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Old 08-04-2014, 12:21 PM   #11
Tiger-Heli
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Old thread, but there are a couple of things wrong here (I'm pretty sure).

First off - the initial post talks about the brass positive connector - I think that is really the negative connector.

I was looking at http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-pcs-Samsun...-/271229421158 and there is a note that says:
NOTE** ( SOME light housings are polarity reversed )
EX: Negative power at the bottom tip, + power from the side

I'm pretty sure our lights are like that, so unless they are dual polarity, they won't work without extensive modification. (i.e. I'm pretty sure the lights above WON'T work, but I'm not sure if the ones without the note work or if they just didn't bother to tell us they won't work.

Here is how the circuit seems to work to me.

+12 VDC power comes into the light from the single orange/blue wire on the right hand side. It flows to the right side of the festoon connector for the dome light. When the light is snapped together, it flows to the silver (not the brass) bus bar to the side terminals of the bulbs. It then flows through the bulbs to the brass contacts and back down to the each individual map light switch. When the switch is on, it flows out the center GND terminal (the one that is perpendicular to the power terminal).

For the dome light - when the switch is off, there is no ground path. When the switch is in DOOR position, power flows through the bulb and through the left hand festoon to the left outer GND terminal (parallel with the power terminal). It is then turned on with a GND supplied by the Central Timer module. When the switch is in the ON position, the right festoon holder is grounded through the same terminal as the map lights, turning on the light.

It's more work than I want to attempt, but if you wanted the BA9S LED's to work and the ones you got only work with power to the tip, it should work if you do the following:
  • Trim the tab on the silver bus bar where it contacts the positive connector - we do NOT want this connected.
  • Back out the teminal for the map light ground wire from the connector.
  • Cut the connection from the silver terminal that is engaged when the Dome switch is moved to the ON position.
  • Solder a pair of wires to the DOME light ON terminal (where the switch contacts it), and to the Silver bus bar. Run these to a male quick-disconnect and connect to the wire that you removed from the terminal.
  • Solder a wire to the positive terminal of the light housing and across to the MAP light ground terminal.
  • Plug the connector back in (the map GND wire will be connected to the new soldered wires and NOT to the housing terminal).

With this change, the circuit works backward - i.e. the dome light wiring is unchanged, except with the switch ON, wiring goes directly to the ground wire instead of through the housing to the ground wire.

For the map lights, power flows to both switches and then through the bulbs and out to GND.

(Alternately, you could use panel-mounted LED's and just connect the wires backward).

If someone could confirm my assumptions, I'd appreciate it.
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Old 08-04-2014, 01:15 PM   #12
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Tiger, I believe you are correct. I did not connect a meter to the wires to see the pinout for positive and negative voltage of the cables themselves. What I did do was pull the entire lamp assembly from my car and connect it to a variable power supply.

Here is the entire assembly:


Now, in this picture you can see that the copper plating (negative) touches the ground tip of the bulb.


In this pic, the gray metal strips, that run across the top, provide positive power to the bulbs and, as you can hopefully see in the below pic, connect to the walls of the bulbs themselves:


I hope this helps?

ETA: Sorry, horrible pictures from the phone.

Last edited by Gudziel; 08-04-2014 at 01:18 PM. Reason: Phone Autocorrects My Words to Incorrect Words
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Old 08-04-2014, 01:20 PM   #13
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I also wanted to add that I can take a picture of the +V and -V connected to the parts I mentioned above with a variable power supply to show that the tips are ground and the bulb seats are positive voltage. If anyone would like that.

Thanks
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Old 08-04-2014, 02:06 PM   #14
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Thanks Gudziel - that confirms what I was thinking. What I really need to know now is how the LED bulbs work ...

i.e. if the bulb doesn't have a warning in the ad, does that mean it will work with power to the side and ground at the tip, or did they just forget to include the warning that they won't work ...
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Old 08-04-2014, 02:19 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger-Heli View Post
Thanks Gudziel - that confirms what I was thinking. What I really need to know now is how the LED bulbs work ...

i.e. if the bulb doesn't have a warning in the ad, does that mean it will work with power to the side and ground at the tip, or did they just forget to include the warning that they won't work ...
I know that no one likes to hear this. But luckily the bulbs are cheap. Cheap being under $5 for two (or so depending on the bulbs you buy). I would contact the seller and ask. If they don't know or aren't clear with their answers, stay away. If they are a true electronics supplier, then they should have the means to test it out.

I would say that unless stated otherwise, the polarity is usually as I tested. From my understanding, the ground is generally the tip and the body is generally the positive voltage. But as always, don't take my word for it, I'd ask the seller.
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Old 08-04-2014, 03:16 PM   #16
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I have a hard time getting the sellers to answer - although if the ground is usually the tip, that is a good sign.

(Although from what I remember of the old 1156 and 1157 bulbs, I think the body was generally ground b/c the wires came into the tips).

The thing that bothers me is this ad:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-pcs-Samsun...-/271229421158

where it says:
NOTE** ( SOME light housings are polarity reversed )
EX: Negative power at the bottom tip, + power from the side


That makes it seem like or cars are backward to the standard, but then again, there have been several threads on this, and most people didn't say they had to re-wire the car to make them work, so either they are set up correctly, or they happened to buy dual-polarity bulbs.
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Old 08-04-2014, 03:35 PM   #17
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http://www.superbrightleds.com/cat/ba9s-ba7s/

Hard to get accurate info ...

I called SuperbrightLED's and they said our lights are reversed polarity. The tech support person said the only lights that would work are the 1 LED and the 4 LED which say "Polarity Sensitive - No" on the product page. In fact, according to the website, the only bulbs that wouldn't work are the 9-LED tower (I think), but that's also really the only one likely to be MUCH brighter than the stock lights.
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Old 08-04-2014, 03:39 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger-Heli View Post
http://www.superbrightleds.com/cat/ba9s-ba7s/

Hard to get accurate info ...

I called SuperbrightLED's and they said our lights are reversed polarity. The tech support person said the only lights that would work are the 1 LED and the 4 LED which say "Polarity Sensitive - No" on the product page. In fact, according to the website, the only bulbs that wouldn't work are the 9-LED tower (I think), but that's also really the only one likely to be MUCH brighter than the stock lights.
Good info.

As I mentioned before, I was under the impression that the tip was generally negative. You learn something every day!

Thanks for the knowledge.
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Old 08-04-2014, 03:44 PM   #19
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Note to self:

Simple Google search for polarity of a light bulb shows that "correct" polarity is +V at tip, -V/Ground at Socket wall.

Reversed polarity is exactly that, reversed....

That was easy.
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