Best headlights for an R53 - North American Motoring

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Best headlights for an R53

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Old 02-16-2019, 05:02 PM
speedman
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Best headlights for an R53

I am so tired of the afterarket headlights that came on my car when I bought it. I want to replace them and I am thinking of going to the OEM HID units unless anyone has a better solution. I need some suggestions
 
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Old 03-10-2019, 03:06 PM
speedman
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Can anyone recommend the best headlights to use on my car
 
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Old 03-10-2019, 09:03 PM
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Did your car originally come with Xenons? There is a leveling system on cars with xenons so that the lights don’t blind on coming drivers. The plugs at the headlights will be a strong clue also.

If not, then you may want to get regular OEM halogens and get good quality bulbs.

If you don’t know what the car originally was configured, plop in you vin into one of the online decoders to see the build sheet.
 
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Old 03-10-2019, 09:50 PM
Tyler747
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Try Minipartsdirect.com

For OE mini stuff I usually start with Minipartsdirect.com . they are a dealer in NC and you can search parts via VIN. I have used them several times and they have always been super helpful whenever I call them up with questions.

Also they are almost always the cheapest place for genuine Mini parts, not including shipping.
 
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Old 03-12-2019, 03:55 PM
speedman
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I just ran my last 7 digits of my VIN and it told me mine came with xenon headlights. A previous owner put in some cheap. Headlights that use h1 bulbs
 
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Old 03-12-2019, 05:34 PM
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I need better lighting
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:26 AM
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Get oem. Check the salvage yards.
 
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Old 03-13-2019, 11:28 AM
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My recommendation is the facelift Xenons. Find a junkyard car and remove the entire system.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 10:20 AM
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I like the Helix ones,

https://www.northamericanmotoring.co...installed.html


if you want to keep it OEM and have headlight washer then the genuine ones are good. Most i have seen used need polished. So try to find some good ones.

https://www.ecstuning.com/Mini-2005-...ng/Headlights/ You can get them aftermarket that are matched to the OEM but they are a little pricey.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by ECSTuning View Post
I like the Helix ones,

https://www.northamericanmotoring.co...installed.html


if you want to keep it OEM and have headlight washer then the genuine ones are good. Most i have seen used need polished. So try to find some good ones.

https://www.ecstuning.com/Mini-2005-...ng/Headlights/ You can get them aftermarket that are matched to the OEM but they are a little pricey.
We just installed a set of the Helix projector lights and I'm pretty happy with them. The fit is decent, though there is a slight gap around the outside edge. I'm still working on getting them aimed correctly, but I'm really happy with the beam pattern from the projectors. Ours came with factory xenons and one of the lights was giving us problems. I tired swapping bulbs and ballasts, but it was always the same light. There was corrosion at the ballast plug, and ignitors are buried inside the light housings. That and hazy lenses led to researching replacement lighting. The cheapest new xenon assembly I found was $255 on eBay, for just one. We decided to spend that much $$ on a pair of the Helix lights and it was a good choice. Down the road we'll probably update the halogen bulbs with some high output LED bulbs.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:28 PM
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Thanks for all the help.
My car still has the washers tied off under the hood so I would like to go with the OEM lights. I will start looking for a good pair
 
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:12 AM
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Yep, welcome.
 
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Old 03-17-2019, 07:43 AM
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Frankly, I'd run the Helix blacked out lamps that don't look like ****, and then wire in some auxiliary lamps. Something that throws another ~2400lumens or more down the road with whatever required beam pattern.

Otherwise it's just expensive mediocrity for light output.
 
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Old 03-17-2019, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by veedubpat View Post
Frankly, I'd run the Helix blacked out lamps that don't look like ****, and then wire in some auxiliary lamps. Something that throws another ~2400lumens or more down the road with whatever required beam pattern.

Otherwise it's just expensive mediocrity for light output.
Yup, I agree. (Well, obviously! Since we are running the blacked out Helix lights.) The factory Xenon lights are overpriced for the output and complexity. And I include the headlight washer system into that complexity, which I deem unnecessary. If the OP still wants Xenons and headlight washers he can PM me and he can acquire some extra bits and pieces with some mediocre Xenons for a steal!
 
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Old 03-19-2019, 07:10 PM
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If you want the best light output look up Zachary Ta on Facebook. They come at a price but are totally worth it. He uses new halogen housings and installs a zenon kit in them. They are crazy bright!
 
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Old 03-19-2019, 07:27 PM
Yjsaabman
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Originally Posted by miniblucabrio View Post
If you want the best light output look up Zachary Ta on Facebook. They come at a price but are totally worth it. He uses new halogen housings and installs a zenon kit in them. They are crazy bright!
I'm sure they are, even to other drivers on the road, which is not conscientious or responsible. I'm actually surprised they ever put xenon lights in non-projector housings in these cars from the factory. Considering my 2003 325i has bixenon lights, the availability of the tech wasn't the issue. I had Hella projector lights in my 1997 VW Golf and they were amazing, even with halogen bulbs. Same with the Helix projectors currently in our MINI. There's a reason you see them as standard on later model vehicles (before LED technology came into the picture).
 
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Old 03-20-2019, 05:19 AM
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I like our helix one because they are projectors and have the correct cut off so you dont blind oncoming traffic on low beams.
 
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Old 03-20-2019, 05:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Yjsaabman View Post
I'm sure they are, even to other drivers on the road, which is not conscientious or responsible. I'm actually surprised they ever put xenon lights in non-projector housings in these cars from the factory. Considering my 2003 325i has bixenon lights, the availability of the tech wasn't the issue. I had Hella projector lights in my 1997 VW Golf and they were amazing, even with halogen bulbs. Same with the Helix projectors currently in our MINI. There's a reason you see them as standard on later model vehicles (before LED technology came into the picture).
Fortunately the folks at BMW got the cutoff correct, because I agree, HID/Xenon/LED is too much light output for a standard reflector. My 04 MCS had the early Xenons and they did well, and weren't annoying. Certainly not like the oh-so-common Brodozers.
Originally Posted by ECSTuning View Post
I like our helix one because they are projectors and have the correct cut off so you dont blind oncoming traffic on low beams.
Cutoff is everything.

The big deal here though folks is wattage. A 55w bulb (halogen, LED 25w or 35w is comparable I believe) is only physically capable of putting out so many lumens. If one really wants some output, 100/130 bulbs in auxiliary lamps are basically required.
 
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Old 03-20-2019, 06:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Yjsaabman View Post
I'm sure they are, even to other drivers on the road, which is not conscientious or responsible. I'm actually surprised they ever put xenon lights in non-projector housings in these cars from the factory. Considering my 2003 325i has bixenon lights, the availability of the tech wasn't the issue. I had Hella projector lights in my 1997 VW Golf and they were amazing, even with halogen bulbs. Same with the Helix projectors currently in our MINI. There's a reason you see them as standard on later model vehicles (before LED technology came into the picture).
I have a set of Zachary Ta headlights. Property adjusted these lights are no worse than regular lights. The light given off is extremely white and turns night into day. Well worth the money.
 
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Old 03-21-2019, 12:10 AM
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Agreed, his lights are done right. There is no blinding oncoming traffic if they are adjusted correctly. The cutoff is very sharp unlike the factory xenons. And yes they are projector style lights. I should have clarified that before.
 
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