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· Registered
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone. I searched the forum for a thread on this particular topic but could not find anything so I decided to start a new thread. I am hoping that some of you have already travelled this road and can share some good advice on how to go about it. I am adding in some auxiliary lighting and switched and seeing as I have the instrument cowl off I figured it would be a good time to swap out the old bulbs in the instrument panel for some new and brighter bulbs. I would like to go the LED route (instead of factory bulbs) but to be quite honest, much of the info I have found is not very detailed or specific on what is required and how to actually do it. If any of you have already performed and LED bulb mod on the instrument panel and A/C control head, I would really appreciate any advise or information you could share with me? Thanks in advance!
 

· '03 Disco SE
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573 Posts
Both the cluster and HVAC unit use standard "wedge" type bulbs. Don't quote me but I believe the cluster uses #168 - not sure about HVAC though. Just pop both units off and get the bulbs matched up at your local parts store before ordering the LEDS offline. The bulb holders just twist off and then you pull the old bulb out and reinsert the new one. Keep in mind you'll also have to do the clock and switch bulbs to get the full effect.

While I haven't done this on the Disco, I have done it in other cars so here's some things to look out for:

1. LED replacement bulbs are nearly always oversize. The actual "wedge" bottom fits fine but the bulb itself is usually longer and a little wider which could prevent it from fitting as a direct replacement. You'll likely have to alter the cluster and control unit slightly to get them to fit.

2. Most displays are DESIGNED to use dimmer, more diffuse light from incandescent bulbs to in order to illuminate evenly. LEDs are much brighter and are typically more directional so you'll notice bright patches directly ahead of the bulbs and it'll be noticeably dimmer off to the sides. Also it's sometimes just too damn bright and you can see light seeping around the rims of the gauges and whatnot.

3. Some LEDs aren't really designed to be dimmed. They like to operate off of a constant 12V source and if you trim the voltage via the dimmer switch they sometimes like to blink. So you'll have full brightness or nothing.

Long story short - not really a worthwhile mod. If you'd like to change the color of your dash it's just cheaper and easier to get replace the green color silicone sleeves with a different color in order to achieve the same effect.
 
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