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dt36

Dash light bulbs

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katana    210

Yes - and for others thinking why not use LED's - not in charge light.....it won't work with them.

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dt36    304

Yes - and for others thinking why not use LED's - not in charge light.....it won't work with them.

Cheers, Katana. Will get them ordered up.

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Yes they are T5 but think about upgrading to a higher wattage at the same time. The normal T5 filament bulbs are 1.2 watts but if you do your search for a T5 2.3 watts you will get a much more usable bulb. That said you have to replace all five but well worth it and most of the sellers only offer them in packs of ten anyways. No more dim indicators or ignition lights.

 

As Katana has mentions do not use LEDs for these accessory lights. The coloured plastic they sit behind is tinted to give the required output colour when used in conjunction with a bulb with a very low colour temperature. (ie a bit yellowish) LEDs are much much cooler than that and they turn your indicators into weird colours. Most of the T5 LEDs arent strong enough to light up very well and also are very directional which means you only get the centre lit up not the whole coloured tab. (Other places in the dash are good for LEDs though just not these)

 

I have spent hundreds of dollars comparing LED and filament bulbs and where to use them and when to not. I have been meaning to start a information thread about bulbs for the entire car but havent gotten around to it yet. I will one day

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mk2dk    24

Yes they are T5 but think about upgrading to a higher wattage at the same time. The normal T5 filament bulbs are 1.2 watts but if you do your search for a T5 2.3 watts you will get a much more usable bulb. That said you have to replace all five but well worth it and most of the sellers only offer them in packs of ten anyways. No more dim indicators or ignition lights.

 

As Katana has mentions do not use LEDs for these accessory lights. The coloured plastic they sit behind is tinted to give the required output colour when used in conjunction with a bulb with a very low colour temperature. (ie a bit yellowish) LEDs are much much cooler than that and they turn your indicators into weird colours. Most of the T5 LEDs arent strong enough to light up very well and also are very directional which means you only get the centre lit up not the whole coloured tab. (Other places in the dash are good for LEDs though just not these)

 

I have spent hundreds of dollars comparing LED and filament bulbs and where to use them and when to not. I have been meaning to start a information thread about bulbs for the entire car but havent gotten around to it yet. I will one day

 

Hi.

Just wondered, is it possible to upgrade the other bulbs in the instrument cluster ? The ones that lights up the background. Mine are very bad, only just visible if driving in the dark. The bulbs are bigger than T5 but same socketless type. What's the correct watt reading on these bulbs ?

mk2dk

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Hi.

Just wondered, is it possible to upgrade the other bulbs in the instrument cluster ? The ones that lights up the background. Mine are very bad, only just visible if driving in the dark. The bulbs are bigger than T5 but same socketless type. What's the correct watt reading on these bulbs ?

mk2dk

 

Yes they are definitely upgradable. One of the banes of MK2 Escorts is the poor instrument lighting. They are T10 bulbs and unlike the others recommend LED ones for this purpose. Its middle of the night here at the moment but I will take some photos during the day for you to give you an idea what ones to get and some slight modifications you need to do to fit them. So watch this space.

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Vista    2,046

Hi.

Just wondered, is it possible to upgrade the other bulbs in the instrument cluster ? The ones that lights up the background. Mine are very bad, only just visible if driving in the dark. The bulbs are bigger than T5 but same socketless type. What's the correct watt reading on these bulbs ?

mk2dk

 

Have you actually taken them out to check them? They can discolour badly over the years and don't give out nearly so much light because of it. You may just need to replace with new standard ones.

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colr6    1,271

Would be careful how high a wattage you go as the higher the wattage the higher the heat is, so to high a wattage bulb would have a tendency to melt the holder or make it brittle causing more problems on bulb renewal.

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Hi.

Just wondered, is it possible to upgrade the other bulbs in the instrument cluster ? The ones that lights up the background. Mine are very bad, only just visible if driving in the dark. The bulbs are bigger than T5 but same socketless type. What's the correct watt reading on these bulbs ?

mk2dk

 

 

Would be careful how high a wattage you go as the higher the wattage the higher the heat is, so to high a wattage bulb would have a tendency to melt the holder or make it brittle causing more problems on bulb renewal.

 

The upgrade in this instance wouldnt involve higher wattage in fact much much less.

 

Most of the loss of light at the instrument face is due to the way in which Ford achieved the green tint illumination back in the 70s. The traditional 4 watt T10 filament bulb have a very low colour temperature, approx 3000 degrees Kelvin, this means that they are incredibly yellow. Ford incorporate very dark blue plastic domes over them to combine with the yellow bulb light to give the green illumination that you see. The blue dome however absorbs alot of light so that much is wasted and the instruments appear not that bright. It also has a secondary effect of enclosing the bulb preventing adequate heat dissipation. Often when you look at the blue domes they can appear black and melted in places.

 

The first step is to unclip the blue domes (2 in each of the large guages, 4 in total) and removed them completely. Just edge them out carefully without too much force and they will come out completely intact if you desire to re-instate them at some later point.

 

The replacement LED bulbs I recommend are pictured below in comparison with a standard T10 filament bulb.

 

post-12481-0-69997200-1491581787_thumb.jpg

 

As you can see there are two different types and both have green plastic bases. This denotes that they give out a green light thus negating the need for the blue conversion domes. These slot straight into the black plastic bulb holders without modification. (Keep in mind that unlike filament bulbs these LEDS are positive/negative specific so you may have to flip them if they dont light up first try) The LED bulb in the middle you will notice is very long and has actually 9 LEDs dotted around it. Because of its unusual design it encroaches much closer to the actual gauge and permit the light to penetrate to the centre between the two main gauges much better thus also giving better illumination to those minor centre gauges which traditionally are even dimmer than the main ones. You will need 3 of these long LEDs. Two for the tacho or combination fuel / temp gauge depending on which you have on the left and one bulb for the speedo. ( I know why not 4? but there is a hitch)

 

On the speedo the bulbs are not placed at the same level in order to accommodate the mileage part of the gauge. So one bulb is higher than the other. Space for the bottom bulb is limited however and the long green LED bulbs do not fit there. Fortunately this bulb doesn’t play as crucial a role in the centre illumination that a smaller single LED type bulb like the one pictured on the right will fill in nicely. Both bulb types are only 1 watt and are very inexpensive through that well know Auction site under the search Green T10 LED and you will search through hundreds to find the ones like those pictured. There are others that have more and less tiers than the long LED I have pictured but stick to the 2 tiered ones with 9 LEDs (8 on the sides and 1 on top).

 

With this conversion you will get a wonderful even green illumination that should have been standard. At 1 watt its not overbearing but keep in mind if your car is equipped with a dimmer switch you will loose that functionality. In Australia all ours were recalled for the switch catching fire so were disabled to an on or off operation instead so the conversion doesn't affect anything. With the lower wattage and the bulbs no longer enclosed in the blue domes this eliminates the overheating /melting issue and with LEDs having a service life of 50,000 hours you should never have to replace them again in your lifetime.

 

Hope this is useful.

 

PS - With the smaller T5 filament bulbs I have recommended an increased wattage from 1.2w to 2.3w. The space around these bulbs is much greater proportionally to the T10s restricted within blue domes of the main instruments and as such there is ample cooling for the extra wattage. So too the bulbs are not on constantly (except high beam on occasion) in they they flash or are only on for very brief periods to ever cause over heating even if they had restricted space.

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Gyver    8

Awesome!!! Thank you so much for sharing this information with us! I recently bought a rs dash and have been watching this thread for your update. With Leon's updated voltage stabilizer and some new LED's soon i will hopefully have a great setup that will work for years to come... And considering what i had to pay for that dash this kind of stuff just makes me feel more at ease with trusting a 40+ year old part.

 

Thanks! :)

 

/David

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mk2dk    24

This is great information. Thank you for sharing it.

I'll upgrade my instrument lighting following this advice.

mk2dk

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Awesome!!! Thank you so much for sharing this information with us! I recently bought a rs dash and have been watching this thread for your update. With Leon's updated voltage stabilizer and some new LED's soon i will hopefully have a great setup that will work for years to come... And considering what i had to pay for that dash this kind of stuff just makes me feel more at ease with trusting a 40+ year old part.

 

Thanks! :)

 

/David

 

 

This is great information. Thank you for sharing it.

I'll upgrade my instrument lighting following this advice.

mk2dk

 

 

Thanks. Doing it yourself and giving instruction for others to replicate it are two different things so I would love to hear how you get on and if it works for you too. Just go extra careful removing the blue domes they can be brittle with age.

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Gyver    8

I browsed through about 100 pages on ebay and found these:

 

This seems to be the longer type with 9 LED's right?

http://m.ebay.com/itm/4-x-T10-194-168-2825-9-x-5050-SMD-LED-Green-Super-Bright-Car-Lights-Lamp-Bulb-/111579000261?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

When i tried to find the shorter type i eventually came across these:

http://m.ebay.com/itm/2-T10-168-194-501-W5W-1-5W-LED-SMD-Wedge-Dashboard-Green-Light-Lamp-Bulb-DC-12V-/281945222937?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

http://m.ebay.com/itm/TWO-GREEN-T10-2825-168-1-5w-License-Plate-Lights-Bulbs-67H-/221904013699?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

The shorter type look to be identical, but they are rated at 1,5W instead of the 1W as you described. Do you know if they would work?

 

/David

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I browsed through about 100 pages on ebay and found these:

 

This seems to be the longer type with 9 LED's right?

http://m.ebay.com/itm/4-x-T10-194-168-2825-9-x-5050-SMD-LED-Green-Super-Bright-Car-Lights-Lamp-Bulb-/111579000261?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

When i tried to find the shorter type i eventually came across these:

http://m.ebay.com/itm/2-T10-168-194-501-W5W-1-5W-LED-SMD-Wedge-Dashboard-Green-Light-Lamp-Bulb-DC-12V-/281945222937?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

http://m.ebay.com/itm/TWO-GREEN-T10-2825-168-1-5w-License-Plate-Lights-Bulbs-67H-/221904013699?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

 

The shorter type look to be identical, but they are rated at 1,5W instead of the 1W as you described. Do you know if they would work?

 

/David

 

That's certainly them. Its been a couple of years since I upgraded and technology as always progresses and most of those ones seem to be 1.5 watts but you can find one watt versions still if you type that into your search. Unfortunately they dont specify the wattage of their T10 9 LED Greens so you may have to factor in they have increased to 1.5 watts as well. Given cheap manufacturing of these cheap Chinese bulbs I wouldn't be surprised if you got the 1.5 watt ones and pair them with the others that you would notice any difference.

 

When I changed mine there wasnt much more than these cheaper Chinese LEDs but some major manufacturers have jumped in with some hyper LED Bulbs. Some quoting 270 to 300 lumens for each green bulb! Amazing, my small car work light is only 200 Lumens. You wouldn’t be able to look at your instruments for fear of being blinded. So too I notice a range of Canbus LEDS now which have resistors in them to mimic the same draw as filament bulbs for car computers and the like and these also supposedly preserve the dimmer function if thats important to you. I personally feel lowering the wattage creating less heat would be of more benefit in preserving the sometimes fragile circuit boards on these instruments.

 

If you wanted to wait a bit more I will try some of the better quality brand name LEDs that appear to be out now that weren't before. May find something improved. Some still look at my instruments and say they arent that bright but they never saw them before. I guess by modern standards they are still slightly dim.

 

PS These are 1 Watt versions by the way. The head design is just slightly different but essentially the same bulb but if you can get the 1.5s for only a couple of bucks it may be worth trying. I can get my hand behind the instruments to change these bulbs in a few seconds to mix and match which you may not be able too. You have to take the instruments out to remove the blue domes but once out you can change the bulbs without having to remove the instruments again if dont have big hands

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-194-LED-Bulbs-HP-1-Watt-Green-Same-Base-as-168-921-T10-T15-/291892761540?hash=item43f62a13c4:g:q5AAAOSwNRdX7UvD&vxp=mtr

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Gyver    8

Yeah ok, i'll wait no rush. Thanks for offering to look into it!

 

/David

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Yeah ok, i'll wait no rush. Thanks for offering to look into it!

 

/David

 

No worries David (Im a bulb / lighting addict) Its stems from my caving and photography days so like to experiment with different types. Ive wasted hundreds of dollars in bulbs I didnt use in the end. Filament bulbs still turn out to be the best for the Escort for two thirds of those required. Just with instruments I found the T10 gauge lights benefit from LEDs whereas the T5 indicator lights do not. Also when you gave me your links and did other searches these bulbs are only a few bucks for a set where before when I got them they were 5 times that so its cheap to try them anyways while I check into anything that may be improved. In the end the Chinese cheapies may turn out to be as good as anything.

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dt36    304

Some good info here. Just changed the T5 charge light yesterday, but for the sake of 4 screws, I think I'll take the dash back out and get some green T10s for the clocks.

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This is great information. Thank you for sharing it.

I'll upgrade my instrument lighting following this advice.

mk2dk

 

 

Yeah ok, i'll wait no rush. Thanks for offering to look into it!

 

/David

 

 

Some good info here. Just changed the T5 charge light yesterday, but for the sake of 4 screws, I think I'll take the dash back out and get some green T10s for the clocks.

 

A friend of mine on here, Marcel does so many things to help me get things for my car, things that I havent been able to find anywhere locally and he refuses to take anything for them. All he asks for in return is that I do the same for others. Scott too has enabled me to get things from there where UK sellers wont sell to me. So in line with that spirit I have done a bulk purchase so all three of you guys can try them out and I will send them to you for free. Come back to this thread and let others know what you think. If you dont like the results maybe pass them onto someone else on the forum to try. The China post can be very slow at times though (ie several weeks) but as soon as they get here I will send them on. Just private message me your details. :-)

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Gyver    8

A friend of mine on here, Marcel does so many things to help me get things for my car, things that I havent been able to find anywhere locally and he refuses to take anything for them. All he asks for in return is that I do the same for others. Scott too has enabled me to get things from there where UK sellers wont sell to me. So in line with that spirit I have done a bulk purchase so all three of you guys can try them out and I will send them to you for free. Come back to this thread and let others know what you think. If you dont like the results maybe pass them onto someone else on the forum to try. The China post can be very slow at times though (ie several weeks) but as soon as they get here I will send them on. Just private message me your details. :-)

Wow, such a nice gesture!

You are making a great example for the type of spirit forums like these should value and hold on to. You just made my day sir with such a simple gesture :) I live in Sweden though so i'll paypal you the postage cost!

 

 

Im fitting the white needle rs dash into a 1300l model. I will definitely come back here and update the thread with some pictures of the results and my thoughts on it.

 

Thanks!

 

/David

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Vista    2,046

Im fitting the white needle rs dash into a 1300l model. I will definitely come back here and update the thread with some pictures of the results and my thoughts on it.

Thanks!

/David

Look in our "How to" room and there's a downloadable guide on the connections. Though I am not certain it's 100% applicable to left hand drive cars.

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dt36    304

Wow. Thank you very much for this gesture.  Much appreciated.

 

Did I mention that I was thinking of uprating my Type 9 box to a longer first gear... :-)  :-)  :wink:

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Wow. Thank you very much for this gesture.  Much appreciated.

 

Did I mention that I was thinking of uprating my Type 9 box to a longer first gear... :-)  :-)  :wink:

 

I did actually upgrade first gear for a longer one but in my 4 speed type E sorry not a Type 9 so cant help you there. However it was the best after market modification I ever made even more so than getting a LSD which most people do without bothering to correct that appalling first gear.

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mk2dk    24

Hi Rally Pack 2000.

That's a fantastic gesture, not seen that often these days. Thank you !

I'm a total newbie to LED bulbs and to me the description found in online adverts are very confusing, I'd probbably end up buying the wrong type.

mk2dk 

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Hi Rally Pack 2000.

That's a fantastic gesture, not seen that often these days. Thank you !

I'm a total newbie to LED bulbs and to me the description found in online adverts are very confusing, I'd probbably end up buying the wrong type.

mk2dk 

 

Pleasure. Dont forget to private message your postage details. :-)

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