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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an '03 9-3 with HID Bi-Xenon headlights. The drivers side just burned out as indicated by a message on the SID "low beam failure". Are the bulbs replaceable or does the whole unit, including ballast, have to be replaced. I searched the threads here and came up empty. My dealer says the part is $298.00 but they could be charging that for a bulb for all I know. Any help would be appreciated.
Mike
 

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Hoss9-3 said:
'03 9-3 with HID Bi-Xenon headlights
Are these factory fitted or aftermarket.

If they're factory fitted, they're probably HID-D2R or HID-D2S and are in the price range that you were quoted. You just replace the capsule (bulb).

If their aftermarket, just replace the whole kit, it's probably cheaper, however it all depends on the brand of the ballast. The ballast is more likely to go bad than the capsules (bulbs). HID's have a very particular way that they should be operated, for example, they shouldn't be flashed unnecessarly on and off, they shouldn't be off when you crank the starter, they should be turned off before you turn off the engine. They shouldn't be used during daylight hours, to prolong the life of the ballast.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
They are factory. I hope it's not a ballast. I can only imagine the price on one of those. I have found some D2C's that the seller tells me they are direct replacment for my D2S capsules. The price is right at $60 for the pair which makes me leary. My car has DRLs so turning the lights off is not an option. I have been trying to find a way to do that as i would prefer that. As for starting and shutting off the car with the lights on...I can't do much about that with the DRL's.

Mike
 

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Considering that you''re vehicle is fitted with factory HID's, I wouldn't settle for a cheaper substitute for the original bulb, you might damage the factory ballast.

Your vehicle calls for:

D2S 35W P32D2 ECE ( D2S/35W/P32D2 ECE ) is known as:
HID D2S 35W P32D2 ECE ( HID/D2S/35W/P32D2 ECE )

D2S 35 Watt HID Bulbs.

I wouldn't get the D2C's you found, for that price I wouldn't trust them. D2S's retail for $205 USD each, so expect to find something in that price range.

If you get a different bulb than specified, you might end up with two different coloured headlights, like some Acura TL's you see with one pink and one white.

You might want to post in the other 9-3 forum and ask if someone there knows how to disable the DRL's. I did it on my NG900 by simply pulling out a fuse, then I rewired my "city lights" the 194 bulbs inside the headlight assembly to act as my DRL's, which actually works out much better. I did actually change the 194 bulbs out for 921's, a little brighter for the purposes of DRL lighting. Plus my method saves all the other bulbs in the car from burning out often because they are no longer on all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies. I am sceptical about the bulbs offered for sure. I have seen DS2's on ebay for reasonable prices and the brand was listed as phillips. Any idea where I can get some good D2S bulbs here in Canada. I need them sooner than later as I'm down a bulb right now. I will buy a pair and install both to account for some dimming of the "older" bulb. 6000K is the color temp I am looking for.

Mike
 

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When it comes to factory D2S bulbs, I don't believe you have the option of choosing your colour temperature, OEM D2S's are rated at 4000-4300K, this is the industry standard. Its only when you get the aftermarket HID's that you can choose the colour temp because the aftermarket HID's are rebased H4 bases with HID capsules soldered on to the H4 base. With this being done, they custom make different colour temp bulbs.

If you're looking for an OEM HID replacement bulb, I'd try a few aftermaket places first before any dealer who could obvously get them. Try places like Performace Improvements in Guelph, or Napa, or last resort, Partsource (CDN Tire). I have my own sources but they are wholesalers for shops only. I could however price the D2S's for you in CDN cash so you get an idea what the markup is on these things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Tweek's Turbos said:
p.s. This is the section for the older 9-3.
Thanks for that. I must have scrolled too fast and clicked on the wrong forum. But I must admit I got some good advice here and the bulb(s) have been replaced. I went with OEM on the advice from above and was able to score a pair of Osram/Sylvania D2S from a GM service tech friend of mine for $215 CDN. A fair price considering I was quoted by the dealer $298 per bulb. The new bulbs are 4100-4300K and look perfect. On another note, I brought the car to a Saab dealer to see if they would change the bulbs for me as I have never done it with Xenons and wanted to see what was involved. Also, the owners manual instructs not to do it yourself and doesn't even give instructions on the topic. They didn't know how but were willing to charge me to remove the bumper and "have a look". Of course the regular shop rate applies even when they don't know what they are doing. I did a search and found the info, I was able to change both bulbs in about 15 minutes without removing the bumper!!! I think it is easier than the standard Halogens.
Thanks to all,
Mike
 

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Hoss9-3 said:
Also, the owners manual instructs not to do it yourself and doesn't even give instructions on the topic. They didn't know how but were willing to charge me to remove the bumper and "have a look". ..in about 15 minutes without removing the bumper!!! I think it is easier than the standard Halogens.
Thanks to all,
Mike
Not a problem. you gotta love how the dealer uses your car as their training example. Remove the bumper to change a bulb? How bizzare is that.

I can explain why the owners manual instructs not to change the bulbs yourself, its because the HID system operates at a very high voltage from the ballast to the bulbs, pulses of 18,000 -20,000 volts to trigger a spark to start the bulbs, as well as supplying an open circuit output voltage between 300-450 volts to force the arc to establish, then drops down to about 70-100 volts when the arc has stablized.

You may get an electrical shock if their is an electrical charge present when you attempt to change the bulb.

I've been shocked by my HID's once during the installation, it was pretty sharp and enough for me to use extreem caution during the duration of the installation.
 
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