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  #1  
Old 03-19-2011, 11:50 AM
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Default 2010 headlight low beams are black at top

The high beams are normal, very bright, and work well. But the low beams have a strange "window shade" effect on the top half. It's like someone lowered a dark piece of cardboard down over the top half of the beam, so the bottom half is very bright, then there is a very sharp line, and the top half of the beam is black. I assume this is an attempt to keep the low beams out of the oncoming driver's eyes.
The problem is, the cut-off is so sharp, when there is a small valley in the road, the low beams reach only a very short distance ahead. And when there are a few bumps in the road, that black line moves up and down so that oncoming drivers, or drivers we are following, think we are flashing the lights at them, and this gets them angry. They honk at us, flash their lights back. I once drove in front of my wife driving our Sonata, and for 10 minutes in our bumpy road, it looked like she was continually flashing her lights at me!
Anyone know how to get rid of the "window shade?"
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  #2  
Old 03-19-2011, 08:46 PM
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Works as designed. That's just how modern headlights are.
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2011, 10:50 PM
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This is normal for HB2 bulb type headlamps, due to the bulb's reflector. You could try upgrading headlight bulbs, such as Sylvania Xtravision, or Silverstar bulbs. Those improved light output on my old car, over oem bulbs. Just make sure the wattage stays the same as oem, or you could melt housings or wiring.
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  #4  
Old 03-21-2011, 07:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austex04 View Post
This is normal for HB2 bulb type headlamps, due to the bulb's reflector. You could try upgrading headlight bulbs, such as Sylvania Xtravision, or Silverstar bulbs. Those improved light output on my old car, over oem bulbs. Just make sure the wattage stays the same as oem, or you could melt housings or wiring.
I'm not sure what you are referring to by HB2 but this issue has nothing to do with the type of bulb used, brand, wattage or anything else bulb related. The Sonata has used projector type headlights for the low beams since 2006 and they like all other projectors use a shield inside the assembly to cut off the top half of the light. This is the way it is supposed to be and changing the bulb will not change this. You could check to see that they are aimed properly but odds are they are set up as intended.
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  #5  
Old 03-21-2011, 10:09 PM
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Default Had same issue...

Seth...I used to own a 2010 before getting my 2011. Had the same issue with the aim being too high. I took it in to the dealership and they were able to adjust their angle so that they would not appear so high to oncoming traffic. Unfortunately, as you'll read on other threads, the headlights on Sonatas are designed to be lower angled to avoid blinding oncoming drivers.
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  #6  
Old 03-22-2011, 08:14 AM
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Default Trying to clarify "window-shade" headlights

Maybe I wasn't clear in my first post. The problem is not that the low beams are aimed too high or too low. There is a strange "baffle" or "window shade" effect, where the bottom half of the beam on the road ahead is very bright, but the top half is completely dark, and there is a very sharp cut-off line between bright and dark. I had the dealer adjust the lights higher, but that just shines directly in the eyes of oncoming traffic. When they were originally lower, the dark top hits very close in front of us when there is a small dip in the road, and when there are any bumps in the road, other drivers think we are flashing our lights at them.
Does anyone know if it is possible to open up the cover over the headlights and remove whatever is making the black shadow on the top half of the low beams?
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  #7  
Old 03-22-2011, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Hill View Post
Does anyone know if it is possible to open up the cover over the headlights and remove whatever is making the black shadow on the top half of the low beams?
Maybe I wasn't clear in my first post. That is how they are designed to be. It's to prevent the brighter headlights that are used today from blinding oncoming drivers. Plus, modifying your headlights is illegal is most states.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Headlamp

Quote:
Regulations and requirements
Modern headlamps are electrically operated, positioned in pairs, one or two on each side of the front of a vehicle. A headlamp system is required to produce a low and a high beam, which may be achieved either by an individual lamp for each function or by a single multifunction lamp. High beams (called "main beams" or "full beams" or "driving beams" in some countries) cast most of their light straight ahead, maximizing seeing distance, but producing too much glare for safe use when other vehicles are present on the road. Because there is no special control of upward light, high beams also cause backdazzle from fog, rain and snow due to the retroreflection of the water droplets. Low beams (called "dipped beams" in some countries) have stricter control of upward light, and direct most of their light downward and either rightward (in right-traffic countries) or leftward (in left-traffic countries), to provide safe forward visibility without excessive glare or backdazzle.

Low beam
Low beam (dipped beam, passing beam, meeting beam) headlamps provide a distribution of light designed to provide adequate forward and lateral illumination with limits on light directed towards the eyes of other road users, to control glare. This beam is intended for use whenever other vehicles are present ahead. The international ECE Regulations for filament headlamps and for high-intensity discharge headlamps specify a beam with a sharp, asymmetric cutoff preventing significant amounts of light from being cast into the eyes of drivers of preceding or oncoming cars. Control of glare is less strict in the North American SAE beam standard contained in FMVSS / CMVSS 108.

Construction, performance, and aim
There are two different beam pattern and headlamp construction standards in use in the world: The ECE standard, which is allowed or required in virtually all industrialised countries except the United States, and the SAE standard that is mandatory only in the US. Japan formerly had bespoke lighting regulations similar to the US standards, but for the left side of the road. However, Japan now adheres to the ECE standard. The differences between the SAE and ECE headlamp standards are primarily in the amount of glare permitted toward other drivers on low beam (SAE permits much more glare), the minimum amount of light required to be thrown straight down the road (SAE requires more), and the specific locations within the beam at which minimum and maximum light levels are specified.

ECE low beams are characterised by a distinct horizontal "cutoff" line at the top of the beam. Below the line is bright, and above is dark. On the side of the beam facing away from oncoming traffic (right in right-traffic countries, left in left-traffic countries), this cutoff sweeps or steps upward to direct light to road signs and pedestrians. SAE low beams may or may not have a cutoff, and if a cutoff is present, it may be of two different general types: VOL, which is conceptually similar to the ECE beam in that the cutoff is located at the top of the left side of the beam and aimed slightly below horizontal, or VOR, which has the cutoff at the top of the right side of the beam and aimed at the horizon.

Proponents of each headlamp system decry the other as inadequate and unsafe: U.S. proponents of the SAE system claim that the ECE low beam cutoff gives short seeing distances and inadequate illumination for overhead road signs, while international proponents of the ECE system claim that the SAE system produces too much glare. Comparative studies have repeatedly shown that there is little or no overall safety benefit to either SAE or ECE beams; the two systems' acceptance and rejection by various countries is based primarily on inertial and philosophical grounds.

In North America, the design, performance and installation of all motor vehicle lighting devices are regulated by Federal and Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 108, which incorporates SAE technical standards. Elsewhere in the world, ECE internationalised regulations are in force either by reference or by incorporation in individual countries' vehicular codes.
US laws required sealed beam headlamps on all vehicles between 1940 and 1983, and other countries such as Japan, United Kingdom and Australia also made extensive use of sealed beams. In most other countries, and in the US since 1984, replaceable-bulb headlamps predominate.

Headlamps must be kept in proper alignment (or "aim"). Regulations for aim vary from country to country and from beam specification to beam specification. US SAE headlamps are aimed without regard to headlamp mounting height. This gives vehicles with high-mounted headlamps a seeing distance advantage, at the cost of increased glare to drivers in lower vehicles. ECE headlamps' aim angle is linked to headlamp mounting height. This gives all vehicles roughly equal seeing distance and all drivers roughly equal glare.

Projector (polyellipsoidal) lamps
In this system a filament is located at one focus of an ellipsoidal reflector and has a condenser lens at the front of the lamp. A shade is located at the image plane, between the reflector and lens, and the projection of the top edge of this shade provides the low-beam cutoff. The shape of the shade edge, and its exact position in the optical system, determines the shape and sharpness of the cutoff. The shade may have a solenoid actuated pivot to provide both low and high beam – the shade is removed from the light path to create high beam, and placed in the light path to create low beam, and such optics are known as BiXenon or BiHalogen projectors, depending on the light source used. If there is no such arrangement, the cutoff shade is fixed in the light path, in which case separate high-beam lamps are required. The condenser lens may have slight fresnel rings or other surface treatments to reduce cutoff sharpness. Recent condenser lenses incorporate optical features specifically designed to direct some light upward towards the locations of retroreflective overhead road signs.

Hella introduced ellipsoidal optics for acetylene headlamps in 1911, but following the electrification of vehicle lighting, this optical technique wasn't used for many decades. The first modern polyellipsoidal (projector) automotive lamp was the Super-Lite, an auxiliary headlamp produced in a joint venture between Chrysler Corporation and Sylvania and optionally installed in 1969 and 1970 full-size Dodge automobiles. It used an 85 watt transverse-filament tungsten-halogen bulb and was intended as a mid-beam, to extend the reach of the low beams during turnpike travel when low beams alone were inadequate but high beams would produce excessive glare.

Projector main headlamps first appeared in 1981 on the Audi Quartz, the Quattro-based concept car designed by Pininfarina for Geneva Auto Salon. Developed more or less simultaneously in Germany by Hella and Bosch and in France by Cibiť, the projector low beam permitted accurate beam focus and a much smaller-diameter optical package, though a much deeper one, for any given beam output. The version of the 1986 BMW 7 Series sold outside North America was the first volume-production auto to use polyellipsoidal low beam headlamps.

Last edited by NovaResource; 03-22-2011 at 09:33 AM.
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  #8  
Old 10-05-2013, 10:31 PM
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Default headlights too low

I have same problem with my 2011 Tucson- Limited. On high beam lights are fine. On low beam it appears that they are aimed too low, and I believe unsafe for highway driving. For now I have been using high beams when ever possible but I was looking for a way to aim the low beams a little higher.
Please help
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  #9  
Old 10-07-2013, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Dettling View Post
I have same problem with my 2011 Tucson- Limited. On high beam lights are fine. On low beam it appears that they are aimed too low, and I believe unsafe for highway driving. For now I have been using high beams when ever possible but I was looking for a way to aim the low beams a little higher.
Please help
Again, works a designed. It's prevent blinding oncoming drivers with the brighter lights used today.
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  #10  
Old 10-08-2013, 08:00 PM
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Ok, but tell me this. Have you heard the term, " overdriving your headlights"? I would say that with low beam lights only reaching 20ft that it would be more likely to happen than not, especially at highway speeds. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out.
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Old 10-08-2013, 08:00 PM
 
 
 
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2011, beam, beams, blind, brighter, difference, driverss, head, high, hyundai, lamps, lights, low, oncoming, polyellipsoidal, sonata


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