Highlander LS430 project underway! How-to inside! - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
Highlander 1st Generation (2001-2007) Forum dedicated to the discussion of 1st generation Toyota Highlanders.

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post #1 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Highlander LS430 project underway! How-to inside!

Update: I've had people message me about these pics being down. They were on my old server and I never backed them up after I put the how-to on there. I am trying to find a few folks I know from hidplanet who might of saved it.

Until then these are the only pics I have left of the retro. I will keep the how-to up until hopefully I can get the pics again.

















Well, the LS430s arrived today! I was expecting them to show up mid next week but I guess my fortune cookie was right from the other nigth. It said "good luck is coming your way" .

I'm working my ass off on trying to get these done by late tomorrow night probably. I don't see any issue holding me back yet but I know the LS430 is going to be a tight fit with the shroud in there. Not sure just much I'm going to have to trim but there will inevitably be trimming involved.

I'm going to be doing a write-up kinda of the process involved for the Toyota people on tundrasolutions and also toyotanation. I will not be offering Highlander retrofit services based off the fact you have to remove the grill and bumper to remove the headlights. Brings me back to my Honda retro days ](*,)


On to the pics:

LS430s are here!



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


First thing is first I wanted to mark a "basepoint" of my stock beams. I'm doing this so that it gives me reference when it comes time to aim my projectors in roughly the same areas of my stock halogen beams.


I taped where my tires were on the floor incase I needed to move my Highlander anytime during the retrofit process and didn't want to skew up where my aiming was originally marked from.



I also taped my wall to highlight the central location of my stock halogen beam pattern. Disregard the wierd look of the beams. Both were the same intensity its just that my cameras flash washed out the driver side....



Now its time to actually begin work on the SUV. First thing is first, the grill has to be removed. There are 4 top tabs that must be removed first. They are circled in red....



You remove them by simply getting a pick tool (or flathead screwdriver) and forcing the tab to loosen from its locked base,,,,



Then simply pull the tab out. Be careful not seperate the tab form its base as you could easily misplace the pin tab....



Next is the most hardest part of removing the grill. The passenger side is easy because you have plenty of access but the drivers side is a bit more of a pain because the radiator is somewhat in the way to get leverage to pry on the tab. These tabs on located behind the grill about 4-5 inches down from the top and next to the inner sides of the headlights. You have to pry both sides of the tab to loosen it.

Here is a picture of the tab on the back of the grill...



Here is the location the tabs secures into. It's located on the inner sides of each headlight as pictured...



Finally onto the last tabs that hold the grill in, the bottom tabs. These tabs are actually made onto the grill. You simply reach insdie the grill openings, find a secure spot, and pull. It's going to be tight, but trust me, it will come loose. Just be careful and patient.

This is a picture of the bottom tabs...



Close-up of the bottom tab...



The way these tabs work is that there is a groove or slot in the upper middle portion of the bumper. This slot or groove is very firm and is what the bottom tabs on the grill lock into. The slot or groove is highlighted in red...



Finally! Onto removing the bumper. The repair manual says you should remove the inner fender wheel splash guards to remove the front bumper. You DO NOT have to do this. Simply turn the steering wheel until its fully locked in a left or right turn. Then look up into the fender wheel. You will see 2 tabs similar to the tabs you saw that hold the top of the grill. Remove those tabs. This will let loose some of the tension on the fender splash guard. Next just get your fingers in between the fender splash guard and the side of the front bumper. Pry the splash guard out and away from the bumper. Do this until you have enough room to see the 10mm bolt on the corner of the bumper up top. Remove this bolt. Repeat for the other side. Once you've done both sides, now its time to do the bottom. There are 6 10mm bolts holding the bumper onto the lower black splash guard on the underside of the SUV. Remove those. Now the bumper should come off quite easily. Should look like so and you'll find out your Highlander has teeth




I've removed the headlights now. One is about to go in the ovenwhile I work on the other via heat gun. More progress pics to come as this unfolds over the course of the weekend
Stay tuned....

Last edited by haknslash; 04-19-2009 at 07:53 PM.
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post #2 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
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Here is some more progress so for.

I've opened the headlights. Started making my hole for the projector to sit back into. I still have a good bit more to trim to allow it to sit further back and I'lm also going to have to trim the inner side of the stock reflector to allow more room. Lots and lots of trimming but I think its going to work out in the end. Please excuse the nasty reflector dust in the turn signal area. I'm going to take that piece out soon before trimming anymore on the reflector.

Small hole for now but it will be around 2.25" in diameter once I'm done for the added room...



LS430 loosely sitting inside the reflecotr. It will sit further back than this when I'm done but this is just for testing purpouses. I want to open the hole little by little until its just right. Not too much and not too little. So alot of back and forth test fitting is going on to make sure its right the first time as I don't want to have to redo these suckers



And here is the LS430 shroud. I'm probably going to have to trim a good bit off of these to make them sit back in there far enough. Probably will have to trim right up to the edge where it starts to go back. Basically will be a dish-shape when I'm done instead of a bowl-shape...



Looks good so far! Wish me luck....I'm heading out to the garage for more action
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post #3 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Here some more progress!

Woohoo I trimmed it just enough and man it barely freaking clears, but its there!!!

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post #4 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
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More progress with the projector sitting in there....



Rear will have plenty of room and I'll do a 3" pvc cap to seal it off.

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post #5 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 08:29 PM
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lights

I admire your ambition and ability to do this conversion, but I have to ask, did you consider replacing the stock fog lights with a good set of Hella (or another brand) driving lights? I know the advantages of HID technology (my wife has an RX330 with HID's), but I betcha a nice set of 100 watt or higher halogen driving lights in the fog light openings would also do an admirable job of lighting at night, and with a much easier install, not to mention the much lower cost.
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post #6 of 48 Old 07-14-2007, 08:32 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lqueral
I admire your ambition and ability to do this conversion, but I have to ask, did you consider replacing the stock fog lights with a good set of Hella (or another brand) driving lights? I know the advantages of HID technology (my wife has an RX330 with HID's), but I betcha a nice set of 100 watt or higher halogen driving lights in the fog light openings would also do an admirable job of lighting at night, and with a much easier install, not to mention the much lower cost.
cost is not an issue. This is a hobby of mine and I've been doing it for several years. I'm just a fan of having my main driving lights HID, and the right way with a oem projector setup

I do plan on adding fogs but they will also probably be HID Hella units like the micro DEs or something. Might do a fog retrofit using Bosch H3s but I'm not sure yet. That's later on down the road

02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))

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post #7 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 01:44 AM
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You are a better man than I for doing that and I commend you on your efforts! Post pics of your completed retrofit when you're done, please!



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post #8 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 09:09 AM
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Looks like your doing things the right way

Can't wait to see pics of the final product
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post #9 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!

Here is some pics of the passenger side about done!

I had to trim the living hell out of the LS430 bezel back and forth because it kept hitting the reflector but you can't tell too much.

What do you guys think?




02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))
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post #10 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Getting there. Took my housing all apart (it sperates into 3 pieces bottom trim, turn signal, and rear cavity) and thoroughly cleaned it from all the dust and junk.....








02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))
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post #11 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 02:20 PM Thread Starter
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Here is some test beam shots. I've noticed that the LS430 beam pattern sort of slopes to each side and then straightens out again on the far right side where the reflector picks the beam back up. Crazy how that little reflector does soo much for width heh. These pics don't do these things justice!






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post #12 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
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Got the polycarb lens on. It was CLOSE but it clears by maybe 1/16" LOL. I checked for aiming and it doesn't hit .







Now for some shots of the lights on! No camera flash. Low beams on.....



Camera flash on. Just lows...





Stock 65w halogen high beams on with lows. No camera flash....


02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))
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post #13 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Night shot time!!
Damn these things are insane wide and intense!!
These are also very old mismatched colorshifted Philips 4300k bulbs. I will be running brand new 85122+ so expect output to be even better!









Check this out!!!







02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))
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post #14 of 48 Old 07-15-2007, 10:42 PM
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Amazing work!
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post #15 of 48 Old 07-16-2007, 12:18 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks man!

After 36+ hours, she's done...






02 Highlander V6 2WD / LS430 HID / Alpine & ((XM))
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