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How to Replace the Tesla Model S Headlight Bulb (Non-Tech Pkg)

loganss

Spaceman
Mar 6, 2011
525
40
Maryland
Stephen Where are you located? The wiring for your bulb is very different compared to mine. I'm in the US.

Yeah taking the wheel off makes a huge difference. I didn't have a jack i was confident lifting the model s with. What Jack did you use?

Glad you got the bulb removed.
 

Dborn

Confirmed
Aug 26, 2011
2,715
358
Sydney, Australia
Thanks for the write up. I'm stuck at this point. Not sure how to remove the old bulb. It won't budge counter-clockwise and I don't want to break anything. Any ideas?
Looks like an Hid headlamp. If so, this a D series, either a D1 or D3. I believe there is a locking ring which is a real pain to undo. You need an extra joint or two in your upper limb!! The bulb itself does not twist. Once you have it out you will need to check the notches on the plastic collar to determine whether you have the D1 or 3. Those notches locate the bulb. When I did mine I removed the entire headlight ( instructions on this site), since I was going from a 25 watt bulb to 35 watt and also had to change the ballast. ( in Australia, different spec to USA, and was a D 8.). Much the easiest way to change bulb, but a big deal since you have to remove bumper bar.
 

StephenM

Active Member
Dec 23, 2012
1,192
93
Stephen Where are you located? The wiring for your bulb is very different compared to mine. I'm in the US.

Yeah taking the wheel off makes a huge difference. I didn't have a jack i was confident lifting the model s with. What Jack did you use?

Glad you got the bulb removed.

Mine is also US though maybe my vin is a lot lower? 5xxx
I use a costway 3-ton heavy duty jack
 

loganss

Spaceman
Mar 6, 2011
525
40
Maryland
That's interesting. I'm also a low 5000 vin (~feb 2013) and live in MD. My bulb is the one listed in my op and is why my bulb removal was slightly different from yours.
 

fsch

Member
Sep 21, 2015
151
177
Montreal, QC
How to Replace the Tesla Model S Halogen Headlight Bulb (Non-Tech Pkg

Thanks a bunch for these instruction on how to replace the bulb without removing the wheel! I have the Tech package, but its mostly the same. @StephenM link to David Drives Electric video was also very informative in this respect but that method involved removing the wheel and I'm not equipped for that.

It was a bit painful for the hand though (more specifically, the thumb on the edge of the hole) when you try to unlock/lock the lamp in place. Perhaps I should have asked my wife who has smaller hands, but I'm quite sure she would have refused to 1) participate in this DIY thing instead of taking the car to the SvC, and 2) touching any HV electric part despite my reassurances that the light was off, etc! Anyway, happy to save 1.2 k$CAD.
 
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Iz

EVs are here to stay
Nov 22, 2006
1,080
22
New York
TMC is the gift that keeps on giving. :)

Thanks for the DIY instruction & photos. The later video is also very helpful. My 2013 Model S (vin 3xxx) requires a headlight change.
 
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demundus

Active Member
Jul 5, 2015
1,335
868
Oceanside, CA
TMC is the gift that keeps on giving. :)

Thanks for the DIY instruction & photos. The later video is also very helpful. My 2013 Model S (vin 3xxx) requires a headlight change.

Depending on Chinese quality, my reference to the earlier post of trying to help a member locally but the bulbs wouldn't lock into the housing is a real risk on this DIY. Mine are still going strong but I feel bad that I couldn't get his to work :(
 

misko

New Member
Apr 16, 2019
2
0
California
Has anyone gotten a service center to replace a bulb? I've been to 2. One tried to tell me there is no bulb, it's all LED and the other couldn't tell me what the cost would be except over $1200 for the entire fixture.
 

Vip

Member
Jul 11, 2013
441
78
United States
Has anyone gotten a service center to replace a bulb? I've been to 2. One tried to tell me there is no bulb, it's all LED and the other couldn't tell me what the cost would be except over $1200 for the entire fixture.
No. I asked the same thing and they said the whole thing needed to be replaced. When I told them about what I read on this thread they didn't know anything about it.
I did purchase bulbs from Amazon as someone here had recommended. I could tell that they were not as bright as the OEMs. But you get what you pay for and these were not costly. I replaced them myself, bit of pain but doable.
Unfortunately a few months later my car was in an accident after someone ran a red light. Well during the repair they replaced both headlights so now I have OEM bulbs again.
 

Dvus 13

Member
Aug 15, 2020
6
-2
San Ramon, Ca
Also, are there any references for a shop that actually knows how to complete an alignment on our Tesla model S units ??
The local Tesla Service center in Santa Clara, CA apparently can't even get this completed. Went in pulling right. Picked up, and still pulls right. Car for 100k and handles like im blown away! This location didn't even understand the term
-bump steer- ....It seems as though most of the Tesla tech repairs are completed with laptops and there is no need for some of these alignment guys to understand steering & suspension fundamentals.
 
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demundus

Active Member
Jul 5, 2015
1,335
868
Oceanside, CA
My 2013 has pulled right for as long as I can remember. I’ve done everything down to machining custom rear control arms To correct toe issues. I get an alignment at a shop I trust in SoCal every time I change all four tires. I still pull right. Can’t explain it
 

Dvus 13

Member
Aug 15, 2020
6
-2
San Ramon, Ca
amazing!! I live right here where Tesla builds these cars. They can't seem to correct these simple issues. But, they know how to crank on adjustment bolts until the alignment machine turns the red specification bars green. -its in specs- is all they can seem to tell you. The kicker is the dont seem to have a great understanding of what they are adjusting in relation to end performance factors. They have NO list of recommended parts to replace (that would cause a steering pull or the extremely poor handling results) I enjoy driving and getting lost in the twisties. I can't push my Tesla at any corner. That's just sad!!! Sexy tech car with balls, and no way to steer through. Whats the point?
 

dld0088

New Member
May 29, 2021
2
0
San Jose
I have done a number of LED retrofits in other cars and the bulb base is a bit larger, however the LED is much lower temperature than the Halogen.
The only way to really check the bulb size for sure is to do a test fit on your Model S and locate the LED and ballast in the fender well area. Good luck!
does this fit the Tesla Model S?
 

dld0088

New Member
May 29, 2021
2
0
San Jose
I was thinking about ordering these and trying... the dimensions are pretty close but it is a little long. I would be afraid of putting the ballast too close to the plastic and melting it or causing a fire. Could this be done with the size discrepancy?

This link has the sizes for the LED LED Headlight Kit - 9005 LED Headlight Bulbs Conversion Kit with Built In Fan | High Beam and Low Beam Headlight Bulb | Front Exterior LED Bulbs | LED Lights | Super Bright LEDs

And this link has sizes for a hallogen 9005 http://www.perdeauto.com/images/9005-65-BX2_specs.jpg
Does this fit? I'm interested
 

Sir_P85

New Member
Jul 17, 2021
1
1
Atlanta, GA
Thanks so much for the details and photos! I was able to replace my halogen bulbs on my 2013 P85 (without tech package) with SEALIGHT Scoparc 9005/HB3 6000K LED bulbs successfully. No error codes, plug and play, didn't have to remove tires or trim inside frunk. It was quick and easy.

Here's the listing on Amazon:


 
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