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LH Performance Modification Discussions
 #353338  by 300mguy
 January 8th, 2016, 9:09 pm
The fog lights on our Ms are helping a little bit in foggy weather but not a whole lot in general. Is there a way to increase their effectiveness? I have heard that in general yellow lights are more useful in fog. Is this true? Has anybody upgraded their fog lights to yellow and seen an improvement? Any suggestions on yellow bulbs that would fit?
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 #353344  by InfernoLime
 January 8th, 2016, 10:39 pm
I think yellow does help but I don't have enough personal experience in the fog to say for sure. I used glass paint for mine. A cleaner way is to use yellow tint wrap.
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 #353350  by Sonicrob
 January 9th, 2016, 10:17 am
I use nokya hyper yellow bulbs in my fogs and they hardly make a difference to be honest. It's more for looks if anything. What I plan on doing is retrofitting a set of projectors in the fog light housings to improve the light output. A few members have done this already with decent results. I am sure they will chime in.
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 #353355  by remi
 January 9th, 2016, 2:09 pm
FWIW I installed HID bulbs in the fogs without projectors, and removed the metal deflector in the assemblies. They are 55 watts bulbs (and ballasts) so they are bright. However they are useless in foggy conditions. They only light up the road when driving in curvy small roads here in France's backcountry. I was hopping for a higher beam wit the deflector removed but I was wrong, the design of the reflector makes the beam go down.
 #353358  by 00R/T
 January 9th, 2016, 6:45 pm
There is some science behind the yellow, but the real-world benefits are debatable. Here's a good article on it:

http://www.danielsternlighting.com/tech ... color.html

The fact is, fog is hard to see through. There's ways to mitigate negative effects like having glare reflecting back at you, but that's about it. I think sometimes people think the right lights will make the fog disappear, but it doesn't work that way, sadly.
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 #353361  by sparky99
 January 9th, 2016, 9:04 pm
I have a set of projectors to retrofit into a set of fog lights. Then I'll run some HID's.
 #353369  by 00R/T
 January 10th, 2016, 8:51 am
Any of you guys thinking about a projector retro should look at the new Morimoto XB Type U LED fogs. I'm not sure if they'll fit in an M housing, but I believe a matchbox retro has been done so I think they will. I'm going to retro them in my Jeep soon.
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 #353388  by LUNAT1C
 January 10th, 2016, 11:31 pm
Matchbox has been done. I'd like to do the LED retro if there dimensions line up and color matches. Doubt the color matches 6000K though.
 #353394  by 00R/T
 January 11th, 2016, 9:05 am
The LEDs are smaller than the matchbox, supposedly, and are 5500k. I'll be playing with them at some point, I just have too many projects right now.
 #353460  by 300mguy
 January 14th, 2016, 12:13 am
I just installed Boltlink LED Ultra Bright H3 Cree LED Fog Lights Bulbs 50w 6000k 700lumens X2 Pack of 2 - White Color http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0144C ... ge_o00_s00. They fit well but I doubt they will be better then OEM in the fog. And OEM was pretty much useless.
 #357691  by 300mguy
 April 24th, 2016, 8:33 am
A few months later, just to confirm, Boltlink LED Ultra Bright H3 Cree LED Fog Lights Bulbs 50w 6000k 700lumens X2 Pack of 2 - White Color are useless.
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 #357695  by Shawn1301
 April 24th, 2016, 4:31 pm
I see 100w versions of the h3 bulb at work. Obviously that would be brighter, but what would be required to rig that up? Higher gauge wire?
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 #357714  by LUNAT1C
 April 25th, 2016, 9:08 am
I'm hoping no one is expecting foglights to improve visibility, as they do not. Foglights are engineering to have a low and wide beam pattern that shoots under the fog to light up markings on the road directly ahead of you, to help keep you on the road. The lower the visibility you have, the slow you should be going, regardless of the lighting you have.

The idea isn't to have brighter lights, rather it's to have lights effective at going under the fog to hit those lane markers. Brighter lights are only desirable if the OEM lights are too dim to accomplish that. Once you can see road markers in dense fog, they're bright enough.

I've had four different lights now and may investigate a fifth (haven't decided due to expense). First is OEM standard halogen, which we all know is crap. Aftermarket halogen bulbs will have the same effect, maybe with a different color to look cool to oncoming traffic. Second is drop-in HID. To fit, I had to remove the reflector that was covering the bulb. This produced a lot more light, however it scattered everywhere. Consequence of HID in a reflector designed for halogen. Third was a drop-in LED. Again, the reflector had to be removed to fit the bulb. This was only good for color matching the 6000K D1S low beam bulbs and the switchbacks in the turn signal. No appreciable output otherwise.

Fourth is what I have now. Morimoto Matchbox bi-xenon projectors. For those not aware, bi-xenon refers to the projector having an actuator system (a solenoid) that pulls the shield out of the way to increase the light hitting the road, usually for high-beam. I have the solenoid controlling the shields in my Matchboxes connected to nothing, as when the high beam is used power is cut to the foglights, and the ballasts are only powered when the OEM foglight switch tells the system to power on, as they get power from the factory harness. They are 35w ballasts, so there isn't an issue with using the factory wiring. Connecting the shields would have them actuating without there being light, which is pointless. It's also better to not have them down when the lights are powered anyway, since dropping them increases light above the cutoff, which you don't want when using in fog. I have them out of the car right now so I can fabricate shrouds, but when they're reinstalled I will have the cutoff sitting low, which is optimal for this application. Installation required modification of the back of the reflector. I had to grind down the original bulb-holder to push the projector forward, and I had to buy close-out section bulbs with the AMP connectors soldered onto the bases (current bulbs have connectors that make them longer). I had to do that to have the clearance needed, otherwise the back of the bulbs crashed into the battery box on the passenger side and washer bottle on the drivers side.

The output is very nice and consistent, as they are projectors instead of reflectors. Installation of projectors into the factory 300M foglight is a bit involved, as anyone who has done it or is doing can attest to. I've done it, Keith built a set to put into his car this year, and I'm aware of Robert A and Robert W doing it as well soon. It requires not only dissection of the housing (not hard at all, unscrew the adjuster as far as it will go, use pliers to gently pull the reflector from its swivel mount, then unscrew the adjuster the rest of the way, easy squeezy lemon peesy). Cost is another factor. If you can find a 2" projector used, it can be inexpensive. I found that pretty hard to do, so I bought the Morimoto Matchbox kit from The Retrofit Source. The standard kit is $270. I got it on sale during their Black Friday sale, I think 20% off since that's all I bought in the 2014 sale. In the 2015 sale I bought a lot more stuff and got 25% off of what I bought then. Doing that had the benefit of a solid projector system for what it is, along with the best aftermarket HID system money can buy (the crap on eBay or Amazon, or other resellers that you can get for $50 is worthless).

Once I have the shrouds done I think I'll leave it alone for a couple of years, but I've also got the Morimoto XBLED Universal in mind. It should fit well in the stock reflector and require far less fabrication. If that was available when I bought the Matchbox, I might have gotten that instead. I've yet to look at the dimensions for depth though. Height and depth are the major considerations when fitting something to the reflector and getting it to fit into the housing.
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 #357817  by M-Pressive
 April 28th, 2016, 2:59 pm
I installed a set of projectors in mine, will be testing them in a couple weeks. Not expecting much though.
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 #357860  by LUNAT1C
 April 29th, 2016, 9:36 am
FYI I took a look at the Morimoto XBLED Universal dimensions. It can be done, but it will be hard to do. You can't just assemble it to the stock reflector and reassemble like I did. You'd have to remove the outer foglight lens like you would any headlight retrofit. Absolutely doable and probably will give a nice beam, just a bit more work to accomplish since it won't easily fit through the rear opening like the Matchbox projectors do. I should be done modifying my matchboxes tonight and can post pictures tomorrow with them installed.