H4 bulb upgrade - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
1987 to 2007 Wrenching & Mods For maintaining, repair or modifications of Generation 1 KLR's. 2007 and earlier.

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post #1 of 33 Old 06-03-2015, 11:15 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: port stephens, nsw
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H4 bulb upgrade

hey, people.
I have been doing a little looking on the site concerning upgrading the H4 globe in my 03 model.
I have put in a +60% type globe left over from my wife's car when the other one blew and it is a lot better than the original.

In saying that I have seen the output of hid lights on cars and am aware of the upgrades in recent years in LED technology so my question is not withstanding ballasts, fans and the heat sinks in the back, has anyone found a superior replacement to the filament styles that does not break the bank?

If the ballasts etc. are an issue you can also comment on that too please.
I have a narrow little euro type front fairing so I don't have a lot of spare room for that, but things can be sorted if need be.
Cheers
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post #2 of 33 Old 06-04-2015, 10:30 AM
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Ain't LED, but . . . much more effective than the OEM Generation 1 headlight:

KLR 650 SUPER BULB AND HARNESS KIT

Kit shown includes relay harness; bulb can be purchased alone and will work with existing wiring (greater performance with relay harness).
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post #3 of 33 Old 06-05-2015, 03:52 AM Thread Starter
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Relays already fitted by op.
So really, main reason is that if I am gonna buy a new single bulb, then I may as well assess my options.
As an aside I have a plan to fit some nice little 3500lm spotties as auxiliary lights that can be dimmed when you hit low beam, so potentially it could be a moot point but the more light the better.
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post #4 of 33 Old 06-05-2015, 05:58 AM
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Single bulb?

Here:

TPI SUPER LOW BEAM BULB

Again, ain't LED.
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post #5 of 33 Old 06-05-2015, 10:43 AM
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As well, you can find really good (better than stock) replacement bulbs at your local auto repair store (Kragen, Pep Boys, AutoZone, etc.).

It's an easy swap. And the difference will amaze you.

There are two rules for being successful in life.

Rule 1: Never tell others everything you know.
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post #6 of 33 Old 06-05-2015, 01:13 PM
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I use Ebay HID kits with great success. The 35 watt HID is about the same as quartz iodide 100 watt, IMO.

HID draw about 2.4 amps when up to operation which is about 1/2 of QI. Pattern in Gen1 is just fine, IMO. Despite all the cut and paste arguments as to pattern and glare, I've installed....30+... something like that, into H4 headlight buckets and everyone is happy.

Cost off Ebay ~$20.00. Make certain that you buy the style which has it's own separate power supply with relay unless your system has already had conventional headlight relays installed. HID can pull over 15 amps for a very short time during start up which can be hard on OEM wiring and switches.

Here's an example of the harness type which has the relay: HID Motorcycle Xenon Conversion Harness Fuse Relay Wiring H4 3 HB2 9003 H L GBNG | eBay

I'm still not sold on LED because the cost continues to be several times that of HID and the claimed performance does not reflect the additional price. The other issue I have with LED is the need for the bulky fan with its need for ventillation.

In the case of restricted space, best to select a bulb with the small sized base, IMO.

I've had great service from this type of ballast: VS2 35W Wireless HID Xenon DC Ballast Discharge System for H1 H3 H7 H8 H13 | eBay

But this type do not have potting inside the module and have had three fail now so no longer will accept them: HID Bi Xenon Conversion Kit Slim Digital Ballast Dual Beam H4 3 H13 Hi Low 6000K | eBay

There are several colors of labels but all I have seen with this butterfly shaped label are not potted internally.

The bulbs shown here are fine but the bulky magnet in the base means having to slice the bulb boot to fit which isn't a big deal excepting for tight spaces.

This type of bulb is nice for space but the ballast and bulb color are not suitable, IMO.
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post #7 of 33 Old 06-20-2015, 12:11 PM
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I just replaced the miners carbide lamp headlight in my 07 with a Cyclops 3800 LED. WHAT A DIFFERENCE .
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post #8 of 33 Old 06-20-2015, 08:26 PM Thread Starter
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thanks guys.
I have the 2003 euro and I believe they are the A/C type (?) therefore I need a $40 rectifier? Getting up around the $100 and that doesn't take into account the aussie exchange rate, so add another 50 bucks with freight-getting up there.
Also normk, did you have a link for the best bulbs you like?

"The bulbs shown here are fine but the bulky magnet in the base means having to slice the bulb boot to fit which isn't a big deal excepting for tight spaces."

Are these on the links you supplied, or another one? The ballast you recommended looks good. Also really only want one bulb but I suppose if they are cheap enough a pair are still a lot cheaper than a single halogen type.
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post #9 of 33 Old 06-20-2015, 09:32 PM
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The ballasts which seem to be among the best are the ones with this shape label:
VS2 35W Wireless HID Xenon DC Ballast Discharge System for H1 H3 H7 H8 H13 | eBay

I've found three of this type which have not had potting compound inside which may be why they failed: 2 x New Arrival Ultra Slim HID Xenon Premium Digital AC 55W Replacement Ballasts | eBay

As a result, I am avoiding the ballasts with the "wing shaped" labels.

I like this style bulb the best but won't work with the earlier style Gen1 headlight because the lock ring won't go over the bulb base. Some don't like these for the later Gen1 either because of the need to slice and reseal the bulb boot: Innovited HID Replacement Bulbs H1 H3 H4 H7 H11 880 9005 9006 9004 9007 D1S D2S | eBay

This style bulb fits both Gen1 headlights and doesn't require modifying the boot:
35W 12V H6 Motorcycle HID Kit Headlight Ballast H4 Bi Xenon Hi Low H6M Bulb Lamp | eBay

They have adapters to fit four bulb socket types including the Honda special socket used on ST1100 and other models.

I'm not absolutely certain that the above kit has a dedicated ground and fused power wire but looks to have. If not it's not the end of the world because the separate harness is only a few dollars and the wiring is useful for other projects.

I'm not a fan of colors in to the blue tint area as broadcast that the lights aren't legal, human eye doesn't see as well, etc.

I need to get back to finish installing the rear suspension grease nipples on this KLR as want to have it back together tonight.
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post #10 of 33 Old 06-20-2015, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks NormK. pretty darn quick considering you are on the other side of the planet, Mind you it is only 930pm over there so not too bad I suppose.
Had a quick look at the bulbs you recommended but they would have to be the only Chinese suppliers that don't ship to ozzie lol. I'll see if there is another supplier as I'm sure they aren't the only one. Cheers
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