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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Hertfordshire
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    1,016

    LED Indicator bulbs - looking for your experience please

    I'm hoping for someone's experience here. My Sumo uses 21w 382 bulbs for the front and rear indicators and an old fashioned bimetallic indicator flasher unit. I'd like to convert to brighter LED bulbs. Wondering whether anyone has recommendations positive or negative please

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Hockley ,Essex
    Age
    58
    Posts
    443
    With regards to indicator/stop lights, as far as I know you are still limited to a maximum
    brightness along with head lights.
    So you need to be careful with this one.
    I will confess that I am a dinosaur and have the same system as yours with the bi metal strip type
    with twenty one watt bulbs, my personal view is that they are perfectly adequate with no legal issues.
    I have had this system for over twenty years and has been fully reliable.
    Going on to led's, they are fine and use them on my daily commute push bike as they don't drain the
    batteries as fast and give a good reliable light unlike the old bike lights.
    Defiantly would not revert to tungsten type bulbs for the bike.
    The current draw is less for led's than tungsten but do you think that is relevant, it's only a couple of
    amps on our cars.
    Chris.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Christchurch, NZ
    Age
    60
    Posts
    2,509
    You will need to change the flasher unit to a newer electronic type. LEDs are polarity sensitive (they only work one way) but this should not be an issue if they are designed as a plug-in replacement. Don't see any other issues.
    Cheers

    Myles D-W

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Lincoln UK
    Posts
    121
    I’ve converted my standard indicators to LED front and rear (left the side repeaters as standard filament lamps). I’ve kept the original bi-metal flasher relay and simply installed ‘shunt’ resistors in parallel with each LED. This means that the original flasher really continues to work as normal but the LEDs show a brighter, and quicker on/off performance c/w the original filament lamps. The relay works because the ‘bi-metal strip’ type standard flasher relay relies on current flow to heat the bi-metallic strip to operate the relay (bends the strip due to the heating effect of the elect current). By putting resistors in parallel to each LED the current flow for the relay is maintained (most current flows through the resistor, with the current flow thought the LED being low) and the standard flasher replay works normally, as too does the hazard lights. I chose to do it this way rather than muck about with changing the flasher relay.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Hockley ,Essex
    Age
    58
    Posts
    443
    Something else to consider is that I carry a spare bulb kit with me on all my cars,
    they are all standard type tungsten or halogen , so if I have a bulb failure which is generally
    not that often it is possible to change them.
    I know it is not a legal requirement in the UK to carry a replacement bulb kit but it can save
    you a lot of hassle if you get pulled by the plod for a brake light etc etc out .
    Over on the continent, it is a legal requirement to have the correct replacement bulbs with
    you.
    Chris.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Toton, Nottinghamshire
    Age
    48
    Posts
    900
    Quote Originally Posted by BomberG View Post
    I’ve converted my standard indicators to LED front and rear (left the side repeaters as standard filament lamps). I’ve kept the original bi-metal flasher relay and simply installed ‘shunt’ resistors in parallel with each LED. This means that the original flasher really continues to work as normal but the LEDs show a brighter, and quicker on/off performance c/w the original filament lamps. The relay works because the ‘bi-metal strip’ type standard flasher relay relies on current flow to heat the bi-metallic strip to operate the relay (bends the strip due to the heating effect of the elect current). By putting resistors in parallel to each LED the current flow for the relay is maintained (most current flows through the resistor, with the current flow thought the LED being low) and the standard flasher replay works normally, as too does the hazard lights. I chose to do it this way rather than muck about with changing the flasher relay.
    If you did wish to change out the bi-metalic flasher for a relay type unit then it isn't that difficult. You will need to run an earth wire to the relay.

    Russ.
    Joint Area Rep - East Midlands Region
    1984 DAX Cobra
    Rover 3.5 V8 with Holley carburetor.

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