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  #1  
Old 11-18-2020, 09:48 AM
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Led tail light issue

I have a 2001 e53. I have just fitted new led tail lenses. All are working but i have noticed that the top tail light is brighter than the bottom. It looks like the brakes are on but the brake lights are at the bottom with the bottom tail light. Also my car has a 4 pin connector whereas the leds have 5 pins. The box states they are the perfect fit for my car. The original lights worked fine. Has anyone else had this problem. Any help would be appreciated.



Last edited by tommy2704; 11-18-2020 at 10:19 AM.
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Old 11-18-2020, 04:15 PM
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Looks like you have a few wiring mods back there (with the additional LEDS in the lower bumper).

Not all X5 E53 cars have the same tail light wiring - there are a number of variations based on the model year. There is no such thing as an LED tail fitting that will work correctly on all X5 E53 cars...

I think your best bet will be to un-pin the connectors, then put the pins in one at a time until you get the result you want. Maybe study the wiring diagram (for your exact model year etc.) first...
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Old 11-18-2020, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wpoll View Post
Looks like you have a few wiring mods back there (with the additional LEDS in the lower bumper).

Not all X5 E53 cars have the same tail light wiring - there are a number of variations based on the model year. There is no such thing as an LED tail fitting that will work correctly on all X5 E53 cars...

I think your best bet will be to un-pin the connectors, then put the pins in one at a time until you get the result you want. Maybe study the wiring diagram (for your exact model year etc.) first...
HI,Yes i made sure i got the correct lights for the right year. just dont understand why 1 light would be brighter. all work other than that.
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Old 11-18-2020, 06:59 PM
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I bought new after market non LED tail lights that said plug and play, bahahaha not. I had to figure out the wiring myself to get them to work or my brake light would be on all the time just like yours. Your going to have to figure out what wires are for brakes,continuous on for lights ,and make sure signals are working correctly too. It will be trial and error ,but they should work. Good luck.

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Old 11-18-2020, 09:40 PM
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The 01 uses dual filament lamps for all four tail lights but only uses the low power filament for the upper lamp. I rewired mine to use the brake filament for the top lamps because I have some replacement light fixtures that have the filament wired for that ability.

As you noticed the plug on the harness is short a pin for this capability. I rewired my light fixture to supply power to the brake filament to top lamp and my car all four lamps light for brake. I tried to do the same for my wife's but the bulb is not wired to the high power brake only the low power run filament.

The lower lamp only uses the high power filament iirc, using pwm to change the brightness (I could have these backwards), this is why you often see different brightness between top and bottom lamp for the run lamp on e53.

It sounds like the designer for your tail light fixture did not take into account the weird wiring of the e53

Does the top lamp get even brighter when brake is applied or do they all become the same brightness?
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Old 11-18-2020, 09:46 PM
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With some luck you can hopefully figure out how to rewire and get run power and brake power to the correct places without having to exchange the whole assembly.

If the circuit is designed to output low brightness @ reduced voltage and full brightness at 12v, you should be able to wire the top lamp in parallel with the bottom lamp and get four run and four brake lights like I have.

You will have to disconnect the top run light ckt which runs at full voltage expecting a low watt filament
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Old 11-19-2020, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewwynn View Post
The 01 uses dual filament lamps for all four tail lights but only uses the low power filament for the upper lamp. I rewired mine to use the brake filament for the top lamps because I have some replacement light fixtures that have the filament wired for that ability.

As you noticed the plug on the harness is short a pin for this capability. I rewired my light fixture to supply power to the brake filament to top lamp and my car all four lamps light for brake. I tried to do the same for my wife's but the bulb is not wired to the high power brake only the low power run filament.

The lower lamp only uses the high power filament iirc, using pwm to change the brightness (I could have these backwards), this is why you often see different brightness between top and bottom lamp for the run lamp on e53.

It sounds like the designer for your tail light fixture did not take into account the weird wiring of the e53

Does the top lamp get even brighter when brake is applied or do they all become the same brightness?
they all become the same brightness.
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Old 11-19-2020, 06:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by puddinboo View Post
I bought new after market non LED tail lights that said plug and play, bahahaha not. I had to figure out the wiring myself to get them to work or my brake light would be on all the time just like yours. Your going to have to figure out what wires are for brakes,continuous on for lights ,and make sure signals are working correctly too. It will be trial and error ,but they should work. Good luck.

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thanks for the advise. looks like thats the way to go
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Old 11-19-2020, 06:29 AM
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thanks for all the advise. well that is what i will do. can i just confirm that the black wire out of the lamps is the earth?? pretty obvious but thoughts id ask as i only have a 4 pin plug but the lenses are fitted with a 5 pin which includes a 3 way black wire.
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Old 11-19-2020, 11:09 AM
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well after a lot of messing around i have now got them all working as they should but there is a difference.
the only way they would all work normally was to take out the lights wires and not use them at all. everything still works including the parking lights/ (not sure how)
the lights are now all the same and the brakes work on all four lights.
if i connect the light wires, all lights automatically become brake lights. go figure.
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