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Adjusting Headlight Aim

14281 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  jzchen
On the smart ForTwo this was incredibly easy to do. Not so on this car!

I think someone else mentioned their lights seemed aimed too high, and I agree. My first drive at night I was shining into the back seats of the cars ahead of me, and into the trees instead of on the road. It took a bit of looking, but I finally found the adjustment.

First, I parked the car in front of the garage and marked the brightest spot of each light with tape, on low beam.

The adjustment nut is directly behind the light, on the back side of the module. It's gray, and is an 8mm nut. In this photo, looking straight down behind the left light, it's the small gray nut in the center of the photo.

The top, inboard edge of the light assembly is stamped with a symbol depicting the direction to turn the nut to adjust the light UP or DOWN.
IT'S WRONG!! Turn CW for beams down. Turn CCW for beams up.

Find a 6" long, 8mm wrench. Shorter than that and you can't reach the nut. Longer, and it's likely to be hard to turn it very far. As it is, even with the short wrench, it's only possible to turn the nut about 1/16 of a turn each pass, because of the restricted area. Tie a string to the wrench. If you don't, you'll be crawling under the car multiple times or finding it stuck in a very hard to reach spot.

It's a very tight spot on each side. Here's the left side.

Aiming for the right side.

In my case I'd say I did at least a full turn of the nut, maybe two turns to get the aim correct. Good luck. Find someone with small hands.
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Thanks for the very good pictures and comment.

The iQ headlamps are well adjusted and there is no need to screw/twist around. The high position of the mainlight and the short wheelbase is tricky.

A real problem is the leveling unit (HRA). This is missing.
Vehicle Car Speedometer Motor vehicle Steering part

In Europe all cars must have a headlamp range adjuster (HRA) switch on the dashboard.
You are able to adjust (if you have load / passengers on board) the beamsetting in (variable) 4 positions.
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The leveling control is not a requirement in the U.S., and on my car the aim was not well set from the factory. I wish it had been, as this is not an easy adjustment.
In Germany the dealer has to do the last delivery-check (before you can drive away from the dealers yard) - including the correct setting of the lights.

It is very difficult to make the adjustments.
Thanks for the thread. I will call the Toyota Service Dept if they will adjust the iQ's headlights aim, since they were the ones who installed the TRD lowering springs.
Instead of a wrench, you can use a phillips screwdriver in the slot to engage with the adjustment gear and turn. That's what they do at the factory...Just a little easier and that's what the markings are for imprinted on the headlight as the Up and Down will be correct using a screwdriver. :)
Good to know about using a screwdriver on the gear. I don't have my car here now to check that out.
Actually the easiest way to adjust them is with a really long philips screw driver. Just insert in the area marked and turn, you probably will be turning the direction the stamping shows. Since you are on the opposite side of the nut. Hood Motor vehicle Automotive design Steering wheel Automotive lighting
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I can confirm that there is even a nice channel right under that wire loom that provides a “path” for your Philips screwdriver. You can disconnect the parking lamp harness/that same wire loom, for easier access, or get a long screwdriver....
I have a Tekton extra long hex wrench set arriving today from Amazon that don’t need anymore. Sigh....
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