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Guest Message by DevFuse

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LED Headlights - Thinking about it...

2 replies to this topic



    New Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
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  • Region:U.S. Mississippi Valley
  • LocationTN
  • My C-MAX:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 04 August 2016 - 03:32 PM

So, my C-Max has factory DRLs, it's a fleet model that shipped with them.


I like DRLs as a concept, but with a battery powered car halogen DRLs seem like a bit of a power sink that I'd like to get rid of.


I'm thinking about changing the headlights out for LEDs.  I understand that it won't technically be street legal, but where I am there is essentially zero chance that I'll ever be called on it.


However, I don't want to blind oncoming drivers.


Does anybody have any experience with the available drop-in LED replacement headlights out there?

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#2 OFFLINE   Levi Smith

Levi Smith

    Energi Member

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  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationUpstate NY
  • My C-MAX:2013
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max Energi 303A W Panoramic Roof

Posted 05 August 2016 - 06:00 AM

If you do some searching you might find a post in the Hybrid group.  I *think* that was the only mention I recall of someone finding some drop in LED bulb replacements from Amazon that they seemed to like.


Just be aware that I seriously doubt you'll be able to tell the difference on the power draw or ever make up the money from the investment...  


That said, if/when my bulbs die I'll probably switch to LED's as well if they actually make LED headlights that are at least as bright as Halogens(that wasn't the case last I looked into it a few years ago, but appears it may have changed now...)

#3 OFFLINE   cwstnsko


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  • Region:Canada Prairie Provinces
  • LocationWinnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • My C-MAX:2015
  • Current Vehicle:2015 C-Max Energi

Posted 05 August 2016 - 06:50 AM

As far as I know, Ford uses the same bulb for the DRLs and the low beams.  As DRLs, they operate at reduced output.  I'm not sure of Ford achieves the reduced output through voltage reduction or through pulse width modulation.  Either way, it is very likely that you would encounter issues with a retofit bulb based on a different technology.  Even if you could find LED bulbs that would work with the DRL logic, I don't think there are LED replacements made that will work well as low-beams in the reflector housings that the C-Max has.  Retrofit bulbs fitted to reflector housings will almost certainly create massive glare that blinds oncoming drivers.  The only somewhat appropriate use of this retrofit bulbs is in cars that have halogen projector lenses already in place. 

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