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Left Low Beam Bulb Keeps Burning Out ?

by bhp, May 18, 2016

maybe high voltage ?? faulty Headlight control module ??

Double check for a faulty connection - a poor, noisy ground has the same effect as too much voltage - puts a lot of stress on the bulb. Same goes to the connections at the battery posts, even if they are secured to the battery posts, sometimes corrosion can form underneath. If it is running excessively high voltages, that bulb will appear to run a lot brighter than the other side.

I pull my batteries out annually, to verify that the case is in good shape, clean off the battery, and use a battery post cleaner to touch up the posts and terminal ends - tighten everything back up and hit the post and terminal with some CRC battery terminal protector spray (same red colored spray that many Toyota techs use).

Faulty control module is a possibility - though pretty rare. I'd look into more common problems, like:

- cracked headlamp housing, letting water/moisture into the lamp assembly

- loose or broken headlamp mount - excessive vibration shaking bulb to failure

- excessive dirt buildup/plastic lubricant around the bulb assembly, when you replace the bulb - it touches the sides and gets contaminated

- bad luck with a bad batch of head lamp bulbs

- bad bulb harness wiring / corrosion inside the bulb harness

Took it to dealership.. They changed bulb and said I probably touched it with my fingers..and to come back if it blows again..

Thanks fish...your posts are always informative and educational

Sounds like a plan - hope that it holds up longer than the others.

I know they tell you "not" to touch the bulb, but unless you are actively rubbing that bulb on your face or eating fried chicken while you were replacing the bulb, these bulbs are pretty tough.

Quick check - if they gave you the old bulb back:

- If you see any cracks or if the glass tube is grossly distorted / looks cloudy / can be darkened on the inside, sometimes on one side - that means it saw contamination on the glass itself, causing the quartz material to change from a vitreous form to crystalline form - which can leak out the gas.

- If the filament is broken but the rest of the bulb looks brand new (clear) - probably vibration killed it or you have underpowered bulb (doesn't cause the tungsten filament to get hot enough, halogen gas can keep up and not cloud the bulb).

- If the bulb is heavily discolored or darkened to a point that the filament cannot be seen (looks like the bulb was sprayed with chrome on the inside) - that means the tungsten filament was cooked off excessively, evaporated the halogen additive - a sure sign of power issues (intermittent, noisy, or too much voltage).

i have the second bulb that blew, the first one , I threw it out.

The second bulb that blew looks clear, even the filaments looked intact, but when I inserted that bulb into the

other side socket for a test, it would not light...

I'm assuming that there is some break in the filament, as it is not lighting up. Sounds to me like there was likely a noise issue (intermittent voltage, poor chassis ground, bad battery connections, shorted or damaged wiring) or excessive vibration that likely killed the bulb.

Could also be a manufacturing defect - sometimes batches of bulbs will die faster than expected. I've had some mixed luck with Sylvania OEM replacement bulbs - even if I use the OEM LL (long life) bulbs - I barely get two years of life out of them. After the first year of use, they dim considerably. Tried a bunch of different bulbs from Osram/Sylvania - Cool blues, Silverstars, Silverstar Ultras, XtraVision, LL OEM - might try some GE Nighthawks next - just to get another data point. LED variants - I'll wait until there are enough data on them to determine if they are worth the additional costs.

Granted, I do a lot of driving and most of my commutes back and forth to work are pre-dawn/post-dusk to beat out traffic. But I'm still shocked on the number of bulbs I've run through. I think on my Corolla - I'm on set #6 or #7, compared to my 1996 Camry which is on its 2nd set of lamps, 1st OEM set lasted almost 15 years!

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