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Saab 9-3 SportSedan, Convertible ('04+)/Combi & 9-3X Workshop Saab 9-3 SportSedan, Convertible ('04+)/Combi & 9-3X , 2003 - 2012 Technical Forum

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  #1  
Old 13th February 2007
DMBeer41 DMBeer41 is offline
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Default Dashboad Lights

I love the green glow of the dashboard lights, but I thought it would be cool to swap them out with blue coloring to match the exterior of the car. I know, I know...that's such a ricer thing to do, but I think it'd look good.

So I ask, is the dashboard lighting actually green lights, or is there a green film between a white light and the transparent parts of the panels? Anyone have any idea of how to swap out either of these situations?

Thanks for the help (and the bashings which I assume will come from this being a ricer move).
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  #2  
Old 13th February 2007
brianl703 brianl703 is offline
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They're green LEDs.

I expect they're soldered in--after all, LEDs usually never fail.
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  #3  
Old 13th February 2007
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Vector-Tom Vector-Tom is offline
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Are you sure they're LEDs? I didn't think LEDs could be dimmed like you can with our dash lights.
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  #4  
Old 13th February 2007
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LED can be dimmed because there very voltage sensitive.
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  #5  
Old 13th February 2007
brianl703 brianl703 is offline
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Yes, they're LEDs, and you can probably tell if you move your eyes quickly across the dashboard at night--at least I can see them flickering because the dimming is done with pulse width modulation (PWM). An incandescent bulb won't have any noticeable flicker when used with a PWM dimmer.

As a side note, I also see the same effect with LED traffic signals--I can easily tell when they're LED traffic signals because they again have that flicker I can see when I move my eyes across them. This isn't because they're being dimmed, this is because they're powered with AC instead of DC.
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  #6  
Old 13th February 2007
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I stand corrected.
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  #7  
Old 7th November 2007
mh7319 mh7319 is offline
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Default

Would it be possible for some one to swap the green led's with say red or blue? I do a lot of night driving and find the green to be annoying. Even when using the nightpanel feature.

Does anyone know where the led's are located in the dash?
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  #8  
Old 7th November 2007
brianl703 brianl703 is offline
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Probably, but the LEDs are almost certainly soldered in, and may even be surface mount LEDs.

So the question comes down to..how good are you at soldering?
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  #9  
Old 7th November 2007
mh7319 mh7319 is offline
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Never attempted to solder in a car.

Do you think it is worth it? or should I just try to change the interior lights. I am looking to personalize my car more without destroying it.
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  #10  
Old 7th November 2007
brianl703 brianl703 is offline
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You could change the color of the courtesy/map/dome lights, they're just regular bulbs.

I think it'd be very labor intensive to change the color of all of the green LEDs in this car and there is a high risk of damage, particularly if you do not have experience soldering/desoldering printed circuit board mounted components. Also they may be surface-mount components which are very tiny and difficult to solder.
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  #11  
Old 7th November 2007
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robhurlburt robhurlburt is offline
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i don't know how hard it is in saabs, but people managed to change all their lights in the MK3 VWs. It has the same bland green, never really liked it myself.
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  #12  
Old 7th November 2007
brianl703 brianl703 is offline
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It's pretty easy to change the bulbs in any car that uses incandescent dash lighting. They're designed to be replaced. Since they glow white you can also just change the filter over the bulb from green to whatever color you want.

LEDs, on the other hand, for all practical purposes and intents will never burn out so they're not made to be easily replaced. They also don't use filters to give the color--the green LEDs in the Saab really are green and there's no way to change that short of replacing them with white, blue, red, or whatever color LEDs.

(Actually that's not quite true..you can change them to glow a dull red if you feed too much voltage into them)
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  #13  
Old 7th November 2007
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Columbus2.0t Columbus2.0t is offline
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Default If this helps you any...

MCC has a green film behind the face that makes the panel the green color and the lights are clear. However the indivual buttons must have ther own coloring on the back side because the backlight was white in behind those: heated seats, ac, & recirculate buttons. I didnt look that close.

I dont know what the other dash components have but thats what I can tell you about the MCC. It was as eazy as just clipping the face panel off and changing out the film there.

The ulgy green digital read outs would stick out like a sore thumb though..
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