Headlight bulb conversion: H11 to H9 - Chevy Impala Forums
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-01-2014 Thread Starter
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Headlight bulb conversion: H11 to H9

As we all know, the regular H11 bulbs on our car are very dim and yellow. I didn't want to spend a lot of money on Silverstar, Nighthawks, etc., for a marginal return in performance.

So, I bought two H9 bulbs and modded them to fit the H11 socket.

The difference in performance is DRASTIC. Not only is there much more light, the light is much whiter instead of being a dingy yellow.

I do expect to get shorter lifespan from the bulbs, but I feel it was worth it. Instead of converting to HIDs, I highly recommend doing this mod. It's not illegal, won't blind everyone (as long as your headlights are aimed properly) and just requires a bit of elbow grease to mod the H9 bulb to fit an H11 socket.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajm786 View Post
As we all know, the regular H11 bulbs on our car are very dim and yellow. I didn't want to spend a lot of money on Silverstar, Nighthawks, etc., for a marginal return in performance.

So, I bought two H9 bulbs and modded them to fit the H11 socket.

The difference in performance is DRASTIC. Not only is there much more light, the light is much whiter instead of being a dingy yellow.

I do expect to get shorter lifespan from the bulbs, but I feel it was worth it. Instead of converting to HIDs, I highly recommend doing this mod. It's not illegal, won't blind everyone (as long as your headlights are aimed properly) and just requires a bit of elbow grease to mod the H9 bulb to fit an H11 socket.
do the new bulbs pull more electricity?

can you show us pics?

can you describe the modding process?
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2014
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Thank you for not PnP-ing..lol
Good way to use your head, will heat be an issue? I wouldn't expect it to be..just askin.
IIRC h11 is 55watt with a tip that's painted, and h9 is 65watt clear tip
So 10watt more
Edit: is the focal point the same on h9? Do you get the same beam pattern?

<a href=http://s1281.photobucket.com/user/702ltz/media/Mobile%20Uploads/20150112_165711_zpsah6xjvc_edit_1421167783579_zpsvuvufe2j.jpg.html target=_blank><img src=http://i1281.photobucket.com/albums/a518/702ltz/Mobile%20Uploads/20150112_165711_zpsah6xjvc_edit_1421167783579_zpsvuvufe2j.jpg border=0 alt= /></a>[/URL]
"I didn't really set a timeline for it to be done. I just wanted to make sure that when it was finally completed, it would meet my expectations."

Last edited by 702•LTZ; 01-02-2014 at 03:49 PM.
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Quote:
do the new bulbs pull more electricity?

can you show us pics?

can you describe the modding process?
1. Yes, H9s pull more electricity. 55w for H11 vs 65w for H9.
2. Unfortunately, I don't have any. However, mark my words: the light is much brighter...and more importantly, much whiter.
3. Yes. I did not have any special tools. I used needle nose pliers to break off the top part of the notch, then used a really small, sharp, flat screw driver to "file" down the rest of it. Plugged right into the H11 socket with no issues at all.

I doubt heat will be a real issue; it's only 10W more, and it's not like there is any difference in the way they seat.

Oh, forgot to mention, there is good news for doing the modding. You do NOT have to cut/shave the small metal ring tab where the bulb sits in the socket. Our headlamps will accept it as is. So only thing you need to do is remove the small notch in the socket (the electrical socket) and you're good to go.

From the looks of it, the beam pattern is exactly the same. And there is no issue of blinding other drivers, because the Impala headlamps have a design that cuts off the bulb light at eye level so it doesn't annoy everyone.
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You are aware that the H9 is just the high beam bulb for the car, right?

Basically what it sounds like you've done is modify the high beam bulb to fit in the low beam bulb's socket, so you have two sets of high beams.

Which means, yes, you probably will be blinding other drivers.

2008 Chevrolet Impala LT 3.9L V6
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Originally Posted by admpln View Post
You are aware that the H9 is just the high beam bulb for the car, right?

Basically what it sounds like you've done is modify the high beam bulb to fit in the low beam bulb's socket, so you have two sets of high beams.

Which means, yes, you probably will be blinding other drivers.
I know exactly what an H9 bulb is. It's the same bulb that's used in the highbeams. And no, it's not blinding other drivers.

Look at it this way. I spent $14 for a set of bulbs that give me at least 50% better output, rather than waste money on a set of Silverstars, Nighthawks, or whatever else.

It's a well accepted mod. The only time you will blind anyone is if your headlights are not aimed properly. If ever in doubt, DO NOT DO THIS MOD. It just so happens that mine are aimed just fine, so I've got no issues.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 01-02-2014
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no matter what bulb you have in the low beam housing it will never be as bright at the high beam because there is a CAP over the bulb regardless if the tip is painted or not.
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Originally Posted by bibeau689 View Post
no matter what bulb you have in the low beam housing it will never be as bright at the high beam because there is a CAP over the bulb regardless if the tip is painted or not.
Good point; thanks for bringing that up. I can tell you it is certainly not as bright as the high beams. As a matter of fact, I can stare directly into the lowbeams with H9; I can't really do that with the highbeams.
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So, is the goal *bright*? ~assuming~ he simply wanted more light on the road. Cap is there to not be annoying to traffic. Bulbs have it incase cars don't, Sylvania knows H11 is low beam, therefore painted tip bulbs.

<a href=http://s1281.photobucket.com/user/702ltz/media/Mobile%20Uploads/20150112_165711_zpsah6xjvc_edit_1421167783579_zpsvuvufe2j.jpg.html target=_blank><img src=http://i1281.photobucket.com/albums/a518/702ltz/Mobile%20Uploads/20150112_165711_zpsah6xjvc_edit_1421167783579_zpsvuvufe2j.jpg border=0 alt= /></a>[/URL]
"I didn't really set a timeline for it to be done. I just wanted to make sure that when it was finally completed, it would meet my expectations."
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So, is the goal *bright*? ~assuming~ he simply wanted more light on the road. Cap is there to not be annoying to traffic. Bulbs have it incase cars don't, Sylvania knows H11 is low beam, therefore painted tip bulbs.
Yes, the goal was not only to get brighter, but whiter. Again, there's only one real way to do that without wasting money. Comparing lumen output to something like a pair of Silverstar Ultras, which would set me back about $40.00, compared to a pair of H9s for $14.00, there's simply no match. The H9s blow it out of the water.
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 08-03-2019
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Hello all,


I am new to this forum and I recently installed this mod in my impala but I am wondering if you anyone has experiences any issues with heat using these bulbs in the long run.
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