Friday, December 7, 2018

One Last LED Post for the Year

So while I ponder whether to keep those super bright LEDs for my rear license plate...

Sharp eyed readers may have noticed that I had another pair of LEDs (25) that I had ordered from Pika-Q, but which I did not discuss in my last post.

Although I was really tempted to replace the orange rear turn signals, the ones on the Pika-Q site all apparently seemed to require the use of resistors. And because I'm too lazy to figure out how it all works, never mind do the wiring, it's something I will have to research further and do at a later day.

Long time readers will instead know that I've been obsessed with trying to figure out how to improve my one back up lamp.  Since Series 3 (Kohki) cars only have a back up bulb on the left side, with the right side being a rear foglight, the back up lamp needs to be as bright as possible. Not only to let others know I'm backing up, but also so that I can see what I'm backing up into.

So when I found this bulb, I was pretty excited.
Oh yeah! 500 Lumens!!
I think there are other bulbs that are brighter, but for the S25 bulb, this was the brightest I could find.

I was happy with the claimed 500 lumens rating because as you know back in July I replaced the failed HID bulb with an LED from PIAA with a claimed 300 lumens brightness.

So here are pictures of the before and after - can you tell the difference?

With the PIAA bulb

With the PIKA-Q bulb

PIAA bulb

PIKA-Q bulb
Again, to the naked eye there is a notable difference, one that the iPhone camera does not pick up. Perhaps you can tell by how the back wall gets lit up?

PIAA bulb 
PIKA-Q bulb
You can tell that the area which is lit up is higher up on the wall with the PIKA-Q bulb.  Also the cardboard box is more uniformly and brightly lit up.

Here is a direct comparison of the difference in design

So, the next logical step would be to replace the turn signals with orange LEDs as well... so tempted but the resistors...


Anonymous said...

You don't have to use a resistor, there are replacement relays that replace the stock turn signal relay that will allow for proper function of LED turn signals. This only works on stuff new enough to use a relay and old enough that the body control module isn't monitoring current of the turn signals to figure out if the bulb is burnt out or not.

Unknown said...

I’ve tried it on a 32 (swapping indicator bulbs to LED) it doesn’t work so good. They will light up the housing more uniformly but relative to a regular bulb they were worse overall. The light output is lower compared with a regular bulb which I attributed to the bulb being ‘on’ for less time with an LED. But if you do find one that you like let us know about it :-)

Wayne said...

+1 on the rely. The relay for the flashers is under the steering column. just remove the trim and you'll see it. I got my relay from "The retrofit Source." It will be the EP34 relay.
Most of my LED solutions have been from there. If by some chance the relay doesn't work as it should, they have resisters with wiring diagrams. Easy stuff.