HID Conversion Kits: Error Checking
A quick guide to the most common issues a HID conversion kit might give you.
Error Checking Aftermarket HID Kits
This article is designed to help car owners with any aftermarket HID kit issues they may be facing.
Our guide should help you either resolve those errors or help you highlight a faulty component.
There are a handful of errors that HID conversion kit owners may experience after installation.
Before we begin, just remember that a lot of HID kit issues will be a power supply issue.
HID Kit Error Solving
- HID Bulbs Flickering
- Bulb Colour Issues
- Issue On One Side
- Issue On Both Sides
- CANBus Issues
- Light Output Issues
Don’t forget to check out this handy HID error checking flow chart we built!
Why Does My HID Kit Flicker?
A HID kit may flicker due to a number of reasons so we’ll try to cover them as quickly as possible.
HID Kit Flickers On Start-up
If your HID kit flickers when it’s turning on, that’s completely normal.
Sometimes the vehicle will struggle to supply the 23,000 volts to each ballast unit on start-up, especially when it’s cold.
It’s important to turn off any features that turn your lights on before the engine is running.
Doing so will reduce the stress put on your battery.
HID Bulbs Flicker When Driving
If both bulbs flicker whilst driving, there may be a few reasons that cause this.
If they flicker while driving, check all connections and make sure they are in the headlight unit correctly.
Usually flickering can be linked back to a power supply issue or loose connection.
HID Bulbs Flicker While Idling
If your bulbs flicker when the vehicle is idling, your alternator might not be charging the battery fast enough.
To check this, either connect a battery pack to the battery or use jump leads to another vehicle.
Let your vehicle idle for a few minutes to see if the flickering continues.
If the flickering stops, you’ll know there’s a power supply issue but if it continues, you’ll most likely have a faulty pair of ballasts.
HID Kit Colour Issues Explained
Occasionally, your HID kit might experience issues with the colour of the bulbs.
Sometimes this might be due to a faulty component or (you guessed it) a power supply issue.
Please read the next section to determine if you have a faulty component or a power supply issue.
Issue On One Side
Your HID kit might experience issues on just one side.
If this is the case, then please read the next section carefully.
Pop your bonnet, swap the ballast units over (drivers’ side to passengers’ side), start the vehicle up and see if the fault follows.
If the fault moves across, you likely have a faulty ballast unit.
You can also do the same with the bulbs – swap them over, start the vehicle and see if the fault follows the bulb.
Issue On Both Sides
This might not be what you want to hear but if a HID kit has the same issue on both sides, it’s usually a power supply problem.
Attach a battery pack or inter-vehicle connection using jump leads and see if the problem persists.
If it doesn’t then you have a power supply issue that can be resolved with a HID Relay Harness.
This harness consists of a set of resistors, relays and connection points.
Usually this is the best way to resolve power supply or HID CANBus issues.
HID Conversion Kits: CANBus Errors
A decent HID conversion kit shouldn’t present any warning errors on your vehicles’ dashboard.
Unfortunately, this is never guaranteed as vehicles may be hyper-sensitive, have other modifications or a poor power supply.
We’ve listed a few ways on fixing HID CANBus issues.
- If your kit has 55W ballast units, try dropping down to 35W ballast units
- Fit a relay harness between your HID kit and the vehicle
- Speak to an auto electrician to turn off any errors
- Plug in an OBD device to turn off the errors yourself
- Speak to the supplier of the HID kit
A reduction is power demand might prevent the CANBus system from displaying an error.
A relay harness has resistors designed to help stop the CANBus system from showing an error.
They usually have a way to turn off specific parts of the CANBus system.
An OBD device plugs into your vehicle and you should be able to turn off certain warning errors. This depends on the vehicle so please always check with the supplier beforehand.
Make sure to be as descriptive as possible and they should be able to offer solutions to help resolve any errors.
HID Conversion Kits: Poor Light Output
After installing your HID kit, you might not be impressed by the light output.
This could be sue to a number of factors:
- Poor quality kits
- You have the wrong bulbs (projector bulbs in a reflector unit)
- Ballast units aren’t powerful enough
- Your headlight needs a clean
Some kits aren’t tested before being sold online. Always check the reviews and make sure they match the product you are looking at.
Putting projector style HID bulbs into a reflector unit will cause glare to other road users and the light output becomes unstable.
55W ballast units will be the most efficient for light on the road.
It happens to the best of us. These headlight restoration wipes should help more light pass through the headlight unit.