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1989 Cadillac Brougham D'elegance, 1972 VW Superbeetle baja
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39 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
are the B-pillar lights on an 89 brougham d'elegance supposed to light up, or would i have to modify them to do so?
 

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Past: 95 Fleetwood, 91 Brougham. Now: 92 Lexus SC300
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5,418 Posts
Yes they light up, and yes they tend to break when they get older. I think the part that most often fails is the transformer, someone else can chime in on this though.
 

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1990 350 Brougham (The cruiser), 1988 Mark VII LSC (The DD)
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5,545 Posts
As far as I am aware the transformer is actually the more reliable part. The electroluminescent paper that was used is easily destroyed by UV rays and because GM was retarded in the 80's they never put a UV coating on them.
 

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1990 350 Brougham (The cruiser), 1988 Mark VII LSC (The DD)
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5,545 Posts
Try and find good ones. These things were not designed to be fixed, they are sealed shut. You can buy EL tape on the internet in several places now but you will have to cut open the lights somehow to replace it.
 

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1989 Cadillac Brougham D'elegance, 1972 VW Superbeetle baja
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39 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
i also found on an older thread that they sometimes go out because of an inverter in the trunk that fails. does that sound about right? id rather just replace that than have to find other lights that worked since ive never seen any that did.
 

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1990 350 Brougham (The cruiser), 1988 Mark VII LSC (The DD)
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5,545 Posts
Test it. Take a voltmeter and measure the power coming out of the inverter. It should be around 110V AC. The inverters do go bad but the lights themselves are most likely toast as well, especially if the car sat outside for any length of time. I have working lights on my '88 but the inverter went out a few months ago and I have yet to find a good one. The inverter is just as hard to find as the lights themselves (took me almost a year to find working lights for it).
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Has anyone ever tried to replace the electroluminescent paper with a strip of LED's?

Before I found out that the lights were supposed to function, I was going to replace what ever was inside with LED's and wire them to turn signals. I never got the lights out because the screws holding the padding to the B-pillar are stripped (half of them, the heads turn but the screws won't come out.)
 

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1990 350 Brougham (The cruiser), 1988 Mark VII LSC (The DD)
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5,545 Posts
LEDs may be hard to fit in there. The distance between the lens of the light and the housing is only like a 10th of an inch, which is what makes them flush to the body and why they used the paper in the first place. Also, the paper produces a very pleasing light that does not violate any state codes. It is very soft, soothing, and evenly spread light.

On the other hand, LEDs produce a rather harsh and bright light. They can be dimmed but it is unlikly that you will get as even of a light pattern as what you get with the paper. Here are pictures of both my '88 and my '90. Unfortunately the inverter on my '88 took a dump at the end of last year so if anybody can get me a working one I would pay you handsomely.








 

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1984 Coupe Deville, 1991 Brougham d'elegance, 1996 Deville
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229 Posts
What is a good web site that sells the cut outs? I looked, but did not really find any in small amounts.
 

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1991 Cadillac Brougham D'Elegance 5.7 Litre, 1994 DeVille
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6,796 Posts
Everyone says its the transformer that dies and makes them stop working but its always the lights I see that are dead and the rest is fine.
 
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