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Xenon Headlight Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Xenon Headlight Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

1 hours1 hrs

Tab:

$300

Talent:

**

Tools:

Phillips & flathead screwdriver, T15 T25 T30 Torx

Applicable Models:

X3 E83 (2004-06)
X3 E83 facelift (2007-10)

Parts Required:

Headlight assembly, headlight bulb, active headlight or Xenon module

Hot Tip:

Do not touch bulbs with bare hands

Performance Gain:

Repair damaged headlight assembly, replace faulty headlight bulb

Complementary Modification:

Replace turn signal bulbs

BMW X3 vehicles with optional high intensity discharge (HID) or xenon headlights utilize a special high voltage bulb and control unit for the headlights. The bi-xenon headlight is equipped with an electrically activated shutter which directs the low beam cone of light in the same direction as the high beam.

The headlight assembly seals can wear out over time resulting in water leaks and repeat bulb failures. On models with high intensity discharge (HID) or Xenon lights, the HID module is located at the bottom of the headlight. Water can enter the module electrical connector causing headlight faults. If this happens to you, you will have to replace the headlight, the electrical harness and the HID module. The procedure below highlights Xenon style bulb replacing. Halogen bulb replacement is similar, but not covered in this tech article.

Remember your car may have been serviced before and parts replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve as they grow older. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

When replacing the headlight (red arrow), first you will have to remove the washer fluid reservoir or intake air housing.
Figure 1

When replacing the headlight (red arrow), first you will have to remove the washer fluid reservoir or intake air housing. Removing these items are not 100% necessary but make the job much easier. See our tech articles on those items. If you have a foggy headlight, you can refinish it to look new. See our tech article on headlight refinishing.

Disconnect the headlight electrical connectors.
Figure 2

Disconnect the headlight electrical connectors. Start by pressing the release tab and pulling the small connector straight off (red arrows).

Next, slide the large electrical connector lock up to disconnect (red arrow).
Figure 3

Next, slide the large electrical connector lock up to disconnect (red arrow).

Working at the rear bottom of the headlight, remove the T25 Torx fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 4

Working at the rear bottom of the headlight, remove the T25 Torx fasteners (red arrows).

Working at the top of the headlight, remove the T30 Torx fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 5

Working at the top of the headlight, remove the T30 Torx fasteners (red arrows).

Working at the corner of the headlight, check that the rubber seal is not stuck on the fender.
Figure 6

Working at the corner of the headlight, check that the rubber seal is not stuck on the fender. Pull headlight out of vehicle slightly.

Slide headlight out of body inner corner first (red arrow).
Figure 7

Slide headlight out of body inner corner first (red arrow). Remove from vehicle.

Flip the headlight over to service the control modules.
Figure 8

Flip the headlight over to service the control modules. To remove the Xenon headlight module, remove the three T18 Torx fasteners (red arrows). Lift the Xenon module up to remove (inset). When removing the Xenon module, inspect the module for corrosion. If needed, replace the module as well as the headlight. Reverse the instructions for reinstallation.

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Page last updated: Mon 10/23/2017 03:20:48 AM