DarkStar
Posts: 2066
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:06 am
Delivery Date: 25 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 568
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Contact: Website

Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 12:25 pm

Update 09/27/2011: OrientExpress has an excellent posting in this thread with the exact LED replacement model numbers. Definitely recommended reading!

Code: Select all

2011 Nissan LEAF Bulb Specifications
Location                 Type              Wattage

Headlamp (HI)            H9 (Halogen)      65 watts
Headlamp (LO)            LED
Front turn signal lamp   3457NAK (Amber)   21 watts
Parking lamp             W5W               5 watts
Front side marker lamp   W5W               5 watts
Front fog lamp           H11               55 watts
Side turn signal lamp    WY5W (Amber)      5 watts
Stop lamp/Tail lamp      LED
Rear turn signal lamp    WY21W (Amber)     21 watts
Back-up lamp             W16W              16 watts
Rear side marker lamp    LED
License plate lamp       W5W               5 watts
High-mounted stop lamp   LED

Map lamp                 Wedge             8 watts
Glove box lamp           Wedge             1.4 watts
Room lamp                Wedge             8 watts
Luggage room lamp        Wedge             8 watts

I'm curious if anyone is planning any LED replacements for the Nissan LEAF light bulbs? A lot of them appear to already be LEDs, which is awesome!

Personally, I'm probably going to start out by installing the "3rd Brake PULSAR" from GoMiniGo.com since they are legal in Oregon. I've seen similar things on other vehicles and it really grabs my attention when driving.
UPDATE: Well, strike that! Even though Oregon law doesn't prohibit the third brake lights from blinking, federal law trumps all! Specifically, section S5.5.10 of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 108. ("All stoplamps must be steady burning when in use. Steady means free from change or variation. This means that they must not modulate, flash, or vary in size, area, intensity or appearance.")

My second modification will probably be to replace the wedge lamps with LED replacements from Super Bright LEDs. I know one person that purchased from them and he was happy and the reviews seem to indicate that they take care of their customers if problems come up. I figure the wedge lights will be a good experiment to take a look at performance and compare them to the stock bulbs.

The lights on the exterior of the LEAF are going to be a time consuming process since the luminosity needs to match the incandescent bulbs at all angles... Depending on how the reflectors are designed, a direct replacement might not be possible (to stay street-legal).
Last edited by DarkStar on Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:44 am, edited 2 times in total.
Mikiko (2011 Nissan LEAF ETEC) Status:
Reserved: 04/20/10 | Ordered: 10/01/10 | EV Project Blink Installed: 03/22/11 | Delivered: 03/25/11 | VIN: 568

Oregon Electric Vehicle Association | Electric Auto Association

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TomT
Posts: 10565
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: Foothills of Granada Hills, CA
Contact: Website

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 12:43 pm

I'd spring for two of those myself! Perhaps a group buy might be arranged?


DarkStar wrote:Personally, I'm probably going to start out by installing the "3rd Brake PULSAR" from GoMiniGo.com since they are legal in Oregon. I've seen similar things on other vehicles and it really grabs my attention when driving.
59,991 miles/12 bars/289 Gids/68.54 AHr/101% SOH/101.64% Hx 7May15 w/ new Lizard (barely made the warranty).
71,770 miles/12 bars/256 Gids/59.04 AHr/88% SOH/87.92% Hx 3Mar16 at lease return.

Now driving a 2016 Volt Premier. Model 3 reserved.

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Skywagon
Posts: 429
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 5:56 pm
Delivery Date: 08 Jan 2011
Location: Chandler, AZ

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:11 pm

I have already changed all of the incandescents in my LEAF to LED. I purchased (or had them previously) from V-LEDs and I am happy with the quality. The only ones I would recommend skipping are the turn signal bulbs. I would go with a silver coated bulb if you are wanting to remove the orange bulb from the clear housings. Even though the flasher is electronic (controlled by the BCM) it senses the load resistance and will double the flasher rate if it drops below a certain threshold. I have found no way to bypass that besides adding a load resistor (such a waste) to put the system load back to normal with incandescent bulbs (I have not done that yet). The 4-way flashers do not rely/vary on that current load test so they flash at the normal rate no matter what.

To add to the OP's comment if you choose wisely you will actually end up with a brighter and even distribution to the stock light output bulb.

One word of caution, the rear taillights are a pain to remove to change the bulbs. If you pull on them incorrectly I could see where you could scratch/remove paint at the top side and/or damage the light housing. The 3 bolts are removed and you have to pull the housings to get the pins on the back side out of their rubber retainers.

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LakeLeaf
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Location: South Lake Tahoe, California

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 2:41 pm

Skywagon wrote: Even though the flasher is electronic (controlled by the BCM) it senses the load resistance and will double the flasher rate if it drops below a certain threshold. I have found no way to bypass that besides adding a load resistor (such a waste) to put the system load back to normal with incandescent bulbs (I have not done that yet).


I assume this triggering is the mechanism that is intended to inform you when you have a burned out turn indicator - blinking at twice the rate to get your attention? With the lowered load, it sounds like the system thinks the bulb is burned out?

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Skywagon
Posts: 429
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 5:56 pm
Delivery Date: 08 Jan 2011
Location: Chandler, AZ

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 4:10 pm

LakeLeaf wrote:
Skywagon wrote: Even though the flasher is electronic (controlled by the BCM) it senses the load resistance and will double the flasher rate if it drops below a certain threshold. I have found no way to bypass that besides adding a load resistor (such a waste) to put the system load back to normal with incandescent bulbs (I have not done that yet).


I assume this triggering is the mechanism that is intended to inform you when you have a burned out turn indicator - blinking at twice the rate to get your attention? With the lowered load, it sounds like the system thinks the bulb is burned out?


Exactly, that is their reasoning for it.

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EVDRIVER
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Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 4:12 pm

Why do you want to change these to LEDs? The locations that would benefit already have LEDs.

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Skywagon
Posts: 429
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 5:56 pm
Delivery Date: 08 Jan 2011
Location: Chandler, AZ

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 4:26 pm

EVDRIVER wrote:Why do you want to change these to LEDs? The locations that would benefit already have LEDs.


Well I, for one, did not like the front with incandescent and LED's on (headlights and parking lights). Also, I like to run the "fog" lights for added visibility (people seeing me) and they are 55w halogens; I would much rather run LED's all the time. From the front my car now looks like the ad/website car with it's lights on, all have the white (with a tint of blue) cast. Also, the license plate lights run with the parking lights and they were incandescent as well. Most of the bulbs I already had around from other projects in the past so I put them in. I also happen to like the white look of an LED rather than the yellow push of an incandescent, especially against a pearl white paint.

DarkStar
Posts: 2066
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:06 am
Delivery Date: 25 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 568
Location: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Contact: Website

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 4:41 pm

EVDRIVER wrote:Why do you want to change these to LEDs? The locations that would benefit already have LEDs.

Like Skywagon, I'm more interested for the looks too.

I don't really care for the yellow tint of the incandescent lights and on my previous Subaru Impreza, when the headlights burned out, I swapped them with "cool blue" (white with a very light blue tint) halogen lights and absolutely loved them!
Mikiko (2011 Nissan LEAF ETEC) Status:
Reserved: 04/20/10 | Ordered: 10/01/10 | EV Project Blink Installed: 03/22/11 | Delivered: 03/25/11 | VIN: 568

Oregon Electric Vehicle Association | Electric Auto Association

User avatar
TomT
Posts: 10565
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: Foothills of Granada Hills, CA
Contact: Website

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 5:03 pm

OK, I have to rant for just a moment. I dislike those who drive around with their fog lights on all the time. It is rude and often blinding. What is more, it is completely illegal in California. The California vehicle code states that you can not have more than two forward facing white lights when within 500' of oncoming traffic. I assume that most other states have similar codes. Fog lights were never designed to be used in conjunction with headlights as that completely defeats the principle of them. They are NOT driving lights. OK, rant off.

Skywagon wrote:Well I, for one, did not like the front with incandescent and LED's on (headlights and parking lights). Also, I like to run the "fog" lights for added visibility (people seeing me) and they are 55w halogens; I would much rather run LED's all the time.
59,991 miles/12 bars/289 Gids/68.54 AHr/101% SOH/101.64% Hx 7May15 w/ new Lizard (barely made the warranty).
71,770 miles/12 bars/256 Gids/59.04 AHr/88% SOH/87.92% Hx 3Mar16 at lease return.

Now driving a 2016 Volt Premier. Model 3 reserved.

Glenn
Posts: 281
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 6:32 pm
Delivery Date: 02 Jul 2011
Location: Oakland, CA

Re: Nissan LEAF Light Bulb Mods: LEDs Anyone?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 5:35 pm

mogur wrote:OK, I have to rant for just a moment. I dislike those who drive around with their fog lights on all the time. It is rude and often blinding. What is more, it is completely illegal in California. The California vehicle code states that you can not have more than two forward facing white lights when within 500' of oncoming traffic. I assume that most other states have similar codes. Fog lights were never designed to be used in conjunction with headlights as that completely defeats the principle of them. They are NOT driving lights. OK, rant off.

Skywagon wrote:Well I, for one, did not like the front with incandescent and LED's on (headlights and parking lights). Also, I like to run the "fog" lights for added visibility (people seeing me) and they are 55w halogens; I would much rather run LED's all the time.

Thanks for all those points, mogur! I've never understood folks who drive with headlights AND foglights; that's just not the way it works. Your cite of the CVC, and "blinding" comment about being the other driver just makes the point all the more valid.

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