Replacing H11b with H11 bulbs You'll need:

  • Nut driver, usually 10mm
  • Vise-Grips
  • A good wire stripper/crimper tool
  • Screwdrivers, wrenches, and other ordinary hand tools.
  • Good quality, appropriate bulbs—Check with Daniel Stern
  • Good quality H11 or H9 bulb sockets, depending on which type of bulb you'll be using—Check with Daniel Stern
  • Good quality 16-14 gauge male ¼" spade terminals or butt connectors; see options below
  • Good quality electrical tape and/or heat shrink tubing
    1. Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery.
    2. Remove the headlamp assemblies from the vehicle. You'll usually find a multi-wire connector attached to the headlamp housing; this must be unplugged. One side of the connector will have a plastic lock tab that must be depressed/squeezed in order to unplug the connector.
    3. Place the headlamps lens-down on a clean towel so the lenses don't get scratched.
    4. Remove the bulb access doors to gain access to the low beam bulb in each headlamp.

    5. Remove the original H11b low beam bulb.

    6. Unscrew the 3 screws holding the metal bulb seat to the headlamp optic.

    7. Remove the electrical socket from the bulb seat. Affix your Vise-Grips to the socket (plastic piece):

      There's a metal tab that must be pushed down:

      You will also need to push up on the metal base to allow clearance for the plastic piece. While pushing down on the metal tab with your thumb, use the Vise-Grips and lift the metal base while pushing out on it:

      You should now be at this stage:

    8. Reattach the metal base to the headlamp optic using the original screws:

    9. Crimp one ¼" male spade terminal onto each wire of your new H11 or H9 socket:

      Now you should have this:

    10. Push the spade terminals into the plastic connector. It does not matter which wire connects to which; none of the bulbs we're talking about is polarity-sensitive.

    11. Surround the spade terminal area with electrical tape as a precaution to make sure the metal quick disconnects wouldn't touch anything and cause a short circuit:

      Note that's just one way to do it, and it's the one you should pick only if you care about retaining the ability to go back to H11b bulbs at some future date. There's no technical reason to do so—if you really want to return to factory-type headlamp performance, you can just install an ordinary plain H11 bulb.

      Instead, you can reduce the number of connections to improve the ease and reliability of this upgrade by doing it another way:

      • Cut the original H11b socket off the ends of the wires, leaving you with two individual wires.
      • Install your new unwired H9 or H11 socket onto the wires or, if your new sockets already have wires on them, use butt connectors to attach the socket's wires to the car's wires.

    12. At this point, procedure varies depending on the particulars of the headlamp model you're working with. Some of them have ample space to install the bulb into the headlamp and then plug in the socket in the usual fashion—in that case, go right ahead. But others don't have enough space to plug in the socket after the bulb's installed, so you'll have to plug the socket into the bulb and then install the bulb-and-socket assembly into the headlamp:

      You may encounter insufficient space in the housing to get the socket onto the bulb or install the bulb/socket assembly. In that case, install the bulb, and turn it slightly to line up its connector with an area with more space:

      It's very important, once the bulb is connected, to rotate the bulb fully clockwise until it stops.

    13. Assembly and installation is the reverse of removal and disassembly.