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 FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)

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turtleman
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Thu May 08, 2008 11:29 pm

'96reese wrote:
has anyone tried to replace the light behind the instrument panel? i wanna change mine to blue

It's not simple to do at all. Getting the the bulbs and changing the color of the bulb its self is no problem but using a blue bulb instead of the stock bulb won't make the gauges blue, they will just become a lot darker in about the same color. The natural tint of the gauge faces is a bluish to correct the natural bulb color to the factory green appearance so It's not impossible to make it blue. What you would pretty much have to do is illuminate the whole back of the cluster with some kind of custom set up of a fairly bright light sorce that's bright white (not incondescent) or blue but white will work better. I've experimented a bit with white LED ropes and with single LEDs against the factory light diffusers. I couldn't figure out a good way to physically get enough light out of all areas equally. It would definitelly take some work and creativity to do.
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'96reese
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Fri May 09, 2008 9:39 pm

okay............ imma have to try that. even though sum stuff will still be the ugly azz green. i agree with the one guy.....i luv the way the jetta gauges look.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Sat May 10, 2008 12:08 am

Just to chime in here...

I recently replaced the bulbs in my Pontiac Montana's steering wheel and learned a couple of things about GM dash lights.

First, LED's don't dim. If you use them, be prepaired to have them at a constant brightness and understand they have positive and negative leads.

Second, if you enjoy a challenge and have the skill to remove the part and solder small parts, you can get minature 12 Volt bulbs at Radio Shack and replace the tiny burned out bulbs in the dash, door and steering wheel. Here's the link:

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2104023&cp=&sr=1&origkw=miniature+bulb&kw=miniature+bulb&parentPage=search

I'd be glad to help as I have some experience in soldering small parts.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Sat May 10, 2008 12:19 am

Oh... forgot something.

The bulbs in the Montana have a red/orange little cover over them so they show through as orange.

Also, the Montana's radio's digital clock/frequency display went dark about a year ago and I thought I'd have to replace the display. I found out that was actually backlit by a bulb but couldn't find it at any parts outlet. What I did find was a similar looking bulb with a diffeternt base and was able to nip the wires and resolder that bulb into the old bulb base.
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PostSubject: Changing the interior light colors   Sun May 25, 2008 10:31 pm

For one, I wanted to change the lights on the floor. Does anyone know what the bulb designation is for those? I'm thinking of maybe a greenish color to go with the rest of the interior lights but I also thought about maybe a blue. I'd also like to replace the side lights that are up high on each side for the rear passengers to turn on. Does anyone know how to take those apart?
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palermocorey90
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 8:37 am

i know the bulb to light up the floor is a 194
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Shintsu
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 4:58 pm

Okay, a better question - where the hell can I buy these at? Autozone carries nothing but replacements, Radio shack has shit and Pep boys don't even act like they carry ANY bulbs on their website at all.
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Buapo
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 7:24 pm

You can get colored bulbs online, but they can be hard to find. I bought yellow fog lights for my Regal online... but then again, those are fogs. More in demand.

Just start with a Google search, that's what I'd do. Make sure to let everyone here know what your findings were, because there might be others interested in a similar appearance mod (myself included).
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palermocorey90
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 8:03 pm

pepboys has them , cuz thats were i got all my rice parts fo my stratus coupe YO
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 9:43 pm

Well, I found some green bulbs that worked at Lowes ironically. The same kind of bulbs used in landscaping lights works under the dash. I haven't looked at it at night but it looks more christmas green than neon/borg green which is what I was trying to go for. I am thinking LEDs are going to have the effect I'm looking for. I found several sites online that supply LED replacements for the interior bulbs that are 1 W vs the 5 W the bulbs draw. They claim to be brighter and that a car has around 10 inside and if you replace it with all of them it will lessen the load on the alternator (And lower motor strain, increase HP, yada yada).

Not sure about all that, but I do know LEDs almost never burn out but I'm not sure about the dome light. A lot of the LED ones aren't bright enough to shine through the plastic I want my whole interior to be that borg green color, similar to how a BMW 740iL has an all red interior.

Here's a vid showing the 740iL's interior, particularly at 1:20-1:24 is the reddish cast they always have when you're driving down the road.
http://youtube.com/watch?v=TQNOhdH-fUQ
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Mon May 26, 2008 10:43 pm

Alright, just took some pics of it. Didn't look as bad as I thought it might. Please excuse the shaky photography, I didn't want the flash to wash out the green and I don't have a tripod or anything else to hold the camera steady. The lighting is also not as orangish as my camera makes it look.






What do you all think? Should I stick with these and make the rest of the car (dome lights and back passenger lighting) green or should I switch these to a whitish blue (white with a hint of blue hue in it) and do the same to the rest of the car or leave these green and do the rest of the car in that whitish blue? Do you think I'd still be able to see anything if my dome lights were green instead of white/clear?

This is a short clip of my door lighting. My dad found these bulbs at Autozone a year or so ago and has had them in here since. Quite a neat little touch I think.

Click here to watch "Changing-door-lights"
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Tue May 27, 2008 2:53 am

I'd honestly like to upgrade to the LEDs you were talking about.

As far as your green look goes, it does look a LITTLE ricer. But not a bad effect if you follow suit in other areas of the car. Might look a little weird with JUST those like that.
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Shintsu
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Tue May 27, 2008 6:28 am

Aww, ricer? What you talkin' bout, I haven't even got my NOS sticker or my fartcan on yet! Once I got all that, I was thinkin' this for a spoiler:
Spoiler:
 
Adds at least 50 hp lol

I was starting to think about it more though and I would like the blueish look I suppose. The problem is those LEDs are only online and from websites I've never heard of (Who doesn't trust LEDsrus.com?). Not only that, they're not really that cheap. Most of the ones I found were like $10 a pair. I might be able to actually find a blue LED around here somewhere as most auto places carried the blue but not the green that I was looking for.

EDIT: Okay, I just found this and I have to post it. Why the hell did they make a bodykit for the Lucerne? Ricers can't afford a car like the Lucerne!
Spoiler:
 
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T Riley
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Tue May 27, 2008 8:37 am

The body kit for the lucerne is for the ELDER ricer crowd........ You know that "BUICK" is GM's most luxiourious Make in China
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turtleman
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Wed Jul 23, 2008 2:14 am

Today I went ahead and re-replaced the interior door handle lights with something much lower profile and simpler. If I hadn't been inspired, first, with the ease and convenience of lights I already had laying around, I would have done this the first time.

What finally made me do it now was probably the 5th person who was new to riding in my car looking at the lights in the riv going "OOOOOO WOW WHAT'S THIIIIIIISSSSSSSSS???!!!???" as they grab, pull, and yank at the LED housing that is trying to remain adheased to my passenger handle while stupified hands are playing with it.

They looked tacky anyway and I'm trying to avoid that.





That's what I have now. It's no more than a naked automotive LED stuck in the slit where the light was to shine through from the stock incondescent bulb.

At least it just looks like a little clear turd instead of a big green prolapsed rocket coming out of my handles crack. You can't even see this unless you look for it. I'm happy.



night shot



old one I just replaced

Like my first LED replacement, these are still a little brighter than I want all the time and the diffusion is not perfect but I'll take that over junk yard hopping for little stupid lights and hoping they even work before I get them in my car. Been there - done that.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Fri Aug 22, 2008 2:20 pm

WWW.normanlamps.com 18009928020 these guys have every kind of bulb imagineable, and DIRT CHEAP LED's if anyone is interested, but can any one give me a write up on how to convert Reg bulbs to LED? I would Love to replace every bulb in my car with an LED.
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PostSubject: Radio/AC Lights   Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:20 pm

I've been looking at this discussion, but no one seems to have mentioned my problem (although I also have the burned out door lights). Over the years, the lights on the buttons for the radio and the climate control system have slowly burned out one by one, until very few are left. Any idea how to fix? I have a feeling it's not easy or cheap. When I asked the Buick dealer one time, they laughed and said they wouldn't even give me a price for that because it would be too expensive. Thought it was worth a try here though. I've had the car so long that I know most of the buttons by touch, since they're now invisible at night.
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PostSubject: Twilight Sentinel   Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:24 pm

One more thing--lately on my car, the interior displays (radio dial, etc) often stay on night mode (dimmed) even in bright sunlight. For some reason the light sensor isn't working right. When they're in night mode in daylight, they're hard to see. This only happens intermittently, though. Is the sensor for this on the rear-view mirror? (1997 model).
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Fri Sep 26, 2008 12:54 pm

Hey PAT906 - if you search on this forum for 'climate control' you will find the write up for replacing the lights, with part numbers and everything.

Albertj
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Tue Sep 30, 2008 11:24 pm

Thanks -- I'll look.
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PostSubject: Change the light color in dash   Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:52 pm

Hi I'm new to the forum group so thanks for all the help you could give. 97 riv supercharged model and i'm wondering how to change the lights in the dash to a red color. I just uprgraded a cd player in there so i've had the dash out of it before but I don't have much knowledge on easy way to do this.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:16 am

I don't know about all the dash lights but in the climate control you could change the color by removing (desoldering) the lights that are in and replacing them with Radio Shack 12v "grain of wheat" bulbs - their stock number 272-1092 - then going to a craft store and getting a paint pen for staining glass that's the color you want.

I posted a write up on replacing the climate control lights some months ago - just follow those instructions but use a red stain pen instead of the turquoise one I specified. The pen brand is "Vitrea 160" and the manufacturer is "Pebeo." I don't know what color you watn but remember that the 'color' of the incandescent lighting (kinda yellowish) affects the color you'll end up with. A "red" paint pen will probably give you an orange-y result. i you want a true red you will have to use a slightly bluish hue to compensate for the incandescent lighting. And I mean slightly. One way to do this might be to go to a junkyard adn get a fragment of a tail light, then go to the craft store and see which paint pen is the same color. The larger ones (like Michaels) should have a display piece you can hold up to the light and check, or one of the crafty sales people may know which red works.

As for the other lights, I do not know which of them have color filters as part of the gauge versus which ones use either colored bulbs or silicone socks over the bulbs to get color.

Albertj


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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:43 pm

Another option is to go with LED's. Standard Radio Shack Red 10mm LED's with a 470ohm resistor soldered in series will replace a 12v bulb. If you need the the light to spread out and not be in a confined beam, use 120 grit sandpaper on the sides and top of the LED.... I used to have a Ford Ranger, converted to all amber LED lighting, looked great. (Even changed out the bulbs in the steering wheel stereo controls, looked great, no heat and 10,000 hr life on the LED's)
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:40 am

Titan4 wrote:
Those tiny lamps are still available. I have a '95 Riviera and according to the Riviera exploded parts diagram the part number for the door handle with the blue lens is 12536289 and it includes the entire assembly (lamp, wiring harness, and connector). They are still available through the dealer (I just ordered two of them for $16.85 each) and it looks like you can also find them at www.newgmparts.com for $14.36 each.

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Just an update on this. I tried to order part 12536289 from gm parts direct. They took the order initially, but canceled it the next day. The above part # has been discontinued by GM.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Interior Lighting Questions (Dash/Guage Color)   Fri Oct 02, 2009 3:41 pm

About the door actuator well and door handle lights - if you disassemble them carefuly you can install a Grain of Wheat bulb in them and put the blue housing back on.

About the radio lights - I forgot to mention that someone posted a writeup for replacing the radio lights some time ago.

Albertj
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