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Old 04-08-2010, 04:49 PM   #1
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Removal of lens on late model LED running lights

Does anyone know for sure how to remove the colored lenses on late model LED running lights. a couple of mine have a little moisture condensed on the inside and I'd like to dry them out. It looks like they might just pop off the base, but I don't want to break anything.

Thanks.
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Old 04-08-2010, 05:02 PM   #2
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Is there a screw holding the lens on? Moisture is entering mainly through the screw hole.

The second thing that happens is that the screw starts rusting through the nickel plating on the screw. lewster & silvertwinkie have each documented the following process ...

The screws are metric. Take one to ACE Hardware and purchase some stainless steel screws of the same diameter -- I know that I had to buy screws that were almost 1/4" longer than the original screws holding the lens in place. There's plenty of room inside the marker light housing to accommodate that. You won't have to shorten them. Get some O-rings to match and reinstall the new screws with an O-ring apiece. I know dealers will seal instead with the tiniest dab of Sikaflex 221 or Vulkem instead.

On another subject I had two of my marker light bulbs burn out within 3 years. Have read about LED conversions. Prolly should move in this direction...
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:48 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Airstream01 View Post
Does anyone know for sure how to remove the colored lenses on late model LED running lights....
sorry but this is UMpossible
___________

the LED version of these cheap running lights is different...

from the prior (also cheap) incandescent bulb running lights.

the LED bulb is INSIDE a 'semi sealed' lens/backing unit...

'semi sealed' because there is still a hole on the back side for the wiring...

what can/does happen is the SEALANT around the base/bezel fails...

then the FAT gasket behind it soaks up water...

and THAT process lets water from BEHIND the light unit migrate inside the lens/backing ...

it's also possible that the lens is CRACKed and letting in water, but that is less common.

so the options are...

1. REPLACE the lens/bulb/case/wiring unit...
2. REMOVED the same, dry it out, re install and TRY sealing it better.

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:41 AM   #4
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Hi, I bought new lights and bezels for mine. The new lights were about $20.00 each and much better than the factory ones that keep burning out the LEDs one by one, or more. I replaced all of my tail lights. [less expensive and better]
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:52 AM   #5
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Rob, my tail lights are fine (so far) its the teardrop shaped running lights that are the issue. Looks like I'll just grin and bear it for the time being. Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:41 AM   #6
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Rob, my tail lights are fine (so far) its the teardrop shaped running lights that are the issue. Looks like I'll just grin and bear it for the time being. Thanks everyone.
CHECK the sealant around them at the very least...

IF the sealant looks great, the OTHER source for the water is...

INSIDE the trailer.

yeah, there is a hole in the shell UNDER the lights and moisture from INSIDE the trailer wall can evaporate/condense into the running lights.

so IF the sealant is tight, basically this water moves back n forth from the light to the wall/insulation...not cool.

it's a nuisance to fiddle with these, but not that hard.

IF you have a tube of parbond or a can of acryl-r it's pretty easy to take ONE LIGHT off and look at the back...

but RE installing it means laying a tiny bead of sealant, so you wanna have either of the 2 products above on hand.

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:56 AM   #7
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I don't think its coming from inside the trailer. I very rarely have any condensation whatsoever inside. I think the problem is the gasket around where the colored plastic lens meets the chrome bezel/mount. The sealant around the bezel/mount to the aluminum exterior panels look good on all lights. I'll take some photos just to show what I'm talking about. Standby.

Here are a couple photos of the light with the issue


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Old 04-09-2010, 12:27 PM   #8
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good pics 01!

that will help others to understand what u r dealing with...

but there is no edge/perimeter/lip gasket where the lens CASE meets the bezel...

this is the best pic i could find (from kev/bambi bandit)

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((open and ZOOOOOM it for pretty good details))


again the BASE is screwed down to the shell with a LARGE soft spongy gasket behind it...

((the black/sponge can be seen oozing though the wiring hole))

the leds are INSIDE the semi sealed teardrop and basically 'snap' into the base, with 2 retention clips.

so it's easy to snap out the lens/led segment and look behind it for LEAKS in the wiring holes...

or cracks in the plastic part.
________

but the fat spongy gasket BEHIND the bezel can soak up water, it's a goofy design and a weakness in the new lights.

while the water MAY NOT be coming from inside, the point is you can't know WITHOUT popping out a lens and inspecting the back side.

as for NO moisture in the walls ?

EVERYBODY thinks this and every unit has water in that space 2 some degree...

cheers
2air'

replacement LEDs are ~20$ at some dealers like this...

http://odmrv.com/catalog/index.php?m...&cPath=116_118
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Old 04-09-2010, 12:55 PM   #9
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So I can pop out the plastic part. That is good news.
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:35 PM   #10
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As Bob pointed out, I did the screw replacement with "o" ring. I do have a seal under the lens. Doing this reduced the water by over 95%. I do occasionally see some slight moisture, but nowhere near what it was.

I also replaced the incandescent bulbs with LED and in addition to less condensation, they run significantly cooler (and of course use minimal power compared to the incandescent).
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:40 PM   #11
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As Bob pointed out...
see title, see pics, no holes, no screws...

old fix, no work here.

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:23 PM   #12
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That blows...sorry bud....
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Old 05-18-2010, 12:33 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=2airishuman;835683]

but the fat spongy gasket BEHIND the bezel can soak up water, it's a goofy design and a weakness in the new lights.

cheers
2air'

2air, I agree this is a goofy design. My issue is on a 2010 Interstate and it's the external light the call the "porch light" but the problem is the same. The gasket is the black spongy foam you mention; looks like open cell foam to me. This would mean that it would be certain to soak up water which would then be certain to find it's was inside the lens. The Sr. Customer Support tech at AS told me to drill a #30 hole in the bottom of the plastic lens. What do you think of that?

WS in AK
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Old 05-18-2010, 01:23 PM   #14
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hi wayne

is THIS is the light in question?


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drilling a hole in the lens would provide drainage and might help with moisture inside the lens/around the bulb socket.
_________

have you taken off the light and looked at all the parts?

if so, a PHOTO or 2 here might help folks to provide better ideas.

is the black base/lens ONE UNIT like the newer led running lights?

with NO replaceable parts INSIDE/under the lens? with the lens GLUED to the base?

IF the issue is the gasket UNDER the light base, against the interstate shell/surface...

one could REMOVED light, DRY the gasket completely, reinstall and then...

add a urethane sealant round the perimeter (white, black or silver)...

this would keep water way from the gasket providing the sealant is intact.

otoh, if the LENS is removable to service the bulb, the small weep hole is probably a good idea.
__________

applying sealant may not LOOK pretty but if the gap is small enough (1-2mm) to use acryl-r...

this stuff really looks good when dry, even in the hands of us amateurs.

sorta like a silver pinstripe around the edges.

adding a thin bead of sealant isn't a guarantee that water won't happen,

as the pics in post #7 clearly show both (sealant and water)...

cheers
2air'
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