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$500 for a light bulb?? They can suck it.

Discussion in 'E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006-2011)' started by JaredBoynton, Jan 18, 2013.

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    JaredBoynton

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    This is the death knell for my BMW ownership experience. One of my Xenon headlights has gone out.
    I spend 3 hours just trying to find a way to change it myself. I called the dealer. $525 to replace the bulb. That is if it needs just one bulb. If I need an igniter, who knows how much it would cost. Really if these bulbs are so good and so expensive, why not just have a lifetime warranty or something

    I've seen online videos of how to replace it. You have got to be kidding. I could handle buying the bulb for $300, but not the service. Especially since I was raped the last time at Chapman BMW in Chandler AZ

    The car is worth maybe $8700 in trade in. I owe $14,000 on. I am so seriously screwed. BMW has bought themselves tons of bad advertising.

    I would never have bought a model with these headlamps, knowing the replacement cost. Perhaps the dealer should explain some of these things when making a purchase.

    The car is supposed to be the Ultimate Driving Experience, not the Ultimate Suck your money dry experience.
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    BMWCCA1

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    What model/year is your car? I replaced both headlight units on my daughter's 318ti (complete housing, lenses, and bulbs) for $104 from Rock Auto. I'm guessing the non-xenons might be available a lot cheaper than replacing your bulb. But then you'd have to invest some sweat-equity.

    Wait til you price the upcoming laser headlamp units!
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    steven s

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    These bulbs are expensive.
    I just looked up on penskeparts.com for a xenon bulb for our 2003 Mini. $218.
    Knock on wood our xenons are 10 years old.
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    BMWCCA1

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    A friend and fellow member with a Series-I X5 found his for $100 each. I believe our shop replaced them for $100 for both. If you don't mind color-mis-match, just do one.
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    JaredBoynton

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    I really have an issue with this. It's a basic item and a safety item at that. It's a light bulb. I cannot believe the dealer, the dealer says it will take them 2 1/2 hours to do the job. I saw an online posting. You have to jack up the car, remove the wheel and half of the fender liner to gain access to it.
    If I knew this when I bought the car, I would have opted for the standard halogen headlights.
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    steven s

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    I wouldn't want a car without xenons ever again.
    Not with my sorry eyes.
    When I drive my E30 or even E36 with Euro headlights, they don't even look like they are on compared to xenon.
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    mrsbee

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    My suggestion is to not throw the baby out with the bath water.

    I know I had to replace a xenon on the One a while back, and I don't recall it being that expensive. Perhaps a second opinion is in order, find an Indie shop or heck, just take it to an auto zone and ask what they'd suggest you doing. Lots of times they'll give you free advice even if you don't buy their material. Swapping out for standard halogen is an option, albeit I don't see it a very good one. (pun intended, see, get it?)

    If not, I'm sorry that you're experience has been spoiled by something like a bulb. Look towards the sky and see the light, it could be exponentially worse, like transmission failure or a faulty gas pump that explodes and burns you alive.

    Looking around, replacement Xenons for even a Hyundai are $200 NOT installed. Just a little nugget of knowledge to chew on...
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    steven s

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    The problem with swapping a xenon on your own is you can not be absolutely be sure that it's the bulb.
    Then you are stuck since I don't believe you can return xenon bulbs.

    I found a DIY at http://trickykegstands.com/e90Headlight.html
    It looks like a PITA if that's your car.
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    BMWCCA1

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    Then it's your fault for not doing your homework. Expensive cars are made up of lots of expensive parts. The good news is you have great lights, when they work.

    I wonder what the new laser headlights will cost to replace?
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    CRKrieger

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    It would not be a bad idea for someone to ask him if the entire procedure could be copied over here for future reference.
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    dschultz 07 Z4 M Coupe

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    Ah yes, those xenon's do jump up and bite you. Shame on BMW for suggesting that this is a lifetime component when it clearly isn't. There have been lots of issues with these systems: bulbs, ignitors and controllers. That being said, the light output kicks ass.

    I'm sorry you had such a bad experience at your dealer. Shortly after I bought my Z4MC one light went out. My dealer/bmw came through and replaced a faulty controller under the CPO warranty. They did mutter something about "looks like someone has been in there" and "looks like there may have been some front end damage" which felt vaguely like a threat, but nonetheless, they fixed the lights.

    Before visiting the dealer I figured I'd just change the bulb myself. Not the simplest procedure but when it became clear that the bulb wasn't the issue I bailed and went to the dealer. As a result of my DIY foray I now have 4 brand new xenon bulbs which is at least 2 too many. (It turns out these bulbs often sold in pairs, who knew?) So if anyone needs a pair of Phillips Xenon Gas Discharge Lamps: D2S 35W 85122, let me know. :)
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    steven s

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    Bulbs are considered lifetime?
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    dschultz 07 Z4 M Coupe

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    "Headlights" are explicitly not covered under CPO, but there appears to be confusion about whether "headlights" means just bulbs, or ignitors and controllers as well. With some dealers covering the additional components and some refusing. According to some reports buyers were led to believe that when they were checking the "xenon" option they were getting a lifetime component. I realize it's all self-reported by pissed-off people and anecdotal, but there does seem to be a lot more anger and frustration about this particular topic than most. Where there's smoke...
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    Pyewacket1

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    I don't want to come across as being a jerk, but I agree with your statement above.

    Yes, premium cars also come with premium costs to maintain as well.

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