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Green interior LEDS to White Conversion Thread

1417 Views 11 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  [email protected]
I am changing all interior leds from the stock ugly green to white. I don't have a problem with the green but it's annoying the the gauge cluster is white, and the rest of the car doesn't match... If the gauge cluster was green I could accept all of

Anyways, I started with the HVAC since that's the easiest to change. I bought 40 different white SMD leds to test brightness and color/hue. I ended up going with one that matches pretty much identically to the modern Lexus line up of interior white lighting. It's not pure white, more of a toned downed yellowish/whitish white if that makes any sense. Pure 5k white is too harsh for interior lighting in my opinion, to the same point too bright is super distracting and blindng. Pictures make it seems like it's pure white, but it's not. My phone has no way of capturing what it looks like.

Anyways, here is the start to the process. I'll be doing the rest of the center console items once my leds come in this week. I'll tackle the navi unit shortly. I have to open it up and verify which leds it takes. Then I'll do the steering wheel controls, mirror/left side of steering column area. Then ending with the window control switches, which arguably is the easiest of them all since I believe they just take 3mm leds.

New White:
Hood Bumper Gas Electronic device Office equipment

With overhead lights on:
Electronic instrument Gadget Audio equipment Computer hardware Office equipment

Middle LEDS make it seems brighter due to white lcd panel/plastic right above them. They aren't' this bright.
Musical instrument accessory Electricity Entertainment Electronic instrument Gas

Overhead lighting on:
Passive circuit component Circuit component Electronic instrument Hardware programmer Electronic engineering

Desoldered LEDS showing the pads:
Circuit component Yellow Electronic engineering Electronic component Hardware programmer

5050 SMD leds soldered in place. I am getting another test unit so I can play around with more things to utilize another style led.
Passive circuit component Circuit component Hardware programmer Electronic component Electronic engineering

Stock green... time to go!
Circuit component Passive circuit component Hardware programmer Audio equipment Electrical wiring

My silly notes:
Handwriting Font Wood Music Writing

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I've actually had quite a few people now on FB message me saying the same thing. I wouldn't mind doing it for people. I'm actually looking to source both the nav/non nav units because they are slightly different. Nav unit don't have the clock option buttons on the unit, where as the non nav have 3 extra switches.

I would imagine it would take me about one day to swap the LEDS and get it back in the mail to people so they wouldn't be without it for long. Or, if I can get source a couple units, people can buy the board and then once you get it, ship me yours and a core would be refunded, then we just keep that going for people and it would be a simple swap...etc.

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They should 100% dim. I will be able to tell you tomorrow when I plug it back into the car. I've got another couple HVAC coming my way as I plan on doing 2 different color white leds as I want to experiment with something and see which one looks the best.
My goal is to have them match the stereo white leds that I use. But I won't know until I do the stereo. I will note that my wife's NX interior has slightly different shades of white from the stereo, steering wheel buttons, and rest of the white lighting... so I might be going past the OCD point yet again trying to get everything to match 100%. This happens a lot though... hence the reason I did 18 revisions of my phone

You are correct, the lcd screen isn't replaceable since it's part of the trim piece. The good thing is that entire hvac trim piece/board is removable with i believe 8-10 screws on the back. So you just pop out the board and put it in a new hvac panel and you'd be good to go. I will see if I can find a good condition non nav unit. I could care less if it's scratched so we might be able to do a swap, I just want to make sure I always have a hvac board so if I'm doing this for people they can swap it in and send another one back to me so there would be minimal down time.

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Yep, everything, including all buttons, switches...etc.
I already changed out the navi buttons, those were easy once I dissembled the track pad. The drive mode switch will get done here later tonight, and the park/shifter lights will easily be done as well.

100% agree, I did NOT want anything blinding. I did that mistake once with the steering wheel buttons on the Solara that I changed and although it looked wonderful with the pure white. it was entirely too bright at night. Very distracting having the buttons right there on the steering wheel shining back at you. I had to dim them down and use led bulb covers to mute them to an acceptable level. I have astigmatism in both my eyes so any super bright lights at night is a problem. Given what happened above, I'm now super conscious of not repeating that or having to deal with the brightness and being blinded. I assure you that the LEDS that I choose aren't going to be like that.

That's why I bought 40 different SMD leds in the 1206 size. All varying brightness/color/hues of white. I narrowed it down to 2. My initial plan was to use LED from existing Lexus models. What you see above is from a Lexus NX climate control panel that I used in the CT's panel. This however gets expensive to buy a $60-$140 item only to scavenge the leds from it... So, the other leds that I bought and labeled on my little cheat sheet I've narrowed it down to 2 of them that would best be suited for brightness and color.

The 1st set which I think I labeled as "W" on my sheet are almost a 100% match to the Lexus NX leds which is exactly what I'm going for. They are NOT pure 100% cold white. They are more of a off white-ish color. Not yellow, but not pure white. They are pretty much what is in every Lexus model to date that uses white leds for interior lighting. It's very easy to look at them at night and not have any strain what-so ever. When I get my second HVAC panel, I will be using the "W" labeled LEDS in that and comparing it. PLUS using the 1206 leds in the HVAC I can easily use them in all other panels which will then guarantee a match of color. Whereas when you start getting into different shape/szies of LEDS it's going to be much harder to match color/brightness/hue given the different specs...I have another HVAC panel coming for this color of LED to compare.

The 2nd 1206 led marked as "J" on my cheat sheet has already been ordered and I should get it next week. They are slightly whiter in color. Not drastic but enough to match a closer white color to the HVAC display/gauge cluster. The weird part of this one is that it's actually a lower rated MCD (brightness) but yet is slightly brighter when they are on. Again, nothing blinding at all. So really, it's come down to the two choices. I'm leaning towards the second "J" led ONLY because I feel like when I do the little tiny 0806 stereo and steering wheel LEDS, it's going to be a better match for the color.
(Although in my wife's NX and now looking at my RCF, the steering wheel/stereo, and HVAC leds are all just slightly different. They aren't the exact same color tone. CLOSE, but really looking at them they are not the same), so it might not be realistic to for me to try and get everything to match 100% or else I'd be chasing leds a long time... I have yet another HVAC panel for this LED to compare between my first one with the NX leds, and the above panel that will have the "W" leds..

I will note that the ozium leds that people use have a brightness of like 1200+ MCD which seems really bright to me. The two I'm using are around 240mcd and 400mcd..

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This is pretty cool, how are the LED’s connected?
You have to solder the LEDs to the PCB board.

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