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Old 10-05-2008, 07:41 AM   #1
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Headlight adjustment techniques....

I got a new set of bulbs the other day (Wagner Truview #BP9007TV).....and decided to re-adjust the aim slightly to take advantage of the better lighting.

There are two different ways to do this.....the first way is by the book, using generic specs for the Focus, against a target. This way can be done any time of the day (unless you are outside in bright sunlight), and is the method used by most dealers. It works ok.....but you can do better.

That's showing this method, except for a measured spot (I used the door panels as a mark). Start by finding a wall or garage door......and two marks of some sort at the same height. The best way is to have about a half-tank of fuel, your normal stuff in the trunk, and the tires at their correct pressure. If you have to do this more than once, be sure the car is at the same distance from the same wall, with the same marks.

How exactly you want the adjustment.....there are no absolutes. It depends on your normal driving. In town you might want the aim lower. If you do mostly highway, you might want the aim higher. How high depends also on your vision, and the brightness of the headlights. Adjust too high, and you won't be able to see the road surface.

I prefer to have the passenger side slightly higher than the driver side....shows up the side of the road better, without irritating on-coming cars. This is also a method to tell if the aim of either headlight is too high. If you get a lot of people flashing at you.....you're too high, or your bulbs glare too much.

The Focus has no side-to-side adjustment...only an up-down adjustment. It's done easily using an allen wrench on each side. Watch the beam change as you turn the wrench....counter-clock-wise makes the beams go up. Small turns with this adjustment make a big difference. I suggest 1/2 turns of the wrench, after-which you road-test at night. Try to find roads with little traffic, and a variety of terrain.

Ok the second method......the quickest method, but with some danger. Forget the wall method. Do everything at night. Drive the car and note where each beam falls. Stop, adjust the beams, and re-test. Just don't get hit by somebody. You can do this in a few minutes. I normally do my own cars like this. If you're working in the day-time, you'll have to use the wall/mark method. The second method will give better results.....Be careful.

I'll keep my guns, my freedom, and my money.....you can keep the "change".
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Old 10-17-2011, 06:22 PM   #2
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Thank you!!!!!
In all reality it isnt fast at all, it didnt ever cost 250k, and it wont blow your girls panties off. that being said i drive a ford focus
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Old 07-06-2014, 10:15 AM   #3
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Hi there, I've tried this on my focus, but the white bolt just spins around, not adjusting the light level.
Any tips on why and how to fix it?
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Old 07-23-2014, 04:50 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by st170nick View Post
Hi there, I've tried this on my focus, but the white bolt just spins around, not adjusting the light level.
Any tips on why and how to fix it?

Your headlamp adjustors are gone. You can;t replace just the adjustors and need to replace the whole headlamp unfortunately. I had the same problem. Cost me 400 for the two of them.
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Old 07-27-2014, 11:21 PM   #5
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redneck headlight adjustments

I know there are rules as to where the "Beam" shall be adjusted on LowBeam (high beam falls where it will)


here is what I do:
find a flat spot with a wall ahead (a parking lot usually works well)
at night, park right in front, turn on highbeams and note where the bright spot of the center hits the building. (make a small chalk mark or something if needed)
then slowly back away and see if the center moves... if it does, adjust until it stays exactly in one spot.
Now, turn on low beams and as you are backing away, make sure they fall off to the right and down so that when you are about 100ft back, they are half way to the bottom or so. This will give you about 2 seconds of forward vision driving at 65mph or so while on LowBeam.
IF they drop faster, then you may consider raising them up a bit.

then, take a drive down a dark road, preferably with "Stuff" along side like trees or building and see how well they are lit... then find a dead end with something straight away so you can see from several hundred yards back how they shine... (too high?? too low??) and adjust.
then drive on low beam and do 2 second counts with spots on the road doing 60-65 so make sure you can see adequately...

if all works out, and low beams are a little short, you may consider raising them up just a bit, as it is better to have your HBs shine slightly above the road and not creating a bright spot ON the road, as that will reduce your night vision

final adjustments are usually made at night to tweek it, and if you get a chance to drive alone in fog at night, park on a flat spot on the highway, and turn on your brights, walk back from your car and to the other side of the highway to see where they shine... do the same with low beams...

after awhile, you'll just get a sense of "BETTER" lighting.

remember, on high, you do NOT want to light the road directly in front of you... a bright spot there kills your distance vision, as your eye will compensate for the near brightness and close up, reducing your distance vision
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