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Thread: LED bulbs now banned

  1. #1
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    17th November 2009 - 15:39
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    LED bulbs now banned

    I've been putting LED headlight bulbs in my 1990's bikes for a few years, and really value the extra light output at night and the increase in daylight conspicuity. I was in at my local VTNZ getting a WOF in the weekend, and I was advised by the bike expert there (actually a genuinely nice, helpful guy) that as of 1 June this year, LED bulbs are now banned in all vehicles that were designed to use halogen bulbs. Apparently the extra brightness is a problem in reflectors/lenses that are not designed for LED. He also agreed that this was actually a benefit for invisible bikes, but then he also thinks louder (but not stupid loud) pipes are a safety feature.

    He was kind enough to pass my bike with a warning for next time, but this now means that I will have to switch out my LEDs before WOF time. Don't tell anyone, but I will be putting them back in afterwards.

  2. #2
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    10th February 2017 - 15:01
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    Your secret's safe with us.

    And that nice Mister Google.

    Thanks for the head-sup though.

  3. #3
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    20th January 2008 - 17:29
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    I swapped out the H4 on my 80's BMW and found although it was bright the pattern was all over the place.
    WOF guy last time said next time it would be a no from him.

    My understanding is that they were not approved for retro fit as the reflectors are different.
    You can however run additional daytime ones which are good for extra visibility.
    Be polite to Siri, she may be your Boss soon.

  4. #4
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    1st March 2017 - 06:23
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    Errr, are you muddling LED with HID?
    HID headlight bulbs already aren't allowed unless factory fitted, but LED too now? Fucksake, it's a headlight arms race out there, bikes need every advantage!
    High miles, engine knock, rusty chrome, worn pegs...
    Brakes as new

  5. #5
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    14th July 2006 - 21:39
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    Hmmmm - I just fitted LED park lights to my 02 Falcon and my lads 1986 Ford Laser. Nice white light now, the Laser is most impressive for a park light and the feeble yellow piss stain of a glow on the Falcon is now white.

    Fuck changing the XR's again - 2 minutes to do the Laser - 20 plus the XR6 and a bloody hand.


    Try those 120 and 150 Plus H4 headlights - replaced the XR's a few weeks back and a much improved light.

  6. #6
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    17th November 2009 - 15:39
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    No we are definitely talking LED's being banned for headlights. I don't believe there is any issue with using LED's in any other light e.g. position lights or indicators.

    I will continue to use them, just won't be leaving them in at WOF time. The early ones had no shroud on the low beam and so were dazzling to the front, but the later ones I have deliver the same pattern as halogens. Even the VTNZ inspector agreed I had no issue with pattern.

    On my VTR1000F, the front lens is completely transparent and the LED bulb has an audible cooling fan, so it is obviously LED. I wonder whether I'll have the same issue on my older bike which has a diffusing lens (not easily seen through) and uses silent fanless LEDs?

  7. #7
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    2nd March 2018 - 15:32
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    FFS, they'll ban the Plus halogen bulbs next.

    Surely if there's a problem with the beam pattern, it will show up on their beam testing machines at WoF time?

  8. #8
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    3rd October 2006 - 21:21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadbury View Post
    No we are definitely talking LED's being banned for headlights. I don't believe there is any issue with using LED's in any other light e.g. position lights or indicators.

    I will continue to use them, just won't be leaving them in at WOF time. The early ones had no shroud on the low beam and so were dazzling to the front, but the later ones I have deliver the same pattern as halogens. Even the VTNZ inspector agreed I had no issue with pattern.

    On my VTR1000F, the front lens is completely transparent and the LED bulb has an audible cooling fan, so it is obviously LED. I wonder whether I'll have the same issue on my older bike which has a diffusing lens (not easily seen through) and uses silent fanless LEDs?
    So then, only low beam, not high beam?
    Only a Rat can win a Rat Race!

  9. #9
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    20th June 2007 - 17:08
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    Ok, they're talking about fitting something that may not be compatible. Which could have its merits.

    What about fitting LEDs as an additional set of lights? They're already designed to work as LED's and don't make the halogen-spec headlights illegal, yet can still provide a good level of brightness.

  10. #10
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    17th November 2009 - 15:39
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    Well having not found the legislation (I have looked unsuccessfully), I can only interpret the words of VTNZ man, that retroffitting LED's into headlight reflectors/lenses that weren't designed for them was now illegal because they were TOO BRIGHT.

    I would imagine that this is a night time only issue, so adding auxiliary LED driving lights would be no issue provided they weren't used at night with low beam.

    Personally I find muppets that drive round with their fog lights on at night far more irritating.

  11. #11
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    26th February 2005 - 15:10
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    Yep. Is new clause. Under S4.1 Lighting in the VIR Manual
    Quote Originally Posted by VIRM
    13. A headlamp is fitted with a type of light source other than that specified by the vehicle manufacturer or the headlamp manufacturer (eg a headlamp designed for a halogen bulb is fitted with any other type of light source such as an HID or LED bulb, or any other light source such as LED strips or non-OEM angel eyes).
    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark
    This world has lost it's drive, everybody just wants to fit in the be the norm as it were.
    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Vincent
    The manufacturers go to a lot of trouble to find out what the average rider prefers, because the maker who guesses closest to the average preference gets the largest sales. But the average rider is mainly interested in silly (as opposed to useful) “goodies” to try to kid the public that he is riding a racer

  12. #12
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    22nd October 2002 - 11:00
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaferRides View Post
    FFS, they'll ban the Plus halogen bulbs next.

    Surely if there's a problem with the beam pattern, it will show up on their beam testing machines at WoF time?
    I've used the Ring Automotive +130 Xenon bulbs on my last 2 bikes and they're a big improvement over stock. In the unlit countryside at night, the shape of my Blackbird headlight with a sharp edge caused some visibility issues in the twisties, even with 100W halogen bulbs. The Street Triple with round headlights gave a much better light spread than either the GSX-S or the Blackbird and could make much better progress in the dark.

  13. #13
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    2nd March 2018 - 15:32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbird View Post
    I've used the Ring Automotive +130 Xenon bulbs on my last 2 bikes and they're a big improvement over stock. In the unlit countryside at night, the shape of my Blackbird headlight with a sharp edge caused some visibility issues in the twisties, even with 100W halogen bulbs. The Street Triple with round headlights gave a much better light spread than either the GSX-S or the Blackbird and could make much better progress in the dark.
    The R1 headlights don't seem to improve no matter which bulb you fit. But the Plus 120 bulbs seem to get noticed when you come up behind other traffic - some drivers actually pull over to let me pass!

  14. #14
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    22nd October 2002 - 11:00
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaferRides View Post
    The R1 headlights don't seem to improve no matter which bulb you fit. But the Plus 120 bulbs seem to get noticed when you come up behind other traffic - some drivers actually pull over to let me pass!
    Yep, I've noticed that too - a safety bonus as well as the ability to make constant progress 😊

  15. #15
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    27th December 2006 - 07:46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadbury View Post
    Well having not found the legislation (I have looked unsuccessfully), I can only interpret the words of VTNZ man, that retroffitting LED's into headlight reflectors/lenses that weren't designed for them was now illegal because they were TOO BRIGHT.
    I understand it is the beam pattern. Halogens emit light from a very small area probably less than 1mm x 4mm - this is placed at the focal point of the reflector and sends out light roughly parallel and focused. LED's at this stage are much bigger and therefore fall outside the focal point and the light is unfocused.
    I was followed home the other night by a KLR that had an LED headlight and driving lights. I presume the headlight was an LED because it was very white and shone a very wide beam. This was unbelievably bright and irritating even in my mirror. This would dazzle oncoming vehicles and increase the risk of an accident.

    I had an HID light on my previous bike on the low beam. They take a while to shine after switching on, so are best left on permanently, hence on low rather than high beam. The HID had quite a good pattern and was a lot brighter than stock.

    Now I have a +150% 55W bulb in my high beam and a normal one in my low beam, plus have Stonk LED running lights, as I find that the +150% bulbs don't last nearly as long as the standard one.

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