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Headlight adj screws

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MagikDraggin

Guest
I see there are two different headlight adjusting screws on stalks on my C5.

I wish to lower the overall setting of the headlamp assy. So I don't go messing with the wrong one and get it out of adjustment, which one is for the up and down adjustment?

Karl
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
Twenty seven "looks" and no one knows which screw does what for the headlights.

Astounding!

Guess I'll just have to "trial and error it" myself and let y'all know, so the next time this subject comes up, there will be 28 people who will have some idea for an answer.
 
Joined
May 29, 2002
Messages
8,668
Location
Missoura Ozarks
Corvette
2012 💯 4LT GS Roadster
OK go...

...Git-R-Done! :beer

L8TR - D
 

napacruzerC5

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 22, 2003
Messages
280
Location
Napa, CA
Corvette
'01 TR M6, '07 MS A6
I try very hard not to drive the C5 in the dark. With the lousy lights and my poor eyesight I try to keep my vette in the sunshine...or drive the wife's C6. So...I couldn't tell which one does what.

You will post your results won't you :D
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
I try very hard not to drive the C5 in the dark. With the lousy lights and my poor eyesight I try to keep my vette in the sunshine...or drive the wife's C6. So...I couldn't tell which one does what.

You will post your results won't you :D

Sure, I'm gonna post the results.

The adjustor on the long stalk immediately behind where the lamps themselves plug in is the one for up and down adjustments.

The short little stubby one right on the inside top of the housing (you have to remove the black cover to see it) is for the back and forth (horizontal) adjustment.

From the factory, the drivers side light was too far to the left and too high, while the passenger side light was too far to the right and not high enough.

Even when they are fully adjusted to provide more and better coverage than the factory settings, they are still pathetic, especially on low beams, as the diffusers simply scatter the light in all directions and don't really light up the road at all. As a matter of fact, the fog lights do a better job than the low beams. At least they are 'focused'.

I'm going to have to get a set of those "export" housings, which I have heard are far superior to the trash that's on the domestic C5 as it comes from the factory.

So now y'all know, the next some dummy like me asks which one is the up and down adjuster.

Karl
 

Jistari

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2006
Messages
254
Location
New York
Corvette
2001 Black on Black A4 Coupe
Alrighty then, I'll wing it :)

Two screws (not really screws, they are torx heads, like sockest that a torx screwdriver fits into, possibly #15, but not sure on that). Spray the plastic screw shafts they are attached to liberaly with WD40 prior to trying to move them. They are plastic and therefore brittle and frequently break. Just rock the tool back and forth until the mechanism starts to move, it'll take a while and maybe a few shots of WD40.

One accessed from the inboard side ( you are looking out from the centerline parallel to the front of the bulb) of the headlight housing (easier if you just remove the shroud surrounding the sides of the light assembly, three phillips head screws), that I think controls the horizontal (side to side) adjustment.

One accessed from the front outboard side (you are looking perpendicular to the front of the bulb, on the outboard side) that controls the verticle (hieght) adjustment.

This is not something that is done that often, so people may not remember which does which :)

But if you use the WD40 and a little caution, you can figure it out yourself pretty easily.

To adjust them properly, you'll need to search the forum or google for the whole procedure, I cant recall it well enough to tell you how to do it exactly.

Me, I just needed them a little higher (they didnt look far enough out ahead of me at night) so I parked 25 feet from a wall (the mall at night is a good place) and put tape on the wall at the center of the beam pattern (cover one light at a time with a towel as you adjust the other one).

Don't know if mine are adjusted exactly right, but no one is flashing me and I can now see where I'm going.

Good luck.
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
Alrighty then, I'll wing it :)

Two screws (not really screws, they are torx heads, like sockest that a torx screwdriver fits into, possibly #15, but not sure on that).

Actually a standard 1/4" 12 pt socket will slip comfortably over the nasty Torx head. Much easier to use and less likelihood of stripping the cheaply designed thing out.

One accessed from the inboard side ( you are looking out from the centerline parallel to the front of the bulb) of the headlight housing (easier if you just remove the shroud surrounding the sides of the light assembly, three phillips head screws), that I think controls the horizontal (side to side) adjustment.

It's probably a good idea to simply take that black shroud off right at the outset to facilitate a better view inside.

One accessed from the front outboard side (you are looking perpendicular to the front of the bulb, on the outboard side) that controls the verticle (hieght) adjustment.

Yes, the vertical adjustment is done with the one on the long stalk behind the bulbs in the fixture, while the horizontal adjustment is done with the one easily accessed right at the top inside of each fixture.

This is not something that is done that often, so people may not remember which does which :)

I can certainly understand that now....as I'll probably forget it myself in a few months.

To adjust them properly, you'll need to search the forum or google for the whole procedure, I cant recall it well enough to tell you how to do it exactly.

I found the procedure...what an absolutely confusing and impossible to follow PITA set of instructions.

First of all, due to the poor refraction pattern of the factory lenses, it is virtually impossible to "define" just where the "low beam" is actually striking the surface you are using as a guide.

The high beams are a tad bit better focused and easier to set according to the factory procedure. The lows are simply a joke, make no bones about it.

Me, I just needed them a little higher (they didnt look far enough out ahead of me at night) so I parked 25 feet from a wall (the mall at night is a good place) and put tape on the wall at the center of the beam pattern (cover one light at a time with a towel as you adjust the other one).

There was a big dark "hole" between the right and left lights when driving on the road, both on low and high beam. Once I closed up that hole and realigned the lights so they are both at the same height, they are "reasonably acceptable" for normal nighttime driving, but out in the countryside where there is not any scatter from other light sources, the Corvette lighting is woefully pathetic still.

I now have a set of those "Phillips high-intensity" bulbs in place as well as having rewired the thing so that all 4 lamps are on in highbeam mode. That helps some. but not nearly enough.

Don't know if mine are adjusted exactly right, but no one is flashing me and I can now see where I'm going.

Yep, so far so good with me as well, although I think most people are simply getting used to all those SUV's 4X4's and Minivans whose headlights are set way too high to begin with and then there are those drivers who exacerbate the situation by thinking it "cool" to drive around with at least 2 if not more fog lights on all at the same time....also set way too high (especially if it were actually "foggy" out).

Good luck.

Thanks, I certainly am going to need it.:rotfl
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
Karl try replacing the bulbs with PIAA's they are much better

I don't feel it's so much the bulbs that are inadequate, as it is the lenses themselves. What I'd like to be able to do is find some relatively inexpensive housings that will bolt right in that have a better designed reflectors and lensing system than the factory junk.

Even the headlamps on my old '95 Accord outperform my Corvette. That's pathetic!

Still, I want to thank you for the suggestion.
 

bossvette

Gone but not forgotten
Joined
May 19, 2003
Messages
3,233
Location
West Unity Ohio
Corvette
1968 1997
I live out in farm country and drive a lot at night and the switch to PIAA bulbs along with tweaking the adjustments made a huge difference.
 
Joined
May 10, 2002
Messages
2,254
Location
Boise, Idaho
Corvette
2002 electron blue Z06
I would have to agree with MagikDraggin. The headlights on the C5 are very poor. I replaced mine with Silverstars and that helped some. When I drive my wife's BMW with the HID lights, I am amazed at the difference. That is also why I am glad they did away with the pop-up lights on the C6. The Corvette needs top flight headlights, and the C6 was a major improvement in the lights department.
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
WOW - Maybe you need to buy a Honda Sports Car and get rid of the Vette! :beer

L8TR - D


You laugh.....but don't think I haven't considered such an idea. If only I could get my Honda to run in the low 12's, 0-60 in 4sec and top out at 186 mph....then I might be on to something, heh, heh, heh.
;LOL;LOL;LOL
There is one thing though that the Honda does as well as the Corvette....and that is give me 30 mpg on the highway. So there's one out of four already and remember it does have better headlights.
:rotfl

The problem is however, no matter what I "do" to the Honda, it will still and always be a Honda. It can never "be" a Corvette.

MyRice-burner.jpg
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
I live out in farm country and drive a lot at night and the switch to PIAA bulbs along with tweaking the adjustments made a huge difference.

You speak of simply switching to PIAA bulbs. Is it really just a matter of swapping out some bulbs? I would think the housings themselves need to changed that would tend to concentrate the light output in front of the Vette and not scatter it all over the place where it is wasted on overpasses, weeds along the sides and in the medians, and the like.

Would you be so kind as to elaborate a bit more on your suggestion?
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
I would have to agree with MagikDraggin. The headlights on the C5 are very poor. I replaced mine with Silverstars and that helped some. When I drive my wife's BMW with the HID lights, I am amazed at the difference. That is also why I am glad they did away with the pop-up lights on the C6. The Corvette needs top flight headlights, and the C6 was a major improvement in the lights department.


Thanks....I need a "pat on the back" like that once in awhile:D

I agree the C6 lighting is far superior to the C5.....what's unfortunate is that the "General" has been unwilling to provide some sort of retrofit for the C5 which is reasonable in cost.

Like I alluded earlier, the "export" versions of the C5 DO have much better lighting, but I am having difficulty in researching the subject as to the ease of retrofitting this export lighting to my domestic C5.
 
M

MagikDraggin

Guest
they are a little pricey but cheaper then HID conversions

9006
9007


Hmmm, that sounds a lot like these "Toshiba" bulbs I have in place now. They are considerably brighter than the factory and quite a bit brighter than the Silvania Superstars I had later on.

When I stand off away from the front of the Vette, they are VERY bright indeed!

But when I get in and drive around, the difference is not that great, because the stock housings scatter the light all over the place and don't focus it where it is needed.
 
S

stonebreaker

Guest
Actually a standard 1/4" 12 pt socket will slip comfortably over the nasty Torx head. Much easier to use and less likelihood of stripping the cheaply designed thing out.

Actually, the correct socket to fit over the outside of the adjustment screw is an E-8 torx socket. I just got through installing the KBCarStuff HID headlights on my C5, and the quarter inch socket stripped one of the adjustment screw heads. You can find the E-8 socket at your local autoparts store. O'Reilly had it with the specialty tools.
 

Junkman2008

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 11, 2007
Messages
560
Location
Kentucky
Corvette
2001 Navy Blue Metallic Coupe
Holy old thread bump! :L
 

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