LED Load Resistors, Why you need them

 So you're looking to upgrade to LED lights for your Vehicle. Well before you do it’s important to note that some vehicle light systems do not behave the same when using low current drawing LED lights. Sometimes it can result in just a faster-flashing indicator or can at times with some newer vehicles cause other electrical issues such as cruise control not working, dashboard errors and more. 

So what’s the fix?
The most reliable solution is to install our purpose-designed BASE6 load resistors. At a basic level, load resistors are purpose-designed for installation in vehicles where problems result from L.E.D replacement of standard incandescent globes. Suitable for indicator and brake light circuits, LED load resistors are designed to draw the same current as a 21-watt incandescent globe, correcting any problems with low current draw you may be experiencing

As a general rule of thumb, we will always suggest when upgrading to LED lights on your vehicle, that you consider at least one pair of load resistors to compensate on the indicator circuit.  

The alternative is to fit a non-load sensitive flasher or a flasher with a measured load matching the LED load, but this is not always practical with many newer vehicles using the body control module to handle these functions. 

So how do I install these? 

As a rule of thumb, load resistors should ALWAYS be wired between the input wires of the lamp, NOT the chassis of the vehicle or trailer! If fitted to the Chassis, a bad earth connection is possible and can result in problems with the lighting system of the vehicle. Further, LED Load resistors must be mounted on a metal surface, the resistor can reach temperatures of up to 170 Celsius.

The most common functions requiring Load Resistors are generally the indicator and brake circuits. However, this is not gospel and some newer vehicles have been known to require resistors on EVERY function! If in doubt about what functions your vehicle needs load resistors on, contact your local auto electrician who can access your vehicle in detail. 

Other Considerations:

We mentioned it above but I can't stress this enough, LED Load resistors do generate heat, it is advisable that they are mounted directly to the solid metal of the vehicle, DO NOT tape the resistors up in the loom!!!

Many new vehicles utilise CANBUS electrical systems, if you are not confident with working with these types of systems, we suggest you contact and Qualified Auto Electrician or your motor vehicle dealer.

The BASE6 Load Resistors are a simple and effective solution to this problem, replacing the load that has been reduced by fitting LED lamps for standard incandescent lamps. They are also available in both 12-volt and 24-volt options.



Comments (2)

load reisters

By: on 10 October 2022
i have ford ranger + caravan with led flashers . ihave 12v 50w 6ohm reisters is this ok .BOB

Updated caravan tail lights (stop/tail/indicator)

By: on 3 March 2022
I have updated my caravan tail lights which has resistors all ready fitted to the indicator and stop lights. The old ones were a combination stop tail lights. When I fitted the new ones as per the colour coding the indicator works perfectly, the tail light works, the stop light flashes (note th Stop light circuit has a resistor fitted) but when tail light and stop light are operated together the flashing stops but the stop light is not working Question; do I need to fit resistor to the tail light circuit or fit a second resistor to the stop light circuit. Or what else do I need to do. Thanks

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