Cheaper replacement for city lights in OEM HIDs

DC-TDIWagon

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 7, 2002
Location
DC (really Fairfax county, but it is easier to say
TDI
2003 Jetta TDI Wagon, Reflex Silver
I searched for this but couldn't find any discussion about it so I thought I'd share. I have the OEM HIDs in my Jetta A4. The city lights burn out a lot (every year and they are the only bulbs to be changed in the headlight module in 8 years). They are expensive and the only place I know locally to get them is a MB dealer for about $12 each. In a quest to save money I found a cheaper replacement. I went to Advance auto parts and bought some 3893 bulbs (2 for $5) and modified them a little. The city lights are H6W bulbs and the two knubs are just barely offset from being 180degrees from each other. The 3893 bulbs are 4W and are 180 degrees offset from each other. So I dremeled off a little (about half) of the knub on the side that won't be making contact with the wiring and then used a small wood chisel to take a thin layer of the plastic that forms the guide channel in the socket for the bulb and made the channel a bit wider. I broke one bulb when I didn't use the chisel first. I now have both sides replaced (to pass stupid inspection) and made a couple of extras while I had the dremel out. So the bulbs cost me closer to $2.50 rather than $12.50 and I can buy them much closer to my house. Maybe someone else will find this information useful.

One note, when I said I dremeled half the knub I don't mean I just flattened the knub to half its height. I cut off half the knub on the side that needed more space to fit in the guide channel.
 

Sc0

Veteran Member
Joined
May 21, 2000
Location
Houston, TX USA
TDI
'02 Golf GL 5sp Candy White Tan cloth interior
I agree, expensive bulbs from Mercedes and burn out VERY often.... Was looking at LED alternatives but they are working well so far between maintenance downtimes.
 

TheWheel

Veteran Member
Joined
May 16, 2004
Location
Gaithersburg, MD
TDI
2004 Indigo Blue PD 5M
I had the same problem with my OEM HIDs and the city lights. I replaced them with BAX9S LEDs from 42 Draft Designs when the first set burned out and haven't bought a set since. I purchased the white LEDs and the color is almost the same blue hue as the HID itself.
 

cevans

TDIClub Enthusiast, TDI Parts Ninja Vendor , w/Bus
Joined
Sep 24, 2002
Location
Hingham, MA
TDI
2015 Jetta TDI 6spd // 2015 Bettle Conv. 6-Speed
I've got a bunch in my toolbox I got from Osram...

Its Osram number 64132

I can get them for about 7 bucks...
 
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