The short story: My daughter told me that she can’t see well at night in her 2012 Sonata. I had a mechanic put in what he said were very strong LED lights. I drove it in the dark after he installed the new lights and, at best, there was no improvement.
(1) This is a reliable mechanic that I’ve been using for years.
(2) At one point during this drive I drove on a very dark road (at night). The lights were so bad that I turned them off while I was driving to get a feel for how much the light were contributing to my ability to see. I literally couldn’t see a difference between driving with them on and driving with them off. On the other hand, if I get out of the car and look at the lights, I can definitely see that they turn on.
(3) The clear plastic casing that the lights are in seem pot-marked and dirty (kind of foggy-looking). Before getting the new bulbs, I mentioned to the mechanic that I thought that this might be the cause and not the bulbs themselves, but he dismissed the idea. Considering that these new bulbs didn’t help and possibly made it worse, I wonder if I’m correct. Also, what would be involved in replacing the casing and how much is that likely to cost? I did follow some directions online a year or two ago about how to clean the casing. It was a lot of work and I’m not sure if it helped at all.
(4) During my test drive I noticed that using the high beams gave me acceptable light, not great light, but acceptable. I drove the entire 10 minutes home with the high beams on. There was very little traffic during this drive, but absolutely nobody flashed their lights at me to indicate that I should turn off my high beams.
(5) Other than the lights, this 2012 car doesn’t appear to have any mechanical issues. So I’d love to fix the lights instead of getting a new car, but being a 2012, I don’t want to pour a ton of money into this car.
I would appreciate hearing anyone’s advice.