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'08 Forester
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13 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm in need of some help for my wifes '08. It has an appetite for headlight bulbs. Usually the drivers side goes out more often then the pass. side. I have to replace these damn bulbs once every month in a half or so.

I always use rubber gloves when replacing the bulbs,no moisture that I can see is getting to the bulbs,I started using white electrical grease per a suggestion by a mechanic acquaintance.

Living in Alaska,its dark during the day almost all winter long,so my wife always has the headlights on in her commute to work. I'm sick and tired of having to fork out the bucks for the bulbs and removing the damn battery to get to the bulb. The car is out of warranty due to mileage.

I've replaced one bulb in my '03 ram compared to 6 or 7 bulbs in the Forester, so can anybody tell me really! is going on?
 

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2007 2.5X 5mt
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943 Posts
If moisture is getting into the lamps themselves? (i.e. your not putting the covers back on the rear of the lamps)

Any kind of moisture dramatically reduces halogen bulb life.
 

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2008 Forester X Premium 5MT
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8,070 Posts
A bad electrical connection can cause a high electrical draw that can and will shorten bulb life. Some times this will be evident as the sockets will actually melt. Even if they are not melted I would feel them while the lights are on to see if they fell excessively warm/hot.

Clean the connections in the sockets with a jewelers/points/ect file and use dielectric grease on reassembly. Also do not touch the bulb even with the rubber gloves.

It wouldn't hurt to look at the rest of the headlight wiring connections either and make sure they are still healthy. Even going back to the relays.
 

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'08 Forester
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13 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
My wife has been using the Sylvania Silverstar. I 'm going to switch brands to see if perhaps this car will quit going through so many bulbs. I know VW had the same problem a couple years ago,but I didn't give it a second thought then,or the fix. There must be a simple reason why were going through so many bulbs. I guess I'm going to have to invest in a multimeter,learn how to use it and see if perhaps the alternator is over charging a tad and popping the bulbs.

I'm quite capable of rebuilding drive trains and feel comfortable working on most types of vehicles. That being said,I know just enough to get electrocuted. :N_poke: I know you need a positive and a negative to complete a circuit. I'm going to have to learn as I go,but I was hoping somebody else may have had this problem or know the cause of it.
 

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2008 XS 4EAT
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9,827 Posts
A bad electrical connection can cause a high electrical draw that can and will shorten bulb life. Some times this will be evident as the sockets will actually melt. Even if they are not melted I would feel them while the lights are on to see if they fell excessively warm/hot.

Clean the connections in the sockets with a jewelers/points/ect file and use dielectric grease on reassembly. Also do not touch the bulb even with the rubber gloves.

It wouldn't hurt to look at the rest of the headlight wiring connections either and make sure they are still healthy. Even going back to the relays.
+1 I've had one socket melt on my 08 (spliced in new ones)and the bulb blown and both went on my 99 over the years, same repairs were done no problems since. So take a good look at the sockets and connecters. Also seems a lot of members have had issues with aftermarket bulbs, especially if they increase the output. I've had good luck with the standard wattage Osrams that my dealer and auto parts store sells. No lights out yet, but I do carry a spare. Standard is still 12V60/55W. H4
 

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'08 Forester
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13 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
We haven't felt the need to go up in wattage,plus my wife gets concerned about warranty issues and won't even allow me to install an after-market air filter. We have drive train warranty to 100K but doesn't cover anything else. I suppose I'll have to pick up a FSM and start tracing the wiring. In the back of my mind, I've thought perhaps there might be a ground issue. I guess all it takes is time. Is there a free downloadable service manual available for this car yet or do I need to dig deep and make the purchase? Where is the most reasonable place to buy the manual?
Thanks for all the help-Casey
 
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