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Old 02-04-2010, 10:46 AM   #1
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LED rear signal bulbs

So a while ago I switched my tail lights to smoked LED taillights, which looks damn good, IMHO
However the signal lights are still good old Thomas Alva Edison style bulbs.
I'd like to switch them to LED bulbs as well (I don't think that this would work with the front though due to the way they sit in the housing).

So back to the rear bulbs:
I understand that LED draw less power so you need a resistor so that the flasher relays will send current.

So I went to my local car parts store and looked for LED bulbs with a built in resistor, bought them and put them in, but still no go.

So here's the question:
Does anyone have made this conversion and got it to work?
(Brand of LED bulbs, or any other tips&tricks pls)

Thanks

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Old 02-04-2010, 11:16 AM   #2
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Am currently working with an engineer to prototype a full LED array for Boxster tail lights. These are not bulbs, but a full array permanently retrofitted to the tail light housing. Expect to be beta testing it in a few weeks.

We are also currently prototyping several other cars incl. BMW 2002 and NK cars and are already on the market with arrays for more than a dozen classic Brit cars from the 60's.

In each case, the units require switching the flasher unit from an electro-mechanical to a solid-state unit. Depending on the wiring situation, a local resistor doesn't always work.

Cheers!
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Old 02-04-2010, 01:45 PM   #3
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Try reversing the polarity (put the bulb in the other way) if you haven't already.
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Old 02-04-2010, 02:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stroked & Blown
Try reversing the polarity (put the bulb in the other way) if you haven't already.
That is really HARD to do with the signal bulbs, it's about the same as trying to reverse polarity on a standard screw in light bulb
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Old 02-04-2010, 05:38 PM   #5
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LED effecting Cruise Control

One other thing to look out for when switching tail lights to LED. When I switched to the DEPO with LED tail lights that plug into the old bulb sockets my cruise control quite working. I had to go to the auto parts store and by a small light with socket and wire into one of the tail lights to trick the system into thinking a regular bulb was instailed for the cruise control to work. Its actually a bulb and socket made to light up a liscense plate. I hid the bulb behind the carpet in the trunk.
This is on a 1997. I am not sure about other years. You can test it by pulling both bulbs. As longs as one bulb is identified by the computer the cruise will work.
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Old 02-07-2010, 10:00 PM   #6
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I have replaced every light on my truck with led except for the dash lights and i have never had any trouble with the cruise control...I bought an electronic blinker control from advance auto parts to get rid of the fast blink.
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Old 02-08-2010, 12:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZang
That is really HARD to do with the signal bulbs, it's about the same as trying to reverse polarity on a standard screw in light bulb
You have to make the change in the wiring harness, it's not about how you install the bulb.

-james
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Old 02-09-2010, 02:20 PM   #8
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Here is a link to a source for LED specific flashers, but you may run into issues if you are only switching to LEDs in the rear and not the front.

http://autolumination.com/equalizers.htm

Google LED turn signal flasher and you will get lots of info.
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Old 02-09-2010, 04:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yimmy149
You have to make the change in the wiring harness, it's not about how you install the bulb.

-james
I don't think I will change the whole car to positive ground for that.
I'll first go the route of trying an electronic flasher module
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Old 02-10-2010, 07:27 AM   #10
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Garage
I don't have any experience with them, but during a recent scan of misc. items for a Boxster on eBay I ran across 'LED load equalizers' on eBay from a seller called sportscarextras. I don't know how to ad a link, but current eBay item # is 120526830998.
Maybe worth a look?
Good luck!
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Old 02-10-2010, 03:51 PM   #11
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Thanks, the stuff that I ordered from v-leds should arrived tpnoight and now I know:
I am now officially an idiot
The rear signal bulbs have indeed switched polarity - so all the posters who told me to change plus and minus were right and I was wrong

Of course, Porsche doesn't make this easy for you, but your Dremel tool and your soldering iron is your friend
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I still wave at Boxsters, but they no longer wave back :-(
2002 Boxster S "Violet" (sold but not forgotten)
2009 Carrera 4S "Kelsey" (current ride)
2015 FIAT 500e "Nikki" my commuter car

Last edited by ChrisZang; 02-10-2010 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:30 AM   #12
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For 194 style bulbs (corners) you can just turn them around.

For the turn-in style, I wonder if you can order LED bulbs with reversed polarity..

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