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Thread: S14 Centre console illumination

  1. #1
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    S14 Centre console illumination

    Thought I'd change this to an How to!
    this is my first attempt at writing one so might not be great!


    First you need to buy some bits (I got mine from Maplins) ...
    - LED's - (3mm Blue maplin code N31BY)
    They need to be the 3mm ones for the switches but I got different ones for the heater controls simply as they had limited stock.
    I would reccomend to try getting wide angle ones for the heater bulbs - something I might change to in the future.
    - Resistors (I got 4x M270R for the switches and 1x M43R fot the heater controls - as reccomended by guy in Maplins)
    - Shrink Wrap (I just got a mixed bag from Maplins)

    Tools Required....
    Philips screwdriver
    Wire cutters
    Long nose pliers
    Tweezers
    Soldering Iron and solder
    Electrical Tester - to determine you have correct illumination wires.
    Lighter - to shrink the shrink wrap (could use soldering iron for this)


    First remove the swich panel. Just pull up from the corners under the switches.
    Then unplug the wiring from the switches and push out each individual switch.
    Pull (hard - don't be scared!) the front cover of the switch and it will come off.


    Then with long nose pliers carefully pull out the bulb and its holder. The bulb in the middle is the illumination bulb.



    With the tweezers unwrap the bulb wire, it loops around twice (easy once you have it in your hand).
    Remove the bulb.
    I cut down the rupper where the bulb goes just to make more light spread and easier LED fitting.
    Now replace with a 3mm LED - This is tricky as the LED contacts are much thicker than the bulbs wires.
    I heated the contact up to bend easier. I only looped the contacts around once, no need to go back around. It's too much of a struggle anyway


    Refit back into switch with longnose pliers.
    Don't re-fit the front as you will need to test for correct polarity and also position the LED.

    Now to find the illumination wire - I used the Workshop manual to determine which wire for each switch and also double checked with a electrical meter.
    I would suggest you do this asI don't want to take responsibility for you blowing your car up

    I found the illumination wire was a Red Wire with a blue trace
    The one pulled to the side away from the others in the pic below (this is for rear fog)

    Cut the wire and fit in a resistor

    Make sure to fit heat shrink tube before soldering both sides
    (no pics of soldering - but we all know what that looks like )
    Slide over heak shrink and heat up to shrink around resitor and soldered wires


    Thats all done - now plug the switch in and test if the bulb works - if it doesn't take out the bulb and fit the other way around.
    Once all working hold the switch front upto the switch and check for correct illumination. I had to fiddle about adjusting the LED to make sure lighted up correctly.
    Once happy that all is lined up push on the switch front, unplug from wiring.

    Repeat this for the rest of your switches and enjoy.
    Last edited by Mark White; 27-02-2010 at 16:01.

  2. #2
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Now onto the Heater controls

    Unscrew the panel and unplug the wiring.

    Unclip the black cover 2 clips at one side to release then pulls out - It's easy so no pics
    There a 3 Clips to undo to remove the outer circuit board to gain access to the bulbs.
    Start at the clip nearest the fan speed switch
    Squeeze the clip using long nose pliers and gently pull the end of the board up out of the clip.


    Using the same method unclip the remaining two clips and ease the board out of the way.


    Next remove the fan speed switch by pulling it off at the front of the unit - pull hard with pliers - it will come off.
    Then unclip the clip and remove the back part from the unit to gain access to the 3rd bulb. (no pics sorry - got carried away)

    Unscew the bulb holder approx half a turn and they should come out.
    The bulbs fit into the holders in a similar way to the switches. Unwrap the wiring and remove bulb.
    Replace with an LED - easier to bend the contacts around this time.
    Refit the bulb holders into the board.

    Now to fit the resistor (the M43R one)
    the illumination wire is on the middle plug - the one loose in the first pic.
    Again its a red wire with blue trace - the one being held in the pic below

    As with the switches, cut the wire and solder in the resistor - cover with shrink wrap tube.

    Before refitting everything carefully plug the middle wire plug (the one where you just fitted a resistor) into the top circuit board.
    Switch on your lights to make sure the bulbs work - if not take out and refit the other way round.

    Once all is working unplug the wiring, refit the fan speed switch, outer board and cover.
    Plug all wiring back in and then screw the heater panel back into the dash.
    Refit the swich panel - push back into place.

    Check all is working again and it should look like this

    Daytime


    covered with a coat to replicate dark


    I didn't manage to do the Hazard switch as couldn't get enough LED's - Will be doing it in the near future, possibly if I can change to wide angle bulbs for the heater panel.
    Last edited by Mark White; 27-02-2010 at 16:02.

  3. #3
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Hope this might come in handy for some people

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    Guest Daniel H's Avatar
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    It would look good if you could change the bulb for the bit that reads hot to red

  5. #5
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    The whole thing is lit by one bulb - I was going to use white so that the red would show up more but wanted to keep the blue writing - kind of one of those trade offs
    Gotta say looks much better than standard bulbs or even the sub-mini bulbs that i tried before going to LEDs.

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    hi mate i dont this today but i could only get 3mm leds from maplin and there not very bright...any idea where i could get wide angle brighter bulbs from?

    good write up by the way

  7. #7
    Guest fozzie's Avatar
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    Mark, Good write BTW

    Do you happen to know what the code is for the wide angle LED as i can find any WIDE ANGLE LED on their site.

    Secondly dumb question what is the need for the resistors as i thought the bulbs were 12v anyway.

    I am correct in thinking that the heater panel has ONE LED to illuminate all the way accross Mine has been on the blink for the last two years & giving it a whack makes no difference it comes on & off when it feels like it & in the winter dark lanes i cant find the correct heater direction switch


    MODS- can this be moved made a sticky & put in the section along with the other usefull bits?
    Last edited by fozzie; 27-02-2010 at 20:14.

  8. #8
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fozzie View Post
    Mark, Good write BTW

    Do you happen to know what the code is for the wide angle LED as i can find any WIDE ANGLE LED on their site.

    Secondly dumb question what is the need for the resistors as i thought the bulbs were 12v anyway.

    I am correct in thinking that the heater panel has ONE LED to illuminate all the way accross Mine has been on the blink for the last two years & giving it a whack makes no difference it comes on & off when it feels like it & in the winter dark lanes i cant find the correct heater direction switch
    Maplins don't sell the wide angle LED's - I'm looking at getting some from Ebay

    The 3mm LED's from Maplins are approx 3v not 12v - thats why resistors are needed. You might be thinking of the Sub minature bulbs that are a direct replacement. These are rubbish, I changed to them first and then ended up doing this.

    The Heater panel has 3 bulbs - one for the fan speed knob, one for the Temp slider and one for the direction buttons - I think the direction one is really where a wide angle one is needed - Hopefully it'll work anyway,

  9. #9
    Guest fozzie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark White View Post
    Maplins don't sell the wide angle LED's - I'm looking at getting some from Ebay

    The 3mm LED's from Maplins are approx 3v not 12v - thats why resistors are needed. You might be thinking of the Sub minature bulbs that are a direct replacement. These are rubbish, I changed to them first and then ended up doing this.

    The Heater panel has 3 bulbs - one for the fan speed knob, one for the Temp slider and one for the direction buttons - I think the direction one is really where a wide angle one is needed - Hopefully it'll work anyway,
    Yes you are right i was thinking of the Sub minature bulbs

    So basicly this is what i need

    7x (3mm Blue maplin code N31BY)
    4x M270R for the switches and 1x M43R fot the heater controls -
    - Shrink Wrap

  10. #10
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by japdrifter View Post
    hi mate i dont this today but i could only get 3mm leds from maplin and there not very bright...any idea where i could get wide angle brighter bulbs from?

    good write up by the way
    Are you sure you got LED's and not the sub-minature bulbs?

    these are the LED's I used
    http://www.maplin.co.uk/module.aspx?moduleno=45931

    These are the sub minature bulbs I first used - they were rubbish!
    http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=25545

    was also told by the guy at Maplins that they had some 3mm 12v LED's but they wouldn't be as bright as doing it the way I did. Maybe you used those?

  11. #11
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fozzie View Post
    Yes you are right i was thinking of the Sub minature bulbs

    So basicly this is what i need

    7x (3mm Blue maplin code N31BY)
    4x M270R for the switches and 1x M43R fot the heater controls -
    - Shrink Wrap
    Yeah thats what I used, well I actually used some 5mm LED's for the Heater panel but the 3mm ones would suit better. Only reason I didn't use the 3mm's was they didn't have enough stock. I got 4 3mm LED's by getting 2 from 2 seperate stores
    They seem to only stock 2 in each store

    I would definately consider getting some wide angle ones for the heaters - I'll be changing to them soon I think

  12. #12
    Guest fozzie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark White View Post
    Yeah thats what I used, well I actually used some 5mm LED's for the Heater panel but the 3mm ones would suit better. Only reason I didn't use the 3mm's was they didn't have enough stock. I got 4 3mm LED's by getting 2 from 2 seperate stores
    They seem to only stock 2 in each store

    I would definately consider getting some wide angle ones for the heaters - I'll be changing to them soon I think
    Cool thank for the input.
    I was just looking at you S14 project- fantasic looking s14 in white As i see you have uprated the dash bulbs as well do you have a linky to what you replaced them with & how many are needed.

    Thanks in advance Mark

    Fozzie

  13. #13
    Guest Mark White's Avatar
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    Dash LEDs were bought from eBay. I got mine from a seller called crazyLEDs. There's a few sellers that sell car specific kits which are direct replacements.
    There's 3 bulbs with 4 LEDs in for the dials and one with a single LED for the clock.
    Have to admit they are a bit patchy though, might try putting a blob of hot glue on the ends of them one day to diffuse them a little more.

  14. #14
    Guest Kyle @ H-Dev's Avatar
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    Ive done this with mine, didnt put the resistor inline with the power source, was worried it might effect its operation, but seeing that it works I think I'll redo mine that way.

    I even went as far as changing the led's for each individual button, but to be honest the led's i chose are way too bright! You can just about make them out from this pic:


    My advice is to get led's from ebay, maplin are super expensive in conparisson and i ended up waiting for weeks and weeks until i eventually cancelled my order because they werent in stock.
    Last edited by Kyle @ H-Dev; 24-03-2010 at 21:32.

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    Guest ZXSpectrum's Avatar
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    Yeah i agree there is a seller called phenoptix that are very good and very good and very cheap

  16. #16
    Guest MaccyD's Avatar
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    that looks well smart, cant wait to get the engine in my car so i can put it back on my drive and do cheap little bits of tinkering like this. very good tutorial too, cheers

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    Excellent guide will help me alot as I need to change the bulbs as there not working.

    Can I just replace them with standard bulbs and would I have to get them from Nissan?

  18. #18
    Guest ZXSpectrum's Avatar
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    I did all mine and they look great... The resistors that come with these http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/5-LEDs-Ultra-B...item3c9de2b258 are perfect to put in line on the illumination wire. Bloody cheap as well..

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    Hey I'm trying to do the same with my cooling panel, your guide is very useful for the antifog and other buttons . Since I'm a total noob about electric stuff, how cai I know which is the alimentation wire to solder the resistor on? Is always the red w blue stripe?. And for the cooling panel is one resistor enough for all the 3 leds?

  20. #20
    Guest CrazySx's Avatar
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    Hi Guys, resurrecting this thread as I want to do this, and I know technology has progressed so is this still the same process or has it changed?

    Sent from my SM-G988B using Tapatalk

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