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BunsenHoneydew
#1 Posted : 06 November 2018 22:02:00(UTC)
BunsenHoneydew

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Hi All

I've had my MX-5 for a few months and now that the clocks have gone back, I'm driving home in much darker conditions. I've noticed that the drivers side headlight seems to be pointing too far towards the passenger side, so the car is a little cross-eyed, and I don't get much light on the drivers side of the car, close to the car.

Is it possible to change the side toside alignment of the headlights easily?

 

Cheers

Steve

Edited by user 07 November 2018 13:15:45(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Andy0306
#2 Posted : 07 November 2018 20:46:10(UTC)
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Watching this with interest, my 2009 is doing the same but the opposite way found.

RichardFX
#3 Posted : 07 November 2018 21:37:13(UTC)
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Hmm, I've had a look in the Mellens manuals and at my car and the only adjustment mentioned seems to be the up/down aim.

Does this problem apply to both high beam and low beam?

Do you have Tungsten-Halogen or HID?

Possible reasons include

 a) the bulb is not properly located in the housing, or

 b) the bulb itself is at fault with an off-centre element, or

 c) the lamp assembly might be damaged or

 d) the car body is bent! or

 e) something else....

Edited by user 07 November 2018 21:38:31(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Andy0306
#4 Posted : 08 November 2018 21:13:20(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: RichardFX Go to Quoted Post

Hmm, I've had a look in the Mellens manuals and at my car and the only adjustment mentioned seems to be the up/down aim.

Does this problem apply to both high beam and low beam?

Do you have Tungsten-Halogen or HID?

Possible reasons include

 a) the bulb is not properly located in the housing, or

 b) the bulb itself is at fault with an off-centre element, or

 c) the lamp assembly might be damaged or

 d) the car body is bent! or

 e) something else....

 

For mine....

a) Thought this may have been a possibility as mine were loose, but I've adjusted the spring and it's sitting in tight.

b) On my third set, but no difference.

c) Doesn't look damaged, but guess it could be internally.

d) Unlikely..........I hope 

e) Wish I knew.

 

Andy0306
#5 Posted : 09 November 2018 20:29:57(UTC)
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Not the best photo, but you can see there is less light on the left.

 

RichardFX
#6 Posted : 09 November 2018 21:20:03(UTC)
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Hmm, judging by the hot spot and cold spots it looks like possibly both bulbs are in the wrong place relative to their reflectors or lenses.  Maybe their bulb holders have been moved relative to the shell by brute force at some time, maybe to get by with the wrong bulb.

The only way to check it properly is to park on level ground, square-on ideally three metres in front of a white wall, and look at the beam pattern, first for the high beam and then for the dip beam. (block the light from the unwanted bulbs)

If the non-adjustable high beam is off axis either left, right, up, or down, then there is a mechanical problem with the shell relative to the body or the bulb in the shell.

If the dip beam is off then as above, and also the up/down motor linkage and/or the default setting for the aiming adjustment (motor reference) could have a problem.

The centres of the left and right beams should be the same distance apart on the wall as their headlights. The height of the top of the dip beam to the right of the kink should be 30mm (at 3metres) below the centre of the headlamp, with cabin adjustment knob midway and one person in the car.

 

See the MOT testers blog on testing for the aim

https://mattersoftesting.blog.gov.uk/the-mot-headlamp-aim-test-is-changing/

Edited by user 09 November 2018 21:22:31(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Andy0306
#7 Posted : 11 November 2018 20:44:44(UTC)
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I'll have to get it sorted soon, will fire it against a wall and see where the beam hits.

AndyMk2
#8 Posted : 11 November 2018 21:17:53(UTC)
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beam adjustment screws on the headlight unit itself?

Andy0306
#9 Posted : 13 November 2018 20:28:37(UTC)
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Don't mean to hijack the OP's thread, but seems daft to start another on the same subject.

 

First image is from about 3m away 

 

This is about 7-9m away

 

 Didn't get chance to take an exact measurement.

RichardFX
#10 Posted : 13 November 2018 21:17:05(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Andy0306 Go to Quoted Post

Don't mean to hijack the OP's thread, but seems daft to start another on the same subject.

 

First image is from about 3m away 

 

This is about 7-9m away

 

 Didn't get chance to take an exact measurement.

That looks about right, perhaps the left beam is a fraction higher than the right.  Don't make any adjustments to either one until you can be sure of the measurements.

If you were in any doubt it can be useful to ask an assistant to move a card (A4 maybe) to cover first one lamp then the other, just to make sure which beam is producing which pattern.  However with the two different distances and the spacing remaining the same the L-R aim looks OK.

EDIT.  Hmm, looking at it again I'd say the right beam is spot on with excellent cut-off, but the hot spot and poorer shape on the left beam might be because the bulb could be misaligned with the projector lens, perhaps the lens has had a knock or has developed a crack.

Edited by user 13 November 2018 21:24:18(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Andy0306 on 13/11/2018(UTC)
Andy0306
#11 Posted : 13 November 2018 21:25:25(UTC)
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It's very strange, I struggle to see the left kerb on some roads. I might talk to a local garage and see if they will check it out on an MoT test bay.

BunsenHoneydew
#12 Posted : 15 November 2018 14:38:12(UTC)
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I replaced the bulbs with more powerful bulbs (that was fun!) and it didn't make any difference, so it doesn't look like it's related to the bulbs.

Maybe I've been spoiled with the Xenon bulbs and side-to-side sweepy headlights on the XC90...

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