3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux) - Page 3
Cadillac
 

Cadillac Forums | Help Us Help You | Advertise | Cadillac Parts | Cadillac News | Cadillac Classifieds / (Old System)

Cadillac Technical Archive | Cadillac Dealers | Cadillac Reviews | Cadillac Dealer Reviews | Cadillac Vendors

CadillacForums.com is the premier Cadillac Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
+ Reply to Thread
Page 3 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 31 to 45 of 59
Like Tree3Likes
Cadillac CTS First Generation Forum - 2003 - 2007 Discussion, 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux) in Cadillac CTS Coupe, Sport Sedan and Sport Wagon Forums; i used a hair dryer for about 3hrs.... will keep on tring.... thanks and dam i broke the red cover ...
  1. #31
    vlbasten is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): CTS
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    53

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    i used a hair dryer for about 3hrs.... will keep on tring.... thanks
    and dam i broke the red cover there is a crack on the top now....

  2. #32
    tommy compton's Avatar
    tommy compton is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 06 CTS-V
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    tha peg
    Posts
    2,492

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    I'm not sure if a hair dryer is hot enough, I used a heat gun, they cost les than 20.00 at most hadrware stores.

  3. #33
    vlbasten is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): CTS
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    53

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    finally made it... just as u said, the hair dryer may not provide enough temp, so I ask my gf to heat while i was prying~~
    i wish i did no break the lense... anyway it works now, wait the glue to dry...

  4. #34
    Fultoncm is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    48

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    Quote Originally Posted by vlbasten View Post
    i used a hair dryer for about 3hrs.... will keep on tring.... thanks
    and dam i broke the red cover there is a crack on the top now....
    Same things happened to me about a year ago. After cracking, the red lens separates from the material below it. Starts to look a little funky and water gets in there.

  5. #35
    vlbasten is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): CTS
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    53

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    what did you do to it?

  6. #36
    njgliderider1 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): CTS
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Age
    58
    Posts
    1

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    I have a couple of questions:
    1) You say to "wire a length of wire to each of the outside electrodes". There are 2 wires coming out of the plastic pieces on the far ends of each of the tubes - white & black from one, red & black from the other. Can I simply cut the white & black wires, twist them together and solder another length of wire to the joined wires? And then do the same with the red & black wires on the other tube? . Are those blue & black plastic pieces on the far ends of each tube removable? I'm afraid to mess with them for fear of breaking a tube.
    2) Any problem, as far as you can tell, with just leaving the old transformer where it is ... thereby not having to disturb anything and again risk breaking a tube?

  7. #37
    alconk is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Automobile(s): CTS
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Age
    46
    Posts
    120

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    I thought the third brake light was LEDs anyway and not neon??

  8. #38
    Gaetano04's Avatar
    Gaetano04 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
    Automobile(s): 2004 cts sport
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    GTA, Canada
    Age
    28
    Posts
    864

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    two neon tubes,, the second gen cts are led

  9. #39
    tommy compton's Avatar
    tommy compton is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 06 CTS-V
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    tha peg
    Posts
    2,492

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    Quote Originally Posted by njgliderider1 View Post
    I have a couple of questions:
    1) You say to "wire a length of wire to each of the outside electrodes". There are 2 wires coming out of the plastic pieces on the far ends of each of the tubes - white & black from one, red & black from the other. Can I simply cut the white & black wires, twist them together and solder another length of wire to the joined wires? And then do the same with the red & black wires on the other tube? . Are those blue & black plastic pieces on the far ends of each tube removable? I'm afraid to mess with them for fear of breaking a tube.
    2) Any problem, as far as you can tell, with just leaving the old transformer where it is ... thereby not having to disturb anything and again risk breaking a tube?
    I'm not too sure what you mean, wire them like my 2nd diagram if you are using 2 transformers, yes you can use the existing wiring. Join the two inner wires together, then wire it to the negative lead. The outter conections on each tube I used for the positive. You can reverse the polarities if you choose.
    If you found a higher power single transformer than I used, then you could wire it like diagram 1.

    You can leave the stock transformer in place if you choose, just clip the wires going to it. It was pretty easy to remove from what I remember, and makes for more room to tuck any extra wire with it no longer there.

  10. #40
    ghettomike's Avatar
    ghettomike is offline Cadillac Owners Master
    Automobile(s): 03 CTS 3.2L (Sold) / 09 CBR 600rr /2014 GMC Sierra
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    off the grid.
    Age
    30
    Posts
    7,891

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    if anyone is attempting this and breaks a tube taking it apart i have 2 from mine i dont need and would be willing to sell, i did a LED swap and it turned out great.
    not trying to thread jack but here is mine...the neon looks better but mine is cheaper and easier.
    http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums...led-cheap.html

  11. #41
    bpitas's Avatar
    bpitas is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Automobile(s): Cadillac CTS-V
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Winchester, MA
    Age
    44
    Posts
    389

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    Hey Tommy,

    My taillight went out and I have to get inspected soon so I was going to do this fix, but wanted to make sure I was doing the "latest solution". You mention that you mounted the additional transformer because you were seeing dead spots when the input voltage to the transformer was low (due to electrical load on your car). Was it just input load do you think or is there something about Neon bulbs that require more voltage when it gets cold? I ask because I was going to get the NeonXA from Amazing 1, but I wanted to try and do a 1-transformer solution if possible. So I was wondering if you thought using 1 higher-voltage transformer would be preferable to using two lower voltage transformers. Looking at the Amazing1.com website, it looks like the NeonXA is 4k volts, but they have one called the DC45 that is supposed to be 4.5k volts. Also, the NeonXA says it "Operates from an automotive 14 volt battery system", whereas the DC45 says "12VDC input, 4500v 20ma Output Transformer, powers 4-15 feet of neon".
    It may just be a coincidence that they say "14 volt battery", instead of "~12v", but maybe the reason your single NeonXA wasn't working is because you were below the 14v input voltage that the transformer was looking for?

    How did you figure out what the input voltage requirements were for those tubes? Is there some documentation on that somewhere? I'm just wondering if the 2000v DC20 is enough power, and will work fine since it seems to be set up for ~12v power.

    Also, what happens if your output voltage is too high with Neon? Does it fry the tubes?

    (My only experience with neon is having a fake neon beer light in college! :-) )

    Thanks in advance for any info!

  12. #42
    tommy compton's Avatar
    tommy compton is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
    Automobile(s): 06 CTS-V
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    tha peg
    Posts
    2,492

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    Quote Originally Posted by bpitas View Post
    Hey Tommy,

    My taillight went out and I have to get inspected soon so I was going to do this fix, but wanted to make sure I was doing the "latest solution". You mention that you mounted the additional transformer because you were seeing dead spots when the input voltage to the transformer was low (due to electrical load on your car). Was it just input load do you think or is there something about Neon bulbs that require more voltage when it gets cold? I ask because I was going to get the NeonXA from Amazing 1, but I wanted to try and do a 1-transformer solution if possible. So I was wondering if you thought using 1 higher-voltage transformer would be preferable to using two lower voltage transformers. Looking at the Amazing1.com website, it looks like the NeonXA is 4k volts, but they have one called the DC45 that is supposed to be 4.5k volts. Also, the NeonXA says it "Operates from an automotive 14 volt battery system", whereas the DC45 says "12VDC input, 4500v 20ma Output Transformer, powers 4-15 feet of neon".
    It may just be a coincidence that they say "14 volt battery", instead of "~12v", but maybe the reason your single NeonXA wasn't working is because you were below the 14v input voltage that the transformer was looking for?

    How did you figure out what the input voltage requirements were for those tubes? Is there some documentation on that somewhere? I'm just wondering if the 2000v DC20 is enough power, and will work fine since it seems to be set up for ~12v power.

    Also, what happens if your output voltage is too high with Neon? Does it fry the tubes?

    (My only experience with neon is having a fake neon beer light in college! :-) )

    Thanks in advance for any info!
    You could be onto something with the 12v vs 14v. I don't have any documentation on it, I only guestimated based on a discussion with a neon sign guy where I went to get a new tube made. I know they list how many feet of neon they will light up on the site, but the problem is they are listing it for a stadard diameter neon tubing which is way larger than the tubes in the tail light. Probably tubing the diameter of that in your beer sign, the smaller the diameter the more power it needs to light up. Gas pressure is also a factor, lower pressure if I remember is easy to light, and the lights in the tail light maybe a higher pressure.
    I don't think higher output voltage will fry the tubes, they will get brighter, but who knows maybe if it is excessive it may shorten the life of the tubes???
    Sorry I can't give a definitive answer, I can only tell you what worked for me from trial and error.
    I can only speculate on an answer for the rest. I would say a transformer with lower volatage requirements and higher output should work better than just one of the ones I used, maybe enough to fully lighten under any electrical load and temp.
    Also remember if you get a 12v transformer it will be recieving more than 12v, that may be a good thing for lighting the tubes but I have no Idea what it will do for transformer life. however I don't really think that should be a problem.
    If you are trying a 12v transformer I would still try to get one with a higher out put voltage than the single 14v ones I used, I don't think 2k v will be enough to power both tubes.

  13. #43
    bpitas's Avatar
    bpitas is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Automobile(s): Cadillac CTS-V
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Winchester, MA
    Age
    44
    Posts
    389

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    OK I just ordered the Firehouse one that is supposedly 5kv, and supposedly ramps up to the load of the neon automagically. I'll report back how it works once I get it and get it installed. Not looking forward to trying to separate the light housing based on all the horror stories I have heard. :-)

  14. #44
    bpitas's Avatar
    bpitas is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Automobile(s): Cadillac CTS-V
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Winchester, MA
    Age
    44
    Posts
    389

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    Crap - can't remember if I replied (maybe in another thread?) after I rebuilt my tail light, but it worked.

    Mine was all rusted up beyond recognition.

    Old one:
    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo...eat=directlink
    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo...eat=directlink

    Basically I put a new transformer into the space where the old one went, and wired everything back up and it works fine.

    Here's the new transformer:

    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo...eat=directlink

    Here's what it looks like all together, although don't use this pic as a reference for the wiring, because this was with the two bulbs in parallel, and that didn't work (see below). But this pic shows how things fit together.

    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo...eat=directlink

    The big issue for me was taking the housing apart - I couldn't for the life of me get it to come apart, and when I tried to force it, it deformed because I had to heat it up so much to even budge. So the black backing portion of the housing is not perfectly lined up with the red tail light bulb anymore. I don't think you'd notice it from >10' from the car, but it makes it so the light doesn't quite fit flush against the trunk lid now. Bummer. No idea how people did that successfully, because it wouldn't budge for me until it was heated up hot enough to melt the plastic.



    If you can get the housing separated though then the rest of the repair is simple. The new transformer fits right into the spot of the old one. The only advice I have is NOT to wire the bulbs separately so that each has it's own positive and negative. From what I could tell, the "voltage sensing" nature of the new transformer makes it only put out enough light to light the first bulb, and then it stabilizes down to a lower voltage. That allows it to not cook shorter lights but still have enough power to spark up longer lights. The longer a neon tube, the more voltage it takes to fire it up. So if you wire up the two separate bulbs in parallel, so each has it's own positive and negative connection to the transformer, then it senses the first of the two bulbs to light up and assumes it's all set, so it doesn't ramp up the voltage enough in to completely fire up the other segment.

    Here's what it looks like if you do it in parallel - you can see that part of one of the bulbs is always off because it didn't get enough juice.
    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo...eat=directlink

    The solution is simple - just run the two bulbs in series and it works perfectly. Tie the center of the two bulbs together, and have the positive and the negative terminals of the transformer go to the outer edges of the bulbs. Then the transformer considers both bulbs as one big bulb and puts through enough juice to run them both.

    Hope this helps!

  15. #45
    Randle Todd is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 2003 CTS
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    2

    Re: 3rd Brake light fix with pix(redeux)

    How did you get it open without breaking it. I tried this on my own car and I swear I am going to break it. any advice? special tools?

Quick Reply Quick Reply

Register Now

Please enter the name by which you would like to log-in and be known on this site.
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.

Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Bookmarks

Cadillac Posting Rules

  • You may post new threads
  • You may post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Read about Lincoln | Buick | Kia Forte Forum
Need products for your Cadillac? Check out your options at the links below:

custom floor mats | Cadillac Chrome and Black Chrome Wheels | window tinting