Headlight bulb replacement 2011 RDX

Old 01-20-2018, 05:03 PM
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Headlight bulb replacement 2011 RDX

Hi! I have a 2011 RDX. My passenger side headlight is out, so I bought a replacement Xenon bulb, not realizing that replacing the bulb might be more difficult than I thought. A couple of questions:

1) Can I replace the bulb without removing the entire headlight and bumper? I've seen conflicting info on the internet
2) Without removing the headlight, I was able to get the protective cap unscrewed. I then found a metal piece (igniter?), which I believe holds the bulb. How do I get that piece out? I couldn't figure out how to remove it.

I disconnected the battery before attempting this due to all the warnings.

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Old 01-21-2018, 06:16 AM
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I changed out my HIDs to OSRAM cool blue 5000k and it was a very noticeable improvement in light output, range, and brightness compared to OEM. I tried to exchange the bulbs without removing the bumper; but, next to impossible for me with hands large enough to palm a basketball and the very tight space near the dust cap. It really didn't take that long once I went through the process of removing the bumper. The only thing I did differently was I removed all upper/lower/internal clips and let the bumper rest on a blanket (fog lights were still attached). About 1/4 of the plastic clips broke during removal, were already broken, or not good enough condition to reuse. I pre-ordered replacement clips from Amazon. I also moved all screws attached to the HID housing just to give me more room to see what I was doing. It took me about 45-50 minutes total since I didn't know what I was doing. I think I could do in about 30 mins now.

The silver HID igniter part only takes around 1/4 turn to remove. Be careful because the silver wires attached to the igniter are not very long and don't pull the igniter too far or too hard. I just turned to remove and set aside 1-2 inches away to reach the back of the bulb. The HID is held in place with two vertical metal clip you need to squeeze together and pull back. It has been a while and I can't remember if I had to squeeze and pull back or pull forward the metal clips to release the HID bulb? Once the clips are hanging down in the horizontal position, the bulb can be pulled out with two fingers. Do the reverse to replace the bulb.

- I made sure to wear gloves to make sure I didn't get any grease/body oil on the HIDs. I also cleaned the new bulb with alcohol before putting in place
- Good time to replace any other lights like the fogs or highbeams if you wanted something brighter or different color temp
- The new HID can only go in one way for the metal clips to attach with almost no effort. Make sure the long blue or brown grounding wire that runs the length of the HID bulb light source is pointed towards the ground when you insert into the housing.

YouTube Vid on how to remove RDX front bumper:
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Old 01-26-2018, 11:03 AM
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Make sure you wear gloves and do not touch the bulb at all. You will need to take off the whole front bumper too. You will need to removed the clips on the top middle of the bumper. The molding on the sides of the engine bay with the crews under them. Then remove the screws from the headlights. Then removed the clips and screws from the wheel well. Make sure its just the bulb that went bad before you put it all back together. I had to change my ballast, igniter, and bulb after 135,000 miles on the passengers side.
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Old 03-13-2018, 11:29 PM
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Hi - thanks to both of you for your help - I finally got around to doing this and was able to get the new headlight in with a bit of a struggle. It was just the headlight after all -- apparently the ballast etc is OK. I did lose the metal clip that holds the bulb in place though - it popped out and I could not find it for the life of me, so I had to jerryrig it all a bit with a wire coat hanger and duct tape to hold the bulb in, but amazingly that worked pretty well. Thanks again - the video was really helpful too!
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Old 12-05-2018, 04:19 PM
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Yep my passenger side headlight also quit working recently. I called my service advisor to get the scoop on how to go about fixing this. The headlight assembly consists of the outer shell, ballast, ignitor and bulb. He quoted me some prices plus labor as shown. I believe I got the controller unit (ballast) and ignitor prices mixed up:

Then he told me that this was pretty much a DIY, he's really cool about helping me out. he suggested I buy a lamp, ignitor and ballast at O'reilly Auto parts. I figured it would be one of the three items, and I made sure I could return the ones I didn't need. Yes you have to remove the front bumper like previously mentioned - no big deal. I had my short stool to rest it on once I took the push pins, screws and bolts loose, then disconnected the fogs and set the whole thing over to the side. I can't believe that they charge $360 labor to do this:

Then I could get to the bolts holding the headlight assembly, unplug the harness and set the headlight on my work table. One thing to note about the ignitor - it's threaded through the plastic housing. Looking at it, the only way to remove it and install a new one is to cut the plug off and pull a string fastened to the cut end through the housing while pulling the old one out. Cut the plug off of the new one and use the string to thread it through, then reattach the plug. The housing looks to be in two halves but sealed, and I believe you will destroy it trying to take it apart. That's why outer shells sold on Ebay, etc. include the ignitor and cost $500 or so. Luckily, my issue was a bad ballast. It was corroded where somehow there was moisture inside under the rubber boot. The bulb and ignitor were ok:

I turned the light on to make sure it worked before putting everything back together, and returned the other two items. Anyway, hope this helps.
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