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Chris,

What you want to do is NOT recommended. "What fits" and what is "called for" are 2 different things. You need to stick with the manufacturers bulb numbers. More powerful lights mean more current. The wire sizes in todays vehicle are marginal the way it is to carry the loads, increasing the load is asking for a possible disaster.
 

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Premium Member
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Chris,

Yes, the electrical circuits are fused or protected by breakers, but what you'll typically come across are "large" fuses. In other words, the auto manufacturer may design for a 10 amp load, but put a 20 amp fuse--protection against a dead-short, but not a simple over-current condition.

You are correct heat is an issue, but not just the plastic pieces, why put undue stress on the connectors and brass contacts that carry the power? This is why are beloved classics suffer from dim headlights and intermittent switches--the heat/cool/heat/cool cycle from current draining devices cause connector and hardware to suck in moisture and dirt, make plastic and rubber wire coating brittle with time and affect copper's ability to conduct efficently when it ages and oxidizes.

Also, to expound on what Gary mentioned, modern cars use many circuits that are affected by current. For example GM products use a diode assembly to drop current to daytime running lamps. BMW or Mercedes (can't remember which) uses a module that contains a "sense wire". A computer module measures the current drop across this wire to check the status on the integrity of the high beams/daytime running lamps. No current = burned out bulb.

Pulling excess current thru circuits doesn't necessarily mean you'll get greeted by a familiar pop of the fuse or trip of a thermal breaker. It can often mean premature failure of often time expen$ive parts.

Trust me on this, I spent a lot of time carefully planning when I rewired my forward lighting harness on my 2000 Impala to disable the DRL's. I had to satisfy the needs of the lamp control module without sacrificing the safety of the wiring or the car's many modules.

This is why you can't find the interchange manual you are looking for. Many, many bulbs use the same base and will "fit", but that doesn't make it right. It's like someone putting a 100 watt bulb in one of those big-box stores do-it-yourself decorative ceiling lamps that has the warning tag inside not to use anything larger than a 60 watt bulb.

If you want more lumens, check another type of "interchange" manual, for example Sylvania now makes there silverstar line, more light intensity without causing overloads.
 
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