BimmerFest BMW Forum banner
Not open for further replies.
1 - 2 of 2 Posts

479 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi guys,

One of my xenon low-beam headlamps went out recently on my 2002 530i.

After looking through this site to figure out how to replace the xenon bulbs, I found a few differing pieces of advice to change the bulb, from removing the headlamp assembly to simple text instructions on removing the bulb, but no clear cut instructions with pictures. I figured I'd provide photos of the process to help out people that were initially stumped like me. This is actually a very easy task that requires no tools except a pair of gloves.

My driver's side headlamp went to a purple-ish hue for a few days After that, when first turned on, it would flicker for a few seconds then go out for the rest of the time I had my leadlamps turned on.

I followed the advice on here and swapped the bulbs to see if the problem was with the bulb or ballast, but the problem was with the bulb, as the passenger's side was out when swapped from the driver's side.

I ordered a pair of 6k D2S bulbs from, for $45, shipped. The bulbs arrived in a few days.

Ok...turn car OFF...turn headlamps/parking lights OFF.

Pop hood.
Put on gloves so you don't get oil/dirty from your fingers on the bulb.

Look at back of headlamps. car is dirty...shuddup...:p

1) Remove electrical connectors.
Each headlamp has a red/black connector with an electrocution warning sticker on it.
Each connector turns counter-clockwise to unlock, then pull them straight back to remove.
Try NOT to move the headlamp asssembly too much, I don't know if it affects the headlamp adjustors in any way.

2) Remove rubber shroud.
Next step is to remove the protective rubber shroudby GENTLY tugging on it. The rubber shroud is secured to the outside edge of bulb's rear headlamp opening and the base of the bulb. Gently tug on the rubber near the outer "rim" until it starts coming off, then I gently worked the remainder of the rim off, the shroud part that connects to the bulb comes off easily. Sorry the picture is blurry.

3) Remove bulb locking ring and bulb.
Once rubber shroud is removed, there is a black plastic locking ring. Grip ring and gently turn counter-clockwise about 45 degrees to unlock. BE CAREFUL, once the ring is unlocked, the bulb is free, so make sure you're holding onto the base of the bulb. When unlocked, make sure you back both locking ring and bulb out at the same time, or the bulb might fall out of the housing.

Shroud off, exposing locking ring and bulb.

4) Bulb examination.
At this point, you can also switch bulbs to see if the bulbs are indeed the problem or not. I've already done that, and here is a comparison of the bulbs. As you can see, the part of my old, burned-out bulb that contains the xenon is black.

NOTE: To help orient the bulbs in the headlamp assembly, the wire with protective sleeve is generally down, and there is also a square notch in the base of the bulb that is oriented upwards. The square notch corresponds to a protruding notch in the headlamp assembly.

NOTE: In this photo, the locking ring is facing with the backside up towards the camera. There is a protruding notch with one diagonal side (see photo.) That notch faces downwards when putting the locking ring on.

5) Installation of new bulb.
Carefully insert the bulbs, notch up. NOTE: My car is backed into my driveway, and facing nose slightly downwards, so the bulb stays in the assembly. If you're on a flat surface, you may need to put a finger on the bulb to keep it in while you put on the locking ring.

New bulb in, prior to putting on locking ring.

6) Install locking ring, rubber shroud, electrical connector.
While keeping the bulb secure in the housing somehow, slip on the locking ring, protruding notch downwards (it designed to only fit in this way.) Once in, turn about 45 degrees clockwise to lock. I used my finger to nudge the bulb a little to make sure it's securely in there.

Reinstall the protective rubber shroud. It's quite easy, push on the center section that goe around the base of the bulb, then the outside edge. On this photo, note the "rim" on the outside edge of the housing assembly where the rubber shroud goes on. I usually fit the outside edge of the shroud on here first, then the rest of it goes on quite easily.

The electrical connector fits in opposite of how you took it off. Push in and turn clockwise to lock. You may have to push it in and "search" for where the locking pins meet the accompanying notch in the connector.

Done! Bulbs work great, thanks to for quick shipping!

Hope this helps,
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
Not open for further replies.