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Replace incandescant with LEDs


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I have reported on this subject in the past and it's time for an update. The technology surrounding LED lighting has improved considerably in the last two years. What used to be a too narrow wiewing angle has been improved and is at least as good as equivalent incandescent bulbs.

Why consider doing this? Safety. If you drive on the Interstate highway system much at all, you have seen the rear lighting on newer over-the-road truck trailers. That is applied LED lighting at its best; bright, fast-acting, and it grabs your eye. Another example is newer traffic lights at controlled intersections.

For owners of '98 to '04 Sevilles, the easiest lamps to convert to LEDs are the rear (amber) turn signals. This is not exactly a plug and play operation because the LED draws only 1/7th (14%) of the current used by the equivalent incandescent bulb. This lower current draw causes the flasher module to flash rapidly as a warning that you have a burned out bulb. Unfortunately, replacing the flasher module is not an option on these models as the turn signals and the four-way hazard function are both operated by one flasher unit that is part of the hazard switch.

The easy fix is to use a resistive load to pull sufficient current through the flasher. A ten ohm resistor will slow the flash rate considerably. And a five ohm resistor will slow the flash rate to the original 80 flashes per minute. Using common values available at any Radio Shack, it is simple to make a five ohm resistor using two ten ohm, 10 watt resistors in parallel.

Connect the resistor between the turn signal wire that is a color other than black and a clean chassis ground point. It is necessary to attach the resistor to the body for heat sinking. The picture is my method of attaching the resistor(s) and making the ground connection at the same point.

The result is an eye grabber of a rear turn signal that is spectacular at night. I used

amber "Eagle-Eye Tower" #3157 LED lamps from http://autolumination.com/3157_3156.htm.



Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.


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