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#128279 - 09/10/15 09:01 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: Muniac]
peejman Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 06/03/13
Posts: 3046
Loc: East TN USA
Originally Posted By: Muniac
Then XT uses a shunt regulator system. That means as the system voltage increases the shunt regulator decreases its resistance to dissipate more power to bring the voltage down. The idea being the regulator tries to keep a constant power load to decrease voltage swings. Not an efficient system but effective. Shunt regulators (unlike series regulators) are usually employed where the difference between minimum and maximum loads isn't too drastic. A motorcycle is a perfect example. Other than turn signal loads, hi/low beam change and brake light not much else is changing. Two of the three mentioned are momentary loads.

The point being is removing too much power consumption from the electrical system means the shunt regulator needs to dissipate the excess to keep the voltage within range. That means excess heat within the regulator which could cause premature failure. Something to consider, perhaps, when replacing filament lamps with much lower power LEDs. Turn signals and brake light probably won't be an issue given they are momentary loads. A headlight, however, is a different story.

Good point, I hadn't thought about that. Is there much history with XT regulators dying? My old CBR was known for exactly that, Honda improved the design and fixed the problem.
This shall pass, be still and know.
2006 XT225, UNI filter, ProTaper bars, MSR handguards, SS front brake line, Shinko 241's.

#128282 - 09/11/15 03:19 AM Re: LED headlight [Re: peejman]
deodom Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 1175
Loc: Bryson City, NC
My regulator (rectifier) under the seat died last year in WNC on my '07. I just use the 9003 Sylvania Silverlight Ultra bulb, which is very bright and has a much wider and whiter pattern than others that I have tried. They don't last quite as long, but light up the road really well at night. You can get them with free shipping for $15 on ebay. I always keep a spare new one handy.
'07 XT225/Z1 mod/short snorkle/130-42.5-3 turns/Load Lord Rack/Vibrinator bar end weights/Padded Seat/kickstarter

#128397 - 09/20/15 04:01 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: deodom]
drifteast Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/11/15
Posts: 45
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Thanks to hobbz for posting this (one of these has been on my list for a winter project), peejman for the other links (great to see more reviews), and Muniac for the electrical info (which definitely falls under the "I didn't know that" category for me!).

I wasn't planning on adding any extra lights, just wanted a better headlight than stock. So I may need to rethink this a bit. hobbz, please keep us posted on what you think of the light on the road.

2014 XT250

#128402 - 09/20/15 06:20 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: drifteast]
alexd Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 09/23/07
Posts: 5915
Loc: Illinois, USA
I'm looking into this too. But be aware of several things; color is generally different...usually more bluish, unless they offer alternatives. Beamspread is also different.

Also, on the question of "shunt regulators" I don't think that this is entirely technically correct, but that said...I run around a whole lot with NO HEADLIGHT on trails. And all my other lamps are LEDs. No known regulator over-heating, and no regulator burn-outs, which is proven with almost no current draw at all for the bike's system.


Edited by alexd (09/20/15 06:23 PM)
(one) 2006 XT225, (two) 2005 XT225, 2006 FZ1

#128445 - 09/23/15 10:54 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
James Springate Offline
Member L2

Registered: 01/18/12
Posts: 210
Loc: Versailles, Kentucky
I have this bulb too. My goal was to be able to use heated gear. If I had it to do over again, I would have just gotten a headlight switch and some sort of flashing led system on the forks. If I wanted to use heated gear,just turn of the headlight and rely on the flashing lights to be visible to others. I have the switch now. If this LED burns out I won't replace it.

I like the light though. I had to ditch the metal and plastic shields to get it to fit. The customer service was first rate. There is a running thread for the light on the ADVrider forum.
06 XT225,130 main,no snorkle,Delkevic exhaust,Webcams 89a,beehive valve springs,Wiseco HC Piston,Clarke,RDL

00 Honda ST1100

#128931 - 10/24/15 02:24 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
smouthman Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/07/14
Posts: 78
Loc: S.E. Pennsylvania
FWIW, I'm running, (always used them in all of my bikes) an 80/100 watt All-Weather Amber bulb.
I also have oxford heated grips and 2 led signal lights in the front flashers. (I like the hyper flash rate in traffic) And I'm using an LED brake light bulb in the rear.

After much experimenting, I've found, that for my riding needs (snow, rain, and Deer)...that the amber bulbs offer me more usable light, with less glare and offer more contrast, to be able to spot Deer, much better.

IMHO. all of the talk in the manuals about avoiding excess wattage bulbs (within reason) is all for liability reasons.
As long as you stay under max current draw, and allow enough wattage left over to charge the battery, you'll be fine.

Even with everything on high, my voltage regulator/test meter, still shows + 12 volts, going to the battery, at idle.

I've got 10,000 miles on my 2014 XT250, and had over 30,000 on my 2008, and never had any problems.
Then again, I ride my bike every day, as a commuter.

Edited by smouthman (10/24/15 02:26 PM)
Dualsport addict.

#140816 - 02/24/18 02:32 AM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
BigSm0ke Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/07/18
Posts: 62
Loc: QLD, Australia
Hey I'd be interested to know everyone's thoughts on running a more powerful halogen in the 225.

I found one that's 90w low beam / 100w hi beam...

Just thinking it'd be a lot safer if ever heading through the night.

Any issues with heat increases possibly?

Want to run something as powerful as reasonable. Also not too interested in LED for headlight as I find the light emitted by LEDs / CFLs irritating.

Thank you

Edit: I found that my alternator likely outputs 140w and that the static load is 82.4w stock. A PO replaced my rear brake/tail with LED so it might improve the figure a bit.

I found that with headlight on hi-beam I'd be looking at a conservative estimate (due to tail LEDs) of 127.4 watts.

Seems to sound good in theory. But interested in your input.

Edit 2: Also found this which is the same wattage but supposedly better brightness, plus would let me add LED aux lighting.

Edited by BigSm0ke (02/24/18 03:19 AM)
The race was definitely underway. I had witnessed the start, I was sure of that much. But what now? What comes next?

#140817 - 02/24/18 04:54 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
Muniac Online   content

Platinum Member

Registered: 01/16/04
Posts: 5608
Loc: Montrose, CO
I do believe on the newer XTs they kicked up the headlight wattage. The OEM electrical diagram shows this headlight rating for a 2003 XT225:

2F9-84314-00-00 BULB (12V-60/55W) | (H4) HALOGEN

60W HB and 55W LB. If you're looking to add +30/40 watts to that light, I'd be concerned about whether the charging circuit can cover it?? +40W would be an additional 3.33 amps. Haven't been able to find (in the specs) what the power output is. And/or spare amperage. My guess would be you'll be OK but with possible reduced service life of your shunt regulator, diodes, stator, etc. You could put an ammeter in series with the battery and check the charging current against the OEM light and your higher wattage replacement. The goal being to ensure you don't lose charging amps. This can give a practical reference and guide any power tweaks you'll likely make.

You could pickup some additional amps by replacing other bulbs with lower wattage LEDs. I'd say with a few measurements (to make sure) and some careful power balancing you can make this upgrade work without a negative impact.

Sylvania makes a line of automotive headlights of varying brightness. The price you pay for a brighter bulb is a lower MTBF rate. As the brighter bulbs achieve that by overloading their filament. Good luck.
Evolve & Simplify
Be There or Be Nowhere! A Few Adventures & Video

#140826 - 02/24/18 11:37 PM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
peejman Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 06/03/13
Posts: 3046
Loc: East TN USA
What he said. I have serious doubts the electrical system is up to a 100W headlight without some changes/upgrades. I suspect wiring might not take the load and the headlight housing might not take the heat.
This shall pass, be still and know.
2006 XT225, UNI filter, ProTaper bars, MSR handguards, SS front brake line, Shinko 241's.

#140838 - 02/26/18 01:49 AM Re: LED headlight [Re: hobbz]
Selden Offline
Member L3

Registered: 03/25/16
Posts: 329
Loc: GA
I can't speak to whether or not the XT charging system is capable of a higher load, but in my experience a heavy duty harnesses with a relay makes a noticeable difference. Many people feel that OEM headlight harnesses cannot deliver full voltage to a headlight. You can make your own, or buy one.

For a BMW R1100RT, which takes a H4 bulb, I used an Eastern Beaver H4 single headlight relay kit. This particular motorcycle has a known weakness in that it passes the full headlight current through the handlebar switch; the switch contacts burned out at 105,000 miles, even with 60/55W bulbs.

Installation was pretty straightforward, plug and play, and all you have to do is figure out where to mount the relays (one for high, one for low). With the heavy duty wiring harness, I switched to a Hella 100/55W. Because of DOT regulations, this is sold as an "off road" bulb. Low beam is noticeably brighter than before, but high beam punches a real hole in the night. With an incandescent bulb, beam pattern is not altered the way it is with an LED replacement.


60/55W bulb:

100/60 bulb:

I don't ride the XT225 at night, and deer in the woods really don't give a hoot about headlight brightness, so I'm not planning to modify.

One other note: I replaced the H4 bulbs in my car 3 years ago with GE Nighthawk bulbs, which were noticeably brighter. However, after 35,000 miles, the glass envelopes were dark inside from tungsten evaporation. The cheapest way to increase headlight brightness is to replace bulbs regularly, whether they are burned out or not.
Don't fix it if it ain't broke, don't break it if you can't fix it.

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