LED Brake Lights for '86 Bigfoot B17 - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV



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Old 04-06-2017, 11:03 AM   #15
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Name: David
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Thanks for all the help. I've got some research to do. I'll let you know what I come up with.
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Old 04-06-2017, 11:08 AM   #16
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There one other thing to consider when replacing trailer brake lights with LEDs. Since LEDs draw a lot less current on some tow vehicles the flash rate on the combination of tow and trailer can change, depending on the tow and how things are wired. It could be good or it could be bad, the flash rate.

One other thing, the higher current incandescent bulbs have a tendency to clean the contacts while the lower current LEDs have a tendency to allow corrosion to stop the electron flow.
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Old 04-06-2017, 11:15 AM   #17
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Hi Mike. I was wondering if you had the model number of the Bargeman lights you used?
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Old 04-06-2017, 11:55 AM   #18
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Would any of these work? They are listed as complete LED assemblies. LINK

I would stay away from putting LED bulbs in incandescent sockets. A LED bulb with good dispersion, high lumen, and reliable (read quality) ends up costing as much as good sealed replacement unit. And cheap drop in just frustrates you.

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Old 04-06-2017, 11:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Gray View Post
Hi Mike. I was wondering if you had the model number of the Bargeman lights you used?
Beware that he has a 1993 model, which has the later, flatter, more square tail lamp assemblies than your 1986 with the Miro-Flex lamps. The LED replacement he found will likely not be an exact fit on a 1986, and may not fit at all. Check the dimensions carefully.
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Old 04-06-2017, 12:17 PM   #20
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There's nothing wrong with good complete LED assemblies, and if you're doing a major rehab, that's probably the way to go. I'm not especially fond of cutting holes in my trailer's shell, though, and most LED lights are recessed mount.

My trailer, like a lot of them here, has surface-mount tail light fixtures (Bargman #92, to be exact). Like another poster, I put in a $15 pair of 1157 corncob LED bulb replacements. I did something else, too, though:

I glued some aluminum foil to the mounting plate behind the bulb socket. White spray paint would also work, but it was faster and easier to cut a piece of foil to fit and then glue it in with a spot of RTV silicone.

Every year I look at the lights and decide that they're definitely 'bright enough.' They're attention getting in daytime, and impossible to miss at night.

I did have to clean off the contacts last summer on one side - had an odd dim glow with parking lamps on instead of normal lamp function. I think the very low current going through the LEDs makes contact quality that much more important. A few seconds of scraping with my pocket knife to brighten up the brass and a little gentle bending and everything was proper again.

I swapped out the side marker bulbs with LEDs as well. All LED lights mean that the stock lighting module on the TV doesn't even know the trailer is back there.

My one remaining lighting plan for the trailer is to put a third brake light above the spare tire on the belly band. An and gate will be required to get the proper behavior, but it's not rocket science.
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Old 04-06-2017, 04:30 PM   #21
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My 2010 Trillium came with sealed Bargman LED tail lights. They are quite bright and easy to see. While LEDS should last a very long time, the support electronics may not. Not long after the warranty ran out, one of the four failed. They use good glue. No way to repair. Replacement cost $40.

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Old 04-06-2017, 05:16 PM   #22
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Dielectric grease should be used on bulb sockets; flasher speed

There have been several references to the fact that LED lights draw less current than regular incandescent bulbs. This is very true. This is one of their benefits.

It was stated in one of the posts that the greater current requirement of incandescent bulbs would mitigate the effects of corrosion on a bulb socket. This, I propose is entirely untrue. The best way to prevent bulb socket corrosion, whether you use LED's or regular incandescent bulbs is to apply some dielectric grease to the bulb and socket before replacing whatever kind of bulb you use. Dielectric grease is readily available at any automotive parts store. You should also apply some to the plug/socket which connects your trailer to the tow vehicle. This too is to prevent corrosion by keeping moisture from the essential contacts.

There have also been comments on the flashing speed of turn signals if/when LED bulbs are used. I suggest that you can get a steady and predictable flasher speed by replacing the stock vehicle turn signal relay with a solid state version. Again, these are readily available at any auto parts outlet.
The stock turn signal relay in most vehicles is designed for the electrical load on the stock vehicle. For example, in many vehicles you may notice that when one (front or rear) of the turn signal bulb filaments burn out, the turn signals on that side will now flash at an abnormally quick rate.

The more robust solid state turn signal relays can '"flash" a much greater load, for example when you hook up your trailer to your tow vehicle.

It is true that LED lights "turn on" much faster than incandescent bulbs. They respond much more quickly when power is applied to them. They literally "snap" on compared to incandescent bulbs which take a noticeable amount of time for the filament to heat up and glow. This could be considered a plus, or simply a "feature", and hence not so critical.

In general all other things being equal, LED's are brighter and consume less electrical power. In lighting, the future is LED. There is no reason why you can't continue using regular incandescent bulbs. However, LED's are less likely to burn out, as they are advertised as having 100,000 hour lifetimes minimum.

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Old 04-06-2017, 06:06 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skinorth View Post
...

There have also been comments on the flashing speed of turn signals if/when LED bulbs are used. I suggest that you can get a steady and predictable flasher speed by replacing the stock vehicle turn signal relay with a solid state version. ...
Indeed, that is one way to deal with it.. anyone thinking of replacing running lights with LEDs should read this:
https://www.superbrightleds.com/blog...rflashing/275/
Or a similar explanation.

And if your vehicle uses CANBus, read this before swamping out bulbs willie-nilly:
https://www.superbrightleds.com/blog...led-bulbs/293/


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...
However, LED's are less likely to burn out, as they are advertised as having 100,000 hour lifetimes minimum.
Some perhaps but many wont last that long.. ever see a traffic signal with LED clusters and half of them "burnt out?" But LEDs tend to fade over time so at some point they might keep working but wont put out much light, so the lifetime figures are not that much help (even though they will almost always give off enough light much longer than incandescents).

What is the life of LEDs? | LED Lighting Systems | Lighting Answers | NLPIP
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Old 04-06-2017, 06:55 PM   #24
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Name: Kees
Trailer: Newmar
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CANBus used in trailers?

As pointed out by gordon2, LED bulbs are evolving with current "advances" in automotive technology. But I am not aware of any trailers using CANBus implementations. Therefore, I would think that you would be entirely safe if you replaced, for example, an incandescent 1157 or 3057 bulb with an LED equivalent.

Just determine what the bulb type/number is that is currently in use and replace it with the equivalent LED version.

It is important to check the part/type number of the incandescent bulb you wish to replace with an LED. Find yourself the equivalent LED bulb, and you should be good to go.

It is true that early LED implementations seemed to experience a higher level of failure than the "advertised" theoretical. I have noticed that as well. New vehicle lighting implementations seem all to be going to LED's. So it appears that the industry has faith in the technology. I suspect that at least part of the early failures are an example of "bleeding edge" issues.

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Old 04-06-2017, 07:48 PM   #25
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This is what i installed
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Old 04-06-2017, 08:19 PM   #26
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Michigan
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https://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Lig...47-84-610.html

https://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Lig...on/PM436B.html

etrailer has bargman lights i used. They will fit in your light space.
They are bright, look great and you dont have to worry about getting rearended.
I replaced the original lens with a solid red lens, which i stiil have. Tighted the reverse light with other socket. Installed led 1157 style bulbs.
It still wasnt as bright as i like.
Added license plate light, pop rivet ground wire to back of bracket for your ground.
Best $100 i've spent.
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Old 04-07-2017, 09:26 AM   #27
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Thanks for the info Mike.
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Old 03-06-2019, 02:05 PM   #28
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Trailer: 1989 Bigfoot 17'
Ontario
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Did you change the lamps Dave ? I installed the same ones Mike used on my 1989 BF17. Work excellent and fairly easy to change over.
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