Author Topic: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!  (Read 169 times)

Offline goodfellow

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The old adage that "You get what you paid for!" sure hit home this week. Four years ago when I rebuilt this front end after the car was in an accident, I used ebay to source parts. Most of the parts are Taiwanese aftermarket stuff, but I remember that there were no headlight assemblies available from Taiwan at the time -- at least I couldn't find any and confirm via email that they were actually from Taiwan. So, I needed to get the car back on the road and settled for Chinese aftermarket.

Over the last month, these assemblies started to leak and retain massive amounts of water. The seals are toast, and I have to install new parts. Luckily I was able to get a set of quality parts from a trusted ebay source.

Both sides -- leaked like a sieve, and at about the same time.







Once the grill comes off, the replacements are easily installed, but the aggravation of having to do a job like this after only four years is a PITA.

Only good thing to come out of this is that I was able to inspect my old body repair and welding work, and it has held up very well. It will outlast the life of the car.





The new assemblies are much better quality -- they fit better at the body and fender seams.



Everything works -- only an hour of my time, but it's good to know that the cheap Chinese crap is out and the better parts are installed.



Cheers -- Have a great weekend everyone!!!

 

 

Offline hofferwood

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If it aint broke----fix it till it is-----there's nothing more permanent than a temporary fix.

Offline goodfellow

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2019, 03:46:55 PM »
Good work there Ray!!
These are the folks I usually go to for headlight assy's. I think I actually ran across them on ebay---maybe---I don't remember.  lol

https://www.am-autoparts.com/?trk_msg=DVLQHARFM6H4RCO86COPH667A8&trk_contact=LBAM2U1MRSFF1I9VSG9D08RDOG&trk_sid=KNU901D4UPVRA732CTGRHT6880&utm_source=Marketing&utm_medium=Email&utm_term=AM+Auto+Parts&utm_campaign=Email+-+052419+Mem+Day+Coupon+YMM&utm_content=Email

Thanks Chuck -- I will need a new Caddy DTS light in a few weeks and will order from them.


Offline bonneyman

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2019, 04:16:59 PM »
The sealant is probably a timed-failure epoxy. Sounds funny but it's actually pretty sinister.

I had a set of click shifters on a racing bike that had a similar timed-failure lubricant inside. My bike mechanic told me. Originally Shimano used premium grease for that fine-tuned assembly. But that was bad - things lasted forever, so, there was no repeat sales. A big company can't have that, so they designed a grease with a grit included that slowly hardened and tightened over time. After about a year or two the shifters would lock up. Time to buy a new pair.  :-[
Luckily my mechanic knew how to disassemble the shifters, pick out the hardened grease granule's with a dental pick, and repack it with quality grease - without destroying the part in the process. 

Offline stokester

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2019, 04:47:26 PM »
I've replaced the headlight assemblies on my daughter's Saturn Ion and on my other daughter's Chevy Equinox which she no longer has.

The Taiwan manufactured replacements have been nearly as good as the OEM.  My source was ->https://www.headlightsdepot.com
Nick
Yorktown, VA

Offline slip knot

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2019, 04:52:04 PM »
I was lucky to get 2 yrs out of a set on my GM truck. they didn't leak, they just clouded up so bad the lights didn't shine very far down the road. South Texas sun is brutal.

Offline Matt_T

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2019, 05:07:00 PM »
I've had to put a couple taiwanese Depo headlights in the 4runner. They're excellent quality and fit for not much more than chinese garbage. The first one still looked brand new when the light pole got it 5 years later. Also better optics than the OEM light but that could be due to the OEM side being 12 years old when I installed the first one.

Bought the first one from Rock Auto. The second Amazon was cheaper and the third party vendor was cheaper than Amazon. The vendor stuck a Depo part # sticker on a plain box with the sorriest piece of chinese garbage I've ever seen. I don't always leave reviews but when I do they're 1 star and scathing. Got a replacement sold by Amazon and it was the real deal. So watch for chinese knock-offs of genuine taiwanese knock-offs if you're buying third party amazon or on ebay.

Offline eborcim

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2019, 12:49:51 PM »
Ray who did you source the better ones from on eBay?

Offline goodfellow

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2019, 01:02:13 PM »
Ray who did you source the better ones from on eBay?

These are the guys --

https://www.ebay.com/str/autolights360?_trksid=p2047675.l2563

Offline Plomb-er

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2019, 01:01:20 PM »
If leaking is an issue you can also use some silicone sealant on the seams as a little extra protection on them.

Online john k

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Re: Highlander headlight assemblies -- cheap import failure!
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2019, 09:19:22 PM »
Just saw this.  Many times when confronted with water in a plastic headlamp,  no money to replace,  freezing season coming, I would drain the water out by drilling an 1/8th inch hole or two, not in the front, but around the side.   Use the air hose to blow past the hole and the water would run out.   Quickie fix,  also going down the highway water would be pulled out by the slip stream.   Good enough to get  by  til  better times.