Author Topic: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP  (Read 357 times)

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Offline tbn3

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Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« on: February 20, 2017, 06:49:48 PM »
Oh me & oh my... I've been looking for 2 weeks now trying to find pair of headlamps for my BMW Z3 that I brought with me from States.  Mechanic says I need to change them to RHD but I can't find any! Well except maybe New ones at £1000/per side.. Ouch.
It's a classic lil 1996 original and I can find LOTS of them exactly like what's on my car but they won't pass MOT.
Has anyone had similar problems that can maybe give me some direction. Where to beg borrow or steal....even buy some? (Kidding, I'll be very happy to buy!)

???

Online camoscato

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2017, 07:06:18 PM »
Have you tried any of the UK BMW forums? I know the 5 series one is good because I used to be active on it when I still had a 5, and I think a couple of the others are pretty active, too.

http://forum.bmw5.co.uk/ - that's the 5 series forum; they might be able to point you toward a specific Z forum

http://www.bimmerforums.co.uk/forum/ - generic BMW forum with sections for each model

You might also search on here for a user named Dennis the Menace. He's a BMW driver, and is a very smart and helpful guy. If there's anyone on this forum who'd know where to get BMW headlights, it's him.

I hope that helps some.

p.s. If I remember right, my UK 98 E39 5 series had a little switch on top of each headlight that allowed you to switch them from RHD to LHD. It was probably something they only did on UK-spec cars, but you might look for it anyway. The switch was under a clear round plastic cover on the top center of each headlight.

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Offline KFdancer

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2017, 07:55:27 PM »
Good luck.  I had a M5 for a couple of years but the cost to run it made it not fun anymore.  I do miss that M button though!

Offline tbn3

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2017, 09:25:55 AM »
Great, thanks very much...goof info.

Tony


Have you tried any of the UK BMW forums? I know the 5 series one is good because I used to be active on it when I still had a 5, and I think a couple of the others are pretty active, too.

http://forum.bmw5.co.uk/ - that's the 5 series forum; they might be able to point you toward a specific Z forum

http://www.bimmerforums.co.uk/forum/ - generic BMW forum with sections for each model

You might also search on here for a user named Dennis the Menace. He's a BMW driver, and is a very smart and helpful guy. If there's anyone on this forum who'd know where to get BMW headlights, it's him.

I hope that helps some.

p.s. If I remember right, my UK 98 E39 5 series had a little switch on top of each headlight that allowed you to switch them from RHD to LHD. It was probably something they only did on UK-spec cars, but you might look for it anyway. The switch was under a clear round plastic cover on the top center of each headlight.

Offline Dennis the Menace!!

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2017, 12:54:02 PM »
Hi,

Perhaps a bit late to this thread!

tbn3 - When you say you can find lots of headlight units but won't pass the MOT, which units exactly have you found? I've just found an ebay seller with 2 separate listings for £45 + £12 delivery, so a total of £114. To ensure you look for the right items, look on this original BMW parts number site called 'Realoem'.

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/select

You can plug in the details for a UK car and browse to get a hold of the part numbers for the RHD headlights. Once you have that, you can filter your searches to find RHD spec headlights.

Camoscato - Thanks for the kind words! I do remember you from the 5 forum some years back! An update for you, on the E39 (perhaps other models too) the little internal switch isn't a 'full' solution. It's meant as a temporary one so that when the car goes to a country with opposite side driving, you can aim the beam a little to the other direction to prevent dazzling, however the movement isn't 'far' enough as it were so a portion of the road remains unlit. There are indeed 'LHD' and 'RHD' versions of the headlamps and for full light dispersion, the correct ones should be fitted.

KFDancer - The E60 M5 is an awesome performance car and I'm sure you got to revel in the sound of that V10 and the drive of the car itself! I've not owned the model you had, but I *really* want the Touring version of it if I ever got one. I do have an older 99 year M5 tucked away though and love the driving experience! That small fuel tank and the V10's potential thirst, especially with my 'spirited' driving when in 'M' mode isn't fun though like you say - but when you are out driving, you kind of forget the financial costs ;)

Cheers, DtM! West London & Slough UK!

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2017, 01:58:45 PM »
Camoscato - Thanks for the kind words! I do remember you from the 5 forum some years back! An update for you, on the E39 (perhaps other models too) the little internal switch isn't...

I never knew that! Unfortunately, my E39 died of a cracked water pump a couple of years ago, so no more headlight switching for me. :)

Thanks, Dennis!
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Offline tbn3

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2017, 05:34:53 PM »
Tks very much. I saw those too but they won't fit unfortunately. I finally found 2 for about £1000 or bit more. Better than the £800+ dealer wants!
Appreciate the post!!


Hi,

Perhaps a bit late to this thread!

tbn3 - When you say you can find lots of headlight units but won't pass the MOT, which units exactly have you found? I've just found an ebay seller with 2 separate listings for £45 + £12 delivery, so a total of £114. To ensure you look for the right items, look on this original BMW parts number site called 'Realoem'.

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/select

You can plug in the details for a UK car and browse to get a hold of the part numbers for the RHD headlights. Once you have that, you can filter your searches to find RHD spec headlights.

Camoscato - Thanks for the kind words! I do remember you from the 5 forum some years back! An update for you, on the E39 (perhaps other models too) the little internal switch isn't a 'full' solution. It's meant as a temporary one so that when the car goes to a country with opposite side driving, you can aim the beam a little to the other direction to prevent dazzling, however the movement isn't 'far' enough as it were so a portion of the road remains unlit. There are indeed 'LHD' and 'RHD' versions of the headlamps and for full light dispersion, the correct ones should be fitted.

KFDancer - The E60 M5 is an awesome performance car and I'm sure you got to revel in the sound of that V10 and the drive of the car itself! I've not owned the model you had, but I *really* want the Touring version of it if I ever got one. I do have an older 99 year M5 tucked away though and love the driving experience! That small fuel tank and the V10's potential thirst, especially with my 'spirited' driving when in 'M' mode isn't fun though like you say - but when you are out driving, you kind of forget the financial costs ;)

Cheers, DtM! West London & Slough UK!

Offline Dennis the Menace!!

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2017, 09:44:14 PM »
Hi,

Comascato - Plenty of decent E39's still about! Can always get another one :)

tbn3 - You've researched more than me as I'm not a Z3 owner, but I find it incredulous that the headlamps can't be swapped over from LHD to RHD versions for less than £800. I don't think there's anything particular which prevents it and there's thousands of RHD Z3's running about in the UK with plenty of spare/repair bits as well as lots of BMW breakers and dismantlers around. If you've already purchased them, fair enough, but I'm currently shocked at you having to hand over that much for headlamps! If indeed there is a technical reason meaning they can't be easily swapped, then it's a ridiculous design/manufacturing flaw/issue. Granted, it's not likely to affect very many people but still, crazy! I've just picked up another spare pair of headlamp units for mine, in great condition for £180 the pair. The upgraded OEM Xenon's go for £250-350 for good used condition ones and the cheapest online for these new is around £645 each.

If you've not purchased as yet, drop me a PM, there's various good resources to buy from both used and new parts with good discounts.

Cheers, DtM! West London & Slough UK!


Offline tbn3

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2017, 11:39:04 AM »
That's what i figured but every time i found any cheaper ones and did a search with their OEM # they wouldn't fit my car.
Mine is an E36 and many of the numbers have been superceded. The ones i did find were for lhd like my car from the EU.
Got one side for bit over £300 but couldn't find the other side so had to order for £755. Now because my passenger seat has a bit of fray on it, but no where near breakable, I've got to get a new seatbelt.
Wow will it never stop?

Thanks for you info. Don't know what is it about my car that's hard to find lights except maybe it being the same year they began shipping them to USA. If it were a 97 it would have been easier which I had until some lady in Florida ran a stop sign and totalled it!!



Hi,

Comascato - Plenty of decent E39's still about! Can always get another one :)

tbn3 - You've researched more than me as I'm not a Z3 owner, but I find it incredulous that the headlamps can't be swapped over from LHD to RHD versions for less than £800. I don't think there's anything particular which prevents it and there's thousands of RHD Z3's running about in the UK with plenty of spare/repair bits as well as lots of BMW breakers and dismantlers around. If you've already purchased them, fair enough, but I'm currently shocked at you having to hand over that much for headlamps! If indeed there is a technical reason meaning they can't be easily swapped, then it's a ridiculous design/manufacturing flaw/issue. Granted, it's not likely to affect very many people but still, crazy! I've just picked up another spare pair of headlamp units for mine, in great condition for £180 the pair. The upgraded OEM Xenon's go for £250-350 for good used condition ones and the cheapest online for these new is around £645 each.

If you've not purchased as yet, drop me a PM, there's various good resources to buy from both used and new parts with good discounts.

Cheers, DtM! West London & Slough UK!
« Last Edit: March 06, 2017, 11:40:39 AM by tbn3 »

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Trying to pass MOT headlamps anyone? HELP
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2017, 11:44:32 AM »
That's what i figured but every time i found any cheaper ones and did a search with their OEM # they wouldn't fit my car.
Mine is an E36 and many of the numbers have been superceded. The ones i did find were for lhd like my car from the EU.
Got one side for bit over £300 but couldn't find the other side so had to order for £755. Now because my passenger seat has a bit of fray on it, but no where near breakable, I've got to get a new seatbelt.
Wow will it never stop?

Thanks for you info. Don't know what is it about my car that's hard to find lights except maybe it being the same year they began shipping them to USA. If it were a 97 it would have been easier which I had until some lady in Florida ran a stop sign and totalled it!!

Shame you didn't find us earlier.  We would have recommended you sell in the US and buy a UK specific one here.  :)  It's definitely a circus to get the car approved for the road here!