Posts Tagged ‘Lighting’

V-LEDS strip lights are a great way to add lights to the interior or exterior of your car or truck. The possibilities are endless for location and functionality of these style of LEDs. We have added another LED strip light to our already popular lineup. These LEDs are not the standard V-LEDS strip lights though. The first major difference you will notice about these strips is the LEDs are aimed to the side, not straight up like our standard strip lights. Second, these strip lights feature dual color, White and Amber LEDs wired separately on the same circuit board. These dual color strip lights function the same as our popular switchback LEDs. A simple 3 wire installation makes them easy to install in any car or truck.

V-LEDS Dual Color Switchback LED Strip Light.

Want to see more pictures of these lights installed on the V-LEDS Project Scion iQ? Click here and see the photo gallery.

The 3rd addition of V-LEDS to the 2011 Scion iQ is Footwell lighting. This car is small, very small. So it is equipped with a proportionately small dome light. It does not provide much light at all. We offer many different LEDs that replace the yellow filament bulbs in your car, but sometimes you need some extra light to see. What if your car does not have enough factory lights? This is where V-LEDS can make a huge difference on any car. We offer a wide range of strip lights that are suitable for just about any application you can think of.

For the V-LEDS Scion iQ we wanted to be able to see the interior when the door was open or when we unlock it with the keyless entry system. So we chose to use some of our new puck strip lights. These are available in multiple colors, we chose to use the 6K white  version. We used one per side, adhered to the bottom side of the dash with the double sided tape that comes on them. We wired these directly to the dome light circuit.

Puck Light mounted to drivers side under dash.

After routing the wiring and making the connections to the factory dome light wires it was time to test. The results are amazing!

So much light!

Onto the trunk area now. There is no light in the rear from the factory. So while we were wiring up the puck lights up front we used a Y adapter and ran some extensions to the rear of the car. There is a great location on the panel in the trunk area to mount a strip light. We used a 12″ piece of our STRIP_3C_W_6K to illuminate the cargo area.

Behold the power of V-LEDS!

Thats it for this installment of the V-LEDS project Scion iQ. Stay tuned for more updates as we continue to bring the light.

Here is a list of the products we used for this upgrade:

Puck Lights: STRIP_RL_12_W_6K

Strip Light: STRIP_3C_W_6K (select length)

Y Adapters: DIY2_Y_ADAPT

Wire Extensions: DIY2_WIRE_48 (there are shorter lengths of wire available here)

Thanks for reading. If you have questions regarding this product please send an email to our customer service department at sales@v-leds.com. We are quick to respond via email and can answer any questions you may have about our products.

Here are some more photos of our Scion iQ.

We are on the second lighting mod on our Scion iQ. On the rear bumper there are 2 circular reflectors. They looked a little out of place but are required by DOT for visibility. We looked at them and thought “these would be great if they were active”. So we decided to see if they could be dissected and turned into brake lights.

Here we see the reflectors with as they appear from the factory.

We started by accessing the back of the reflector. This was pretty easy, with the removal of few plastic snaps we were able to remove the small rear inner fender liner. This allowed easy access to the fastener that holds the reflector to the bumper. After removing the nut from the backside of the reflector it comes right out.

Behind the bumper you can see how the reflector mounts. You can also see the wiring for the LEDs.

The red reflector portion of this unit is plastic welded to the mount (backer). There is enough space inside to hold one V-LEDS STRIP_RL_12_R. To separate the red reflector from the backer we heated a razor knife and pressed it into the seam where the front and back are fused together. Then it was just a matter of wedging a small flat blade screw driver into the melted section and prying them apart. It is not a clean split, but is the most non-invasive way to get it apart so that they can be glued back together later.

After you separate the front and back its time to get them ready for the STRIP_RL_12_R to be installed. I oriented the LED disc so the pattern of LEDs was aligned so the vertically/horizontally. From there I drilled a hole for the wire to be routed through. I drilled a hole in the bumper so the wire could be routed through as well.

LED Installed Inside Rear Reflector.

Here are the reflectors after completion.

After affixing the LED we used super glue to reattach the reflector to the backer. It was a tight squeeze but it fit inside. After the glue cured we reinstalled them and routed the wiring through a factory rubber grommet located on the back of the car. We ran the wiring up to the factory brake lights and spliced it into the brake circuit.

Reflectors are now active brake lights.

Here is a list of all the components used on this upgrade:

2 of these: STRIP_RL_12_R

2 of these: DIY2_WIRE_48

1 of these: DIY2_Y_ADAPT

Thanks for reading. If you have questions regarding this product please send an email to our customer service department at sales@v-leds.com. We are quick to respond via email and can answer any questions you may have about our products.

Here are some more photos of our Scion iQ.

V-LEDS Platinum Edition High Power 20

Here at V-LEDS we pride ourselves on developing the latest in cutting edge LED technology for your car. The latest addition to our extensive assortment of LEDs is the Platinum Series High Power 20. This bulb features years of development and testing brought together to form the perfect combination of light output and aesthetic appeal. This V-LEDS product is overbuilt to deal with the most demanding of applications. From Daytime Running Lights to Brake lights, this LED can do it without problems. Thick aluminum circuit boards and a large machined heat-sink located at the top of the LED quickly dissipate the heat generated by the .5 watt diodes. Clear lenses with vent slots add to the finished look of the bulb. Each .5 watt diode, 20 total, make for an intense blast of light aimed directly into your cars reflective lenses for the brightest output available on the market today.

The Evolution Of The High Power 20 Bulb

The Design of the High Power 20 LED bulbs started years ago. There was missing product in the 7440/7443 category. Everything we tried was just not bright enough. We needed to do something completely different to achieve acceptable levels of light output. After designing different prototypes a decision was made to use different diodes. The .5 watt diode was realized as the best candidate for the job. These diodes pack a serious punch. Each .5 watt diode has the same light output of 10 of our standard diodes. They also create 10 times more heat than the standard diodes. Heat is an LEDs worst enemy and we needed to develop a means to dissipate the large amounts of  heat generated by these new diodes. This led to another technological innovation by V-LEDS, the aluminum circuit board. This allowed the full power use of the .5 watt diode in brake light applications. This technology is applied to all High Power .5 watt LEDs offered by V-LEDS. The first edition of the High Power 20 used 14 .5 watt diodes on the sides and 6 of our standard 1210 diodes on the top. This design was hugely popular, so popular in fact that we continued development all the way up to the current Platinum Series. As we continued to advance this product we knew it needed to be brighter and even more capable of dissipating the heat of the .5 watt diodes. The 3rd Generation of this LED was equipped with massive aluminum circuit boards to handle the increased power output of the LEDs. The 6 standard 1210 diodes on the top were replaced with 4 .5 watt diodes to get as much light output as possible. This bulb packed a serious punch, but the finished look of the bulb left something to be desired. Which is where the Platinum Series steps in. A few tweaks in diode placement and heat management combined with its vented lens and voilà. Stay tuned in to V-LEDS to see where we take this already amazing product. Can we make it any better than it is now? That was the same question we asked ourselves a few years ago and the answer is YES, YES we can! Check out the progression of photos; 2nd, 3rd and Platinum Series from left to right. (The 1st Gen not pictured, It was a 48 LED version utilizing our standard 1210 diodes)

Have you heard of voltage spikes in your cars electrical system? Have you had a set of LEDs burn out after only having them installed for a couple of months? Chances are they were the helpless victims of voltage spikes. These voltage spikes are found in every car or truck. There a few causes of voltage spiking, but they all originate from the alternator. The alternator is the electrical power plant of your car. It charges the battery and provides the power to keep all the electronics in your car operating. We know that your car uses a 12 volt battery, 12 volts DC (direct current). Did you know that your cars alternator actually makes AC (alternating current) power? There is a component called the rectifier that converts the AC voltage into DC voltage. This part is either built into the alternator or mounted separately. The demand of your cars electrical system increases or decrease the load on the alternator. You may have experienced changes in the electrical load of your car, a common example is while you are waiting at a traffic light at night. You may have noticed your  headlights dim for a moment when your cars radiator fan kicked on. That is a change of load on the alternator, the alternator responded by generating more current to keep up with the higher demand created by the radiator fan and the lights returned to their original brightness. This continual up and down cycling of power being generated causes dips and spikes in voltage that over time will degrade the LEDs in your lights.

LED failure caused by voltage spiking is slowly starting to become a problem of the past. V-LEDS incorporates the latest technology on all of our new High Power LED products. We have been incorporating regulated power supplies onto the circuit boards of all of our High Power LEDs. These LEDs are not susceptible to damage caused by voltage spiking. What is the difference and how does it work? Lets take take a look at the difference between standard LEDs and High Power V-LEDS.

In the photo below I have taken apart some highly popular V-LEDs. The 194_HP_W_6K and the 194_5_SMT_W_6K. You can see the difference right away in the circuitry. Lets start with the 194_5_SMT_W_6K. This is easily our most popular LED. Its popularity comes from three places. 1) Price, at $7.99 for a pair you can’t go wrong. 2) Output, Brighter than a filament bulb without blinding you. Great color too 3) Application, with 4 LEDs around the sides and 1 on top it works in pretty much every application. The only downfall to this LED is the circuitry that regulates the power to the individual LEDs. In the photo you can see that  I circled a resistor. This is the component that steps the voltage down to the operating voltage of each LED. If you measure the voltage after it passes through the resistor it reads like this: 12 volts = 9.6 volts, 14.2 volts = 10.2 volts, 19 volts = 13 volts. The LEDs are ran in a series circuit that divides this voltage equally. This means that when operated at 12 volts the voltage is dropped to 9.6 volts by the resistor and is then divided amongst the 5 LEDs. This equals 1.92 volts per LED. This product is designed to be operated around 12 volts give or take a couple of volts. But what if your car has a spike up to 19 volts or greater? By using the same math at 19 volts we end up with each LED seeing 2.6 volts. It doesn’t seem like that much more voltage but the LEDs will get brighter and overheat, thus causing premature failure.

Now look at the 194_HP_W_6K. This is what sets our High Power LEDs apart from our entry level LEDs and from all other LED products on the market today. There is no math needed to show what will happen with different input voltage on this LED. The regulated power supply provides a consistent 3.6 volts to the LED. All of our High Power LEDs are stable from 9-24 volts. It will not affect the brightness of the LEDs at all. We have different variations of High Power LEDs. From our Platinum Series bulbs to our DRL/FOG bulbs to the brightest dome light we sell, all of them use our .5 WATT diode and a regulated power supply that controls the voltage that each LED receives. On our flank LEDs  and DRL/FOG LEDs we have also incorporated Bridge Rectifiers. These components allow for dual polarity use. These LEDs will light up regardless of which way they are plugged in.

To sum it up there is a difference, the V-LEDS difference. We bring “The Latest in Automotive LED Technology” to our customers. With each and every new product we develop it is our goal to raise the bar and bring you the best LED lighting products you can find. Hopefully this will help you understand why some of the LEDs we sell cost more than others. Simply put they are engineered to be better, brighter and last longer than anything else you can find on the market.

If you have questions on our products and how they work you can email me directly here:  tech@v-leds.com

Thanks for reading and feel free to leave a comment, James the tech@v-leds.com

Have you ever gone to start your car in the morning and find that your battery is dead? You end up searching around for jumper cables and calling your neighbor over for a jump start. After you get your car started you notice the dome lights were left on because one of the kids left the door open or you forgot to turn off the map lights the night before. Nothing can be more irritating, especially if you’re already running late for work. The filament bulbs used for lighting the interior of your car use quite a bit of power, more than you would think for such a small bulb. These bulbs can drain your battery down in a matter of hours if left on. All of this could have been avoided if you had just installed some efficient V-LEDS in your dome lights.

V-LEDS bulbs use far less power (80-90% less) than a conventional filament bulb to produce the same amount of light, if not more. You can leave your dome lights on for hours on end without draining the battery after you replaced them with V-LEDS. There are other benefits you will enjoy from using V-LEDS. The solid state design of V-LEDS makes them naturally shock resistant. The vibration of driving down a rough road will cause the filament of a regular bulb to break and burn out over time, something you don’t have to worry about with V-LEDS. The expected lifespan of a V-LEDS dome light is typically 10,000 hours or more!

Chances are you are already using LED technology in your day to day life. From illuminating the buttons on your remote control to  digital road signs and even on your personal electronics like your cell phone and i-pod. LED technology is used across a wide range of products. From illumination in cars to televisions, the possibilities are endless. LEDs are even starting to show up as standard equipment on new automobiles. From tail lights and brake lights to illuminating the interior, LEDs are the lighting of choice as they use less power and never need to be replaced.The good news is that you dont have to buy a new car to enjoy all the benefits of LED technology.

V-LEDS specializes in LED replacements for every type of filament bulb found in automobiles. And its as easy as 1 2 3 to find a V-LEDS replacement for your car. Not only can you get the efficiency of V-LEDS but you can customize the look of your interior with different color V-LEDS. V-LEDS bulbs have incredible benefits over standard bulbs. They are much brighter, operate at cooler temperatures, are extremely energy efficient and have a much longer life span. So go ahead and do yourself a favor, replace your interior bulbs with V-LEDS and avoid that potential morning frustration of jump starting your car.

Examples of V-LEDS dome light bulbs

Things have been pretty busy around the shop lately. New products coming in that need to be tested, vehicle specific kits that needed some tweaking and I did some pretty sweet headlight customization too. I always seem to be writing about how to fix some LED compatibility issue, this time I am going to show off some work I completed recently. V-LEDS sponsored a drift car last year that competed in the Formula Drift circuit. We met a lot of people who are involved with the drift circuit and they quickly caught the V-LEDS lighting bug. One of the teams sent us their headlights and asked us to work our lighting magic on them. Here is what we came up with for this particular set of lights.

Stock 370Z headlights

These lights are from a new Nissan 370Z. They are pretty nice light housings and almost seemed to be begging for V-LEDS touch. We did not get to see any pictures of the car and the race team only had a couple of simple  requests, AMBER LEDs around the projector headlight and to black out all of the chrome. I have been perfecting my headlight baking skills lately while testing our new Bi-Xenon projector upgrade kit and quickly set up my industrial sized easy bake oven.

The V-LEDS industrial sized easy bake oven.

Here it is in all its glory. It doesn’t look like much, but its amazing what a heat gun and a cardboard box can do! After baking the headlights in here for a while I was able to pry the front lens away from the back portion of the housing.

After getting the lights disassembled it was time to get modifying!  Prepping and painting the chrome parts. We had a friend who works at a machine shop cut us out some nice aluminum rings to go around the projector headlight lens. I disassembled some of our 194_HP_A and 194_2_HPFS_W_6K LEDs and soldered wires directly to the circuit boards. I used some epoxy to mount the LEDs to the “landing strip”area of the housing and to the aluminum ring. Here are some pictures that show how the project progressed through some of these steps. I tested the Amber LEDs around in the aluminum ring after it was assembled and it looked pretty dope. At this point I could not wait to get everything done and put back together to see it complete! If you click on the image it will take you to the complete photo gallery on our website.

This project went pretty smooth considering all of the custom fabrication involved. I am very happy with the way they turned out, hopefully the race team likes them too. I can’t wait to see them lit up on the car, but we have to wait until the next race season to see the complete package.

The Final Product

Thanks for checking out my work. Let me know what you think in the comments.

James, the tech@v-leds.com