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Fast Eddie
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Discussion Starter #1
Was told this is an ongoing problem with 2000-2003 era New Bugs. No recall or written Technical Bulletin was disclosed by the local VW dealer on this, but orally they chirped like a flock of birds! Alternator & grounding was fine. Solution: Use ONLY OEM headlamps! Yes, use ONLY the German bulbs!! They WILL supposedly last much longer than aftermarket ones. Of course, make sure you don't ever handle the lamp with your bare hands, the oil from your body will prematurely burn out the lamp. So it is written, so I shall try this...
 

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Premium Member
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580 Posts
my 2k does this quite often. ive heard of the bad grounding and blah blah blah but never found anything. as far as oem is a load of bs, ive found they blow just as easy as the others. i just buy them at like autozone or pep boys about 5$ each and keep spares. i have been running on the same set now for about a year. sometimes they blow in a month and so far the cheapies i put in are still fine.
 

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Bourgeoisie
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309 Posts
My OEMs burned out quickly (read: months) even with DRLs disabled. Meanwhile, my OSRAM Silverstars (clear bulb, not tinted) have lasted over two years.

The dealer is supposed to say you can't use anything but OEM parts. It's one of those little advertising gimmicks swallowed and taken as fact: that OEM parts are always best for a car. It's why insurance companies tout repair benefits where they insist on OEM parts -- it's supposed to be a good thing. And it is, if you're planning on selling the car.
 

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I noticed that Paul specified OSRAM Silverstars, NOT the Sylvania US versions. I have read rumors on this sight that the OSRAMS are superior in life than the Sylvania US counterparts. Does anyone have a resource for obtaining the Osram's???
 

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cyclehobby
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3 Posts
My 01 had only one headlight bulb burn out in 5 years, but I have heard many NB owners complain of freaquent failures. The biggest issue associated with this is the complex process you have to go through to replace a headlight bulb on the NB (though once you do once, it's really no big deal.

I agree with jackfrost though. You don't have to use german made or expensive bulbs in your NB. Just keep an extra on hand and don't exceed the wattage specified by VW. Some blame the extra heat generated by higher wattage bulbs for premature failure.
 

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Bourgeoisie
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309 Posts
redwolf698 said:
I noticed that Paul specified OSRAM Silverstars, NOT the Sylvania US versions. I have read rumors on this sight that the OSRAMS are superior in life than the Sylvania US counterparts. Does anyone have a resource for obtaining the Osram's???
Sylvania Silverstars are tinted blue. I cannot verify the rumors about their lifespan, but I am fairly sure they aren't as bright. And the OSRAMs are whiter and brighter than stock (it's easy to compare with my stock fogs on). Not Xenon bright, but bright.
 

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Keep It Real
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1,746 Posts
Hummmm, interesting.

I currently run an HID system but prior to that I never had any problems with headlamp bulbs burning out on my car.
 

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a.k.a. porkchopzz4
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890 Posts
Maybe this is a car specific thing, like certain 2.0L engines that burn oil. Maybe some Beetles eat bulbs and others don't. Our 2000 burned out each bulb within a month of one another... after 4 years. The new bulbs were from Wal-mart for $4 each. Was careful not to touch the glass portion with my fingers. New bulbs have now lasted over a year. So.. one bulb replacement for a car built July 1999.

Others replace their bulbs monthly. No idea why.
 

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25 Posts
I just acquired a Silver 2001 1.8T GLX and the headlight is out. The dealer recommended the German headlamps due to the other parts either A: Not fitting well or B: Quick burn out

How hard is it to replace the headlamp yourself? Also is there a maintenance manual out there that I should have?

I think I may have the Haynes manual but I will have to look.

Any help is appreciated.
 

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No NB Yellow Trifecta :(
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5,639 Posts
I suggest that you get a Bentley manual and not a haynes. The bulb is an "H1" and you can get it at any auto parts place for $5-$6. Getting the head light assembly out and back in can be challenging but, changing the bulb is easy. Remember not to touch the bulb.
 

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Want to do a drive.
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1,798 Posts
I'm running a set of PIAA extreme whites and have no problems.
 

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25 Posts
Well I got the headlight replaced. But has anyone ever had to adjust the headlights on their NB? I just took an evening drive and the drivers side headlight was pointed pretty much at the center line and down...
 

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Semi-Lurk Mode: GOOOOO
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2,842 Posts
And the record for oldest thread revival goes to.... drumroll please... :D

I just acquired a Silver 2001 1.8T GLX and the headlight is out. The dealer recommended the German headlamps due to the other parts either A: Not fitting well or B: Quick burn out

How hard is it to replace the headlamp yourself? Also is there a maintenance manual out there that I should have?

I think I may have the Haynes manual but I will have to look.

Any help is appreciated.
 

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Registered
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308 Posts
The headlight housings have a pair of white plastic adjustment "bolts" can be turned by either using a socket on the bolt shape, or using either a torx or philips screwdriver in the center of them. (Will vary depending on whether your headlights are OEM or replacement)

There's actually a fairly detailed process to aiming them correctly that involves having a level surface to put the car on at a certain distance from a wall with guides on the wall to aim at.

However, if you don't have that sort of setup, but have a nice level place you can safely park and adjust them at night, you can usually eyeball it pretty well.
 

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565 Posts
Silverstars???

Osram Sylvania says the H1 Silverstar will only last about a year, they suggested the H1 Extravision H1XV. Here is the adjustment procedure for the headlights. I think its a 8mm allen wrench that fits.
 

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'07 convertible. 3 lights in 2 years. The cheap plastic hinge on the assembly broke last time I changed the bulb. Opted for the superglue/duct tape fix.

Anyone know of a replacement for the OEM assembly on an '07? HID or regular, just not OEM. I'm told the '07 canister assembly is different than the '05 and earlier, which seems to have a number of options.
 
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