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Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: October 31, 2022 07:20AM

Hey everybody.

So I recently put new LED lights in my car. As people know, in the past I had halogens, and then installed LEDs that required a modification of the bowls in order to really work, and then went back to the halogens for a little bit. Then this summer, with the car running again and putting everything in tune, I decided to buy some more expensive halogens that look exactly like the original style, but have LEDs that you can replace.

They look beautiful. They have little blue bulbs that of course just go fantastic with my theme.

However, I'm experiencing a problem whenever I put the lights on high beam. They run fine for approximately 30 seconds, and then they begin flickering as if I am trying to start the car at the beginning of an 88 mile run with Marty McFly. It's completely uncontrollable and does not respond to me adjusting the knob or anything like that. THE only way to stop it is to turn off the brights, then everything's fine. I cAN reapply the bright button, and everything is great for 30 seconds and then they begin flashing again.

There aren't any loose wires that I can identify. Thoughts?

Eric C. Player
Fargo, North Dakota
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and Great Plains Corvair Club.
THEN: 1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow - 1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red - 1966 Monza 110, Purple - 1967 Monza 140, Red - 1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow" - 1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW: 1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"
---------------------------------------
"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: October 31, 2022 07:35AM

Its the thermo braker in your headlight switch. Weak breaker or tooooooo much current draw.

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: toms73novass ()
Date: October 31, 2022 08:06AM

My guess would be too much current draw.

I ran a dedicated 10g wire from the battery to the trunk and have relays that are activated by the light switch.

I have full current to the bulbs and my halogens are BRIGHT. I think the same setup for your LED's fix your issue.

-Tom


63' Monza Spyder Convertable (in process) MY Build Thread
62' Wagon rebuild MY Build Thread
65' Monza MY Build Thread
73' NovaSS 454 Big block (Sold)
86' BMW 325es
67' UltraVan 211 "Violet"
NFCC, UMCC
Grand Island, NY

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: October 31, 2022 09:40AM

Math time. What is the current or wattage of the new lamps?

The original setup was 4 lamps on high beam at 50 watts each, so 3.91 amps times 4 is 15.6 Amps. If the new lamps use more than 4 amps each, trouble. So additional wiring like Tom says is a great idea.

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: guthrie1068 ()
Date: November 02, 2022 05:05AM

2x what Tom said. Here's how I did it.
[corvaircenter.com]

Chad Guthrie
Rives Junction, MI
'63 convertible

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: November 02, 2022 05:33AM

At one time I hooked my driving lights to the high beam circuit on my 87 Chevy Van. That is when I had them turned on they would work with the high beams. Soon after that the breaker would open when both were on. I realized my mistake and wired it correctly. It didn't matter, the breaker was now weak and it open with only the high beams. New switch which was the same one my Vair used and all was OK. Same thing happened to my Vair in the 70s, but there were no extra lights installed, just running the high beams, New switch fixed it.

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: November 08, 2022 01:28PM

Thanks for all these answers guys. I parked the car and honestly forgot that I'd even made this post. Had a busy week. I'm going to go back over everyone's responses and figure out what I want to do next.

Eric C. Player
Fargo, North Dakota
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and Great Plains Corvair Club.
THEN: 1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow - 1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red - 1966 Monza 110, Purple - 1967 Monza 140, Red - 1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow" - 1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW: 1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"
---------------------------------------
"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/08/2022 01:32PM by playerpage.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: November 10, 2022 08:30AM

Many decades ago in another vehicle, I had an issue with the headlights flickering at night - from the time they were turned on - IIRC.

Do not recall another electrical issues - only had an AM radio (and driving lights, but I did not use them in the city).

It turned out to be a bad diode in the alternator.

Replaced the alternator and problem went away.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: November 10, 2022 09:40AM

Eric, In response to your question on the Alternator thread.

I have a California Corvairs 65 amp on my More Door. I have halogen lights still running on original circuit wiring. I have no issues with the power source with headlights on, heater fan on medium and radio running all at the same time. The alternator has 5 years inservice and 16.5k miles operation on it. Headlights are Sylvania T3 style halogens and still using 50 year old headlights and dimmer switches.

I think you need to start looking at the grounds for the headlight. They are buried under the trunk panels over park light assembles. Bad grounds will cause the flickering problem. Take grounds loose and clean terminals and body metal to get them totally clean. Reinstall and tighten. Paint over the screw and hardware lightly.

Probably overloading of circuits and poor grounding issue.

(ps: try to keep issue and questione relating to the issue on the same thread. No need to bounce around.)

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: JimBrandberg ()
Date: November 10, 2022 10:59AM

I would think Halogen lights would draw more amps than original and LED lights would draw less amps.
I'm just trying to learn something. I had a car here earlier this year where someone was half done installing different lights with some new wiring. There were problems so I just put stock parts back in there and there wasn't money in the budget to go investigating, but I still can't help being curious.

Jim Brandberg
Isanti, MN
CorvairRepair.com






Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/10/2022 11:00AM by JimBrandberg.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: November 10, 2022 11:16AM

JimBrandberg Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I would think Halogen lights would draw more amps than original and LED lights would draw less amps.
> I'm just trying to learn something. I had a car here earlier this year where someone was half done installing different lights with some new wiring. There were problems so I just put stock parts back in there and there wasn't money in the budget to go investigating, but I still can't help being curious.

From my feeble memory installing driving lights in the 1970’s, there is a formula that converts watts to amps.

What the new bulbs / lights draw (watts); I have no clue.

When I used the formula on 55w halogens, I came up with 7 amps per bulb. Not the same as someone else has posted here.

I wired ( fused) the circuit based on this and did not have any problems.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: November 10, 2022 11:55AM

From Sylvania data

Halogen bulbs.
H5001 bulb 3.91 amps

H5006 bulb 2.7 amps.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: November 10, 2022 12:01PM

E=IR

P=IE (pie good, but I digress)

Power in Watts = amps x volts

amps = watts / volts

55 / 12.6 (or 13 or 13.8*) = 3.98 to 4.36 amps.

Per lamp

You were adding driving lamps to 6 volt vehicle?confused smiley

Ohms law has not been repealed.winking smiley

*lamp manufacturer will list volts the power rating is based upon

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: November 10, 2022 02:05PM

Frank DuVal Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> E=IR
>
> P=IE (pie good, but I digress)
>
> Power in Watts = amps x volts
>
> amps = watts / volts
>
> 55 / 12.6 (or 13 or 13.8*) = 3.98 to 4.36 amps.
>
> Per lamp
>
> You were adding driving lamps to 6 volt vehicle?confused smiley
>
> Ohms law has not been repealed.winking smiley
>
> *lamp manufacturer will list volts the power rating is based upon

Just my feeble memory from 40+ years ago.

Do know that 4 55 watt Cibie halogen headlights will trip the circuit breaker in the LM headlight switch.

Used a 30 amp fuse on the other vehicle so I guess it was more than enough.

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: November 10, 2022 06:46PM

Well, the mystery gets deeper, or, you CAN teach an old guy new tricks!

I found a Wagner lamp specification book and downloaded it from here:

[www.drivparts.com]

The original equipment headlamps were 4002 low beam and 4001 high beam. Later, the 4002 went obsolete and the 4000 was the replacement for the low beam.

Now here's the kicker. See these specs:

4002 low beam (3 terminals) 12.8 volts high filament 37.5w 2.93a
low filament 50w 3.91a

4001 high beam (2 terminals) 12.8 volts 37.5w 2.93a

4000 low beam (3 terminals) 12.8 volts high filament 37.5w 2.93a
low filament 60w 4.69a

See what seems wrong? Yep, that low beam lamp on low filament is higher lamp output than the high filament output!eye popping smiley

Truly, I never knew that. I guess high means focal spot high and focal spot low, not wattage (or candlepower, candela).

Anyway, when the car had the low beams on, headlamps draw 7.82a. If replacement 4000 lamps were installed, it would be 9.38a.

When the car is in high beam, the headlamps draw 11.72a.

Four 55 watt lamps? 55/12.8x4= 17.18a. Quite a bit above design.

Now, I read on forums where the Halogens draw extra current, but most report never having an issue installing them, me included. Well

H5001 high beam is still 50 w, 3.91a. Just lots more candela. 55,000 vs 29,000. Wow.

H5006 low beam high and low filaments are both 35watts! So lower current draw than stock headlamps. But the low is 20,000 candela vs the old lamp's 19,000. Close and whiter for less power.

Anyone have the specifications for the LEDs in question?

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: November 11, 2022 04:29PM

Halogens are designed to run hotter and must get to that temp to get the resistance where it should be. If they are not getting full voltage and in turn full temp they get stuck in no mans land and will suck up current like crazy.

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: November 13, 2022 04:08PM

Or teach an old dog to re-read his tricks.grinning smiley

Quote
Frank
H5001 high beam is still 50 w, 3.91a. Just lots more candela. 55,000 vs 29,000. Wow.

Um, no, 50 watts is higher than the stock 37.5 watts, so it draws about 1 amp more, or 2 amps per vehicle.

Have to re-read more what I type.sad smiley

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Headlights Electrical Mystery Issue
Posted by: TIBCO ()
Date: November 15, 2022 11:17AM

Eric, did you by any chance happen to replace the headlight switch with a new one? If so, that could be your problem. I put the halogens in my 61 Rampside along with a new switch from Clark's. It did the exact same thing as you describe in your original post. They worked fine on low beam but when switched to high beam, they would burn for about 20-30 seconds then flicker off. I put the original switch back in and all is fine. Just another thing to check.

Cliff Tibbitts
Nicholasville, KY
CORSA, CKCE, Derby City Corvairs
66 Monza, 140/4sp

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