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      06-14-2014, 02:06 PM   #1
Badmeat
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2007 335i Headlight Issue - intermittently working

I'm not new to car forums, and I have searched, but haven't found anyone having similar issues....
I just picked up an 07 335i a few days ago and I'm having an issue with my driver side low beam. The car has Xenon bulbs with adaptive lighting. On the way home from purchasing this car, my buddy who was driving my other car back with me, noticed that the driver side low beam would intermittently work. I have not checked it out with a volt meter, but that's soon to come (if I can arrive at my place with the headlight not working). I'm also planning on swapping the bulbs between the driver and passenger side, to see if the intermittent issue follows the bulb (which I'm betting it won't). I was curious if anyone has heard of a common issue with them. Here's what I've noticed:

-Light will work intermittently, sometimes turning on/off due to vibrations
-I have closed the hood with the light on, and it has shut off. I thumped the headlight a couple times with my palm and it came back on.
-I have checked the connector on the upper back of the headlight, easily reachable from under the hood. Seems to be tight and not loose.
-No frayed or exposed wires from the headlight, back to the firewall. Everything appears to be in tact.

The car has been wrecked, and air bags were deployed. The paint work and body work appears to have been done properly. I either think there's possibly a loose connection somewhere else (where?), or possible a ballast, module, or bulb is going out. If one of the aforementioned were bad/going bad, would they still work intermittently?

Thanks in advance

Last edited by Badmeat; 06-14-2014 at 02:14 PM.
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      06-14-2014, 02:11 PM   #2
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haha, you and I posted the same subject within minutes. Check out my thread. Swapping the bulbs is a pain, but will tell you instantly if you have a problem with your xenon bulb.

My intermittent headlamp turned out the be the bulb. Good luck!
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      06-14-2014, 02:16 PM   #3
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$200 for a bulb? I have found some Sylvania Xenons online that claim to be OE replacements. What are the factory bulb brands in our cars?

I've sourced:
http://www.turnermotorsport.com/p-57...0-e71-e89.aspx
http://www.autohausaz.com/search/pro...xcjaWD4qTw_wcB

I'll likely go with the Sylvania, unless someone suggests a reason not to.

Last edited by Badmeat; 06-14-2014 at 03:53 PM.
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      06-14-2014, 04:19 PM   #4
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http://m.ebay.com/itm/280735235261?nav=SEARCH
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      06-14-2014, 05:02 PM   #5
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I wouldn't think 6000k would be the same as stock. 4100k or 4300k....?
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      06-22-2014, 01:21 PM   #6
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Update:

The driver side headlight had completely stopped working when my bulb arrived yesterday. I installed the new bulb last night....still didn't work. I then removed both headlight assemblies and swapped the ballasts, which determined the ballast was at fault. I have ordered an aftermarket replacement with a one year warranty, which should be here by Thursday.

Side note- in case anyone is wondering, the OEM bulbs are Sylvania Xenarcs (which is what I ordered for $80 shipped from the link above). I will be comparing the OEM bulb with the Sylvania replacement that I ordered to see if they're the same (I forgot to do that before re-assembling everything). If they are, then everyone who has been paying $200 for a replacement "OEM" bulb has been paying 2.5x what they could have....
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      06-22-2014, 02:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmeat View Post
... If they are, then everyone who has been paying $200 for a replacement "OEM" bulb has been paying 2.5x what they could have....
Everyone has been paying 2.5x what they *could have* no matter what the outcome of your test is lol

Hopefully your bulb matches and holds up over time and we can all stop paying through the nose for OEM.

Did you replace both bulbs? I only replaced one, and discovered that the new bulb was burning much brighter than the old bulb. So I replaced the other also.

Curious - did your intermittent light throw any codes? Did you get the "Low Beam Malfunction" error on your CIC?
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      06-22-2014, 04:02 PM   #8
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The new bulb has triggered no codes. I'm planning to compare the numbers on the back of the bulbs to see if what I bought is, in fact, the exact same bulb as the OEM bulb (without a BMW stamp on it).

I did just replace one bulb, but I will be taking it back out and keeping it as a spare, since there was nothing wrong with my bulbs in the first place.
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      06-22-2014, 04:54 PM   #9
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isn't it a rule of thumb to always change xenon bulbs in pairs due to colour changing over time.

obviously more expensive but will stop one bulb seeming brighter or "different" to the other.
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      06-22-2014, 05:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JP.Williams View Post
isn't it a rule of thumb to always change xenon bulbs in pairs due to colour changing over time.

obviously more expensive but will stop one bulb seeming brighter or "different" to the other.
Yep, that's basically what we're saying - change both at same time.
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      06-22-2014, 05:04 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGEE View Post
Yep, that's basically what we're saying - change both at same time.
Sorry i didn't actually see your last reply where you mentioned this.

i replaced both of mine at the start of the year, the difference new bulbs alone make is fantastic!
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      06-22-2014, 05:17 PM   #12
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I understand what you're saying, but I will be running the bulbs that the car had in it when I purchased it, since they're both good.
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      06-23-2014, 03:18 PM   #13
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I rebuild BMWs so my 2 cents.
If your Air Bags were deployed, say the wheel airbag.
Then was it a Front end accident?
If so, did they replace your either or Both Headlights?
do they Match? Per RealOEM.com

I have heard that Pre March 07 Build and Post are different Wire configuration slighly.
And FRM Module is FRM2 on March 07 and forward.

Might want to look into FRM Programming also for AEs as DRL on FRM2 ONLY.

DN
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      06-23-2014, 03:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmeat View Post
Side note- in case anyone is wondering, the OEM bulbs are Sylvania Xenarcs (which is what I ordered for $80 shipped from the link above). I will be comparing the OEM bulb with the Sylvania replacement that I ordered to see if they're the same (I forgot to do that before re-assembling everything). If they are, then everyone who has been paying $200 for a replacement "OEM" bulb has been paying 2.5x what they could have....
I'm confused. Who the hell is paying $200 for replacement bulbs?
The OEM bulb is made by Osram-Sylvania (P/N: 63 21 7 217 509). Retail price on the bulb is $244, but any seller (except BMW) should realistically be charging under $90 for each bulb.

My passenger side bulb burnt out over the week-end with 77k miles on the clock on my '07 335i. Since the bulbs are over 7 years old at this point should I definitely replace both?
I was planning on starting with just the 1 bulb that burnt out and buying the other after in the case its a significant difference in color.

Anyways, I'm also going with the OEM Osram-Sylvania bulb which means it is the EXACT bulb that came in the car from the factory. It simply doesn't have BMW's logo on it making it significantly cheaper (~$75 vs. $270 w/ BMW's logo).
Although, lets not forget - BMW's logo makes the lights shine brighter and last an extra 5,000 hours.

FWIW: My tail light bulb also went out which I simply picked up at the BMW stealership. I asked about the headlight bulb while I was there and here is what they told me:
$160 to diagnose a burnt out bulb
$270 for the bulb itself
45-60 minutes of labor @ $140/hr

Now I know why some people think BMW's are so expensive to maintain. Good thing I've got some DIY talent or I would have been shelling out over $500 to replace a little bulb!
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      06-25-2014, 08:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkNemesis View Post
I rebuild BMWs so my 2 cents.
If your Air Bags were deployed, say the wheel airbag.
Then was it a Front end accident?
If so, did they replace your either or Both Headlights?
do they Match? Per RealOEM.com

I have heard that Pre March 07 Build and Post are different Wire configuration slighly.
And FRM Module is FRM2 on March 07 and forward.

Might want to look into FRM Programming also for AEs as DRL on FRM2 ONLY.

DN
Front end accident. Drivers side headlight is OEM and passenger side is Hella. The car has adaptive headlights and they do function.

I just replaced the ballast and the issue is fixed. Both headlights work now.

Here are the bulbs.

On the right is what came out of the car. What's on the left is the Sylvania replacement that I ordered from AutohausAZ. I am running both bulbs that the car came with when I purchased and am saving the replacement that I purchased as a spare.

It appears that they are both the same...35w 4300k

Last edited by Badmeat; 06-25-2014 at 08:49 PM.
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      06-26-2014, 02:45 PM   #16
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Glad it works, keep us up to date on issues that hopefully are fixed.

Can you tell us, what exactly you replaced in all to get it going?
Thanks in advance.

DN
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      06-26-2014, 05:08 PM   #17
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First I replaced the bulb on the driver side. When that didn't fix the issue, I swapped the driver & passenger side ballast. The issue followed the ballast, so I ordered a new ballast to replace the one that I determined was faulty. All is well, so far.

Also, my driver side bumper support (plastic strip where the screws attach to the fender) was stripped out, so I dropped by the local BMW parts department and picked one up that they had in stock. The bumper is now secure on both sides.
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      08-26-2014, 02:37 PM   #18
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Intermittent xenon failure / flicker

I have a 2006 330i with xenons and the driver side started to flicker a bit intermittently about a year ago. At first it wasn't very frequent but the problem progressively got worse - the bulb started flickering then shutting off for a few seconds and them come back on. It then got even worse and it wouldn't come back on unless I turned the lights off then back on.

After a bit of research, I ended up lifting the front of the car, removing the plastic fender covers, and swapping out the bulbs and confirmed the issue was the bulb. As others have mentioned - this is a good way to figure out if it is a bulb or ballast / control module issue.

I found the BMW part number for xenon bulbs on RealOEM, searched for it on Amazon and found the Osram bulbs for ~$50 each. I ordered two based on the Amazon reviews that color may not match the original 100% (also figured if one crapped out the other was soon to follow).

Overall it was an easy replacement - the hardest part was raising the front and removing the wheels. There are a few YouTube videos that will walk you through the process.
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      07-06-2015, 05:42 PM   #19
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Badmeat --- did you have to reprogram the ballast? I've read here that reprogramming/reflashin etc, is needed. Please advise.

My E91 low beam went out on passenger side. Changed bulb once w Sylvania/Osram D1S from amazon. It worked for two days then went out. Changed second time --- does not light up. Any way to test the ballast w/o swapping it left/right?

BTW did you by the ballast from EBAY the $75 ballast?

Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Badmeat View Post
First I replaced the bulb on the driver side. When that didn't fix the issue, I swapped the driver & passenger side ballast. The issue followed the ballast, so I ordered a new ballast to replace the one that I determined was faulty. All is well, so far.

Also, my driver side bumper support (plastic strip where the screws attach to the fender) was stripped out, so I dropped by the local BMW parts department and picked one up that they had in stock. The bumper is now secure on both sides.
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