stone or an accident.
 
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