How to: - Interior Dome Light LED Conversion (PICs) | Page 2 | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

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How to: Interior Dome Light LED Conversion (PICs)

Here Is how to convert your dome lights from light bulbs to LEDs.

Starting with the Driver and Front Pax

What you will need

20 LEDs 55,000mcd
20 Resistors to bring the voltage down from 12volts to what your LEDs are rated at. Mine were 3.6v
Radio Shack Project board

First cut 2 pieces of the project board to 1.35" X1.35"
IMG_0018-2.jpg


Then arrange your LEDs on the board the way you want them. I used 10 on each board, 6 as spot lights and 4 on the corners as floods (grind the tips flat on the 4). Solder a resistor to each + lead of each LED and wire all the - leads together. Use Hot glue to attach each LED.
IMG_0019-2.jpg


Use clear nail polish to refinish the 4 ground down LEDs.
IMG_0023-2.jpg


Test
IMG_0022-3.jpg


Now disassemble the over head console and remove the 2 bulb holders
IMG_0024-2.jpg


Remove the metal shrouds from each of the bulb holders.
IMG_0025-1.jpg


Attach each board to the bulb holders using a Zip Tie, then use hot glue of silicone on the back to bond the board to the bulb holder
IMG_0026-2.jpg


Wire the 2 boards to the corresponding light switch on the console and snap on the cover.
IMG_0043.jpg



2nd row seats

I used 8 LEDs for this

Cut 2 pieces of project board .84"x.84"
IMG_0027-1.jpg


Arrange your LEDs and solder away.
IMG_0031-1.jpg


I used the - leads on the LEDs to hold the 2 boards together since the dome light reflector is in a pyramid shape and has to be bent in the center.
IMG_0030.jpg


Hot glue the board in.
IMG_0032-1.jpg


Done
IMG_0042-2.jpg



Cargo Area

I used 12 LEDs here

After removing the Unit from the headliner you need to gut out the metal contacts that were used for holding the bulb. Then Cut a piece of project board to fit inside the housing. Arrange you the LEDs and solder away.
IMG_0036-1.jpg


Here is what the back looks like on the boards with the - leads soldered together.
IMG_0038.jpg


Use hot glue to glue the board into the housing, and coat back of the board with glue or silicone to insulate.
IMG_0039-3.jpg


Done
IMG_0040.jpg


Will get pics when it gets dark out

Good Luck
 
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jturquette

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Where did you get the LEDS? What are the LED specs?

Also, did you replace your puddle lamps with LEDs? If so, what were the specs on those LEDs?

looking at holiday projects. hee-hee.
 
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MustangP51

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Godsmackuinuhead

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You are like the LED Guru. lol Anymore lighting upgrades you have writeups to?
 
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millerman23

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I just purchased some leds off ebay and was wondering. how many leds do you suggest for the front light. you said you used to many and wished you used less.
 
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MustangP51

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I just purchased some leds off ebay and was wondering. how many leds do you suggest for the front light. you said you used to many and wished you used less.

For the front light I would say use 6 on each board. I think that will be plenty of light.
 
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btimm86

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what was the ohm rating on your resistors? How was it wired? It looks like you had them all in parallel.
 
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MustangP51

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what was the ohm rating on your resistors? How was it wired? It looks like you had them all in parallel.

I didnt put the ohm rating for the resistors because not all white LEDs have the same operating voltage. In my case they were 460 ohm. Yes they are wired in parallel. I don't like wiring LEDs in series.
 
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buckshotmudder

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looks great.. good write up
 
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btimm86

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I have a problem. I think I shorted something in my overhead console. I was testing my LED boards with the overhead console and they burned bright as they should. I accidentally shorted the circuit and blew a 30A fuse, I replaced the fuse and now when I connect they LED boards they burn very dim. I also tried using the old bulbs and they wouldn't even light. I thought i wired the LED's wrong and burned them out but I tried them with a 12v cigarette lighter source and they burned bright as normal. Any ideas as to what i might have done?
 
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Bill Kemp

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Could be you burned out more than ONE fuse. Or melted a wire that is causing a ground. IDK???
Probably have to take it off and bench test the console.
 
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btimm86

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Thanks i'll try checking all fuses and trying a different ground
 
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ReLoaDeD BuLLiTT

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what about some pictures of the actual wires from the led mod going into the factory harness, etc.
 
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MustangP51

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Sorry but I don't think I have any pictures of the wiring. If you pull the console off the ceiling it will be fairly easy to figure it out. I cut into the wires right after the buttons for the overhead console lights. In the 2nd row The board plugs right into the socket. The cargo area just had 2 wires running to it, a pos and a neg, cut off the connector at the end and solder the pos and neg from the LED Board to those wires.
 
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greyphox

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I did a variant of this mod this past summer. I replaced all the interior lights with LEDs, although I put both blue and white in. I have it set up so that a rocker switch drives the coil of a DPDT relay to change between white and blue. Wiring was pretty tricky, and is actually still a work in progress since school started before I could complete the whole process. Now that finals are over I will dive back in and tidy up a few things. If anyone wants to know the specifics just pm me so as to not hijack this thread.

As always, very clean work and it looks great.:thumbsup: I have that same problem with the front lights being way too bright. :eek:
 
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VinnieZ

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Hey guys...I have no experience whatsoever when it comes to this stuff....however, I really would like to put a light in the cargo area of my explorer. It is really hard to see back there and it would really help. Can anyone please refer me to maybe a step by step manual or a post where this is explained?

I mean I really have no idea what I am doing or how to go about doing it. I dont even know what supplies I would need. I have looked at previous posts but I am still really confused. I would like to put a light in and have it look halfway decent. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks
 
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CJL

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Great write up!

I have a question, is thee a site that shows the average light output of halogen bulb?

For example,the dome light in my other vehicle accepts a 578 type bulb,so I wanted to know the light output of that specific size bulb to determine how many/what size LEDs I would need to exceed stock performance.
 
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RickOTR

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MustangP51, where did you wire your LEDs to. The only wires I can find are the black one in the middle, and the red/green ones on each side of the holder. Can I just cut them and hard wire them to the LED board I made without shorting out anything?
 
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MustangP51

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MustangP51, where did you wire your LEDs to. The only wires I can find are the black one in the middle, and the red/green ones on each side of the holder. Can I just cut them and hard wire them to the LED board I made without shorting out anything?

Yes you can hard wire them in. That's what I did. The black is the ground, and the red and green are the positive leads for each light. Just double check first, use a meter or a test light to make sure.
 
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RickOTR

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Yes you can hard wire them in. That's what I did. The black is the ground, and the red and green are the positive leads for each light. Just double check first, use a meter or a test light to make sure.


Thanks!, I just got everthing back together and the difference in lighting is amazing. I used 6 LEDs on each map light which I think is just right... not to dim and not too bright. I bought 12 of them from Superbrightleds. com part number RL5-W8045 and they work great. Here are the specs...

Super White LEDs:
8000 mcd/45 degree
forward voltage 4.0
20ma
470ohm resistors
 
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