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One of these days I'm going to do a full write-up on my GT project guys. "When it's done" lol.


For now I'm trying to solve the abysmal dipped beam headlights on a 2007 (non-HID) GT.
At first I thought it was because they were improperly set so they were pointing too low, but I'm starting to think they're just not very well designed for illuminating things.

The question I pose to other GT drivers is: Will buying some fancy-pants £30 +120% sun-beam-night-laser-wrath-of-god flavoured headlight bulb help at all?
I have a 5+ hour night drive planned for next month so any improvement would be worth it.

Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Oops, the title was supposed to read "Do +130% bulbs help for the GT's terrible dipped beams?"
Is it possible to update that?
 

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The GT headlights are absolutely pants - this is known.

+130% bulbs help a little, but the headlight itself (reflector design) is pants... Good bulbs in a pants lamp, makes for a pants pattern I'm afraid.. Osram Nightbreakers are usually a little cheaper than the Phillips ultra whatsits... I've tried both, and for my money there was nigh-on no difference between them...

You could play about with the height of the pattern - that helps... Set the beam to focus down low using your dash-board controls, then use the adjuster screw on the headlight housing to bring the beam back up to normal height (use a garage wall/door to assist here..)... Then you've at least got a bit of upward adjustment on the road when you need it, and no trouble for the MOT as the tester can set beams to correct height using only the controls by the steering wheel...
 

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A knowledgable fella called Grahmeo used to frequent here, he suggested (for a 156) putting a penny washer under the light mountings, apparently it made a good difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
A knowledgable fella called Grahmeo used to frequent here, he suggested (for a 156) putting a penny washer under the light mountings, apparently it made a good difference.
Huh. Seems like a good idea.
Although to get to the ajdustmenty bits you need to take the bumper off(?)
Annoyingly.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The GT headlights are absolutely pants - this is known.

+130% bulbs help a little, but the headlight itself (reflector design) is pants... Good bulbs in a pants lamp, makes for a pants pattern I'm afraid.. Osram Nightbreakers are usually a little cheaper than the Phillips ultra whatsits... I've tried both, and for my money there was nigh-on no difference between them...

You could play about with the height of the pattern - that helps... Set the beam to focus down low using your dash-board controls, then use the adjuster screw on the headlight housing to bring the beam back up to normal height (use a garage wall/door to assist here..)... Then you've at least got a bit of upward adjustment on the road when you need it, and no trouble for the MOT as the tester can set beams to correct height using only the controls by the steering wheel...
Hmm.. Yes, as I expected.
I currently have mine set at maximum adjuster height and maximum dashboard height and would still only describe it as "barely usable".

This idea of using a washer or something to tilt the lights further than they go by default seems worth a try (especially since I have to replace the adjuster on one beam anyhow.)

When the GT was in the garage recently they gave me a Ford Focus to drive, and even the dipped beams were so large and bright that I felt I was blinding everyone I passed.
 

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Huh. Seems like a good idea.
Although to get to the ajdustmenty bits you need to take the bumper off(?)
Annoyingly.
Yep - bumper off if you want to stick a washer in on the lower mount. This will tilt the whole housing back to bring the beam up.

Should be some factory tilt adjusters on the rear of the housing though. These adjust the "home" position of the reflector within the housing, completely separately to the motorized tilt adjustment you can do from the dash.. Might be a little more you can get from the adjustment screws before getting the bumper off.

For what it's worth I've tried pretty much all flavors of the fancy bright bulbs - they're OK, pretty much no difference between them, but they wear out twice as quickly.. Also tried HID H7R retrofits into the reflector housing.. Lots of intense light, focused at the floor directly in front of you.. No real improvement for my money I don't think...

I now have a spare set of headlights in the garage that I've opened up and have fitted Morimoto H7 Mini bixenon projectors to... Going to fit them (eventually!) and set up the beams, and finally have a decent light output!
 

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As said, the lamps are poor.
Philips +130% make a big difference.

As these cars are older now there is a good chance someone forced a bulb in incorrectly in the past. That happened to my 156. Anyway, bumper off, lamps out, spring bent back and all put together correctly.

I now have bright headlamps with good beam focus. The beams are still a bit strange with the horizontal cut off with the kick-up to the left which has a hot spot underneath.

They now work well and provide good dip beam. They have been in the car for over 2 years and I have personally done more than 35000 miles with them in.
Frankly, that transformed the lights and there is plenty f adjustment in all directions. I've set the lamps on many 147s and 156s over the years and I've never needed washers after I installed the bulbs correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
As said, the lamps are poor.
Philips +130% make a big difference.

As these cars are older now there is a good chance someone forced a bulb in incorrectly in the past. That happened to my 156. Anyway, bumper off, lamps out, spring bent back and all put together correctly.

I now have bright headlamps with good beam focus. The beams are still a bit strange with the horizontal cut off with the kick-up to the left which has a hot spot underneath.

They now work well and provide good dip beam. They have been in the car for over 2 years and I have personally done more than 35000 miles with them in.
Frankly, that transformed the lights and there is plenty f adjustment in all directions. I've set the lamps on many 147s and 156s over the years and I've never needed washers after I installed the bulbs correctly.
Thanks that's interesting. I look forward to taking a look.
 

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Obviously the results depend on condition of your lights. If the headlights are like an old dog's eyes (a bit dull and milky rather than clear and sparkling) then don't expect the results to be, er, night and day.

Do I get booted off for the bad pun?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Obviously the results depend on condition of your lights. If the headlights are like an old dog's eyes (a bit dull and milky rather than clear and sparkling) then don't expect the results to be, er, night and day.

Do I get booted off for the bad pun?
They clear as a cold winter sky :p

I just had a crazy thought... Wouldn't the GT look great with the headlights from a 159?
Has anyone been crazy enough to try?
 

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Sounds like a world of hurt for equally crappy lights.
The only benefit is 159 lamps have a good beam pattern because they are projector types. OE Xenon types are loads better than the halogen types but that is immeasurably even more problems.
 

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They clear as a cold winter sky :p

I just had a crazy thought... Wouldn't the GT look great with the headlights from a 159?
Has anyone been crazy enough to try?
159 lamp housings are a different shape, but you can mod the original GT lamps with twin bi-xenon projectors and a few tins of spray paint.. There's a guy that posts to Alfabook fairly regularly that does it, or it's a reasonably simple DIY job if you pick up a set of GT headlamps from eBay/breakers.

You can have them set up to give double dipped beams, and then have both sets of projectors drop the cut-off shield for high-beam... Mega light output! Just make sure your beam pattern is spot on if you run with that... Serious risk of retinal damage to oncoming drivers if they get that in their face!!!
 

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Retrofit projectors is the only real way of making them better and with a good beam shape.

My 156 headlights were appalling when new, even after adjusting the level (they were below the minimum MOT height from the factory!), so it isn’t simply an issue of age.
 

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I bought and used, a couple of weeks ago, a Philips headlamp lens restoration kit.

The upside is the lights are better than ever but the downside is I must regularly apply the UV protection to stop the lenses turning yellow.
 

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Can't speak for the GT, but bought GE 130% bulbs whilst on deal in Halfords, they made a hell of a difference in the 159, and previous 147 (similar lamps to GT)
 
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