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Will swapping front Parking Light incadescent bulb for LED throw a canbus error?

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by wiztecy, Aug 20, 2013.

  1. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    Curious if the front incandescent bulb can be swapped out for an LED one? Is the parking light bulb tied to the canbus or only the front headlights and/or tail lights?

    Has anyone done this mod with success and no error codes?
     
  2. dhrivnak

    dhrivnak Active Member

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    I swapped out my back-up lights and license plate light with LED's and had no issues with my 1.5.
     
  3. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    I thought the backup lights are already LEDs.

    Did you swap out the small front parking lights?
     
  4. dhrivnak

    dhrivnak Active Member

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    No I did not try front parking lights and I also did the trunk light as it got hot enough to burn and now the trunk light is cool.
     
  5. strider

    strider Active Member

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    I haven't done it but I swapped out the headlights, license plate lights, and interior light w/ LED bulbs with no problems. If you figure out what kind of bulb it is and a source let us know.
     
  6. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    Its a 1156 bulb, I'm working with the company who's doing a retrofit of HIDs into the Halogen stock Roadster headlight housings. I asked about swapping out the parking lights for LEDs since those bulbs run very hot.... For some reason both the clear parking light lenses popped out of the housings on the headlights that are currently in the Roadster. I never hit anything hard to cause both to pop out, Tesla say's they didn't hit any bumps hard when they road tested the car... I didn't notice them popped out until I got my car back. Ohh well... Anyways the bulb melted the clear parking light lens. I think its always good taking pics of your car before you take it in for service. That way you can pinpoint when things happened otherwise its your problem...

    So in talking to the company who's doing the retro-fit they asked if the bulb is hooked into the canbus, if so, a stock LED will throw an error do to the voltage drop. I know the headlight is on the canbus but not sure of the parking lights.... He did indicate he'll be getting some 1156 bulbs that will work with the canbus so looks like we're covered either way.

    As for the HID project, they will be getting the prototype mounts for the HIDs in 2 to 3 weeks, they just paid for that work to be done by an engineering company. After that it'll be tested in the stock Tesla headlight fixtures. This will be both the high beam, low beam, and projector swap to accommodate the Xenon HIDs. I'm using Augie's spare stock headlight set for the conversion which luckily has paint armor on the headlights, so with that it should stop that stupid UV protection from flaking. Total cost should be $500-$600 for the conversion as originally quoted.
     
  7. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Well, I just swapped out my halogen bulbs for HIDs from ddmtuning and no errors were reported. Does the Roadster even give "blown light" errors? If not then it won't matter.

    Is it pretty easy to get to these from the wheel well? I'll take a flyer and order a couple to test out.
     
  8. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    From this thread it appears the headlights are on the canbus and will throw an error if it detects a change (drop) in voltage:
    Check low beam bulb error

    Your HID bulb replacements would most likely have been the same or higher wattage so it wouldn't have triggered an error.

    If you did your HID bulb upgrade, it should be the same or easier to change the parking lights bulbs out. I haven't torn into the headlights yet but from what I recall you access that bulb from the same area of the headlight housing.
     
  9. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Update: the front marker/parking lights are NOT 1156's. They are a W5W which appears to cross-reference to a 194/T10. Also, the front turn signals are not 1156's either, they are a 7507. So back to the web to order more bulbs :)
     
  10. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    Thanks Strider for straitening this out, the headlight shop gave me the 1156 reference. I'll forward them the update.

    Did you get the bulbs in? Any luck on the swap?
     
  11. strider

    strider Active Member

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    The parking light bulbs came in this week and will swap them in this weekend. I'll try to take before/after pictures although I am rubbish w/ a camera and assume that the camera in "auto" mode may change the settings based on lamp brightness but I'll give it a shot.

    I decided not to swap the turn signal as I didn't want to deal with adding resistors and such to make sure it flashes at the correct speed. It's pretty tight space-wise in the headlight assembly. Though I may take a flyer and see if a 7507 will "just work". Maybe Tesla is using a computer to flash the lamps (since the rear lamps are LEDs right?) vs the old resistance-based relays.
     
  12. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    #12 wiztecy, Sep 12, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013
    I just talked to Tesla a moment ago, they confirmed that the turn signal light in the headlight housing is indeed on the CANBUS. I'm still awaiting the news on the little parking ligths. So with that said they most likely will throw an error on the VMS. The company that has just completed my HID retrofit will be sending me some LEDs for the indicator lights to beta test. I'll shoot them an email regarding the turn signal LEDs as well and keep you guys posted. Thanks.

    ...Ok just got an update from Tesla. love the promptness :)

    The little marker lights are NOT monitored by the CANBUS so they're fine to put a regular LED in there. As for the large orange turn signal, that IS monitored by the CANBUS and that will need a special LED otherwise it WILL throw the CANBUS error.
     
  13. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Update... Installed a 3W LED in the parking light slot and no errors. Much brighter than stock. Will try to post some pics later. It was a b$stard to install as the LED is larger than the stock bulb and there is not much room to maneuver inside the headlight assembly. For the left side I ended up taking the light out to get the angle right. Incidentally only the 2 rear screws were installed in the light which was lucky as Idk how to get to the front one.

    And try to form in the course of R&R'ing the light I realize that I'm getting the cracking/peeling going on that light. I thought the factory PPF covered the lamps but guess not. So when I go in for my next annual before my warranty goes out I'll have them replace it. I wonder if they'll replace both lights? And that also means all the work I did to get the parking lights and HID low beams in will have to be re-done...

    On the turn signal side I installed one of these:
    18HP-LED 7507 (PY21W) LED Tower bulb | LED Brake Light, Turn Light and Tail Light Bulbs | LED Car Bulbs | Super Bright LEDs

    and sure enough it caused a VDS error to check the bulb. It also blinked faster than the other one (I had the hazards on). The stock bulb is 21W if you want to add a resistor but I have to say that the stock bulb seemed brighter so I left the incandescents in. I'm happy to send the LED ones to someone if you want to experiment w/ the resistor option.
     
  14. Chillout

    Chillout Member

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    There are special relays available to prevent any led blinker errors and blinking too fast. Could be a possibility to try out?
     
  15. strider

    strider Active Member

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    Yes, that's the resistor option I talked about. But part of the reason for this update was the save power and so if you're throwing a resistor in the mix you're consuming just as much power as the old bulb.
     
  16. Chillout

    Chillout Member

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    Yeah, and that would suck... With my Volkswagen you could disable the bulb checks through OBD2, I wonder if this could be disabled on the Tesla too... Having more light with less energy is worth the effort, I'm sure!
     
  17. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

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    I'm not worried about the power draw on the parking light, but more with the heat. I already had two of my parking light housings pop out and melt on the bulb. I use the parking lights every time I drive over 17 and kick on my headlights anytime I see a dangerous situation such as coming though a lineup of cars. Not sure if the heat caused the housing to loose its fit in the headlight assembly which could be the case, but after it popped out and definitely the heat of the bulb destroyed it so it couldn't go back. Luckily my HID retrofit came in performed on a second set of headlights. An LED won't produce heat nearly as close, so that's next on my list. Thanks for the feedback!
     
  18. Chillout

    Chillout Member

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    Be warned: a resistor can get pretty hot too!! Make sure it's fitted in a place where it's vented well, and not touching any wires/plastic. There are resistors with cooling fins that should help it cool down.
     
  19. slcasner

    slcasner Member

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    Watts is Watts!
     
  20. Chillout

    Chillout Member

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    Good point :)
     

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