Introduction: Headlight Replacement of a 2007-9 Kia Sedona or Hyundai Entourage
And the lights went out all over the world! Well at least they did on my '07 Kia Sedona last night. Both of them! Fortunately it was with me and I was home for the night. So after doing a little reading up on the intertubes, I decided I could still change a light bulb and went to the part store this afternoon. After the forth store, found a pair of H11B's. $50 ?!?!?! That's what I get for buying a "cheap" vehicle - the most expensive bulb made. And that's not even the premo extra bright blue things.
but enough of this....
You're probably reading this because you are in the same situation I was in. So lets get to it - how many geeks does it take to change a light bulb in a Kia Sedona? In this case 1.5. 1 can do it, but if you have son around, he can be of use.
Oh, and one more thing: I AM NOT A MECHANIC, NOR DO I PLAY ONE ON TV. ANY LAWYER WILL TELL YOU THAT AUTO REPAIR IS BEST LEFT TO A QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL. ATTEMPT ANY AUTO REPAIR AT YOUR OWN RISK AND YOU AGREE THAT IF YOU DAMAGE YOUR VEHICLE IT'S YOUR OWN FAULT. DO NOT ATTEMPT IF YOU DO NOT LIKE GETTING DIRTY, BLOODY, OR BREAKING THINGS. HAVE A NICE DAY.
Step 1: Things You Need - PLEASE READ CAREFULLY!
Please Read this a few times before moving on.
Ok, you need the following:
- The required bulbs. I used H11B's for the low beams in this project. Verify the part you need when you go to the store.
- 10mm socket and rachet
- Philips #2 screwdriver
- More Patience
- a tub or container of some kind to keep all these little plastic bits in
- needle nose pliers
- flashlight or a very well lit work space
- an extra set of hands and eyes can be of use
- a calming beverage. (today was cold, so I went with a cappuccino)
If your vehicle is more than just dusty, I recommend cleaning it before getting started. I learned from a friend whose dad was a mechanic that its always easier to fix a clean car because you are less apprehensive about touching things.
The reason I bring up patience is that you are dealing with plastic parts that are DESIGNED to break if you push them wrong. This job is very doable by anybody that can turn a socket ratchet and a screwdriver. But if you get frustrated easy, like me, you can break things that are expensive to replace.
So, lets get started...
Step 2: Open Up and Say "aaaahhh"
Once we have everything together, its time to open the hood. Take a moment to look at the front of the engine compartment and familiarize yourself with the layout. If you have to ask how to open the hood, you need to stop now and head to the dealer and let them do it. But I digress....
NOTE: It's always a good idea to unhook the battery when working the electrical components of a car. If you are unsure how to do this, stop and take it to the dealer.
So the first thing is to remove the radiator cover. This is the large plastic cover located above the grill covering the radiator. It's held in place by about 14 plastic screw clips. They can be removed with a #2 Philips screw driver. Minimum pressure should be applied as the screws will pop back down if you push on them.
BE CAREFUL NOT TO STRIP THE PLASTIC SCREWS - If you are careful you can easily reuse them. If you are rushing, they will strip and you'll be heading back to the part store for clips and screws.
If the screw does not want to "unscrew" a fingernail placed under the edge should apply enough upward pressure for it to come out.
Once the screw is out, the grommet is removed. The screw should be kept with the grommet in some container for replacement later.
Once all the screw and grommets are removed, the cover can be removed. GENTLY lifting the back side, the side toward the engine, the cover is raised about an inch. It is likely to catch on things but easing it up and down a couple inches while pulling it toward the engine should cause it to slide out.
It can be set aside for later replacement.
On to the next step....
Step 3: Removing the Assembley
Ok, two bolts and it's out...well sort of...
First the two bolts for the assembly being remove must be found. One is at the top and the other is at the side next to the radiator. These are remove with a 10mm socket and placed aside in a container for later use.
With the bolts remove, the person removing the assembly stands in front of the radiator grill and places their hand on the underside of the assembly next to the radiator grill and firmly presses the assembly forward away from the vehicle - holding the top of the assembly while pressing from the back.
DO NOT PULL THE TOP OF THE ASSEMBLY IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO BREAK IT AND THE RETAINING CLIPS. Just so you know.
The assembly will pop forward. It should only be moved forward a few inches. Just enough to allow access to the bulb cover.
At this point it's a good idea to inspect the assembly for damage and note how the retaining clips work.
On to the next step...
Step 4: Out With the Old, in With the New
With the assembly pulled forward the cover for the appropriate bulb is found and removed by turning it about 1/8 of a turn. Directions are on the cover.
With the cover removed, the bulb is turned counter clockwise about 1/8 of a turn and carefully removed.
Now is the time to remove the new bulb from the package. VERIFY YOU HAVE THE CORRECT BULB BEFORE OPENING THE PACKAGE. Care must be given to only hold it by the end and not the glass.
***IMPORTANT: These types of bulbs get VERY HOT and will burn out fast if you touch them during installation. DO NOT TOUCH THE GLASS. If it gets touched, it needs to be wiped with a clean paper towel until there is no trace of fingerprints, oil or dirt.
The new bulb is place back in the assembly and turned clockwise until it snaps into place. There is a little arrow showing correct placement.
The bulb cover is then replaced and the assembly set back into the fender part of the way.
Steps 2 and 3 can now be repeated for the other headlamp assembly. Then its time to test...
Step 5: Let There Be Light!
To test, the battery should be reattached and the lights turned on. ALL lights in the assemble should be tested at this point to make sure they didn't get damaged in the process.
If the bulbs are 3 or more years old, consideration should be given to replacing all of them at this time, unless you just like taking your van apart. :D
Once all lights are working, it's time to put things back together...
Step 6: Reassembly - Lights
Now it gets scary. This is where I was worried I'd break something.
With the lights off and the battery disconnected, the light assembly is lined up with the bolt hole and bottom retaining clips.
The fixture is slid up until it is pressing firmly against the retaining clips and then with hands placed at top and bottom (as shown in the forth picture) the LOWER hand applies enough pressure for the clips to "snap" into place. DON'T TRY TO PUSH IT THROUGH THE CAR.
Once it snaps in, the bolt brackets are checked for alignment and adjusted by hand until the bolts can be threaded by hand.
Bolts can now be tightened down to the point of snug.
(NOTE: these parts are plastic. Over tighten them and they will break. You will want to inspect every few days to make sure they are not coming loose. I recommend looking under the hood of any car you regularly put your family in weekly to inspect for anything out of the ordinary.)
Now would be a good time to check the lights again and make sure they are still working and that they are correctly aligned.
Once that's done......
Step 7: Reassembly - Radiator Cover
It's time to put the radiator cover back on.
The cover is placed back above the radiator and careful attention is given to lining up the tabs. One person can do this, but alignment is easier with two people.
Slight back and forth adjustment is likely to be needed to get the cover to drop over some of the nobs that poke through it. The first to picutures show the tabs that are going under the lip of the grill, and the third shows the outer tabs that fit over the lip of the grill.
Once the cover is replaced and the holes are lined up, starting in the middle and working outwards, the grommets can be CAREFULLY placed back in their holes.
Once all grommets are replaced, the screws can be finger tightened. A screwdriver is used to finish.
NOTE: care should be giving not to press to hard. The screws "can" be pushed in, but doing so damages the threads and would make future removal difficult or increase the likelihood of them coming out on their own.
Step 8: Double Check
At this point I was ready to hook the battery back up and check the lights and alignment again.
IT WORKS! IT WORKS!
Make sure no tools get left under the hood before closing.
Step 9: Final Thoughs
I'm just guessing, but I would guess this was a $150 or more job at the dealer.
If I wasn't in a hurry and it wasn't so close to Christmas, I probably would have gone ahead and replaced all the bulbs in each assembly. I'll post an addendum when the next one blows.
On other thing that might be considered is WHY both bulbs went at the same time. The research I did indicated that when the battery on this thing is weak and the bulbs have had more than a years worth of use, having the lights on while turning the van on can cause a surge that can blow the bulbs. This is what appeared to happen to me.
Another thought relates to the bulbs. I noted that while there were "brighter" bulbs available, all of them had a lower stated life than the factory spec bulb. Keep this in mind before you buy the more expensive cool blue bulbs.
This was my first Instructable. I hope you find it helpful and thank all of the other folks who have posted - you've helped me numerous times!
I'll try to respond to any comments you care to make.