How to Align Headlights on a Class A Motorhome?

How to Align Headlights on a Class A Motorhome?

Class A motorhomes are massive vehicles, and it is a difficult job to drive them at night. In addition, many people complain about the issues in the alignment of motorhome headlights.

I had the same issue with my motorhome, and I decided to learn how to align its headlights. So now, I am going to share all the details here.

How to Align Headlights on a Class A Motorhome? In general, you can align headlights of Class A motorhome by using adjuster screws, bubble levels and matching them with the aligned headlights. However, it costs around $45-$60 for labor or hiring the services of an expert.

How to Align Headlights on a Class A Motorhome?

Before starting the procedure to align headlights of your Class A motorhome, make sure that it fulfills the following conditions:

  • It is mandatory to park it on level ground.
  • All four tires have equal air pressure to avoid any height difference.
  • RV should have a balanced suspension to prevent any side up or down.

Some manufacturers install headlights with bubble levels to orientate the headlights according to set levels.

Mark the centerline

Park it as close as possible near a plain wall. It is an excellent practice to keep the distance between the wall and vehicle within 1 foot.

Using the straight edge, mark a point on the wall. It must be at the level of the grille or the center point of the headlights.

Mark it with a vertical piece of masking tape of 1.5-2 feet in length. It is the centerline of headlights.

Mark the low beam

Move the vehicle about 25-30 feet away from the wall. Measure the distance from the ground to the center of the low beam headlight.

Repeat this for the second headlight to ensure that both are at the same level. Otherwise, you will not be able to align it correctly.

Next, turn ON the low beam headlights and mark their location with 2 vertical strips of masking tape of 8-10 inches in length.

Mark the low center

Measure the distance of both low beam headlights to its centerline.

Use a single piece of horizontal tape passing through the center of marks for both lights. Its length should be equal to the width of the vehicle.

Mark the high beam

Most RVs have the same adjustments for low and high beams. By setting one, you can automatically align the other.

However, in the case of a separate system, repeat steps 1 to 3 for high beams. Mark the high beams and their center with vertical and horizontal pieces of masking tapes. 

Locate the Adjuster Screw of the Motorhome headlights

Locate the adjuster screw or bolts on headlights. You will find them on the top, bottom, or sides of their assembly.

However, their shape and location can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. In addition, accessing these screws is a tricky job as they are present on headlight housing under its hood.

Adjust the vertical aim of headlights for low beam

Turn ON the headlights and observe their spots in comparison to the marked points.

For the vertical aim of low beam headlights, both the lights should be at or slightly lower than the horizontal tape piece passing through the center of low beams.

In case of any deviation, move its assembly by rotating the adjuster screws.

Keep the passenger side light slightly higher than the driver side to illuminate signboards without blinding the oncoming traffic. 

Adjust the horizontal aim of headlights for low beam

The horizontal aim should be slightly right of the vertical tapes marking the center of low beams for low beam headlights.

It will help illuminate the roadside areas for any people or animals that may abruptly come in your path. Then, make the necessary adjustments as required according to recommendations.

Aim Adjustment for high beam

Turn ON the high beam headlights and observe their spots.

Their center should match the cross at the intersection of the horizontal and vertical lines for high beams.

Make necessary adjustments if required according to guidelines or your convenience.

Focus Adjustment

The focus ring is a lens to control the size of the light cone emerging from headlights.

You can move the ring closer or farther to the lights with the help of the screw on the light assembly.

It will change the size of the light beam, narrower or broader. Keep on rotating the screw clockwise or counterclockwise until you achieve the desired focus.

Matching it with a vehicle with aligned lights

Find a vehicle having aligned headlights installed at the same height as that of your motorhome.

Park it at a distance of 20-30 feet from a plain wall and mark the light beams by turning them ON.

Next, drive it to the place of the vehicle and adjust the lights. Keep on doing this until they match the marks on the wall.

Relocate the lights according to requirements

There is no provision for adjuster screws or bolts in old vehicles to move headlights for proper alignment.

In that scenario, you have to reinstall your headlights by drilling new holes to change their orientation.

First, unscrew the lights’ assembly and move it to find the aligned spots. Then mark those points, drill new holes, and fix it at those spots.

Use Bubble Levels for headlights Alignment

The latest models have both vertical and horizontal bubble levels aligned with headlights.

Therefore, you need to level those bubbles. It is the simplest solution; however, it depends on the availability of bubble levels. 

Hire the Services of Expert with Specific Tools

If you have no technical skills and cannot locate the adjuster screws, hire professionals to do the task.

Because doing it on your own can worsen the situation. Workshops or mechanics have special tools like a headlight alignment tester to do the job and access the adjustment options.

However, it will cost you a bit of money and time to go to the workshop and avail the services.

Legal requirements

There are laws in various states regarding maximum and minimum heights of headlight illumination.

They should not be above the centerline of your vehicle. It is also illegal to shine them in the eyes of oncoming drivers.

Moreover, there are laws regarding the illumination of the maximum number of lights.

There can be chances of fines and penalties in any crash or accident due to misalignment of headlights.

What causes the Misaligned headlights of a Motorhome?

The most common cause of headlights misalignment is a change in their orientation due to wear and tear in the assembly holding screws with time.

However, driving on bumpy roads can also cause a change of height or position of headlights.

Therefore, you should annually inspect their alignment and make it part of the preventive maintenance checklist of your motorhome.

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