LED Questions

Discussion in 'Chevy Silverado Forum (GMC Sierra)' started by Warped5, Feb 16, 2012.

  1. Warped5

    Warped5 New Member

    Greeting to all ..

    2005 Silverado Z71 4X4 Ext cab ..

    I've been looking at updating my tail lights (plus a few others) to LEDs.

    I thought that they would be a straight swap-in, but I'm now convinced that the conversion may involve resistors being added and a flasher module being swapped out.

    To further muddy the water, when I use my buddy's trailer (has the whole LED package on it), everything works fine and I have no issues.

    What is the REAL deal?

    Thanks in advance ..
  2. ahmitchell1

    ahmitchell1 Rockstar 4 Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    I've heard you can take your truck to the dealership and they can reflash ur computer to have led light in without ur computer thinking that the bulb is dying due to the low watts the led pulls. But i would like to know if anyone has done this and the cost for it
  3. SurrealOne

    SurrealOne Former Member ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    As it pertains to 99-06's, it's a straight swap for non-blinking/flashing lights (such as runing/brake lights). For those lights that blink (turn signals, hazards, etc) you need to EITHER (A) use load resistors on each blinking/flashing light (relatively close to the bulb) OR (B) replace the OEM flasher module with a LED compatible flasher module.

    I've done a LED swap for every light on my truck except the obvious ones (highs, lows, fogs, and dash/HVAC lights). I elected to go with route (B) because replacement of the OEM flasher module is a 10 minute operation and it's very clean compared to splicing load resistors into multiple wires at multiple points on the truck. Also, it may be cheaper to do the flasher module swap than it is to do load resistors -- depending on what's being charged for load resistors. :)

    The OEM flasher module is located behind the driver's side, interior fuse panel. Remove the driver's side knee panel (2 7mm hex bolts, then pull with some force to remove the panel from the pressure mounts) to get to it and look for what is roughly a 3"L x 1"H x1"D rectangle that's plugged into the back side of the fuse panel I mentioned. You'll need to work/wiggle it free. Take your time; do it right.

    I used the Tridon LM487 Flasher module. I bought it from Amazon at this link and it was cheaper there than other locations when shipping was factored into the equation: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001KS6GIG. Also, Amazon has a very solid track record regarding its return policy on items it stocks (and it stocks this one), which was some peace of mind if the item was defective or simply didn't fit.

    I'd have posted a how-to, but the location of the flasher module is very tight and quite dark ... and I've got sound deadening there to complicate matters. I snapped a few photos and wasn't happy with them, so I just did the work and moved on.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2012
  4. ahmitchell1

    ahmitchell1 Rockstar 4 Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    Anyone done this on a nnbs
  5. Untouchable

    Untouchable Member 2 Years 100 Posts

    It's the same concept as Surreal has mentioned. They're plug and play...but sometimes with a swap of the flasher unit which is what I'm doing. I've got a few friends that have done the LED conversion on their NNBS and it works fine that way.
  6. AMac

    AMac Rockstar 3 Years GMTC Chick 500 Posts ROTM Winner

  7. donyms

    donyms Epic Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    1st off the reason everything works fine with your buddy's trailer is because you still have the filament bulbs in your truck so they still draw enough juice to make the flasher work properly. The recon lights are great if you can get them for your truck but mine is a 2002 step-side so I had to go a different route. SurrealOne is correct in everything that he said but he did not come across the problem I did with the DRL's and I have seen other people mention this on other forums. My DRLs and front parking lights flickered with the LEDs so I added the resistors and that fixed it. The resistor just acts as a regular bulb and fools the electrical system into thinking it has all the correct bulbs in place. I too have done a complete LED conversion and it is not hard, just takes a little time, the right LED lights or bulbs and good info. Good luck.

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