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idahoBLKss

The Official L.E.D. How To Guide

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OK this is it , i'm officially retired from doing L.E.D. swaps so id figure i would put a how to together with all of the pictures i have takin' over many moons of doing this. this may take a while to get completely in order and put up so hang in there for a bit . i know your asking your self why? you already did one and the answer is because it is so full of b.s. its not funny and is very hard to find any thing in there, and besides i have made a couple discoveries that need to be addressed.

 

 

 

ok first off , tools that you will need =

 

- soldering station of some kind preferably with alligator clips attached for holding stuff.

- soldering stick or what ever you prefer

- solder (smaller in diameter the better)

- soldering wic

- needle nose plyers

- screw drivers ( normal size one and some very small ones) need like 4 total for wedging purposes .

- normal size philips screw driver

- skinny dinner fork

- 7mm socket

- wire cutters

- sharpie marker

- run down 9v battery don't use a new one, use on that has very little juice left

 

think that covers it...

 

few basic rules b4 we get started please read this it is basic but helpful info...

 

leds- positive side is the longer leg, if it is cut and legs are same size look into the bulb and the negative side is shaped like an arrow so just remember the arrow points to the positive side.

- resistors don't matter what side you solder to.

- don't get the leds too hot they will not work if you do.

- if you are replacing a factory led , you don't need to add resistor to your led (basically every thing in the door controls)

- take your time , its not a contest

- i em not responsible if you fry or break some thing do it at your own risk.

 

parts you will need...

50+ - 3mm blue leds flat top 180* view

20- 5mm blue leds flat top 180* view

100 resistors 1/4 watt 470 ohm

PIC_0895.jpg

 

ok i will start with the cluster.....

 

b4 you start pulling it apart , start your truck and let it warm up to operating temps. take a picture of every gauge so you have a reference to where the needles will go when you are done.

 

first thing you want to do is un clip the plastic cover from the circuit board...

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then the front, it can be a lil tricky ... undo the top and yank on it to pull the bottom out ...

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this is what you should have at this point...

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to get the needles off use a dinner fork under the gauge and pry it loose gently you don't want to damage the stepper motor...

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after pulling the needles off , pull and set the plastic cover aside...

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at this point you have two options on what you can do. one being you can go plug your cluster back into your truck and take a led with a resistor soldered to it out to your truck and hold the led to the stock bulbs till it lights up and when it lights up you can mark the positive side with a sharpie positive side being the side with the resistor attached to it. and repeat this with every bulb you want to replace. OR two you can take my word and just copy what i did and go from there ... again "i em not responsible if you break stuff" PLEASE KEEP IN MIND i have ran into different circuit boards and the order did not work the same as the other circuit boards so just keep that in mind.

 

locate the blue bulbs and toggle them back and forth , they should come loose with very little effort...

PIC_0893.jpg

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ok it is very important to make sure your positives and negatives are in right, your leds will be easy to tell the long leg is positive but when you soilder them to the board make sure you have them like i have them, the resistors are soildered to the positive leg, i took very close up front pics so it shouldn't be a problem to tell , this will save you hours of trouble shooting...

PIC_0897.jpg

 

the gauge cluster is where you will use the 5mm LEDS no 3mm LEDS in there...

 

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the ds21 spot in this pic is wrong it is pointing to the negative spot but the rest are pointing to the positive...

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in some spots your going to want to add a extra led to get rid of hot spots and you will have to bend them with the needle nose to take shape how you want them to...

2011-03-21_21-56-56_734.jpg

 

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ok lots of request about how i did the screens blue. i'm not taking full credit for this part of the write up a friend off of sss.net "ducttape" told me how to do this and i asked him if i could post it and he was cool with it, so here you go the secrete behind the blue....

 

use a blue gel sheet for lighting looks like this when you get it...

PIC_1009.jpg

 

cut to size being careful not to get finger prints or dust behind it. all you do it scotch tape it on don't let the tape show in the window you will see it.

 

PIC_1008.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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dimmer switch...

one of the more easy pieces..

2011-03-26_22-06-36_789.jpg

 

held together by 4 lil philips screws , should look like this when pulled apart...

2011-03-26_22-08-24_795.jpg

 

unscrew the dimmer (2 more screws) and lift out of the way. be careful it doesn't come apart so you don't loose any of the pieces . the bulb you see can be twisted out of place.

2011-03-26_22-10-24_296.jpg

 

led installed ...

2011-03-26_22-16-19_111.jpg

 

added the leds where there were no lights from the factory.... after fabbing it up put the dimmer cover over it and make sure the dimmer isn't rubbing on it when you rotate the dimmer. you will have to melt a passage in the dimmer cover so the wire can feed into that area..

PIC_0937.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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AIRBAG SWITCH ....

 

 

first thing you do is pop the plastic piece out thats around the key hole...

2011-03-26_23-16-05_418.jpg

 

this part will fight you tooth and nail but get your skinniest screw driver and push the clips in while wedge one in the top like so... (you will want to smash this thing on the ground and stomp it out by the time you get it this far P.I.T.A.!!)

2011-03-26_23-19-45_848.jpg

 

after you get the top off , take your screw driver and push it out from the back put it face up on your palm so you don't loose any parts. be careful and watch it carefully when pulling it apart to see how it all goes together.

2011-03-26_23-21-27_195.jpg

 

take note to how everything looks and watch out for the spring in the bottom when pulling it apart...

PIC_0909.jpg

 

here are a series of pics when done. the circuit board is very fragile DO NOT MELT the factory soldering it will part from the circuit board and you will be SOL trust me i found this out the hard way twice.as you can see i left one of the stock bulbs because i wanted the "airbag off light" to still be red . what you need to do is cut the bulbs off leaving as much wire on there as possible so you have something to solder too...

PIC_0910.jpg

 

 

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pay close attention to how things are bent and placed in the pics they are like that for fitment ,room is very tight when putting back together...

PIC_0933.jpg

 

PIC_0934.jpg

 

 

 

AC CONTROLS ...

so far i have ran into 2 different slider controls. they look the same but the circuit boards are a little different (must be made at different times or something). with that said make sure you pull it apart down to the circuit board and plug it in with the stock bulbs in and mark your positives with a sharpie. it will be extremely hard to figure out once the stock bulbs are removed cause most of the bulbs are in a series on this circuit board if one don't work the rest wont and it will make it extremely hard to figure out what ones you got in right....

 

here are the two that i have done...

2011-03-28_12-32-02_936.jpg

 

so first step take a fork a wedge it under but be easy i have heard of these things pulling out .if they don't come off with ease try some heat

2011-03-28_09-32-09_539.jpg

 

then pull the knobs off with your fingers...

2011-03-28_09-33-47_480.jpg

 

then flip it over and undo the BLACK hex heads with a 7mm .. DONT TAKE THE CHROME ONES OUT...

 

 

2011-03-28_09-35-38_912.jpg

 

here are some finished pics. I THINK THIS WAS THE CIRCUIT BOARD PART NUMBER ENDING IN 7352 IF I REMEMBER CORRECTLY.... LOOK AT THE CIRUIT BOARD IN THESE PCS AND MAKE SURE IT LOOKS LIKE YOURS ... I WILL HAVE PICS OF BOTH KINDS...

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2011-03-28_12-15-14_622.jpg

2011-03-28_12-15-26_263.jpg

2011-03-28_12-15-35_72.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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THIS IS THE 7353 IF I REMEMBER CORRECTLY ... NOTICE HOW LESS BUSY THE CIRCUIT BOARD IS...

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PIC_0959.jpg

 

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PIC_0957.jpg

 

when doing this complete all of the lights b4 you plug it back in it seems like if only half of the lights done that half of the stock bulbs wont light up so dont get spooked just finish the job.

 

 

DIGITAL CLIMATE CONTROL UNIT ....

 

 

OK I FINALLY DID A DIGI UNIT ... BLACK MARKINGS REPRESENT POSITIVE SIDE...

PIC_1004.jpg

PIC_1005.jpg

 

Edited by idahoBLKss

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door locks / power windows/heated seats...

 

note that you will NOT need resistors for any of these!

 

THESE ARE HELD TOGETHER WITH SNAP CLIPS JUST USE A SMALL SCREW DRIVER TO POP THEM OFF...2011-03-28_12-37-23_960.jpgafter u get the stock leds out push your leds threw the board like this ...2011-03-28_12-55-08_698.jpg

should look like this from the bottom...2011-03-28_12-57-46_340.jpg

after pushing them through , bend the legs over and clip them to length..2011-03-28_12-58-19_426.jpgblurry pic but then put a bead of solder on the legs being as quick as possible cause the legs are so short the heat will travel up the leg and destroy the led if heated to long...2011-03-28_12-59-46_725.jpg

drivers side b4 i start...

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major close up of the far left one . the square white thing is the stock surface LED i put a black line on the positive side...

PIC_0965.jpg

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the black dots with the black line is the positive side..

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pics of them in from the other side..

 

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passenger side ... agian the square white things are the stock leds just heat them and pull them out at the same time when the solder melts.

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here are my LEDs in place ... black dot / line represents positive side...

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after you do that next thing i did is cut the lil squares out using a razor blade so my LEDs could poke through...

2011-03-28_13-19-38_628.jpg

this pic has one cut out so you can see the difference...

PIC_0972.jpg

this is what mine look liked after...

PIC_0975.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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you can actually test these with out being plugged in on the stock leds because leds will only light when the positive is lined up with a positive . so i tested and marked it with a sharpie... (heated seat controls)

2011-03-28_13-33-45_906.jpg

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2011-03-28_13-52-54_553.jpg

arrows mark the positives...

2011-03-28_14-44-37_540.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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OK OPERATION STEERING WHEEL....

 

to get the buttons out or the "boxes" the house the buttons you will need a small screw driver to pry them out . once you get them pried far enough grab them with your fingers and pull on it till you see the clip behind them. use a smaller screw driver to unclip them .the bottom buttons will be a PITA to get out. once out use that small crew driver to open the boxes. once open this is what it will look like....

arrows represent positive side on this one...

PIC_0998.jpg

 

arrows represent negative side on this one THIS PIC WAS TAKEN B4 I SWAP THE LED/RESISTOR AROUND...

PIC_0999.jpg

 

arrows represent positive side on this one...

PIC_1000.jpg

 

arrows represent positive side on this one...

PIC_1001.jpg

 

 

ok after you get them all together with your LEDS AND RESISTORS you are ready to plug back in, tops should go in fine you might need some needle nose pliers to grabb the wire to connect it back to the box for the top. and for the bottom you are going to have to pull the airbag off. i didnt unplug the battery or do any of that funny $hit. go about it how you want to thou, im not responcible for your actions :uhoh: .

to pull the airbag off your going to need a small screw driver that will fit in the little holes on the side / back of the steering wheel . as you push the screw driver in them and put pressure on it you will feel something compress about a 1/4 inch, while it is compressed pull on the top of your steering wheel airbag , that side will pop off and repeat for the other side.once off this is what you will see...

PIC_1002.jpg

the small wire i em holding is the wire for the bottom right button box. you will have to re route this to get enough wire to plug the box back in. it should look like this after the reroute...

PIC_1003.jpg

i used a screw driver and some needle nose to reroute it. now b4 you button everything up make sure you test your lights to make sure everythng is working alright. then just push the AIRBAG back on and your done. :chevy: NOTE I DID NOT DISCONNECT THE AIRBAG.

Edited by idahoBLKss

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MY RANDOM led PICS...

2010-12-17_23-53-58_327.jpg

2010-12-15_14-01-27_174.jpg

 

 

video..

th_VID00028-1.jpg

Edited by idahoBLKss

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Hope you don't mind a question already lol. My cruise light and apparently my tow/haul light went out after the swap, are they easy to "find" on the board? Also, if I replace the surface mount LEDS on there, would I downsize to a 3mm led?

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Hope you don't mind a question already lol. My cruise light and apparently my tow/haul light went out after the swap, are they easy to "find" on the board? Also, if I replace the surface mount LEDS on there, would I downsize to a 3mm led?

 

 

yeah should be easy to find. just plug it in with the board exposed and youll see what ones you need to replace. and yeah a 3mm should be fine.

 

AND IT OK TO POST NOW IF YOU WANT ...LOOKS LIKE ILL HAVE PLENTY OF ROOM...

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just wanted some feedback im about half way through this and am noticing the flat tops led arent as bright as the dome tops . i noticed in your video that your mirror adjust switch isnt lit up , after doing the driver side i kept having the leds come in contact with the clear plastic that they illuminate through. what i did was drilled a small 3/16 hole about 1/8 deep to allow the led to fit into , without doing so would not allow me to fully clip in the led/switch board. i tried but it popped the solder right off.

 

i also added an extra led into the "passenger" illumination cubby on the airbag switch , i was able to finess and solder directly to the film i got a weller solder iron and man is it bad ass , level 3 seems to be the best setting as for getting the solder melted without hurting anything .

 

what i want to try is get some dome led's and lightly sand each one making it a flat top , imo that will make everything much more uniform . i really dont like the hot spots im getting thus far.

 

i also picked up a lux nav with all the goodies , will be doing that in led as well as the lux bose audio upgrade. more bass here i come .

 

thanks for writing this up , it definatly helped me out with the positive and negative side.

 

i wouldnt want to do this again but honestly its pretty darned easy , just finesse and concetration is key .

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