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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Noticed the stock fog lights on my 3sGT were no brighter than the parking lights, and they seemed to be pointing more to the ground that up the road, I decided to up the wattage of them, and look into aiming them up. Before I downloaded the Factory Service Manual, I searched YouTube, and found a video of how to replace the Fog Light Bulbs on my 2010 3.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgqwcZPBQWs
Couldn't believe how easy it showed to be, and no bumper removal needed.

Researching the stock fog light bulbs are 9006 Halogen 51w white, (also referred to as H11 Bulbs). I have seen where others have used some yellow clear adhesive, to change the color, but why not just change the bulb instead? I opted for a higher wattage bulb, 100w and in yellow because I like to see and be seen without blinding on-coming traffic. Ebay sale had them shipped to me, new, for less than $7.00. :grin2:
TMZ 9006 100W Low Fog Xenon HID Replace Yellow Light Bulbs Fast SHIP YI2 Al F188 | eBay
Once received, they did say 100w on the bulb housing, and they were not used or broken.

Once the rain stopped yesterday, changed out the 51w bulbs and also aimed the housings up. Looking into how the fog light works, I can see inside that there is a little ring/sleeve that the main part of the bulb goes into. I think this is why the stock bulb doesn't seem very bright. The majority of the light emitted is reflected from the back side of the assembly, and this and the sleeve takes away from the brightness of the bulb. Look at the 3rd series of pictures in the Ebay sale and you know what I mean:
2010 2011 Mazda 3 2 5L Fog Lamp Set Genuine Mazda BBM551680C BBM551690B | eBay
I don't see any way to remove that inner ring/sleeve. I am thinking this is a DOT Thing, as I see this reflective beam projection on other headlights too. Miss the days of glass headlights, and more powerful lighting, but it's all safety glass now.

Anyway, I installed the 100w bulbs and adjusted the housing up higher, and now I can see that they are on and off with the headlights on. Before I couldn't tell if they were on or not. My suggestion for brighter projection would be to remove the housings, and clean the insides out with warm soapy water, making sure not to scratch the inner reflective paneling, and also make sure the inside is dry. I have done this on other vehicles using tissue(Kleenex) and then lightly blow drying them out. Over time the exterior of the lenses can get pitted from debris hitting it, so just replacing them or trying to clean them up will make you light brighter.

Note: Just for the record, I have never had any burning/melying issues on any of my vehicles that I have upgraded the stock bulbs on that came with plastic housing,

This is an easy job and took less than about 45 minutes following the video posted above. Sorry no pictures. :frown2:
 

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Cool, but technically you got scammed if you think you actually got Xenon HIDs lol... which technically means you can't trust anything written there. Who knows if they even are 100W.
Anyway, 100W bulbs aren't the best idea because they generate twice as much heat and thus even if you get lucky and they don't melt the housings, they will certainly burn out twice as fast.

Also FYI, if you do some searching you'll probably find some people who bent/snipped those metal glare shields off/out to make their real HIDs fit. Not that I'm saying you should do that, they are there to block light from going where it's not supposed to go, i.e. other drivers eyes
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The fog light bulbs that came out were stamped 51w and were Halogens. The new ones installed are also Halogens and are stamped 100w. I will keep an eye on these for heat issues. Oh, I see what you mean the seller listed them as Xenon Bulbs, but looking at them in the sale I know they were only Halogens, which is what I wanted.

Xenon HID's would be the ultimate lights for brightness, but I went the alternate route. Just wish I could get rid of that ring inside, or look for aftermarket replacement housings that don't have that ring.
 

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Xenon HID's would be the ultimate lights for brightness, but I went the alternate route. Just wish I could get rid of that ring inside, or look for aftermarket replacement housings that don't have that ring.
Like I said, if you want you can chop the ring out. It has been done (at least on prev gens, more searching would be required for gen2s I suppose)

e.g.
HELP! How to remove fog shields from Mazda 3

If you do do it, maybe take pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thanks for the link, and if I do go that route, I'll be sure to take pictures. I can see how these rings were installed with screws before the lens was sealed on the housing.

Note:
After reading that thread, the fogs might be way too bright if I remove the ring, and getting the ring out I could end up scratching the reflective background inside. This would leave me buying new housings, and installing the HID's after that. I'll leave it as it is for now. Sometimes doing it the right way by adding HID's is the best way.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Still running the 100w yellow bulbs in the fog lights, and eventhough they are a little brighter than the stock 51w I removed, replacing them with HID or something brighter will be next. I might even remove them and look into the inner ring removal. Trial and error here, so if I mess up the housing, these are still available in both Mazda and aftermarket.


Headlights are stock for this model.


Fog lights are aimed as high as they can go stock.


Fog Lights Off







Fog Lights On

 

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Discussion Starter #7
Replaced the stock fog light housings with new ones. Originals were faded, and not bright at all. I also cut out the inner ring that blocks most of the light. Running 100w yellow bulbs.

Driver Side:





Passenger Side:




Headlights on, fog lights off:




Headlights on, fog lights on:



I will aim the fog lights in a few days.




.
 

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What a difference cleaning them made! Can believe that much dust/build up occurs inside them.

I noticed a huge difference in aiming mine in my 15. Can actually tell you have fog lights now!

I personally bought a HID kit off amazon for $40 without a relay harness. I got 3k and love the look which you can see in the 2014+ Exterior Lights section of the forum for pics. That being said, I think taking off and adjusting the fogs in a 14+ is easier than a 10-12.
 

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uh, $7 for a pair of bulbs? you'll be replacing them in no time

piaa , bout $20 a piece

and if these are h11 as you claim, why did the hb4 fit?
 

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and if these are h11 as you claim, why did the hb4 fit?
He said that he used a 9006 instead of a H11. They are not the same bulb but they can be used interchangeably.

My personal opinion, you are paying for the name with PIAA. Plenty of options out there at a lesser price point that work just as good.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
In my search for the least expensive way to go for brighter useable fog lights without having to change the complete fog light system, I looked into the bulbs after modifying the lenses in the post above.

The 9006 or H11 that comes in my 2010, is almost the same as the 9005. The pictures below show the difference in the two. The both lock into place in the fog housing with no issues, but it's the plug in inside, and the glass tip that makes the difference. The 9006/H11 has a single inner tab for plugging into the factory harness, where the 9005 has a dual channel. I have clipped the dual channel grooves out of the 9005 and they are working just fine. I also opted for these, due to the tip of the glass not being painted/coated, but I don't know why, and can only assume that it is to keep the heat from the bulb off the inside of the lenses?

Anyways, with the 100w Bulbs I have there now, I will keep a watch out for any excessive heat and if in doubt, will change back to a lower wattage bulb. For now I can still aim them where I want, and it makes for a more noticeable fog pattern.

Fire away with the comments and suggestions.





 
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