Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

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FunkyRider83
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 am
Astra Model: K SRI VX 1.6T
Astra Colour: Silver
Location: Auckland/NZ

Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by FunkyRider83 » Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:29 am

Hi fellow Astra K owners, this is my first time posting here after lurking for 3 months. I have acquired a Holden Astra K RS hatchback with 1.6T and equivalent SRI VX trim in New Zealand on January 2019. I have immediately noticed that although the car has beautiful LED DRL and integrated turn signal at front, the rear turn signals are traditional bulbs and doesn't flash in sync with the front ones, which is a bit irritating.

I have thus started the quest of converting the rear turn signals to LED to match the front. After reading many forum posts and foraging on eBay, Aliexpress for a couple of weeks, I have finally put together a solution to this conversion and successfully put it into my car today. I want to share this knowledge with all the Astra K lovers here.

Let's look at the results first: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npVsCeV ... e=youtu.be

Firstly, this mod is completely reversible. There is no drilling, cutting and soldering of anything comes with the car. It can be reverted in minute's notice.

Secondly, the heat output by the load resistor is mild. Although it starts to get warm after a couple of minutes continuous use of the indicators, it is not in contact with anything plastic and the closest reflector surface stays completely cold.

If you are comfortable performing very simple soldering and can use double sided tape. Please go head and read it.

1. Getting the bulbs:
I have bought the 2x bulbs from here: https://www.ebay.com/itm/2PCS-x-Amber-T ... 3140079907
The shape provides 360 degrees illumination. It has integrated rectifier so polarity doesn't matter. It also has proper constant current LED driving circuit so the LED elements doesn't get degraded with use.

1_led_bulbs.jpg

2. Take the rear light assembly out and apart.
If you don't know how, search on the forum or google. Be careful not to break the plastic clamps. There are 3 very tight clamps and just pry them open by hand. Don't use a screw driver since it exerts to much force and can damage them.
On the assembly there is P21W brake light and W16W turn signal light. We will remove them both for ease of handling.

2_light_assembly.jpg

3. Strengthen the LED module
Mix some 2 part glue and run them along all the edges and seams of the LED module and wait for them to set for at least 30min. This makes sure the light assembly is structurally strong and doesn't get damaged by vibration.

3_led_treatment.jpg

4. Get the resistors:
I have bought the 2x resistors from here:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/0-01-5k-Ohm-Wa ... 3603453219
Make sure to select 15R as Ohm and 25W as Power. I have calculated this value to be fairly conservative. The LED themselves consumes 4W of power by measurement. The resistor only needs to dissipate 12W of power for the Canbus bulb out detecting circuit to pass.

4_led_resistor.jpg

5. Treat the LED contact points
The LED's contact points are a bit thin, so the LED will mount loosely and might dislodge themselves by driving vibrations. We want a very secure mod, so put a layer of solder on the contact pins. A very thin layer is enough (0.3mm) for a very firm mount.

5_contact_solder.jpg

6. Prepare resistor contact pins
Find 4x coated copper wires of 0.8mm thick and 20 - 25mm long. The best ones can be found from electronic component legs, like resistors, capacitors. Make a slight bent on one end as in the picture below.

6_copper_wire.jpg

7. Solder wires to resistor
Solder wires to both ends of the resistor. Use ample of solder and make sure to heat them properly. Cold solder points can crack when exposed to repeated mechanical stress, like driving. If you don't know how to solder, watch some youtube tutorials and practice before you do this on the actual car mod.

7_solder_wires.jpg

8. Get the mounting tape
I use 3M Scotch outdoor double sided mounting tape. You can use something similar. The stronger the glue the better.

8_3m_tape1.jpg

9. Attach the mounting tape to resistors
Make sure the tape covers the entire bottom side to prevent the metal casing of the resistor to make contact with light power wires and short them.

9_3m_tape2.jpg

10. Bend the wires to shape
Make 90 degress bend on the wires and the length of mounting tape. When you sit the resistor on the table, the bent part sits flat with the table.

10_wire_fold.jpg

To be continued in next post, as 10 images are the maximum allowed.


FunkyRider83
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 am
Astra Model: K SRI VX 1.6T
Astra Colour: Silver
Location: Auckland/NZ

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by FunkyRider83 » Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:29 am

11. Test mounting of the resistor
Without removing the tape film, mount the resistor with both pins going underneath the power rails to the indicator, as shown in the picture.

11_trial_mount.jpg

12. Test mounting of the assembly
Put the light assembly back to the light housing, without pushing it all the way in. Inspect the gap between the resistor and the internal reflector inside the light housing. There should be a 2-3mm gap between them.

12_trial_install.jpg

13. Mount the resistor
Remove the mounting tape film, Put the resistor back to as in Step 11. Make sure wires go underneath the power rails. Firmly press the resistor to the power rails for 1 minute to make the tape set.
Slightly pry open the bracket around the turn indicator bulb, since they get in the way of LED module and shorts out a capacitor. Make sure the bracket doesn't touch the SMT capacitor on the LED. Leave at least 1mm gap to be safe.

13_mount.jpg

14. Install LED
Push the LED module firmly to the bracket and it will set with both sides of the PCB base touching the power rails. That is okay since the PCB is non conductive. However make sure the SMT elements don't touch any of the power rails.
Then fold the excessive wires from the resistor back on top of the power rails and clamp them tight.

14_mount_led.jpg

15. Resistance test
Use a multimeter to test resistance between 2 power rails going to the turn indicator. It should read around 13 Ohm. If it reads large number, like 100 Ohm or more, it means the resistor contacts is bad. Anything smaller than 12 Ohm indicates a short somewhere.

15_test_resistance.jpg

16. Put everything back
Mount the light assembly back to the light housing. Check the gap between the resistor and the internal reflector surface again to make sure there is no contact.

16_final_mount.jpg

17. Inspect from outside
Hold the light housing and look at the LED module through the cover. It should sit straight and there is no noise if you shake the entire assembly.

17_inspect.jpg

Do the same thing to the other side of the light and enjoy your all LED turn indicators! The color is very nice amber, more accurate that the old incandescent bulbs and about 1.5x as bright. The instant ON/OFF effect matches the front indicators well and greatly improves the appearance of the lighting system.


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Shaky
Posts: 72
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Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by Shaky » Wed Apr 03, 2019 7:26 am

Nice tut. Funky ;)
I am Homer of Borg. Resistance is..............Hmmmm Doughnuts.
AGR Seats, Keyless Ignition, Power Tailgate, Parking Sensors. Detachable Towbar, Corsa E Headlight Switch.


frank appleton
Posts: 45
Joined: Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:19 pm
Astra Model: Astra K Elite Nav S/S_2017
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Location: Surrey(SW London)

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by frank appleton » Wed Apr 03, 2019 9:10 am

One of the best tutorials i have ever seen. Well done.


FunkyRider83
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 am
Astra Model: K SRI VX 1.6T
Astra Colour: Silver
Location: Auckland/NZ

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by FunkyRider83 » Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:51 am

Bonus: Use these WY5W equivalent Amber LEDs to replace the side repeater bulbs. They are insanely bright and gives a bit reddish orange flash. They are also designed using constant current driver so the bulb should be fairly long life.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-x-Amber-Canb ... 3168632633

18_side_repeater.jpg



giannis20vt
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:43 am

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by giannis20vt » Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:11 pm

FunkyRider83 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:51 am
Bonus: Use these WY5W equivalent Amber LEDs to replace the side repeater bulbs. They are insanely bright and gives a bit reddish orange flash. They are also designed using constant current driver so the bulb should be fairly long life.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-x-Amber-Canb ... 3168632633
18_side_repeater.jpg

Very nice DIY, thank you my friend. I am wondering is it possible, the bulb that have 8 LEDs 3030smd, to be brighter than the first one that have 24 3030smd LEDs ?


FunkyRider83
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 am
Astra Model: K SRI VX 1.6T
Astra Colour: Silver
Location: Auckland/NZ

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by FunkyRider83 » Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:43 am

giannis20vt wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:11 pm
FunkyRider83 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:51 am
Bonus: Use these WY5W equivalent Amber LEDs to replace the side repeater bulbs. They are insanely bright and gives a bit reddish orange flash. They are also designed using constant current driver so the bulb should be fairly long life.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-x-Amber-Canb ... 3168632633

18_side_repeater.jpg

Very nice DIY, thank you my friend. I am wondering is it possible, the bulb that have 8 LEDs 3030smd, to be brighter than the first one that have 24 3030smd LEDs ?
They have different mount, The 24 SMD one has T15 (W16W) mounting and the 8 SMD one has T10 (W5W) mounting.

The 8 SMD one is used on the [side repeaters] on the front fenders. Push the front fender repeater light module toward the front of the car and lift the back side and it will come off. Unscrew the bulb mount from the light cover and you can pull out the W5W bulb and replace it with the 8 SMD led.

The 24 SMD LED is brighter, they are just used in different places.


giannis20vt
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:43 am

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by giannis20vt » Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:25 am

FunkyRider83 wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:43 am
giannis20vt wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:11 pm
FunkyRider83 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:51 am
Bonus: Use these WY5W equivalent Amber LEDs to replace the side repeater bulbs. They are insanely bright and gives a bit reddish orange flash. They are also designed using constant current driver so the bulb should be fairly long life.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-x-Amber-Canb ... 3168632633

18_side_repeater.jpg

Very nice DIY, thank you my friend. I am wondering is it possible, the bulb that have 8 LEDs 3030smd, to be brighter than the first one that have 24 3030smd LEDs ?
They have different mount, The 24 SMD one has T15 (W16W) mounting and the 8 SMD one has T10 (W5W) mounting.

The 8 SMD one is used on the [side repeaters] on the front fenders. Push the front fender repeater light module toward the front of the car and lift the back side and it will come off. Unscrew the bulb mount from the light cover and you can pull out the W5W bulb and replace it with the 8 SMD led.

The 24 SMD LED is brighter, they are just used in different places.
Thank you my friend, i understood, it's clear now, i didn't notice that.
Does the side repeaters, want resistors too ?


FunkyRider83
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 am
Astra Model: K SRI VX 1.6T
Astra Colour: Silver
Location: Auckland/NZ

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by FunkyRider83 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:00 am

giannis20vt wrote:
Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:25 am
FunkyRider83 wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:43 am
giannis20vt wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:11 pm



Very nice DIY, thank you my friend. I am wondering is it possible, the bulb that have 8 LEDs 3030smd, to be brighter than the first one that have 24 3030smd LEDs ?
They have different mount, The 24 SMD one has T15 (W16W) mounting and the 8 SMD one has T10 (W5W) mounting.

The 8 SMD one is used on the [side repeaters] on the front fenders. Push the front fender repeater light module toward the front of the car and lift the back side and it will come off. Unscrew the bulb mount from the light cover and you can pull out the W5W bulb and replace it with the 8 SMD led.

The 24 SMD LED is brighter, they are just used in different places.
Thank you my friend, i understood, it's clear now, i didn't notice that.
Does the side repeaters, want resistors too ?

The side repeaters don't need resistor, they are not in the bulb out detection circuit.


giannis20vt
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:43 am

Re: Astra K rear turn indicator LED modification (no error)

Post by giannis20vt » Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:38 pm

Thank you. Sorry for my poor English language.


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