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MG MGF Technical - HID conversion legal, easy or worth it?
Seen new HID conversion kit complete for £50, with 6000K brightness and bulbs guaranteed 2500 hours. Not sure if it's 35W or higher, but here are some questions (i've looked at earlier posts on this subject but it is now 2011 and 2/3rds!)
1. Are they still legal?
2. Will the light power ruin the silver reflectors?
3. Are they worth it?
|I have two early Fs; one with HID and one without, for several years.|
1. They are 'probably' still 'illegal' but I am still passing MOTs with them (4).
2. Light will never ruin reflectors, it is the heat that kills them. HIDs run much cooler than incandescant bulbs - the energy all goes into the extra light and they use only 2/3 of the wattage so you save on fuel as well.
3. Everyone who has fitted them says yes.
There is dark talk that this summer(?) the rules will change and 'really' make them illegal. You can easily reverse it should it materialise. See FTF spring issue.
|New lighting regs are applicable for the MOT from 2012. There was info on the VOSA site, but I can't find the link now.|
However, the DfT issued a fact sheet in 2006: http://www2.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/drs/hidheadlamps.html regarding aftermarket HID's and despite this warning, and people not reading the advice properly, it was only a matter of time before the rules were changed to cover MoT testing, which they have now done, effective next year.
To quote the DfT summary: "In summary it is not permitted to convert an existing halogen headlamp unit for use with HID bulbs. The entire headlamp unit must be replaced with one designed and approved for use with HID bulbs and it must be installed in accordance with the rules stated above."
It's not a matter of reading between the lines and making your own "interpretation" anymore, it ain't legal
Personally, I thinks that HIDs are a good idea in principle, it's just that they need more development before the dazzle problems are overcome, even on OEM fitment.
|wow! Lots to consider! Will think about this; maybe fit some fog lights on the front; I do a lot of night driving and want to see and be seen! Apparently fog lights are illegal to use when it's not foggy...|
|Not sure whether your last comment is tongue in cheek Janine, but the Highway Code only permits the use of foglights in visibility under 100m. Rules 226 and 236 apply and are covered in law through Road Vehicle Lighting Regs (RVLR), section 25 & 27.|
Sorry to rain on your party :o)
|Hi Mike, yes you're right! I actually get p***ed off when people carrier drivers always have their fog lights on, even when it's sunny!|
|Once the kits are fitted you can very easily change back to incandescent bulbs for the 'new' MOT. If the police have so little else to worry about that they start cracking down on HIDs, you can easily revert back to rubbish night vision. For me and for the moment, it seems worth the risk for the enormous safety benefits.|
|I did a summary of this recently, as Charles will recollect! http://mgf.ultimatemg.com/group2/lighting/HID/index.htm|
So in a nutshell, not technically illegal but not exactly legal either, reasonably easy to fit, and potentially worthwhile.
You might want to change the bulb for a Phillips variety first, as this is even easier, and I've heard good reports.
Oh, and consider why the head lamps are not the best - probably find that the reflectors are well past their best and have oxidised. These can be reconditioned: http://mgf.ultimatemg.com/group2/lighting/misty_headlights.htm
This thread was discussed between 15/08/2011 and 24/08/2011
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