How to Aim HID Headlights

What You'll Need
Car with HID headlights
Measuring tape
White Paint
Movable tape
Yard Stick
Smooth wall as aiming screen
6x8-foot plywood, 1/4 -inch thick (optional)
2-inch spacers (optional)

High Intensity Discharge or HID headlights are a recent development in headlamps for cars. You must properly aim HID lights because they are strong enough to blind the oncoming traffic if aimed too high. The high beam is usually used during the night time for increased visibility on a non-crowded road. Follow the steps below to effectively aim your HID headlights.

                    Step 1: Aiming Screen and Car’s Positioning

                    Park your car 25 feet away from a smooth wall. You can do this inside your driveway, but make sure that you clear the area and remove any rubbish. You can even create an aiming screen if the wall is unsmooth. Construct the screen using 6x8-foot plywood, ¼-inch thick. Prop this against the wall using 2-inch spacer blocks. Paint the plywood with a non-glossy white paint. 

                    Paint the 25 feet line on the floor to mark your permanent reference point. Make sure that the floor is perfectly level. The vehicle should be positioned such that the vehicle’s centerline is in line with the wall’s centerline. Do this by extending the yardstick from the car’s logo on the hood to the wall. Mark the vehicle’s centerline on the screen as a vertical line which is same as the screen’s center line.

                     Step 2: Making the Reference Measurements

                    Identify your low beam and high beam lens. When you turn on the high beam, you will notice a perfectly oval shape on the screen. When you turn on the low beam, you will notice a more spread out and unfocused shape. For the first reference measurement, extend the measuring tape from the center of any headlight lens to the ground. Name this A. Take another measurement from the center of the low beam lens to the vehicle’s centerline and call this B. Thirdly, measure from the center of one of the high beam lens to the vehicle’s centerline. Call this C. Note these down.

                    In Case of 2 Headlamp Systems

                    Move to next step if you have a 4 headlamp System. Draw a line on the screen/wall horizontally; exactly 2-inch below the measurement A. Draw 2 vertical lines on this horizontal line. These lines are B inches away from the screen’s center line, one on each side. Work with the up/down controls. Let the top cut-off of the high beam exactly touch the horizontal line drawn. Now work with the right/left control for the low beam. Let the vertical lines be exactly in the middle of the cutoff, the top cutoff of this beam still being in line with the horizontal cutoff.

                    In Case of 4 Headlamp Systems:

                    Draw a horizontal line of the same measurement as A on the screen. Make 2 vertical lines C inches away on either side of it. Draw another horizontal line 2-inch below A. On this, make 2 vertical lines B inches away from the screen’s center line, one on each side. For low beam adjustment, follow directions stated in step 3. For high beam, let the cutoff be seen at the horizontal line with A’s measurement. The high beam should be at the center of the cross formed.