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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
I switched over all tail lights to LEDs and I'm getting the expected hyperflashing for the turn signals. Surprisingly, it's doing the same for the hazard lights, which I've never seen before. I found that putting one resistor on each rear turn signal wasn't enough to stop it, so I tried putting two right next to each other (in parallel) on the wires, but it made the LEDs too dim. I'm going to take care of all that with a flash relay for LEDs I just picked up at AutoZone for about $12.50.

The thing that's also surprising me is the "Brake" warning light in the dash -- is that also due to the low power consumption of the LEDs? Do you fix that the same way as for turn signals, with resistors?
 

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Have fun putting in that LED-compliant flasher - it's mounted on the BACK side of the fusebox on the driver's side (left) kick panel. I was going to go that route after swapping out my turn signal bulbs for LEDs to lose the "egg yolk look". Simple resistors fixed it just fine.

Did you put a resistor across every bulb? There needs to be a resistor across every bulb IF it's on the blinker circuit (to prevent the dreaded hyper-flash) or across a "monitored" circuit (which apparently the brake bulbs are). You shouldn't have to put more than one resistor across any single LED bulb though. Once the combination of the LED bulb and the resistor are drawing the same current as the original incandescent bulb was, there's nothing else to be done - if it doesn't work right, there's another problem.

You need to know the wattage of the bulb you took out.

Then you need to know the current draw / wattage of the LED bulb (not the "equivalent wattage" of the light output). If it's listed as only current, multiply the current by 14 to get wattage.

Subtract the second from the first, and that tells you how many watts your resistor needs to dissipate to get you back to the original current drain.

To figure out how many watts a resistor will "draw" you multiply the amps times the voltage (figure 14 volts). You figure amps by dividing the voltage by the resistance.

So if you have (for example) a 14 ohm resistor, it draws one amp (14 volts divided by 14 ohms). Multiply the one amp by the 14 volts and you get 14 watts (I used those values for easy math).

FWIW, I calculated that the right value for the turn signal resistors (with the LED lights I used...) was 11 ohms.

And finally, remember that the resistor has to be capable of dissipating at least as many watts as you just calculated. In my example above, you'd need a 14 watt (figure 20 watt real-world) resistor. FWIW, I used 10 watt resistors on the blinker circuit because I figure the blinkers are less than 50% duty cycle, so that cuts the required resistor dissipation requirements in half.

Oh, and mount them where they won't melt anything! They DO get hot.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Oh my, that information overload made my brain melt. I actually took electrical engineering for a semester.....and didn't do so well. Is there a tutorial of any kind available on how to exchange that flasher module? I would really prefer that. I've already removed the resistors I had and covered up the exposed wires with electrical tape.
 

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I was a pretty serious sparky, and am dumb enough to get in WAY over my head on car fixes (like dropping the tranny on my VW Jetta), but didn't want anything to do with swapping out that blinker. In the end, the potential for stressing something by pulling and twisting all the cables tied to the fusebox was enough to scare me off.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I was able to change the flasher relay! See a thread called "How to change 2003 MDX turn signal relay". I'm a newbie on the forum, so it wouldn't let me post a link.
 

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I have a similar issue in that my '05 has '03 style tail lights on it, which use a lower votlage bulb in one of the position and causes the "Brake Light" dash indicator to remain on at all times, but the lights themselves work just fine.
 

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Yep, that's my situation too -- all brake lights working great, but the "BRAKE LAMP" light is still on. Is there any relay/sensor/module that can be changed so that this goes away? The MDX has six brake bulbs, and there's no way I'm going to install six resistors.
 

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Good job on getting the blinker swapped out.

The thing is, you WILL have to put a resistor across any monitored bulb. I really don't know which of them are monitored, but if it's all of 'em, you will need a resistor on each to prevent the "light out" indicator. It's really not a big job, but will take some time.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I thought that might be the case..... There's no module or relay somewhere that can be replaced that handles that "Brake Lamp" warning light? Like you say, putting in resistors isn't really challenging, but putting six of them in is a pain, because they all have to be carefully placed to avoid contact with plastic.

Here's the link to the description on switching out the turn signal relay:
https://www.mdxers.org/forums/73-first-generation-mdx-2001-2006/43603-how-change-2003-mdx-turn-signal-relay.html
 

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I switched out all my interior and exterior bulbs with LED on my 2005 MDX. I paid somebody to do the relay for me. But as for the brake lamp indicator the only thing I've seen is adding resistors to all four lights or somebody somewhere found a single line somewhere in the back where they soldered a single resistor. There are also threads about removing the gauge assembly and removing the bulb for the brake lamp indicator. That is apparently pretty easy from what I've read. However, I'm in Florida now and there are no state inspections so the only thing the brake lamp indicator does is annoy me. It doesn't have any functional issues.

SiriusLED makes some LEDs with the resistors built in. I bought some and they work great. However, they didn't fit into the front housing so I had to eventually replace the relay (which I just mentioned). I still have the ones in the back. Unfortunately, they don't make them in red in 7443 otherwise that would be an ideal option.
 

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Yep, that's my situation too -- all brake lights working great, but the "BRAKE LAMP" light is still on. Is there any relay/sensor/module that can be changed so that this goes away? The MDX has six brake bulbs, and there's no way I'm going to install six resistors.
Did you ever figure out a solution to this? Currently have the same issue with tail/brake lights. Wondering which 2 colored wires I wire the load resistors to (each bulb has red, black and green wires going to it)
 

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I switched out all my interior and exterior bulbs with LED on my 2005 MDX. I paid somebody to do the relay for me. But as for the brake lamp indicator the only thing I've seen is adding resistors to all four lights or somebody somewhere found a single line somewhere in the back where they soldered a single resistor. There are also threads about removing the gauge assembly and removing the bulb for the brake lamp indicator. That is apparently pretty easy from what I've read. However, I'm in Florida now and there are no state inspections so the only thing the brake lamp indicator does is annoy me. It doesn't have any functional issues.

SiriusLED makes some LEDs with the resistors built in. I bought some and they work great. However, they didn't fit into the front housing so I had to eventually replace the relay (which I just mentioned). I still have the ones in the back. Unfortunately, they don't make them in red in 7443 otherwise that would be an ideal option.
Do you happen to know which 2 wires you wire the resistors to for the tail lights (it has red, black, and green)?
 

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Do you happen to know which 2 wires you wire the resistors to for the tail lights (it has red, black, and green)?
I wound up not using the resistors. I was afraid they'd get too hot and melt the housing. I wound up going a different and probably more complicated route. I actually pulled the gauge assembly and removed the light. Now the brake lamp light can't come on because it doesn't exist anymore. (so technically the light is on and maybe there is an error code being kicked off but you can't see it anymore because the light itself was removed.) I describe the process here. LED Brake lights - Got rid of Brake Lamp Indicator

If you want to do resistors there are photos over on the following thread that might be useful. I just found there was no good place to mount the resistors. Maybe if you insulated the heatsinks but that the heatsinks are supposed to get rid of heat.

 

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Let me just say this...I know some people have been very negative about switching to LED but they make a HUGE difference in light output. It's not even close to the same. It looks much better and it was worth the effort.
 

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Let me just say this...I know some people have been very negative about switching to LED but they make a HUGE difference in light output. It's not even close to the same. It looks much better and it was worth the effort.
I agree. It makes a big difference in safety having brighter brake and turn signal lights.
 

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I wound up not using the resistors. I was afraid they'd get too hot and melt the housing. I wound up going a different and probably more complicated route. I actually pulled the gauge assembly and removed the light. Now the brake lamp light can't come on because it doesn't exist anymore. (so technically the light is on and maybe there is an error code being kicked off but you can't see it anymore because the light itself was removed.) I describe the process here. LED Brake lights - Got rid of Brake Lamp Indicator

If you want to do resistors there are photos over on the following thread that might be useful. I just found there was no good place to mount the resistors. Maybe if you insulated the heatsinks but that the heatsinks are supposed to get rid of heat.

Thank you so much for your reply! Awesome. At least you don’t have that light on anymore, got it taken care of oneway or another.

Worth it to have LED lights for added layer of visibility/safety alone.
 

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I agree. It makes a big difference in safety having brighter brake and turn signal lights.
I think it looks a lot better too. I switched everything to LEDs in and outside the car. Really adds a fresh look to the vehicle. Many people are surprised when I tell them my Acura MDX is a 2005. Everyone thinks it's a lot newer than that.
 

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I have gotten the same response. It’s a slick car for being 15 years old!

Did you go with cool white, or warm white LED’s for the interior? Also, can you share a link to the bulbs you purchased or did you just piece them out on eBay/amazon... any recommendations would be appreciated.

Any pictures with your new interior lights?
 

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I have gotten the same response. It’s a slick car for being 15 years old!

Did you go with cool white, or warm white LED’s for the interior? Also, can you share a link to the bulbs you purchased or did you just piece them out on eBay/amazon... any recommendations would be appreciated.

Any pictures with your new interior lights?
The interior lights I replaced much earlier than the exterior lights. A few years ago now, I suspect. I bought my F150 in 2016 and I think I upgraded my LED in my Acura a couple years before that. In fact, I could probably could upgrade those LED now.

I would look at Diode Dynamics or IJDMtoy websites first. But lately I've bought most of my LEDs after sourcing on Amazon. More choices, more reviews. I prefer a white light, at least 3000K. Probably for car interior I got 4000 or 5000K white light.

My Acura has 130K miles on it more or less. I've done a few upgrades now (replaced headlights due to discoloration, started using carbon air filters for cabin, LED all around, switched to drilled and slotted brakes). The brakes was another big deal. I was so tired of getting brakes done and the rotors always warping. These new brakes look great and work well.

My daughter 13 is going to inherit our Acura I think. By then it will be 17 when she can drive and 20 when she's 18. If that car can hang on to 20-25 years, it will be fantastic. Talk about an investment into a car. Just take all the expense of the car including the purchase price and amortize over 20 years. Wow.
 
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