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Post Info TOPIC: VW T4 Camper headlight conversion


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VW T4 Camper headlight conversion


Hi All

Any VW T4 owners know about upgrading headlight globes?  I think ours are the originals from 2003 and they're like torch light. Reminds me of my old 6v beetle.  Didn't expect this issue when we bought the van so would appreciate any advice. Don't really want to spend a fortune on it...

 

 

Hugh



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Hughcr wrote:

Hi All

Any VW T4 owners know about upgrading headlight globes?  I think ours are the originals from 2003 and they're like torch light. Reminds me of my old 6v beetle.  Didn't expect this issue when we bought the van so would appreciate any advice. Don't really want to spend a fortune on it...

Hugh


 Hi Hugh smile

I have had a few T4s over the years, and I never noticed the headlights were a problem ?? Lots of other things were though !!hmm

You could check the supply voltage at the lights in case there is a bad connection somewhere. Perhaps the relay is faulty and needs replacing.

The globes are a standard fitting so an upgraded wattage would be a 2 minute job to replace the standard ones. But if there is a power supply problem that will just make it worse.  disbelief

Jaahn   



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Many thanks Jaahn. I don't think there's a fault but I will certainly get the voltage checked. Which globes to buy is the issue without breaking the bank or overloading the loom.

Hugh

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Hi Hugh smile

Here is a tip from an old fella. Do not drive far at night. There is noting to see and the chance of hitting wild life is much greater. Hitting a cow at 100Ks will dim the lights more than you want to think about ! Most GN try to be camped in the bad times so minimise the risks. Easier than big lights hmm

Jaahn 



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Something to note..
Be carefull just popping in higher wattage globes.
You will find a max rating on the lamp somewhere, ignoring this could melt the reflectors inside, and the wiring.
We owned a 2012 VW Amarok, from new the headlamps were very poor, we too avoided night time driving.
Seemed cheaper than the 3.5k LED upgrade they offered!!!
4wd supacentre sell cheap light bars, unsure of quality though..
Hope this helps.
Kezngaz.

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2014 Lc200 with 17ft New Age Big Red in tow.



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Hey.
I have a 2010 D-Max.
Lights. Reasonable.

To give my old eyes a better chance.
I have a nudge bar on front with side wings to protect such.

On the centre rail. I installed a 20in. 10w Light bar.
SINGLE row of lights. (Much better than the 3w double rows)

Cold white light. As far as you can see and more.

Daylight has nothing on it. Brilliant. just about dazzles ME. Behind the wheel.

Like stepping out of a cupboard when you turn on high beam now.
$235ish. and an hrs work.
Wired straight into Main beam wiring with that little blue thing.(diode?).
It came with own loom and wiring chart.
Even I could follow it.

You can always put in higher output globes as well.
Bit I certainly don't need 'em.

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Thanks everyone for the comments and advice. I ended up buying a pair of Phillips +60% halogen globes for $48. They are much brighter and same wattage: 55w/60w. Better technology than 2003 when the van was built in Germany. Also found out that the T4 is set up to onLy deliver 10 volts to the headlights for some reason. The T4 forums in UK are helpful on this. Would love an LED light bar Macka but it's a bit pricey for us and we don't intend to drive much at night on our big lap. The technology keeps improving hey?

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Glad to hear you got it sorted, safely.
Kezngaz.

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2014 Lc200 with 17ft New Age Big Red in tow.



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Hughcr wrote:

Thanks everyone for the comments and advice. I ended up buying a pair of Phillips +60% halogen globes for $48. They are much brighter and same wattage: 55w/60w. Better technology than 2003 when the van was built in Germany. Also found out that the T4 is set up to onLy deliver 10 volts to the headlights for some reason. The T4 forums in UK are helpful on this. Would love an LED light bar Macka but it's a bit pricey for us and we don't intend to drive much at night on our big lap. The technology keeps improving hey?


 Hi Hughcr smile

I hope you have got some good lights now. I must say I have never hear about the 10V at the headlights before ???confuse In fact I seriously doubt it is an intended factory design, just crap electrical connections which T4s suffered from. Where would you buy the globes to suit that voltage.

But whatever, if you do not have the full proper voltage at the light globe pins when they are on, then the globe will not give its full brightness. Any vehicle ! And the earth return must be perfect too. Easy to check both with a multimeter. When you fix the bad connections you get free extra light without buying anything, AND avoid a burnt out connector in the future or worsehmm

Good luck jaahn



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Just an option Hugh.

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With the headlights on high beam, check the voltage between the negative wire at the headlight globe and a good chassis connection point. If there is any voltage reading at all you need to fix the negative wire path back to the body. Another check is from the battery negative to the engine and to the body with the headlights on, again, there should be no voltage reading otherwise the wiring/connections need to be cleaned and retightened.
I have a '74 Kombi and I know what poor electrics is all about, but once you get the earth/negative connections sorted most of the problems seem to settle down. I had to install a relay at the ignition coil so it would start in cold weather, the engine would spin over but not enough voltage at the coil to make a spark :lol: Ya still gotta love the Kombi's though, a whole different style of travelling and a whole community of support.

T1 Terry

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Thanks Jaahn and Terry
I actually don't think we have a fault so much as that the original globes were not very bright. I have learned recently that you can have much brighter globes at the same voltage and wattage as the previous ones simply because of the materials used to manufacture them.
On the subject of kombis, I totally agree,Terry, they get under your skin. This is my third Kombi. The others were T2 models from the 70's and were not fitted out as campers. This T4 is great, though I am still getting used to driving a diesel automatic for the first time. I would be interested to compare fuel economy with others: we are getting 10.9 around town at the moment but I'm hoping for much better economy when we hit the road in July. I was actually followed home by a Geman guy recently in his T4 - he just wanted to rave about the wonders of the T4 and said that in Germany people are buying them from wreckers and restoring them! Not a bad recommendation. Your 'community of support' theory came to life at that moment, Terry. The kids at the school where I teach seem to think I've become very cool since they saw the Kombi in the car park...

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Hi smile

I hope you are happy with your T4 and the lights. I have had perhaps 10 'Kombis' over the years. I have personally rebuilt the motors and gearboxes and in later years swapped motors and gearboxes. I had a full set of the T4 factory workshop manuals too. They are great vehicles in concept and perform well on the road. wink

However their reliabilty is not as good as some imagine in their dreams. In fact a 5 cyl automatic diesel would be at the bottom of my list. I could only recommend you take it to an experienced VW mechanic and have it serviced religeously to avoid heartbreak. Sorry but that's my experience !! The lights may be the least of your worries.hmm 

In later times the quality was improved a lot. But I drive a Toyota van now. Boreing and reliable.

Good luck.



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Great to hear the new globes improved things, I bought 2 LED globes for the spot lights on our Mazda T3500 motorhome because the rough road vibrations kept blowing the Halogen bulbs, haven't fited them yet though so I'll report back with how well or otherwise the conversion went.
My '74 Bay started life as a camper and from what I can find through service book logs and rego records Kombi is on her last trip around the clock to reach the 1,000,000km mark. We have travelled over 400,000km in it since I bought it in '98 and it was the 3rd Kombi I've owned. The first was a '67 split window panel van, the second a '68 low light panel van, I've gotta say the 1800 type 4 motor is head and shoulders about the earlier 1500 and twin port 1600 motors. 4 other VW's, 2 beetles, a station wagon and a type 3 hatch back, but this '74 Kombi has been by far the most reliable in terms of getting us back home, even if it's limping.

T1 Terry

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Hi.
Anybody with the older 6v Konbi's.

Coupla blokes in the old fishing club were Mechanics, one VW.

Both had Kombi's. and both ran a Holden Carby in them.

Completely different motor with tunes exh and Different carby.

They sounded different. plus, they actually went.
No more waiting for the funny little rubber band to wind up.

I think they tickled the heads and valves too.

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i changed the globes on my T4, they didn't last long before blowing, bought light force spotties, the way to go

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Fitted LED bulbs to the driving lights, not all LED bulbs are created equal and I'd recommend the 3 faced or even 4 faced units and forget about the 2 faced units. A lot of light but a big shadow from each of the faces without LEDs making them virtually useless without some addition work changing the bulbs orientation, but where the light comes out it's like a bright sunny day the area lights up so well, far better than any filament globe I've used.

 

T1 Terry



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You can lead a head to knowledge but you can't make it think. One day I'll know it all, but till then, I'll keep learning.

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