Trillium Original tail lights/marker lights to LED - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-19-2016, 06:04 PM   #1
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Name: Cassie
Trailer: 1979 Trillium
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Trillium Original tail lights/marker lights to LED

I am a new trailer owner and I am enjoying the learning experience... I have lots to learn.

I have heard a couple opinions on this and I need some clarification as to what my plan of attack should be.

My trillium has incandescent tail lights and marker lights. I would like to switch them to LEDs. Is this as simple as just putting a LED fixture in the place of the old incandescent fixture? We tried to hook up new LED marker lights and they did not work... a friend said we needed to rewire the entire trailer... <_< Not the simple facelift and 20 minute trip to Princess Auto I was hoping for.

I appreciate any and all input. This is a great learning experience, I am loving it.

Thank you in advance,
Cassie
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Old 07-19-2016, 06:33 PM   #2
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You shouldn't have to rewire the entire trailer. There are LEDs that have the same bases as the incandescent bulbs you want to replace. You do have to be careful to wire LEDs with the correct polarity. If your trailer was wired correctly to start with, the replacement LEDs for the tail lights-brake/signal lights should work fine. If you currently don't have marker lights, they should be wired into same circuit as the tail lights. Just make sure the dark wire, usually black, goes to the hot wire and the white wire to ground. If you are replacing marker lights, wire them the same way the current ones are, matching the wire colors.
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Old 07-19-2016, 07:19 PM   #3
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Rewire the trailer?
Wires don't know if they power an LED or incandescent or whatever. They just carry the current, and as you probably know LEDs use less current so your electrical system will not be as loaded as with the standard bulbs.
You do have to watch for polarity with LEDs.

I actually have all the LED lights required to replace all the exterior bulbs on my Trillium, but I haven't installed one yet due to lack of time.

Two years ago I replaced all the exterior bulbs on my popup camper with LEDs. The marker lights were simply a matter of removing the old bulb and insert the LED replacement. For the stop/turns signals, instead of using 1157-type LED, I went with the square SMD type LED and I spliced the wires (not really plug'nplay here, so a little more work). The reason I went this way is the 1157 bulbs were mounted sideways in the fixtures and I wasn't able to find a suitable LED light with a 90deg angle and a 1157 base.
The stops have 48 red 5050 SMD LEDs (12 for the turn signals) and are VERY bright, absolutely no comparison with the original 1157.
I plan to do the exact same mod on my Trillium, and I can't see why it wouldn't work.

I bought my LEDs online (Amazon and DX), some people will stay away from buying LEDs at DX and feel they get a much better product when they pay 3 times the price at a certain domestic reseller. I never had an issue with DX LEDs. It's your wallet...
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Old 07-19-2016, 07:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cassie Trill View Post
My trillium has incandescent tail lights and marker lights. I would like to switch them to LEDs. Is this as simple as just putting a LED fixture in the place of the old incandescent fixture? We tried to hook up new LED marker lights and they did not work... a friend said we needed to rewire the entire trailer... <_< Not the simple facelift and 20 minute trip to Princess Auto I was hoping for.
Thank you in advance,
Cassie

I can see the tail light change for better "stop" light brightness as some of the stock ones were pretty bad from the start. But I wouldn't change out the marker lights unless there is a problem with the lenses or bases from UV like I had to do. All the outside running lights are powered off the tug. No battery power savings like you get from an inside LED change out.
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:18 PM   #5
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Were the marker lights you tried a one wire unit or a two wire?
If they are a one wire system you need to run a ground wire to the mounting screw that acts as the ground. These lights were meant for use on a metal vehicle and ground themselves to the sheet metal. You have to run the white ground wire to the mounting screw that has a small tab attached. I have a spare one somewhere, I'll try to take a pic
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Old 07-19-2016, 08:40 PM   #6
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Heres a good link about putting led's inside the original tail lights. We did this and it worked great. There are other threads to if you use the google search function. Good luck.
LED tail lights for Trilliums on sale in June 2012
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Old 07-19-2016, 10:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Borrego Dave View Post
I can see the tail light change for better "stop" light brightness as some of the stock ones were pretty bad from the start. But I wouldn't change out the marker lights unless there is a problem with the lenses or bases from UV like I had to do. All the outside running lights are powered off the tug. No battery power savings like you get from an inside LED change out.
Good point Dave.
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Old 07-20-2016, 02:42 PM   #8
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I replaced all exterior lights with LED, mostly because they were old, and failing a lot. There was no re-wiring.

I used ones like these from Princess Auto, on sale for 9.99.

I also used something like this, but they don't have them anymore, so some others there may work just as well. I actually busted the lens cover off and mounted inside the factory tail light assembly. Other than being brighter that the original, you wouldn't be able to tell I changed to LED.
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Old 07-20-2016, 03:01 PM   #9
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Name: Cassie
Trailer: 1979 Trillium
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Thank you so much for the feedback, the task sounds much less daunting now! It's good to know that by the end of the weekend I may have the new LEDs up and running.

Unfortunately we do not have the original tail lights, but thanks for pointing me in the direction of making older housings work with new LEDs. When we bought our Trillium she was (and still is) sporting some less than attractive boat trailer lights!

Thank you again everyone!!
You have been a huge help.
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Old 07-20-2016, 03:40 PM   #10
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If you want to get new 'old' style Trillium tail light lenses you can at the link below
http://www.fibreglass-rv.ca/catalog.html
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Old 07-20-2016, 05:28 PM   #11
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The lights I used were from princess auto the mounting screw acts as the ground wire on the outside of the trailer. Only the black wire gets attached to the light
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Old 07-20-2016, 05:36 PM   #12
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The ground wire was attached to the mounting screw on the inside of the trailer (I used bigger screws than those supplied with the light)
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Old 07-20-2016, 05:48 PM   #13
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My originals had no lenses and the metal contacts were corroded so badly that I couldn't reuse them, if I had it to do over again I would have found new ones that were similar in size to the originals so as to have less holes to fill, but I like the look of the new ones I have. You can retrofit the originals with led bulbs if yours are in good condition.
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Old 07-23-2016, 09:04 AM   #14
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Name: Daniel
Trailer: Trillium
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Hi Cassie, here is my mod. I removed the old bulb socket and put a new led kit inside it. This kit include wire, 4 wires plug and roughly use to wire an entire trailer. it is water resistant and have light going down on both side to light the license plate. It is disponible in autocrats or less expensive in eBay and cie. It keept the oem good looking. Hope it help you.
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