Need help-Replace low beam headlights 2012 SL - Nissan Murano Forum
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#1 Old 01-18-2013, 12:12 PM
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Need help-Replace low beam headlights 2012 SL

Recently purchased 12 SL and wife complains of poor lighting with low beam headlights, both to the side and front. I went out and drove her MO and to me it's almost unsafe. I searched this forum, OEM reported unsatisfactory by others. Do not want HID, considered switch to H9 but decided on the silverstar ultras as I was at Pep Boys, they were $50 before $15 rebate- can return for refund easily if not satisfied (used AMEX to double 1 year warranty). I'm mechanically challenged so here comes my questions. 1. Majority of night drivng is on low beam, if on high will mismatch in bulbs but real obvious?. 2. How do you access these? Manual says d/c negative terminal first. I don't think I can change bulbs without more room- it looks like if I pop off one plastic connector I can then peel back that cloth material that is attached to the post. Stupid question but how do I pop that plastic connector off and is this the way to change bulb? I know brighter bulbs have lower life and some think ultras overrated but hopefully this will significantly improve lighting. Thanks to any/all for help.
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#2 Old 01-18-2013, 08:02 PM
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Sylvania SilverStars = Scam

  • Yeah, ditch the Silverstars -- They're nothing more than overpriced, under-performing marketing ploys (see this thread for details and this thread for a comparison of bulb output and lifespan data, both from an automotive lighting expert). But all you really have to do is look at Sylvania's weaselly promises:
    Quote:
    Just how bright are SYLVANIA SilverStar® ULTRA bulbs? By providing up to 50% greater brightness*, they can increase visibility down the road by up to 40%*, and peripheral visibility by up to 50%.*
    Sounds great until you refer to the footnote:
    Quote:
    *Compared to worn standard halogen
    Since all halogen bulbs get dimmer as they age, all they're really stating is that a new bulb is brighter than an old bulb. What they aren't telling you is that, apples to apples, a new Silverstar Ultra is dimmer than a new standard bulb! Marketers win, consumers lose.
  • Proper HID conversion (not retrofit but actually swapping out the headlight assemblies for Nissan OE dual-xenon headlight assemblies and components) would give you the brightest (and arguably the best) beams, but for a premium cost.
  • For a much more reasonable cost-benefit, you were on the right track with the H9's. For
    under $15 under $15
    , you can safely (and legally) increase your headlight output from 1,350 to 2,100 lumens per bulb, all the while maintaining proper light distribution (H11 and H9 bulb structures are identical, so the light is emitted from the exact same location that the optics were designed for).

    See this thread for more info and this thread for another member's endorsement of the H11 > H9 swap.
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#3 Old 01-19-2013, 01:30 PM
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I had considered the H11 to H9 conversion and I went to Pep Boys to inspect the bases to see what was involved. I noticed the 9s had the 2 tabs and I could trim the one out but was concerned because when comparing to 11s the 1 tab was longer than what the remaining tab would be on the 9-don't know if this is signifcant but I had read where one member could only rotate H9 80 degrees, not 90. I also read the thread aand it looked like you had to trim one metal tab 3 mm. I would prefer the H9 conversion. Sorry about all the questions-do I need to trim the metal also for proper seating? Anyone done this on a 12? thanks again
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#4 Old 01-19-2013, 02:07 PM
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Forgot- What would be the best bulb with the H11 base?
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#5 Old 01-19-2013, 08:48 PM
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I've actually been pleased with Silverstars - but I have to qualify that because I ran them in a Jeep Grand Cherokee (2000) and a Toyota Camry (2009), so the headlight designs will be somewhat different. I have Osram Nightbreaker bulbs in the Murano because I wanted brighter, but did not care for whiter, light.

I say install the Silverstars and see what you think of them.

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#6 Old 01-20-2013, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcdee View Post
I noticed the 9s had the 2 tabs and I could trim the one out but was concerned because when comparing to 11s the 1 tab was longer than what the remaining tab would be on the 9-don't know if this is signifcant
Those tabs are simply 'keys', meant to keep you from accidentally connecting the wrong bulb to the socket. You could remove both keys, but only need to remove the one specified.
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but I had read where one member could only rotate H9 80 degrees, not 90.
I think this was user error of some kind. It's possible he didn't remove enough of the metal tab which prevented it from seating properly. Don't know, but it was unusual.
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I also read the thread aand it looked like you had to trim one metal tab 3 mm... -do I need to trim the metal also for proper seating?
Yeah, you need to trim the metal key too. I used a dremel to grind down both the metal and plastic keys following these instructions. Be methodical; Wear rubber gloves to avoid transferring oils from your hands onto the bulbs. Also, work on 1 key at a time. Take your time; using the H11 as a guide, grind off a little bit and then check the fit in the car. Keep doing this, bit by bit, until it fits. If you're worried you touched the bulb's glass envelope, clean it with a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol and let it dry before firing them up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Qat View Post
I have Osram Nightbreaker bulbs in the Murano because I wanted brighter, but did not care for whiter, light.
Those are quality bulbs, and are brighter than standard H11's, but still no where near the output of H9's.
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Originally Posted by Qat View Post
I say install the Silverstars and see what you think of them.
Let me 1-up Qat - If you've already installed the Silverstars, use them for a week. Then head over to an auto parts store and pick up a pair of standard* H9's, modify them and pop em in. Although completely subjective, an increase of >1,400 lumens should be pretty obvious!
*Bulbs manufactured by Philips, Osram-Sylvania or GE, that have clear envelopes (not tinted blue or yellow), and aren't LL (long life).
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#7 Old 01-20-2013, 12:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcdee View Post
Forgot- What would be the best bulb with the H11 base?
The bulbs Qat mentioned, Osram NightBreaker +90%. But again (dead horse), they aren't as bright as H9's and cost 3x more than plain old H9's.

The reason is that, legally, a bulb can be ±15% the (agreed upon) nominal output for that bulb type (that's an allowable range of 30%!).
An H11 has a nominal output of 1,350 lumens, so it can legally output:
  • Minimum: ~1,148 lumens (Silverstars, HOEN's & other legal blue tinted bulbs)
  • Maximum: ~1,552 lumens (XtremePower, NightBreaker & other mega high efficacy bulbs -- these come close to, but don't meet, the legal maximum).
So 1,552 lumens is the best you can do with an H11. But as you can see, it's still no where near the nominal output of an H9 (2,100 lumens). I hope this helps.
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#8 Old 01-20-2013, 10:51 AM
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I did buy the Nightbreakers about a week before I saw the H9 conversion thread. When I get a burnout, I'll be going H9.

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#9 Old 01-20-2013, 03:36 PM
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Thanks to all for the info, with my lack of knowledge I couldn't see how I couldn't get the H9 lighting on the H11 base. I may go ahead and try the silverstars I have/paid $35 for and return them if not satisfied and then go the conversion route. Anyone accessed the bulbs on a 12 without removing the gray panel? Thanks again, mcdee
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#10 Old 01-20-2013, 10:58 PM
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If the '12 is the same as the '10, getting at the low beam bulbs is pretty easy. There's a panel on the side of the engine well just behind the headlights - you remove two pins, pull it open and reach in.





Look inside:



Also I'd suggest that after you get the old bulbs out and have carefully opened up the new ones - wear some disposable latex gloves, kinda like surgical gloves (you can buy a package of them at the grocery store). It's conventional wisdom that dirt or even the oil from your skin on the outside of the bulbs might shorten the life of the bulb.

Hope this helps.

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#11 Old 01-21-2013, 01:14 AM
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Thanks for help/pics but the 12 is different. It's very tight but I can get my hand on the base and was told to turn counterclockwise to loosen but I haven't tried it yet. If I get it out I don't think I'll have enough room to switch out the bulbs due to lack of room. There is a metal strut in the way and that grey panel(?) attaches to it. There is a round clip that anchors it through pre -drilled hole. If/when I remove this panel it will be much easier, but I tried to gently pry it off and was unable- didn't want to force it. I have a feeling I just need to pop it off harder but wasn't sure, was hoping for correct advice. It looks like the worse that would happen is I would break that small plastic anchor- I stopped by dealer last Friday and asked service writer but he was no help as he was unfamiliar with bulb change on the 12. I tried internet search but no instructions/pics found-I was able to do LED lighting switch on my tacoma from forums and you tube. Things are EZ when you know what you're doing, obviously I suck at mechanics.
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#12 Old 01-21-2013, 12:59 PM
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I wonder why this would be so much different without a significant change in the vehicle.

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#13 Old 01-21-2013, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qat View Post
I wonder why this would be so much different without a significant change in the vehicle.
Instructions in my manual show a picture like you have-it even says to remove the rubber cover by pulling out the 2 clips. I have this heavy, dark gray/black cover inside with these round rivet type clips connecting to metal in various locations. I will try to stop by dealer and show them and get instructions.
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