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  #1  
Old 10-18-2008
marvjeanm380 marvjeanm380 is offline
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Default Sealing headlight compartment

Hello to all:

I have a 2004 M380 with Xenon headlights. Blue Bird, in all it's
wisdom, did not completely seal the area behind the head light covers
allowing road grime and dust to wind up on the lens and and the back
side of the headlight covers. This causes the lights to be less
efficient and looks unsightly.

I have been told that this space was left open to assist in cooling the
lamps. The bulbs, however, are in a completely sealed reflector and
lens assembly and I don't know how much cooling they are receiving from
this space being open to the elements, road grime and slush.

Can I safely seal this space without causing the headlight covers to melt?

Your thoughts please.
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Marv & Jean Wheeler
2004 M380 - SOLD
Ocean Shores, WA

Amateur Radio - KG7V
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  #2  
Old 10-18-2008
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Rob Robinson Rob Robinson is offline
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Marv I cannot provide you an answer for your question but I would like to say that several months ago another BBer with a newish unit like yours had quite a shock when he had to replace the headlight cover. They were very expensive. I think it was an LX and not an 380 but I'll bet you the price won't vary much.
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  #3  
Old 10-18-2008
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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i would feel the headlite covers after the lites have been on for a while,to see how hot the are.
then i would go from there.
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  #4  
Old 11-28-2008
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I have the same coach and if you find the solution I would like to know it. I believe if you seal it off the heat will melt the lenze.
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  #5  
Old 11-28-2008
marvjeanm380 marvjeanm380 is offline
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Doug:

I have got them sealed off and since I have got my IR thermometer I am going to turn them on on High Beams and sit and check the temperatures. The hard part was not closing up the holes behind the lights but getting the screws out of those darn well nuts. The entire well nut would turn but not loosen the head light covers.

I will let you know if the covers melt! ! !\

Take care
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  #6  
Old 11-28-2008
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PLeae let me kmnow
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  #7  
Old 11-29-2008
davidmbrady
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Marv,

Are you sure that they are XID's? Do they have a start ballast? I ask cause I think it's illegal to put a lexan cover over XID headlamps - creates too much glare to oncoming drivers. This is why the XID's you see on late model Prevost's and MCI's have the headlight unit exposed (no lexan rock barrier). I know your M380 has a protective lexan cover. If they are actually Halogen's, then you can reduce heat by upgrading to XID's. XID's are more efficient than halogens, more energy is converted into light energy w/o heat loss. The typical halogen bulb may be 65Watt while the typcial XID is 35W. This also results in less heat.

David Brady
'02 LXi, NC (Upgraded to hi and lo beam XID's)
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  #8  
Old 11-29-2008
marvjeanm380 marvjeanm380 is offline
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David:

What started this whole fiasco was I had a bulb blow and while I was changing the bulb I decided to do away with all the filth and grime that was on the lights. Anyway, I took the old bulb to my trusty NAPA dealer and asked for a replacement and he sold me a Xenon bulb. I told him I thought that it was a halogen and he assured me that it was a Xenon and that he was selling me the correct bulb. I will double check again when them and if it different I will let you know.
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  #9  
Old 11-29-2008
davidmbrady
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Hi Marv,

My mistake. When you said Xenon, I immediately concluded that you were talking about HID (High Intensity Discharge) Xenon headlamps. What you bought from your local Napa are "xenon" filled halogen hotwire bulbs. True HID's don't contain a wire and require a ballast to run them.

From Don Klipsteins Light Bulb website, which contains a wealth of information on all types of lighting, I snagged the following:

http://members.misty.com/don/xeincand.html

"Some "xenon" automotive headlight bulbs are halogens with a xenon gas fill as opposed to krypton or argon. Some of these merely have a blue tint added to the glass or in a coating on the glass and have nothing to do with xenon except for producing light with a more xenon-like color!

The true xenon car headlight bulbs are very expensive and require expensive ballasts and do not have filaments but contain an electric arc. Furthermore, these are not so much xenon lamps as they are metal halide lamps. They do contain xenon which is useful for producing some useful white light output while you are waiting for the metal halide ingredients and the mercury in these bulbs to vaporize as the bulb warms up."

Don's page has a ton of info on bulb temperatures and lots more.

Good luck,
David Brady
'02 LXi, NC
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  #10  
Old 11-29-2008
marvjeanm380 marvjeanm380 is offline
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David:

You are right. I looked at the bulb package and it is a Xenon gas filled halogen bulb.

I also check the temperatures of the covers with the bus in the garage and the hi beam lights on. Prior to turning on the hi beams the cover was 62 degree F. and the highest reading of the cover I saw was 97 degrees after about 15 minutes. Aiming the IR thermometer directly into the head lamp the temp was 188 degrees. The cover was warm to the back of the hand but was not at all uncomfortable.

I am going to watch it again when I have a longer time to leave it on. If anyone else tries this you are doing so at your own risk. I don't supply warranties.
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