OK, so I got my hands on a set of the 9007 LED headlight bulbs from GTR Lighting and I wanted to show you how to install them because at first glance it looks kind of tricky.
The vehicle I’m going to demonstrate on is a headlight from a 2002 Ford F250. This is a very common headlight and I will tell you this: These headlights suck!!! No matter which types of bulbs you use, high power halogen, HID or new LED style headlight bulbs, these housings are awful and it’s impossible to get amazing light output from them. Your best bet for amazing light is a light bar or a projector retrofit… but that’s a whole other story! For now we’re going to try to put these GEN 2 9007 LED Headlight Bulbs from GTR Lighting into these housings.
The original 9007 halogen bulb is held in place by a retainer. In the case of this Ford F250, the retainer is very tall. Sometimes they are snort and sometimes they are tall, but they all work the same way. The retainer goes on top of the bulb and holds it in place.
Here you can see how the original halogen bulb sits when you take the retainer off.
The new GTR Lighting GEN 2 LED Headlight Bulb is a little longer than the original halogen bulb, but it doesn’t matter for this application because there is nothing inside the housing to interfere with it. The mounting method is identical. The new LED bulb has the same mounting collar as the halogen bulb.
Here’s an aerial view showing the slots in the mounting collar between the original halogen bulb and the new GTR Lighting LED headlight bulb. They insert into the headlight housing the exact same way as each other.
The housing for either a 9004 or a 9007 will have 3 alignment tabs inside like this. The bulb will only seat one way.
This is how the new 9007 LED headlight bulb should seat when you have it resting on the housing. There should be no gaps, it installs perfectly flat.
The original retainer that held the halogen bulb in place will likely NOT fit over the top of your new LED headlight bulbs, they are far too large to facilitate the heat sink and cooling fan.
The mounting collar on the LED headlight bulbs comes off easily by twisting it. Separate all the parts and re-install the original headlight bulb retainer between the heat sink of the LED bulb, and the mounting collar.
With the collar removed from the new LED bulb insert the bulb into the mounting adapter that the headlights originally with. The next step is to re-install the LED bulb collar to sandwich the adapter in place.
Here you can see the 9007 or 9004 bulb re-assembled with the original mounting adapter sandwiched between the heat sink and the mounting collar.
When you have the 9007 or 9004 LED headlight bulb re-assembled with the mounting adapter between the fan and the bulb collar, you can re-install the color shield and top screw.
When you have the original mounting adapter installed between the heat sink and the LED bulb collar, then you can install everything like the factory bulb was installed.
Here are a couple notes about the final install:
1. If you have a tall mounting adapter like shown in these pictures, it may be a good idea to either drill holes in it to allow the LED bulb fan to “breathe” and flow more air to keep it cool, or just trim the excess material off to allow the LED heat sink fan/bulb to be fully exposed.
2. In order to get the LED bulb and mounting adapter fitted to the housing there are several things to line up and it can be a tricky puzzle! Just examine it and see how everything fits together. The housing has alignment posts, the LED bulb collar has 2 alignment posts, and the mounting adapter for the original bulb has 2 sets of alignment posts!!! Everything has to be put together just right.
3. This install guide is specific to the early 2000’s Ford trucks that use 9007 or 9004 headlights, but the basic premise should be universal to anyone trying to install 9004 or 9007 LED headlight bulbs.