Technical Articles

Installing Halogen Headlights

This one of the most popular upgrades to the 912E (and 911). Replace your dim sealed-beam headlamps with high-powered halogen units. The newer lamps are reported to give you more than triple the light than the stock tungsten sealed-beam lamps. It’s an easy procedure which can be accomplished in a few of hours with just a couple of screwdrivers.

You have two options - replace just the sealed-beam lights with Hella halogen lamps, or replace the entire assemblies with the Bosch H4 headlamps. These Bosch H4 units give the car a more up-to-date look, while replacing just the lamps allows you to keep the classic headlamp look and style. The bulb and lens in this kit directly replaces the sealed-beam lens that was originally used on the 912E/911.

Step 1

Using a large philips-head screwdriver, remove the screw at the bottom of the chrome headlight ring. Be careful that the screwdriver doesn’t slip and scratch your paint! Also note the angle at which this screw is installed. When reinstalling it you need to install it the same way. Once the screw is out you can gently pull the ring up and off the fender. If it doesn’t come right off, you may need to slightly twist the ring to loosen it up. Once it is off, check the rubber seal around the headlight opening in the fender. Now is a good time to replace it if it is worn or cracked. If you think it is still usable, give it a wash, let it dry, then rub some talcum powder on it to extend its life.

Step 2

Next remove the three small screws holding the chrome headlight retainer ring. These three screws tend to rust, so you may want to spray them with WD-40 first, and make sure you have a good grip on them before trying to turn the screw. Once these three screws come out you can remove the headlight from the assembly. Photo shows the headlamp removed. Pull off the electrical connection from the back of the existing headlight.

Now is a good time to wash away the years of road grime and dirt that have accumulated in the headlight bucket. Let dry and give the area a rub with some wax or a corrosion protectant such as Waxoyl.

Step 3 - Replacing the entire unit with Bosch H4 units

To replace the entire headlight assembly: Remove the four screws that hold the headlight retainer and remove the entire assembly from the headlight bucket.

Step 3a - Replacing the sealed-beam headlights with H4 halogen headlights

Slide the old chrome retainer ring over the new headlight. Note that the retainer goes on one way only. If it is not on correctly, the mounting screws will not line up. Plug the headlight electrical plug into the back of the headlight assembly, and then install the headlight and the chrome retainer with its’ three mounting screws. You can then test the headlight at this time to make sure it works.

Step 4

Install the rubber seal around the headlight bucket opening, making sure it is seated correctly.

Step 5

Install the headlight ring. Note that the ring fits over the metal lip on top of the headlight bucket, and then the screw at the bottom holds it in place. Remember to note the upward angle of the headlight rim screw. It is sometimes hard to get it started correctly. Once again be careful not to let the screwdriver slip off and scratch your paint.

That’s it! You will want to check the adjustment of your headlights after they are installed.

H1 headlights

H1 headlights can be found on some cars - they are NLA and are expensive when they do come up for sale. They are desirable because of their seperately adjustable low and high beam bulbs. The parabolic shape of the reflectors provides for a fairly intense, but wide pattern of illumination. Some people also like that the top of the glass lens is smooth and clear in contrast to the H4’s ‘pebbled’ texture.