How To: Change License Plate Bulbs (Video)

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by usbseawolf2000, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. osiris12

    osiris12 Owner of 3, yes three priuses

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    Thanks for the post. Came in handy!
     
  2. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    Is it pretty much the same with 2010 redesigned model?

    [Edit]: Oh, I see you have all 3 generations!
     
  3. navguy12

    navguy12 Member

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    Thanks for this post. Reminds me of pulling panels off my antiques....

    I'm getting my '08 in a few days.

    Do these vehicles come from the factory with LEDs? Someone mentioned warden_jp for LED bulbs. Have folks been swapping factory incandescent bulbs (exterior and/or interior) with LEDs? If so, what is the consensus?

    Thanks

    Cheers

    Signed: 4 days to wait!!
     
  4. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    It comes with incandescent bulbs which is why we are swapping it to LEDs.

    One of the two died after about 3-4 years.
     
  5. NortTexSalv04Prius

    NortTexSalv04Prius Active Member

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    That website is not the "best" and really has poor navigation. Auto Illumination, Super Bright LED, and ebay just as good aka "best"
     
  6. ggarb

    ggarb Member

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    Note that once you have the black plastic cover off, you can easily unsnap the cable from each bulb holder. This then makes it easier to get a small pair of pliers on the bulb holder if you need a bit of extra help in twisting the thing (counterclockwise about a quarter turn) to remove it.
     
  7. mtnbiker30

    mtnbiker30 New Member

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    Once you unsnap the cable from each bulb, use a small diameter stiff wire (I used a lawn flag). Run the wire through the small holes at the bottom of the socket and use it to get leverage and twist the socket right out. It also works great getting it back in snugly.
     
  8. SteamPowered

    SteamPowered Junior Member

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    Here's my little writeup for how I did it. Hopefully not too redundant. By the way, USB2000 must have hands of steel, seriously.

    1. Got my lights from amazon, same as parking lights.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0047RK746/ref=oh_o00_s00_i00_details


    2. I had to use ALOT of hand strength to remove the plastic cover. Broke one of the plastic fastener holders, not a big deal.

    3. I unplugged the lightbulbs and then tried to unscrew them with my hands. No way it was going to happen. I do alot of physical activity that involves finger strength, I'm probably in the top 1% percentile here, and I had no shot at moving the screws. I used a simple adjustable wrench instead, that worked easily once I got its jaws in there. Even though it takes some torque to remove the headlights, you definitely still need to use finesse to make sure you're simply rotating the headlight and not breaking the part.



    4. The wedge LEDs I got needed alot of tweaking of the wires to get it to light up. I definitely stabbed myself with one of the wires at some point. EDIT: Well apparently they are polarity sensitive?! That makes sense why I kept having to put them a couple times.

    See pictures of (1) the wrench I used on the bulb holder, (2,3) some idea of how to bend the wedge light wire (4) working light
     

    Attached Files:

    2 people like this.
  9. KK7PW

    KK7PW Junior Member

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    Well, I just installed my LED bulbs for license plate with little difficulty. Used gentle tug to remove lid and had to extract one of the blue snaps that separated from the cover -- no problem, no damage.

    I then used a wrench to gently twist CCW and remove the bulb. Replaced bulb with LED unit and voila -- almost.

    Turns out, the bulb color does not match (blue / white variations) and one of the five LEDs is not functioning. :(

    Disappointing and because only $5 and change, not worth returning for replacement (imagine the embodied energy costs to do so). So, I am somewhat satisfied with "Comfort Wheels" via Amazon. If they are reading this post and would like to contact me to provide a replacement, I would accept. :)

    Thanks for the mod advice.

    KK7PW
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. fattychips

    fattychips New Member

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    awesome post usbseawolf2000!! Now I can finally change mine to led tomorrow!
     
  11. FraterAV2004

    FraterAV2004 New Member

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    I just did this on my 2004 Prius. I used a 14mm socket on an extension. MUCH easier to push and turn then using your fingers . Worked like a charm.
     
    Batmobile 2010 and diomedes05 like this.
  12. diomedes05

    diomedes05 Prius Novice

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    I just replaced my stock bulbs on the license plate with LED's and the 14mm socket worked great! It was a bit snug to fit around the the receptacle, but that actually helps give you control. I removed the bulbs a couple times during this project to get the LED's to match in color temperature and it was very easy with the 14mm.

    In case you have not read it in numerous places before: LED's are polar sensitive! Test them before putting everything back in its place. This saved me a lot of work by simply turning them on and adjusting as needed while everything was open.

    When I took the cover off, I used a gentle bouncing method instead of straight force. It came off just fine, but about half of the blue snaps stayed in the door. This was not a big deal to remove them and none were broken, but I can see how it would be easier to break them if they do not stay in the panel.

    Great thread! This project would have taken twice the time and triple the effort if I had not read everyone's tips!
     
  13. Batmobile 2010

    Batmobile 2010 Junior Member

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    I just replaced both bulbs for my 2010 Prius and I used the 14mm. Correct it worked fast and easy. Thanks
     
  14. Chris Dragon

    Chris Dragon Junior Member

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    Thanks for the video but when I try to view it, it redirects to here and says "This video is private". Can that be fixed?
     
  15. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    Fixed, Chris Dragon.
     
  16. Chris Dragon

    Chris Dragon Junior Member

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    Thanks, but I'm still having the same problem. I've tried two different browsers and two different google accounts as well as not being logged in to google. It always says it's private. Try logging out of google and viewing it and I assume it will say it's private for you too.

    Update: It's working now. Thanks!
     
  17. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    Sorry, it was set to private. YouTube on mobile does not show or allow me to change it.

    I just used my PC and set it to publish it to the public.
     
  18. FCguy

    FCguy Junior Member

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  19. NorthsidePaul

    NorthsidePaul New Member

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    Great. How do you put the panel back on?
     
  20. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    Put all the 11 blue tabs back on the cover (some may be stuck on the hatch). Just align it and push the cover back in place. You can hit it with the palm of your hands just to make sure all the tabs are secured back on the hatch
     
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