Troubleshoot HID headlights? (TOP 5 Tips)

Troubleshoot HID headlights

  2. First, check for power to the ballast.
  3. Next check the bulb.
  4. HID ballast diagnostic tip.
  5. HID ballast diagnostic tip.
  6. If the HID bulb won’t light on one side.
  7. Replace an HID bulb.
  8. Differences between HID bulbs.

How do I know if my HID bulb is bad?

Signs That Your Ballast is Bad

  1. Dimming or Flickering Headlights. If your HID bulb cannot produce its full brightness or strobe periodically, this is most probably a ballast problem.
  2. Strange Sounds.
  3. Headlights Not Working.
  4. Changing Light Colors.
  5. Constantly Blowing Fuse.
  6. Damaged Casing.
  7. Burn Marks.
  8. Water or Oil Damage.

Why are my HID lights not working?

If you install your HID kit or LED kit and they do not turn on you may have a reverse polarity issue. If your HID kit or LED kit still doesn’t light up after reversing the polarity, your headlight fuse might be too weak. Upping the fuse by 5 amps might do the trick.

How do I reset my HID ballast?

The ballast can only be reset by turning the headlight switch off and then on again. However, allow a few minutes cooling time between attempts to allow the ballast to cool down. If you reset have to repeatedly reset the ballast that’s often a sign of a bad HID bulb.

What is the main cause of HID headlamp failures?

If your HID system wiring has any loose connections it will cause premature failure of the ballast, bulb or both. Intermittent connections will force the system to turn on and off frequently which is hard on the electronics.

How do I know if my HID ballast is working?

Using a multimeter By connecting the multimeter to the ballast, you will see right away whether you have a working or a bad ballast. If the multimeter measures and detects current, voltage, etc. you will know that your ballast is perfectly fine.

Do HID ballasts go bad?

In most cases, ballast failure occurs as a result of the surrounding environment. Heat and moisture are great enemies to your HID ballast. When it is too cold or too hot, the ballast can burn out or fail to start headlights. A combination of heat and constant condensation can also cause severe corrosion over time.

When should HID bulbs be replaced?

HID bulbs lose approximately 70% of their power over their lifespan, meaning they will not provide the same quality of life as they did before. When you notice your lights starting to dim, it is best to replace them as soon as possible before they burn out to avoid being down a headlight on the road.

How do you reset a ballast?

Firstly, turn off your UV ballast from the power. Now hold down the reset button on the side, keep it held down. Now turn the main power back on. Yes, you still have the reset button held.

What are the symptoms of a bad headlight relay?

Headlights Don’t Turn On The most common sign of a bad headlight relay is headlights that don’t work. A headlight relay will typically fail in the open position, preventing voltage from reaching the headlights. If the low beam relay fails, the low beams won’t work.

Can you fix a HID ballast?

Do you want to know when to repair and when to buy a new ballast? If yes, you must learn how to reset HID ballast. Not all failures require a replacement; sometimes it is because of a damaged ballast. By resetting your ballast, you can make it work again, extend its operational life, you save money in the long run.

Can HID bulbs work without ballast?

Without HID ballasts, the bulbs won’t function. It is essential that you buy a HID conversion kit that includes HID bulbs, ballasts, mounting elements, wiring, etc. so that the conversion is 100% successful.

Can you fix a ballast?

While simply swapping burned out bulbs in an existing ballast is deemed “ballast repair” by many – and can offer advantages in longevity and energy savings – sometimes this simple “fix” is not enough.

Troubleshooting Guide for HID & LED Headlights

In the event that you install your HID or LED kit and they do not turn on, you may be experiencing reverse polarity problems. Essentially, this implies that the power and ground wires of your vehicle’s factory harness have been switched around. If you want to reverse the polarity of your HID headlights, you must spin the 2-pin oval connection on the HID ballast by 180 degrees in order to flip its orientation back around. The polarity of LED headlights may be reversed by simply rotating the connection that connects to the vehicle’s OEM harness by 180 degrees.

It appears to be a problem with the OEM wire arrangement in the car.

If your HID or LED kit still doesn’t light up after switching the polarity, it’s possible that your headlight fuse isn’t working correctly.

2. My HID Bi-Xenon high beams or low beams are not working or are inverted.

In this case, the polarity of the connector’s pins is not precisely matched, which is identical to the previous situation. Ground, low beam, and high beam connections are made using the three pins on the harness connector of bi-xenon HID kits. It will be necessary to unplug the pins from the connector and reposition them inside. For some people, it takes many trials to get the right orientation. Investigate the connector’s inside, and using a fine-tipped screwdriver, you may loosen the pins and reverse the wires.

3. My HID lights are flickering.

Flickering typically indicates that the automobile is unable to provide sufficient power to the ballast. Connecting the HID system directly to the car battery will allow you to quickly and easily verify this. If the kit functions properly, the problem is with the power supply. A wire harness will be required to rectify the situation. The lower voltage required to run the Daytime Running Lights (DRL) at half power is frequently the source of flickering if your automobile has Daytime Running Lights (DRL).

If the flickering is caused by the DRL, you will either need to install a wire harness or have the DRL turned off (this may not be legal in all areas).

This is readily remedied by using a set of warning cancellers, which are inexpensive (capacitors).

4. My LED headlights are flickering.

If the LED lights on your car begin to flicker, it is likely that the vehicle’s onboard computer has failed its self-check test as a result of the new LED package you have fitted. This may be readily remedied by including a set of warning cancellers (capacitors) in your system configuration.

5. My HID kit works sporadically.

If just one side of your lights goes on from time to time, or if your lights function in an inconsistent manner, you most likely have a power problem. A wire harness will be required if you want to power your HID system straight from the car’s battery.

If you have installed the wire harness and are still experiencing sporadic fire, please examine the connections between the circuits. Inspect your car’s battery to ensure that the power terminal is correctly connected to the battery and that the wiring harness is properly grounded.

6. Only one side is working on my HID kit or LED kit.

If one side of the lamp occasionally fails to illuminate, it might be due to a faulty bulb, HID ballast, LED driver, or wiring. Take the following procedures to assist you in determining which component is faulty.

  1. Change the positions of the ignitors such that they are on opposite sides (not applicable for LED kits). If the problem occurs in the other direction, you may have a faulty ignitor.
  • This step will determine whether or not you have a faulty ignitor. When the ballast and the bulbs are connected together, the box with a black rectangular opening is known as the ignitor. If you want to run this test, please change your ignitors to the opposite sides of your kit and take note of what occurs.
  • Switch the HID ballasts or LED drivers to the opposite side of the circuit. If the problem occurs in the other direction, you may have a faulty ballast.
  • This step will determine if you have a bad HID ballast or a poor LED driver in your system. The two metal boxes that arrived with your package contain the HID ballasts and LED drivers, respectively. To carry out this test, please change your HID ballast or LED driver to the opposite sides of your kit and take note of what happens to your equipment.
  • Switch the HID or LED lights to the opposite side of the room. If the problem occurs in the other direction, you may have a faulty bulb.
  • This step will determine whether or not you have a faulty bulb. Please change your bulbs to the opposite sides of your kit and take note of what happens to your kit in order to do this test.
  1. If none of the suggestions above are effective, look for loose connections. When installing your HID kit, double-check that the power relay harness is correctly grounded
  2. Otherwise, the kit will not function properly.

Troubleshooting Guide –

  • Finally, if none of the suggestions above assist, look for weak connections. In the case of a HID kit that includes a power relay harness, be certain that the harness is correctly grounded.

Are you looking for assistance with the installation of LED or HID headlight bulbs? Check out our installation guidelines for certain types of bulbs.

LED / HID Headlights Do Not Turn On

If your LED or HID headlight bulbs are not turning on, the most likely reason is that the polarity of the bulbs is incorrect. LED and HID bulbs are polarity sensitive, which means that if the positive does not line up with the positive and the negative does not line up with the negative, no power will flow from the vehicle to the bulb. LED and HID bulbs are available in a variety of sizes and colors. We’ll go through how and where to reverse the polarity on LEDs and HIDs in the section below.

Reversing the polarity on LEDs

The LED headlight bulb can only be plugged into one spot if you do not have warning cancellers (‘WCs’) installed in your vehicle, and the polarity can only be switched in one place as well if you do not have warning cancellers (‘WCs’). To flip the polarity of the connector, just detach it from the vehicle’s power harness and spin it 180 degrees before reconnecting it. There are two points of connection if you are using WCs with your LEDs; thus, polarity may be switched in two places: firstly, between the LED and its power supply; secondly, between the WC and the vehicle’s electrical harness.

Reverse the polarity of the plug from the WC to the plug if it does not fix your problem!

Please get in touch with us if none of these three alternatives resolves the problem.

Reversing the polarity on Xenon HIDs

However, if you don’t have WCs, the xenon HID headlight bulb can be plugged into two different locations, and the polarity can be switched in two different locations as well – fromthe bulb to the vehicle’s power supply, as well as from the bulb to the ballast. Begin by reversing the polarity of the current from the bulb to the automobile. If it does not resolve the problem, try reversing the polarity of the bulb and the ballast as a final resort. If the problem continues to persist, try reversing the polarity of the bulb connected to the car to its original position.

With xenon HID headlight bulbs that feature WCs, there are three connection points, and therefore the polarity may be switched in three places: from the bulb to the car, from the bulb to the WC, and finally from the WC back to the ballast.

It may be necessary to invert the polarity, starting with your bulb and ending with your WC.

If the problem continues to persist, try reversing the polarity of the bulb connected to the car to its original position.

Please get in touch with us if none of these four alternatives resolves the problem. If you are still unable to get your lights to switch on after attempting to flip the polarity on all of the connection points using various combinations, please contact us for further assistance.

LED / HID Headlights Are Flickering

Generally, flickering is produced by one of four factors:

  1. Aftermarket bulbs are not recognized by the CANbus system, which is controlled by the onboard computer. Lighting systems that use pulse width modulation (PWM)
  2. Daytime running lights (DRLs)
  3. Inadequate electricity (this occurs seldom)

CANbus System

Because the vehicle’s computer system believes there are no bulbs in the headlights, aftermarket LED/HID headlight bulbs frequently flicker and cause a warning light to flash. This problem may be readily resolved by installing a warning canceller in the form of an LED or HID (also known as the anti-flicker or capacitor). As previously said, warning cancellers are only necessary on specific car models, therefore if your vehicle model does not require them, the problem is most likely caused by one of the other three causes listed above.

  • Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Honda, Infiniti, Jeep, Lexus, Mercedes, Mini, Mitsubishi, RAM, Volkswagen, Volvo
  • Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Honda, Infiniti, Jeep, Lexus, Mercedes, Mini, Mitsubishi, RAM, Volkswagen, Volvo
  • Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Honda, Infinit

Xenon HID warning cancellers are needed on the vehicles manufactured by the following manufacturers:

  • All vehicles from the model years 2006 and upAND
  • All model years: Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Honda, Infiniti, Jeep, Lexus, Mercedes, Mini, Mitsubishi, RAM, Volkswagen, Volvo

In this case, a 2001 Ford F-150 will require warning cancellers since, despite the fact that it is not 2006 or newer, warning cancellers are required on Fords of all years. Example:

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Daytime Running Lights (DRL’s)

This is the second most common reason for aftermarket LED/HID headlight bulbs to flicker after they have been installed. As with a dimmer switch, DRLs function in a similar manner as daytime running lights in that the power supplied is lower and the light is less bright when compared to when they are not dimmed and fully powered at night. Insufficient power is supplied to the leds/high-intensity discharge lamps when the lights are dimmed, causing them to flicker. This problem may usually be fixed by switching your light settings from automatic to manual or by turning off your daytime running lights.

Pulse Width Modulation (PWM)

Vehicles using pulse width modulation (PWM) lighting systems are uncommon, although they are a well-known source of trouble for aftermarket headlight bulbs. In a pulse width modulation (PWM) system, the electricity from the vehicle to the bulbs is delivered in pulses. This is particularly problematic with aftermarket LED/HID headlight bulbs, which require a continual supply of electricity in order to work properly. Because to the pulsing of the power source, the lights may flicker, fail to turn on at all, or just function on one side of the room.

Insufficient Power

Very old automobiles, as well as vehicles with old or broken batteries, may fail to give enough power to the light, causing it to flicker. This is an uncommon occurrence, but it does happen. Getting a new battery can help you overcome this issue.

LED / HID Headlights, Only One Side Working

In most cases, when only one side of the device does not come on, it is due to one of the components not functioning properly. You can use the following procedures to assist you in identifying the faulty component. BALLASTS / DRIVERS / DRIVERS: Transpose the LED drivers or HID ballasts to the opposite side of the board. If the problem has now been reversed, you most likely have a defective ballast in your vehicle. BULBS: Switch the LED / HID bulbs to the opposite side of the room. If the problem has now been resolved, you most likely have a faulty bulb.

If the problem has now been reversed, you most likely have a faulty ignitor on your hands.

If none of the methods above are successful, please examine your setup for loose connections and try again. If your vehicle is equipped with a power relay harness (HID Only), make certain that the harness is properly grounded.

HID Headlights – Intermittent On/Off

If you are having intermittent operation of your HID headlights, you are most certainly facing a power draw issue. In order to resolve the problem, you will need to add a power relay harness. It should be connected directly to the battery of your car. Inspect your power relay harness to ensure that it is correctly grounded at all times.

HID Bi-Xenons Not Working or Inverted

If the low or high beams on your HID bi-xenon headlights are not working or are inverted, the problem is most likely due to a problem with the polarity of the bulbs. Check to see that the pins on the connection are correctly aligned. Three pins should be present on the harness (ground, low and high beam). Release the pins and reorganize them such that the connector pins are aligned with one another. This procedure can be done as many times as necessary until the pins are properly oriented. Inspect your power relay harness to ensure that it is correctly grounded at all times.

Troubleshoot HID headlights

A high-intensity discharge (HID) bulb is composed of an exterior shell constructed of cerium-doped quartz. The inner bulb, also known as the ‘arc tube,’ is housed within the outer shell. The inner quartz envelope is formed of fused quartz and two tungsten electrodes are employed to hold it together. In this case, the material is unique quartz, which is capable of withstanding the high arc temperature, which may reach up to 1,500°F. When a large amount of current is delivered to the electrodes, it causes an arc to light up, resulting in the formation of two bright or ‘hot’ spots, one near each electrode.

Read this page to understand more about the terminology used in HID headlight bulbs.


The ballast’s duty is to manage the amount of electricity sent to the HID bulb in order to sustain the arc. It must be able to deliver a consistent 35 watts of power between 70 and 110 volts. Despite the fact that the HID igniter initiates the arc with extremely high voltage, the ballast is responsible for maintaining the arc.


Ignitor for High-Intensity Discharge LampsThe HID igniter increases the voltage originating from the ballast to around 15,000 to 25,000 volts in order to jump the air gap between two electrodes and ‘fire’ the arc. Once the arc is ‘lit,’ the ballast is responsible for keeping the arc lit.

First, check for power to the ballast

It is possible to switch the power to the headlights from the headlight switch (in earlier cars), a headlight relay, or the vehicle’s body control module. As a result, the first step is to determine whether or not there is electricity to the ballast. If the ballast does not get power and ground, it will not be able to operate the headlights.

Next check the bulb

The flashing of a HID headlight bulb is the earliest indication of bulb failure. After a period of time, the HID headlight bulb automatically turns off. Shutdowns are intermittent and unexpected, but they will become more frequent over the course of the following 100 hours of operation. The light emitted by a HID headlight bulb is a dull pink glow. Change the bulb on the other side of the circuit that is causing the problem. If it continues to operate there without shutting off, the fault is with the ballast or the igniter itself.

After several failed tries to relight the bulb, the ballast eventually overheats and fails to operate.

Turn on the high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights and wait for the bulb to automatically go off.

The ballast is reset as a result of this action. In most cases, if the bulb lights up with a faint pink or purple tint, it is a faulty bulb. If your HID bulb exhibits any of the symptoms listed above after being switched to the opposite side, it should be replaced.

HID ballast diagnostic tip

High-intensity discharge (HID) ballast is a boosting transformer that transforms battery electricity into the approximately 75 to 110 volts required to keep the arc going and illuminated. The ballast is meant to detect when the bulb has been turned off. If the bulb is turned off, the ballast will automatically turn it back on after 12 seconds of being turned off. This happens so rapidly that you might not even realize that it was turned off in the first place. It is possible that as the bulb ages, it will shut down (lower its arc) more frequently.

When this happens, the ballast is more likely to overheat.

It is not going to reset itself.

Allowing just a few minutes of cooling time between efforts will allow the ballast to cool down between attempts.

HID ballast diagnostic tip

Turn on your high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights. If both lights are on, wait for one of them to go out before proceeding. If one of the headlights does not illuminate when the headlights are turned on, perform the following test: Allow someone to keep a careful eye on the HID bulb when you turn on the headlight switch. They’re on the lookout for any indication of flicker. If there is no evidence of lighting, the problem is most likely due to a malfunctioning ballast or igniter.

If the HID bulb won’t light on one side

If you’ve moved the bulb to the opposite side and it still doesn’t light on that side, the most likely culprit is a malfunctioning igniter, which is the most frequent.

Replace an HID bulb

High-intensity discharge (HID) systems use extremely high voltages. It is always necessary to detach the wire from the igniter or HID bulb before disconnecting the wire from the ballast.

Differences between HID bulbs

There are four primary types of high-intensity discharge bulbs: The D1, D2a, S, and RD1 series bulbs are equipped with an in-built igniter. D2 series bulbs do not have this feature. A high-intensity discharge (HID) bulb designated as ‘R’ is designed to fit in a typical reflector-style headlight assembly. A black painted mask is applied to the glass of all R HID bulbs in order to hide approaching cars from glare. ‘S’ shaped high-intensity discharge (HID) bulbs are intended to be used in projector-style headlamp assemblies.

LED HID BULB D1R and D1S Why are SD2R D2S HID bulbs used?

3 times the amount of light produced by halogen lights Compared to halogen lamps, LEDs provide twice the light dispersion over the road.

HID lights have a three-fold greater life span than halogen lamps. Highway signs and other reflective surfaces are illuminated by HID bulbs because they emit visible and ultraviolet wavelengths. Rick Muscoplat has a new year’s resolution. Rick Muscoplat posted a blog entry on

Guide to Troubleshooting HID Headlights

In this post, we’ll go over some of the most typical problems that occur while installing and troubleshooting high-intensity discharge headlights. We’ll also go over some concerns and suggestions to keep in mind when purchasing a HID headlamp. The popularity of high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights skyrocketed a few of years ago. The improved light quality and quantity provided by the new design, as well as a much longer lifespan, are key advantages. Following the release of aftermarket kits, individuals began installing high-intensity discharge (HID) systems in vehicles that were not built to use these lights, resulting in a slew of difficulties and a lot of misinformation.

Often, they beam directly into opposing lanes, causing drivers to get blinded, or they jitter around like they are mounted on a jello-like substance.

The high degree of irritation experienced by drivers and installers coping with the usual difficulties associated with aftermarket HID light packages has resulted in a plethora of solutions being put forth in recent years.

With this troubleshooting guide, we hope to assist the ordinary DIYer or installer who is resolving difficulties or who wants to install a HID headlight system while avoiding common errors that might cause problems.

Common Issues with Previously Installed and Working Systems

Another issue that arises with using HID lights is when you acquire a car that has had HID lights placed in it by someone else, but which did not come equipped with the system from the factory. Often, a system will function properly for a short period of time before failing, making it more difficult to diagnose the problem because you don’t know how the lights were put or whether the wiring was done correctly. Trying to track down electrical gremlins is not everyone’s favorite activity, but it is necessary for resolving the majority of frequent problems.

Intermittent Function of Aftermarket HID Headlights

Improper electrical connections are the most likely source of the problem. When installing any electrical modifications, including HID headlamp systems, there are a number of blunders that are frequently made. Connectors that are not properly crimped usually result in the intermittent operation of one or both headlights.

  • Flickering is a phenomenon that is typically caused by weak connectivity. The cause of intermittent operation is most often inadequate connections, although it may also be caused by defective ballasts. There is just one side that works: One side of a correctly fitted system not working is most typically caused by a defective bulb or ballast
  • However, this is not always the case.

Ground Connection Problems

Ground connections should be checked first, as they are the most serious problem. This should be securely fastened to a structural metal component of the vehicle’s structure. Installers frequently make the error of failing to remove paint, corrosion, and debris from the ground connection point, which can lead to serious consequences. Using a wire brush, grinder, or sandpaper, remove any debris from the surface until you have a clean, shining piece of aluminum. Remove the bolt or screw and replace it after applying a small layer of dielectric oil to the surface to keep it from rusting and to promote a good ground.

This strategy can be effective in some situations, but it is not always effective.

It is possible for factory ground wires to attach to multiple different systems in the car before finding their way to ground, providing the technician with several opportunity to make bad ground connections that will impact the functioning of the vehicle’s headlights.

Improper Crimping

After you have eliminated any difficulties with the ground connection, you will need to look at the other connections. There will be at least one power connection on the HID headlamp configuration, which will normally utilise the factory power wire that was installed for the headlights. When installers are required to remove stock plug terminals and replace them with aftermarket ones, the likelihood of encountering difficulties increases. There are a handful of methods you may use to check for connection difficulties.

The first step is as simple as gently tugging on the wire while holding the connector in your hand: If it comes loose, it indicates that the connection is not secure.

To ensure that appropriate connections are formed, always use a high-quality crimping tool.

Whenever possible, power should be routed to the positive side of the vehicle battery rather than being jumpered to other devices or to other circuits.

Using Resistance to Test the Circuit

An ohmmeter may be used to detect whether or not a wire has a faulty connection. Connect one lead to one connector end and the other lead to the other connector end to complete the circuit. You should have a reading on the resistance that shows that the circuit is complete at this point. If you encounter endless resistance, you may be certain that either the connection is weak or the cable is damaged. Before tracing the wire in search of burns and cuts, make sure that both connecting ends are securely crimped together.

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Bouncing, Jiggling HID Headlights

When installing aftermarket HID headlights, this is the most inconvenient problem to deal with because it occurs virtually universally. The most significant issue is the variation in the way in which headlight housings are constructed on the two vehicles. Halogen headlights direct the light emitted by the bulb through a thin, lightweight reflector. The beam of light in many modern automobiles is automatically leveled and stabilized by the use of tiny electric motors. Because HID headlight projectors are substantially heavier than the original component, this is an issue for many drivers.

Depending on the design of the original equipment, the solution to this problem might be reasonably easy or quite complicated.

This will lessen the amount of bouncing and jiggling.

Finding a location on the vehicle where you can place straps, brackets, or some other mounting mechanism in order to minimize the need for auto-levelers is critical. You’ll need to include a technique of manually changing the beam in your design as well.

Tips and Considerations if You Are Planning a DIY Install

One of the very first considerations you’ll want to make is whether or not it will be worthwhile to spend the money on HID headlights in the first place. It’s important to remember that in the United States, aftermarket HID lighting systems are not permitted to be used as headlights on public transportation vehicles. If a police officer notices that your vehicle did not come equipped with high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, he or she may issue you a fix-it citation. If you use HID headlights, you do so at your own risk, and you should be aware that you may be required to remove the HID system and restore the vehicle to its original condition at any time.

The majority of the most serious issues that have been reported with HID headlamp systems on the market have been caused by improper installation.

Before you purchase an aftermarket headlight kit, you should make a plan to ensure that you will have all of the necessary components.

Differences in Quality

When looking for HID systems, one of the very first things you’ll notice is the broad range of pricing. This is one of the most important factors to consider. There are three aspects of every HID system that are critical to its operation. First and foremost, high-quality bulbs are required. Cheap bulbs frequently do not fit properly in the connections, resulting in excessive bounce that is objectionable. Companies that manufacture low-cost bulbs will employ less-expensive gas mixes in the bulbs, as well as poorly fitted o-rings and fragile plastic parts, which can result in a variety of issues ranging from a short lifespan to strange hues.

  1. The absence of waterproofing and the bulkiness of low-cost ballasts make installation a difficult task.
  2. Cheap ballasts generate far more heat and create electrical outputs that are less stable.
  3. It is also vital to consider the kind and quality of the HID light controller.
  4. In spite of the fact that CPU controllers are significantly less expensive, they sometimes contain inferior components that cause flickering and other visual issues since the power supply is not properly controlled.
  5. Start with an ASIC controller to save time and money in the long run.

Always choose kits that have high-quality wiring harnesses made from appropriate wire gauges, and while installing them, make sure to use tight crimps to keep the wires from fraying.

Additional Components

The use of xenon HID warning cancellers or anti-flicker capacitors will be required by many cars, including any make or model constructed after 2006, as well as approximately a dozen other manufacturers regardless of year. This gadget prevents your vehicle’s computer from failing to identify the presence of high-intensity discharge (HID) bulbs. Many vehicles will not function with HID systems unless they have a warning canceller installed. HID headlights are incompatible with many automobiles that feature daytime running lights, and this is especially true for older vehicles.

Because of the way HID lights are constructed, the lesser power does not allow the bulbs to fully activate, resulting in flickering.

If your vehicle does not have the ability to switch off its daytime running lights, you should not put HID lights in it.

Tricks for Getting Proper Alignment

A large number of aftermarket kits advertise their goods as ‘plug and play,’ while in fact they are not. The reason for this is that you cannot just swap out a halogen bulb with a xenon bulb and expect the same level of performance. The halogen bulb and reflector are intended to create light within a certain beam, which eliminates the need to manually adjust headlights, which is a time-consuming process. When you replace incandescent lights with high-intensity discharge bulbs, the reflector no longer adequately concentrates the light beam.

In the absence of HID headlights as an accessible option on your car, there is no straightforward solution to this problem.

The second option is to cut the reflector to allow the HID projector to fit through it, then add brackets and a mechanism for tilting the bulb horizontally and vertically, similar to the way traditional automobile headlights are designed to function.


Installing an aftermarket HID headlight system in your vehicle may improve the illumination in your vehicle and make driving more safe. Unfortunately, many of the systems available on the market are of poor quality and make for a poor substitute for the original halogen headlights on many vehicles. There are an unending amount of publications on the internet that deal with debugging low-cost HID systems, which makes it evident that these devices aren’t worth the time and effort. A high-quality HID system is not inexpensive, but if you want to achieve the type of outstanding illumination that can be seen on some of the most popular European automobiles, making the right purchase selections is critical to your success.

  • The majority of problems associated with poor HID light performance may be resolved by checking the wiring and connections.
  • Remember that when troubleshooting HID systems, the most important rule of thumb is to start with the simplest solution possible.
  • If you are experiencing problems on one side of the car but not on the other, try swapping one component at a time, starting with the bulb, until the problem is resolved.
  • Alternatively, you’ll discover the defective component since the issue will follow the component.

A proper electrical schematic for your car will make the job a lot less difficult to do. Have high-quality wire crimpers and the appropriate connections on available before beginning any electrical system work to ensure that the task is done correctly the first time around.

Troubleshooting HID Headlamp Problems

If you are having issues with your high-intensity discharge light, try these troubleshooting steps first before calling a professional.

The Bulb is Continuously Flicking

Examine the connection between the wire harness in the car and the HID ballast to ensure that it is secure. Check the bulb once again for any loose connections and then fix them. If the connections are in good condition, remove them first and clean them with alcohol. After about ten minutes, replace the connections and reset the ballast. Replacing the wires and checking the bulb should be sufficient. Also, make sure the fuses on the lamps are working properly. If they have separate fuses, they should each have a minimum of 15 amps of capacity.

The Lights Don’t Turn On

After 5 minutes, try resetting the HID ballast and turning the lights back on again. If this does not address the problem, it is possible that the problem is with the battery. Check the battery for signs of wear and tear. When checking to see whether it is in excellent working order, make sure it has a suitable amount of energy stored and that all connections between the igniter, the HID ballast, and the bulb are securely connected. Any loose or disconnected wire has the potential to prevent the light from operating properly.

If it looks to be damaged, it should be replaced with a new one.

Inconsistent Flashes

If the headlights are not flashing consistently, make sure to turn the car on first before turning on the lights to ensure that they are working properly. In order to avoid damage to the ballast, be sure that the car battery supplies at least 12V. If it does not, the ballast may be destroyed. If the headlamp necessitates the installation of extra high-power cables, ensure that they are done so in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Inconsistent Brightness

Ensure that the car is turned on before turning on the headlights if the headlights are not continually flashing. Because the ballast might be destroyed if the vehicle’s battery does not produce a minimum of 12V, be sure the vehicle’s battery does. If the headlamp necessitates the installation of additional high-power cables, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to the letter.

Issues while Driving

Immediately pull over and look for the position of the ballast if your lights suddenly cease working while you’re driving down the road. If the site is close to an area with high temperatures, it will immediately stop operating for safety concerns, which will result in the lamp being turned off. When the temperature returns to normal, the ballast will begin to function again. When the automobile is in a safe operating environment, relocate the ballast to a more convenient location. If the lamp vibrates while driving, check the socket in the light housing and make sure any loose joints are tightened completely.

Disable Auto Switch on or Daytime Running Light Operations

When these features are enabled, it is possible for the HID system to fail to ignite and, as a result, to fail to operate. Keep in mind that in order for the HID system to function correctly, it requires a constant 12V supply.

When these functionalities are activated, they take power from the battery, reducing the 12V supply voltage to the computer. Before you go behind the wheel, double-check that these settings are switched off.

4 Common Problems With HID Lights & How To Fix Them

Disclaimer: We may gain a commission if you make a purchase after clicking on one of our affiliate links. However, please bear in mind that the quality of our evaluations and buying tips is unaffected by this. We are always striving to provide our readers with the best possible experience by delivering high-quality and well-written content. In this post, we will discuss some of the most typical issues that occur with HID lights, such as ballast failure and bulb failure. Are you experiencing issues with your car’s headlights?

There are several issues with high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, and they might contribute to car accidents.

Please take the time to read the full article in order to find solutions to all of your difficulties.

Common Problems With HID Lights

There are several drawbacks with HID headlights, but some of the more significant are discussed below in this article. We’ve given you with information on how to identify each defect as well as how to correct them. We make every effort to make things as easy as possible for our readers. The following is a list of the issues that we will be discussing:

  • The light ballast is not functioning properly. Failure of a light bulb
  • One side of the headlamp is not functioning properly
  • After the installation, the light does not illuminate.

The following is an explanation of each problem, followed by a solution:

1. Light Ballast Not Working

Theballastiis one of the most important components of the headlamp. The ballast is in charge of ensuring that the intensity of the light emitted by the headlights is kept within limits. It also regulates the bulbs, ensuring that they do not consume the entire power of the vehicle on which they are fitted. Because the bulbs can only operate on alternating current, it also serves as a transformer. The battery’s current is a direct current. The ballast is responsible for converting it to alternating current.

It is immediately restarted by the ballast within microseconds of being turned on.

In this instance, you will discover that the ballast will shut off on its own accord.

How To Detect It?

Identifying a defective ballast is not always difficult. The problem might be a bad ballast if your headlights start flickering, changing colors, buzzing, or dimming suddenly. When looking for a faulty ballast, keep an eye out for the following indicators:

  • Look for signs of oil leaking, burn marks, or bulging casing in the engine compartment. They are the first signs of a ballast failure to manifest itself. Even if you are still doubtful, you should follow the other suggestions to be certain
  • Purchase D3S or D2S bulbs and attempt to install them. Now attempt to get them to light up. If they are not illuminated, it is possible that the ballast is at fault. If these work, it is likely that you have resolved the issue. Replace the old bulbs in the car with the new bulbs to ensure proper operation.
  • Make use of a multimeter that can measure resistance. If you are using a digital meter, the readout should be ‘1’ if the ballast is no longer working properly. If the readout is anything other than ‘1,’ it indicates that the ballast is functioning properly.

How To Fix It?

Here are some suggestions for repairing your ballast. Depending on the nature of the problem, you can attempt the following solutions:

  • If the problem is with the wiring, you may purchase a ballast restoration kit that is designed specifically for wires. It is the most convenient and time-efficient method of resolving your issue
  • If the problem is with the solenoid, you may replace it, and you will not have to do a reset after doing so, and it may prevent the lights from being damaged further. Many times, during the installation of the ballasts, the connection does not fit well, and if the problem is with the connection, all you need is a solder gun to fix it. You are now ready to go
  • Simply solder the connections.
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If any of them are not functioning properly, you will most likely require a new ballast. It may initially be more expensive, but it may ultimately save you money in the long run.

2. Bulb Failure

Many drivers have complained about their headlights not working or that they have stopped unexpectedly.

The failure of the bulb may be the source of this problem. When HID bulbs flicker or make clicking sounds, it is almost often due to a failure of the bulb. In rare instances, this can potentially result in an accident.

How To Detect It?

A faulty HID bulb emits a variety of warning indicators. You must be able to recognize them and take the required actions to resolve the situation. Here are several methods for identifying a faulty light bulb:

  • One of the numerous indicators of a malfunctioning HID bulb is excessive heat. This means you must be able to recognize them and take the appropriate action. Some methods for determining whether a light bulb is in bad condition include the following.

How To Fix A Bad Bulb?

First and foremost, determine whether the bulb is the source of the problem. Replace the bulbs and then switch on the lights to see whether it works. If they continue to operate normally even after being turned off, the fault is most likely with the ballast rather than the bulb. If they continue to malfunction, the only option left is to replace the bulbs.

3. One Side Of The Headlight Is Not Working

On rare occasions, one side of the headlamp will function flawlessly while the other side would fail miserably. If you have problems with the bulb, it will either not turn on at all or will not turn on no matter how hard you try. Here’s more information on this particular issue.

How To Detect It?

Because a non-working site is available to everyone and does not require any additional checks or detection, identifying one is a straightforward process. Here’s how to resolve the issue with the component that’s creating the issue.

How To Fix It?

If you attempt it, you may be able to restore the function of the headlamp, depending on the portion that is broken. The failure of one side can be caused by a damaged bulb, a poor ballast, or an ignitor that is not functioning properly. Depending on the nature of the problem, the following methods can be used to restore it:

  • To determine if the problem is caused by a defective bulb, you should replace the bulbs and then attempt to light them up. If the problem persists, it is most likely due to a faulty bulb. It will be necessary for you to change the bulb. To inspect the ballast for damage, use the procedures described in the first issue. It is likely that you will be aware of what to do if the ballast is faulty. Swap the ignitors once more to see if there is an ignitor. If the problem persists, it is likely that the ignitor has to be repaired or replaced.

4. Light Does Not Turn On After Installation

Were you as delighted as we were to install the LED or HID lights, but now that they have been installed, they are not turning on? This can’t be very enjoyable and appears to be a waste of money, so let’s move on. Here’s what you need to do in order to solve your problem. When the lights fail to function even after installation, there are three possible explanations:

How To Detect It?

Because the headlights will not turn on, detection may be carried out immediately after installation of the lighting system.

How To Fix It?

If you are using an HD kit, you will need to reverse the direction of the input connector. In the ballast, there will be two plugs: one red and one black. You may also flip them from positive to negative or vice versa. This will take only a few seconds and will almost always be successful. Otherwise, you are most likely dealing with a malfunctioning ballast or an ineffective fluorescent lamp. They can also be restored or fixed if you follow the instructions we provided before. They may even be replaced because they will still be covered by the manufacturer’s guarantee.


When a HID ballast fails, it emits a series of warning signals. There will be burn scars on the surface and oil leaking from the surface. As an additional option, you might try swapping the bulbs to see if they work in the other headlight. If you answered yes, you have a bad ballast. We’ve gone through everything in detail in the article.

What Is The Leading Cause Of HID Headlamp Failures?

There are a variety of reasons behind this.

There are several causes, the most significant of which being electrical problems and a lack of cleaning. It would be beneficial if you also cleaned your bulbs. It is also possible to experience failure if your connections are sloppy.

How Do You Troubleshoot HID Headlights?

It is possible to accomplish this by replacing out the igniters or the bulbs. You may also double-check the wiring to be certain that it is correct. Just in case the problem is caused by faulty wiring, you may fix it.

Why Does My HID Light Go Out Sometimes?

HID lights might go out for a variety of reasons, including connection faults or bulb issues. If you’re wondering why they’re not working, it might be because of a problem with the connections of the bulb or ballast. It is possible that there are loose wires, defective bulbs, or a damaged ballast. There are a variety of reasons behind this.


There are numerous issues with HID headlights, but if we treat them with care they will live much longer. They are easily remedied by following some basic guidelines and doing minor repairs. We hope this post was helpful in identifying and resolving these typical issues with HID lights, and we hope you will give our solutions a go. If you appreciated our method of repairing HID lights, please forward this information along to your friends and family. Resources that are related to this topic: Are you torn between 55-watt and 35-watt high-intensity discharge lights?

How Do I Know if My HID Ballast is Bad? Galvin Power

What is the best way to tell whether my concealed ballast is bad? In the event that my HID lights won’t come on, how can I tell if it’s the ballast or something else? Is it necessary to get a new system if my lamps are not working? You are suffering mild failure when you ask this inquiry, so I know what you are talking about. There are a variety of causes for this, one of which being the failure of the HID ballast system. It is necessary to inspect and troubleshoot your ballast in order to determine its condition.

Signs That Your Ballast is Bad

Consider checking your existing ballast to determine if it was the source of the problem before going out and purchasing a new one for your illumination system. The alternative is a complete waste of both your time and money. Dimming or flickering of the lights Headlights If your high-intensity discharge (HID) bulb is not producing its full brightness or strobes on and off, the fault is most likely with the ballast. The fading and flickering of your light source may occur when your ballast begins to fail because it is having difficulty regulating and producing a consistent current.

  • It is possible that your ballast is having difficulty maintaining the current and is resulting in an audible voltage regulation problem.
  • If your headlights are not working or if your switches are not reacting, you should inspect the entire system.
  • Changing the Color of the Lighting If you are experiencing uneven coloration or excessive brightness, it is possible that your ballast is malfunctioning.
  • If you do not replace them as soon as possible, there is a possibility that your bulbs will shatter.
  • When your ballast is no longer able to correctly control the voltage, it may cause a rise in the current of your electrical system, leading your fuse to trip and your system to be shut down.

Consequently, if you’ve noticed that you’ve been replacing your headlight fuses more frequently than normal recently, you should investigate your ballasts.

Check The Ballast Itself

Along with examining the warning signals that your ballast is in poor condition, you should also consider inspecting the ballast itself. You should try to reset your ballast or replace it with a new one if you see any of these indicators of a broken ballast. Casing has been damaged. The most common cause of a damaged or bloated shell is a result of voltage overloads. Check your replacement ballast’s power supply and fuse as well, because if these components are not properly maintained, they might create difficulties with the replacement ballast.

  • It is triggered by a sudden voltage charge, which has the potential to cause the capacitor to fail.
  • It is also a simple item to repair, so you won’t have to be concerned if you discover that it has been damaged.
  • Damage Caused by Water or Oil Opening your HID ballast and finding moisture or oil within may indicate that your ballast is not functioning properly.
  • A damaged indicator indicates that your ballast is in poor condition and that it needs to be repaired or replaced immediately.


If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above in your HID lighting system, you should check your ballast. It’s possible that it’s past time to replace or repair them. It is preferable to identify problems before they manifest themselves, because losing your lights on a dark, wet night is a dangerous scenario to be in. If you discover that your ballast needs to be replaced, please see our page on HID Ballasts for your vehicle for more information. When it comes to updating or replacing HID ballasts for my customers, these are the ballasts that I select from a selection.

HID Conversion Kit Troubleshooting Issues

There are a variety of reasons why your HID conversion kit may not be functioning properly or as well as you would like it to, therefore I’d like to provide you with some solid measures to follow in order to determine what’s wrong with your kit. The fact is that all HID conversion kits have a chance of failing, mostly as a result of the large number of components used. Bad HID bulbs can be caused by a malfunctioning gas chamber, an issue with the wiring, or an electrode that has become detached from the housing.

  1. There are several failure spots as a result, and it is essential that you get high-quality components in order to have the strongest defense against failures.
  2. If your LED kit is flickering or you have to switch it on and off 10 times before it will turn on, it isn’t always a damaged bulb, a poor ballast, or faulty wiring.
  3. To be honest, you could even use other colored bulbs, and the problem may be with the ballast.
  4. It is critical to do the troubleshooting steps outlined below in order to rule out the possibility that the ACTUAL problem exists.

The Elimination Process consists of the following steps: One of the few surefire ways to determine which component has failed is to change components around and observe whether the problem you’re experiencing ‘follows’ one particular component.

  1. Make sure your connections are secure! Depending on whether or not you’re utilizing a relay harness, resistors, or some other integration component, your HID conversion kit will have anywhere from 24 to 50 wire connections in total. Make a firm tug on EACH AND EVERY wire, from behind the connection, to examine if any are loosened. A visual inspection should also be performed for corrosion or damage. This is an often ignored, yet critical, component of your troubleshooting process since you may mistake a loose connector for a faulty bulb if you don’t pay attention. Swap the ballasts from left to right. The HID ballast is generally the most accessible component of your HID system, so unhook them and change them around from side to side until they are working properly. If the difficulty you’re experiencing ‘follows’ the ballast, it’s likely that the ballast is faulty. Swap the bulbs from left to right. In the event that switching your ballasts does not resolve the issue, you should try swapping the bulbs next. Check to see whether the problem follows the bulb by switching them from side to side. Replace all of the components in the HID system until you can determine which one is causing the problem. Then remove the HID system and replace it with the original halogen bulbs. Very well, your problem might be related to something on the vehicle’s side, such as the factory wiring or fuses. If you try plugging in the original bulb and that doesn’t work either, it’s time to look into the fuses that regulate that headlamp or to look into the wiring more closely for faults.

A darkening in one or both of your high-intensity discharge (HID) bulbs may have been detected if you’ve ever removed them to physically check them to determine if they were damaged or otherwise problematic. The little glass ball contained within the bulb tube contains a variety of gasses and metal halide salts, including xenon gas, mercury, fluoride, chloride, and other elements and compounds. A damaged bulb might seem black or brown inside that little ball of light on occasion. A faulty bulb might appear to be perfectly clear at times!

To determine whether or not your bulbs are defective, use the process of elimination testing using known good components.

It’s possible that a dark-colored ball inside the bulb is completely natural.

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