Toyota Nation Forum banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
One of my bulbs burned out, so I decided to replace them with LED bulbs. I ordered them from superbrightleds.com and they were about $20 with shipping. I did a comparison between the stock bulb and the LED in the video which I might help someone who is considering this cheap, easy mod. I love LED brake lights, but I also didn't want that 'riced out' look that a lot of LEDs give you.

 

·
Registered
'12 Ram 1500 HEMI
Joined
·
1,138 Posts
^ yea, those actually give it a riced out look in my opinion. your brake light went from a 4" diameter circle to a 1" diameter circle! those forward facing LEDs do not fill the bowl and are extremely hard to see during the day. i see chevy's w/ those all the time and just laugh...put the $1.99 bulbs back in, they are brighter and safer. if you want LED brake lights, swap in some 09 tails, now those are bright!!
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The LED's dont look like they project wide enough in my opinion.
^ yea, those actually give it a riced out look in my opinion. your brake light went from a 4" diameter circle to a 1" diameter circle! those forward facing LEDs do not fill the bowl and are extremely hard to see during the day. i see chevy's w/ those all the time and just laugh...put the $1.99 bulbs back in, they are brighter and safer. if you want LED brake lights, swap in some 09 tails, now those are bright!!

Good points. I am going to look into ways to make them project more, because I think they're too dim, too. I don't really want to go back to incandescent bulbs, though. I'm thinking a convex reflective surface directly in front of the bulb would shine the light back into the mirrored part of the tail light and give it a kind of doughnut appearance. I don't find it to be overly ricey myself, or at least not to the point that I don't like it, but I am concerned about the dimness during the day. I'll keep working on it. Also, the video may not do them justice as they didn't strike me as that dim in person.
 

·
nooB nooB noo
06 Taco
Joined
·
545 Posts
I like seaweed and wasabi mustard with my rice
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Another possibility:

I don't know if it's possible to clear out the tail light, but I would consider making just the brake light circle clear, then painting it with clear matte spray paint that would diffuse the red light (I don't want the bare LED to be the only source of color). This I would probably get a junkyard tail light to use as a prototype, as I don't know what the end result would look like.

Any other ideas?
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Is anyone here familiar with the resistors associated with the brake lights? If I can figure out how, I might also look at lowering the resistance to make the LEDs brighter.

(If you can't tell, I really want these LEDs to work, because I don't have the money for any other kind of LED light [i.e. put in '09 tails])

An idea I came up with that I like is to fabricate a mount to hold another rear-facing LED to light up the mirrored bowl. I could probably find a trailer brake light that I get the bulb holder out of, and I'm pretty competent at wiring, so I could easily wire it up...
 

·
Stupid is stupid does
2008 tundra
Joined
·
5,554 Posts

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·

·
Stupid is stupid does
2008 tundra
Joined
·
5,554 Posts
Those are some pretty sick LEDs, but unfortunately they are way out of my price range. I'm thinking that trying to add another bulb might be the way to go. Plus, it would give me a chance to tinker without spending a lot of money, which is not something I get to do often enough.
I hear ya brotha. Just letting you know about them LEDS :thumbsup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
495 Posts
LEDs can work, I bought some for my old Chevy that were like $24 each from that site (315x series) and they had a great viewing angle and were wicked bright. Enough so that a friend following me once when a bunch of us were headed out one night called to bitch about how bright they were :lol: The only weird thing was they caused noise on some of the FM stations.
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well I got a chance to see them in the dark tonight, and I think they look pretty cool. If I can just find a way to make them brighter in the day, I think I'll be alright.
 

·
Love the Tick
2001 Ford Ranger
Joined
·
286 Posts
When I replaced my bulbs with the ones bassman has in his truck I also felt they weren’t bright enough.

I eventually replaced them with these bulbs:



Very little difference in brightness compared to the incandescent. Different look, which I was happy about, and a split second faster reaction time. They are pricey, but if you want a LED bulb back there, this is a bright as I have found. The forward firing LED is bright enough to fill out the lens and not look like a 1” light. The side firing LEDS reflect inside the chrome housing. The total effect fills out the tail light just like an incandescent would.

Interesting note: About a month ago, someone hit me from behind causing my truck to spin around several times before hitting a concrete wall in the front, side and back. Even though the back passenger tail light lens was missing and the back was pushed up to the tires, both LEDs in my tail light (brake and flasher) were still hanging from the sockets and working.
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
How much were those?
 

·
Love the Tick
2001 Ford Ranger
Joined
·
286 Posts
How much were those?
I think I paid $20 each when I got them a year or so ago. They for go $24 right now at autolumination.com. I know, they are expensive. They aren't for everyone. I found they are the best LED bulb for tail lights and if I had to buy them again I would. I tinted my tail lights with Nightshades and I really like the color of the lens with the LED in there. I tried the incandescent one in the left and the LED in the right and I could barely tell the difference in brightness.
 

·
^the guitar, not the fish
'06 Tacoma
Joined
·
679 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I think I paid $20 each when I got them a year or so ago. They for go $24 right now at autolumination.com. I know, they are expensive. They aren't for everyone. I found they are the best LED bulb for tail lights and if I had to buy them again I would. I tinted my tail lights with Nightshades and I really like the color of the lens with the LED in there. I tried the incandescent one in the left and the LED in the right and I could barely tell the difference in brightness.
Yeah, those are expensive, even though it sound like they're worth the money. I think, though, that I'm going to grab some 3156's that are on clearance for really cheap. They are basically the same bulb but they don't have the dual intensity like the 3157's do, but I think I'm just going to have them fill up the bowl of the light when the brake is applied and be off when the just the lights are on. This will be fine because I'll get the brightness I need in the daylight, and a hopefully a cool custom look that no one else will have.

The bulbs I have, I discovered, do have some rear facing LEDs to light up the bowl so that at night they look great. All I really need is more light for brakes during the day, and I think I've found the solution.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top