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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I did a search and came up with nothing...........

Wondering if anyone has used these and your impressions.

NOT interested in LEDs

Thanks
 

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This is Phillips version of a Sylvania Silverstar Ultra. Both are expensive for a traditional incandescent bulbs. Both have short lifespans. So plan on replacing BOTH in less than a year, especially if you do frequent nighttime driving. When one fails the other will follow shortly there after.

I’ve had a lot of experience with The Silverstars for many years in a few different vehicles. I replaced more than you could imagine. I finally transitioned to LED in one application with great success and HID in our Volt. I did have to replace the HID bulbs once since the conversion, one bulb failed but are one sold in pairs, so opted to change to 5000k from the 6000k that I originally installed.


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When I bought the 2013 I traded in a car with auto-leveling HID headlights. As a result, I was never happy with the Volt headlights. The low beams were useless and the light was yellowish - probably the worst headlights on any of my cars in recent years. I had better lights on some cars back in the 80s. Like you, I did not want to do an LED or HID conversion and went looking for some halogen upgrade that would be an improvement. I wound up installing a set of Sylvania Silver Star Ultra 9006 bulbs, and am very pleased with the results. They made a world of difference - noticeably brighter & whiter, and reach farther down the road.

The obvious tradeoffs are the shorter life span and cost, but I can live with that for the difference in performance. With luck, I figure I can get 18 - 24 months out of them. Prices are absurd, but I found a brand new set on eBay at about $25 below Amazon. If I find another good deal I'll pick up another set just to have on hand.

The bulbs I pulled were unbranded - probably some OEM supplied by the lowest bidder.
 

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Here's the thing, there is only so much light you can get out of an incandescent lamp within the thermal capability of the lamp housing and electrical current capacity of the wiring. I have used both cheep lamps and the silverstars and other premium brands. The biggest difference I found is the cost. Light output and color temp is better with premium lamps but I do not see the cost being justified. Also, the life is significantly shorter.

I've also used HIDs in other cars and while nice, they had their own issues. Incandescent and HID both give off most of their energy in the form of heat localized on the lamp itself. Because of this, you cant simply put in a higher wattage lamp without the risk of melting down the lamp housing. LEDs do not have this problem. While they do produce a bit of heat, its not nearly as much. Another interesting fact is that LEDs cannot tolerate the temperatures that HIDs and incandescent lamps run at. Because of this, they employ much different heat management designs. Their heat is radiated by conduction while HID and incandescent is by radiation.

When it comes to HIDs, they can produce great light but there are a few issues. When I was running kilsuns, they were quite expensive. Not sure what they cost now. Also the ballasts can have problems with DRL controllers. Cars designed to use the headlights as daytime running lights generally undervolt the lamps by a couple volts. This can be destructive to the ballasts. LEDs generally are immune to this because the nature of the constant current power supplies typically employed. The high voltage pulse that is used to strike the HIDs can cause problems with the cars electronics. At the time I was running HIDs, they would not tolerate multiple hot strikes or short cycles. For example, blinking headlights to tell someone ok to pass. Most of these problems can be alleviated.

All that said, I know you said that you are not interested in LEDs, but if you want more light with minimal effort, thats the only way to go. The LEDs that I am running now have been in my volt for over a year and in my truck 2 years prior.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for all the input... Looks like I may start looking at LEDs.
 

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