Full Volvo S40 and V50 (2004.5+) LED conversion (Should apply C30 and the P1 C70)
Have a P2 (S60/V70 or S60R/V70R)? Check out my P2 LED conversion thread.
NOTE: There's a style change in the 07+ (aka MK2) so some of those bulbs are different (look for the notes).
number of bulbs | bulb style | (year) | [superbrightleds.com part number]
Front Overhead Lights (aka "Map Lights" or "Reading Lights")
2x 42mm festoon (-2006) [4210-xHP3 (3 LED) or 4210-xHP6 (6 LED)](See NOTE (6))
4x 194 (2007+) [WLED-xHP (1 LED) or WLED-xHP5 (5 LED) ](For blue base bulb holders, see NOTE (9))
Rear Overhead Lights
2x 194 (all) [WLED-xHP5 (5 LED drop-in) or WLED-xHP6-DAC (6 LED, requires soldering but better pattern)
Front Foot Well Lights and Glovebox(See NOTE (8))
3x 194 (all) [WLED-xHP5 (5 LED drop-in) or 3710-CWHP3-V2 (3 LED festoon, modifications required) or Complete Assembly from volvotech.eu]
1x 37mm festoon (all) [3710-CWHP3-V2 (3 LED) or Complete Assembly from volvotech.eu]
Vanity Mirror Lights (aka "Sun Visor" lights)
4x 6x31mm festoon-SV5.5 (all) [F30-WHP-12V] (See NOTE (5))
New Info! Headlight Switch Illumination (aka Light Switch Module, or LSM, 3/111)
2x neo-wedge 6mm (10mm base) "instrument cluster" bulb - yellow-green (all) [TBD] (See NOTE (10a))
New Info! Hazard Switch Illumination
1x neo-wedge 4.8mm (8mm base) "instrument cluster" bulb - white (all) 5mm LED How-To (See NOTE (10b))
2x 37mm festoon (all) [3710-CWHP3-V2 (3 LED)]
* Euro spec may use 2x 194 in plate lights - check bulb before ordering overseas.
City Lights (AKA "Parking Lights")
2x 194 (-2006) [194-W-120 (1 LED); better: autolumination "194 With Globe" or "Cree Beam XPE" (BRIGHT!) ] * Regulated bulbs last longer, see NOTE (3)*
2x 194 (2007- no bi-xenon) [WLED-xHP (1 LED) or WLED-xHP5 (5 LED)] * WPH9 are too long*
None (2007- w/active bi-xenon) See NOTE (4)
Running lights - headlamp (AKA "Front Side Markers")
2x 194 AMBER (all) [WLED-xHP (1 LED) or WLED-xHP5 (5 LED)]
Mirror turn signals
2x 194 AMBER (all) [WLED-xHP5 (5 LED)]
Mirror puddle lights - Verify you have them first
*** IMPORTANT: to avoid PWM flicker see NOTE (7)! ***
2x 194 (-2006 - not standard, check your car) [WLED-x13-CBT (includes resistor)]
2x 194 (2007- w/power folding mirrors) [WLED-x13-CBT (includes resistor)]
Reverse lights see NOTE (11)! ***
2x BA15S / 1156 / P21Y (all) 796 halogen or 35W-equivelent (e.g. this (in white)) ==============================
IMPORTANT: All bulbs listed above can be changed safely without vehicle modification or bulb failure warnings. The remaining higher wattage lights are current monitored & PWM regulated which causes issues LED retrofits because (1) the LED replacement will not draw enough current resulting in a "bulb failure" warning, and (2) the PWM regulation is 80Hz and can cause higher power (3w+) constant current regulators to fail or strobe. As such, lights not recommended for LED conversion include:
- Headlights - PWM w/DRL in USA. For HIDs see the headlight upgrade thread. There are NO GOOD LED H7/H11 retrofits. Please DO NOT POST about LED headlights here.
- Brake lights - PWM regulated, need resistor spliced into harness to suppress "bulb failure" warning. Ugly when off and on, high-power LEDs don't fill the reflector properly, and large clusters of "standard" LEDs produce so little light they are a safety hazard. True brake light conversion requires modification of the taillight housing with custom heat-sinking.
- Running lights (rear) - Also PWM regulated and "bulb failure" monitored. Same reflector issues as brake lights.
- Turn signals - PWM regulated, digital "hyper flash" monitoring (fast flashing to indicate burnt out bulb) w/"bulb failure" message. Turn signal functionality is built into the CEM (central electronic module) which communicates over a computer bus to the turn signal stalk switch, so there is no way to add an "electronic flasher" to overcome this problem. Similar reflector issues to the brake lights, turn signals also look bad with LEDs.
- Rear fog - Driving around with the rear fog on makes you look like an idiot. If you actually use the rear fog in low-visibility conditions, and want to increase it's light output for safety reasons, then the 796 halogen fits in the fog socket.
NOTE (1):194 is AKA 194B, 168, 5W5. Most LEDs are sold as 194.
NOTE (2): Some cheaper 194 bulbs have poor socket contacts - many times just a small piece of wire. Over dozens of cars and hundreds of bulbs that I have installed, around 50% of 194 bulbs don't work the first time they are installed in the socket. If you are sure that the polarity is correct and the socket has power, try bending the leads to make better contact with the holder. Occasionally I've used a bit of a paper clip or a copper wire (18 or 16 AWG, solid not stranded) to shim the bulb into making contact. If all else fails (and you're sure the bulb isn't defective, you can try adding a blob of solder to the wire lead and flatting it with a pair of pliers.
NOTE (3): The -2006 city lights are co-located in the high beam reflector and directly exposed to the IR (infrared) radiation (aka heat) the high beam bulb puts out. This makes resistor-regulated LEDs in this location especially susceptible to thermal runaway, a cycle where the extra heat lowers the forward voltage drop, more current flows, LED gets hotter, voltage decreases, more current flows, etc.. until it burns out. When SMD LEDs that have a yellow phosphor "blob" exposed to air (sometimes called "COB") burn out, they leave a nasty magic smoke stain on the reflector and ash in the housing which surely reduces the output of the high beam. For this location, I suggest getting a set of regulated bulbs with encapsulated LED elements (e.g. "Cree Beam XPE" or "Super Wide Angle Bulbs" from autolumination.com or anything with a high-power LED), which use a computer chip rather than a resistor to control current through the LEDs, so regardless of temperature they get the same current and thermal runaway is not an issue. These bulbs should be expensive (expect to pay $8-$10 USD) but are worth it for both burnout protection and longevity. Melvin (aldebaran) reports that PIAA 19263 work well in this application, though these will not be as bright as the other bulbs listed here
NOTE (4): 2007+ Cars equipped with "active" bi-xenons may already have LED city lights. In this case, the bulb is not user replaceable (and is already the correct color). You can tell if this is the case because the city light will be a vertical bar close to the same color as the xenon bulb.
NOTE (5):SV5.5 is AKA 6614, 6614F, 6641, F30-WHP, TS-14V1CP, or 28mm / 29mm / 30mm / 31mm "fuse-type". The SV5.5 has a smaller contact barrel diameter (5.5 - 6mm) than "standard" SV8.5 festoons (8.65mm, 10mm or 11mm body) used in the other lights - it's the same size as the old glass fuses. If too bright, try flipping the LEDs around so they point away from your face.
NOTE (6):In shopping for festoon bulbs, you might see sizes off by one or two millimeters, e.g. 36mm/37mm, or 42mm/43mm. The bulbs are the same - the length specification is inexact, and even if they were 1mm off it's only a 2% difference. You might have to bend the tabs in the bulb holder a bit to make them fit, regardless of the bulb model or length.
NOTE (7):The puddle lights have a minimum load requirement to prevent PWM flicker (strobe light). The SBLED
WLED-xHP15-T draws enough current, and will fit in the housingbut was discontinued and the replacement WLED-xHP15-T is not suitable. The WLED-x13-CBT, and other bulbs with built in resistors like these from Eurosport tuning ($20/pair) or iJDMtoy ($24/pair)(fitment issue) should work. I can't vouch for these products, though if someone wants to try these I'll update this post.
NOTE (8): Replacing the footwell/glovebox can be a bit tricky, the socket is poorly designed and it is easy to break a bulb such that there is nothing left to pry on. It is best to remove the entire bulb housing before attempting to remove the 194 bulb. To do this, once the lens is off, squeeze the clips inwards and pull down. I suggest starting on the passenger side footwell because you can feel around to the top of the housing to help you push down. Look at that housing and it will become obvious how to do the others. The glovebox is the most tricky since there is no access from the top (without complete disassembly). Unclip the connector and bring it into somewhere with plenty of light. Then use a jewelers screwdriver or similar to wiggle the bulb free. Alternately, complete LED assemblies are available from volvotech.eu.
NOTE (9): If the 194 bulbs are in blue holders, the bulb is tack welded in. To free the incandescent bulb, remove the holders from the housing and break the loops free using a metal pick (see this post later in this thread). Alternately, you can order new twist-lock bases from SBLEDs part#T3.25S-TW - (see this post for details)
NOTE (10a): Neo-wedge 6mm AKA neo wedge T1.25 (T1-1/4), neo wedge T4, Stanley T4.2, or Volvo PN 30739357 or 9472403; these have a 10mm OD base, a 6mm body, and a bulb starting 6mm from the PCB (15mm tall total). The incandescent bulb has a thin blue filter/cover/condom knocks out all reds and most yellows from the spectrum leaving the trademark Volvo yellowish-greenish. This bulb has proved difficult to find a drop-in replacement for that looks stock for three reasons... First, the bulb must emit the correct color, and Volvo interior green is not an easy/common LED color. Second, the light pipes in the LSM are built to capture an even 180° of light, where even wide-angle LEDs (120 degree) will typically throw most light straight forward. As a result, the center elements (low beam, and gas flap) are much brighter than the other elements. Third, most LEDs are just WAY to bright... the factory bulb output (at 12v, 100mA) is 500 MSCD (about 6 lumens) or ~1000mcd in the relevant direction, LEDs are between 5000 and 35000
NOTE (10b): neo-wedge 4.8mm AKA neo wedge T1, stanley T3, or Volvo 30739356, 9148906/9148908; these have a 8mm OD base, a 4mm OD body, and bulb starting 4mm from the back of the PCB. These are just clear bulbs, so any white LED should do.
NOTE (11): Reverse lights - The reverse circuit is a direct battery connection through a dedicated relay and 5A fuse, so no PWM issues or other electrical complications. The best upgrade for power output and "off" aesthetics remains the 35W halogen 796 upgraded reverse bulb which output around 800 lumen each, though this may require switching to a 7.5A fuse due to extra current draw. Personally, off all the bulbs in the car, I look at this as the least critical for LED conversion since it's on for maybe 30 seconds - of which light output is significantly more important than color/power.
For reference, this is what the headlight assembly bulbs are called:
Here's some pictures of the bulbs for reference, thanks to superbrightleds.com:
3710-xWHP3(-V2) and 4210-xHP3 (3 LED) SV8.5 Festoon:
3710-xWHP6 and 4210-xHP6 (6 LED) SV8.5 Festoon:
F30-WHP-12V (1 LED) 6x31 SV5.5 Festoon:
194 (L2R: 1 LED, 5LED, 9LED, 15LED):
If you order everything from superbrightleds.com it comes out to around $150. This is the best option if you just want it to work the first time. My original set purchased from there, installed before writing this guide (2009), are still working fine (2016). Many have saved money on fleeBay but most of the stuff ships directly from Hong Kong or China and can take weeks or months to arrive. I have also found that the cheaper bulbs use smaller resistors to achieve higher output, at the expense of LED life, and can burn out as quickly as a few months (especially in the headlight housing, which reaches high temperatures - see Note 3 above). The cheap ones also usually have poor color consistency between bulbs. You get what you pay for!
LED Retrofit Troubleshooting==============================
Before you post with a problem run down these checklists.
Just installed new LED bulb and it won't light up:
- Check power - it sounds obvious do it anyway. Plug the incandescent bulb back in to make sure the socket is energized. Try to have the car leave the bulb on, for example using the running light switch rather than pushing the city light button on the remote.
- Check polarity - Most "economy" and some expensive LED bulbs are polarized, meaning that they will only work if the positive and negative terminals are connected the right way. Some LED bulbs are not marked. Flip bulb around 180 degrees in socket so the contacts are reversed.
- Check bulb functionality - Using alligator clips or similar, apply 12V directly (from the battery terminals, or whatever) to the bulb contacts. If you can't get the bulb to light up, it is probably defective.
- Check the bulb contacts. As noted above, some cheaper 194 bulbs have crummy contacts that need some love to make a decent connection. If you do figure out a way to make it work, make sure that it won't fall out with vibration, heat, etc.
- Make sure the circuit is not monitored. Monitored circuits in the S40 include brake, front/rear running, turn, and low beam.
LED bulb has been running for a while, but now won't light up
- Check connection - bulb and socket are subject to vibration and may become loose
- Check power - Plug an incandescent bulb back in to make sure the socket is energized. If it does not, make sure the switch is on and the fuse has not blown, etc.
- Check bulb functionality - Using alligator clips or similar, apply 12V directly (from the battery terminals, or whatever) to the bulb contacts. If you can't get the bulb to light up, it is probably defective. This happens pretty often with cheap bulbs in the city lights, since they live next to the high-beams which dump a lot of heat out. Either buy better bulbs or buy a lot of cheaper ones. Also, twice I've gone to the dealer and left with a burnt out city light. Don't know if it's something they hook the car to or what. Very annoying since they offer to replace it with an incandescent..
Some inspirational pictures to overcome the price shock:
This one's not mine but it's a beautiful shot:
Here's some more pics from jedgar:
Overheads from an 07+ from delhibeli
City lights from Deviation01
Let me know if I forgot something! Moved change log to post 1402792 due to character limit!