Tail Light Upgrade



The 1992 - 1997 Thunderbird's had the normal brake/tail lights on the corners, plus large tail light only on the trunks.

I cut the lights for the trunk open, and added 2 LED strips in each, and wired them to the brake lights and turn signals. I went to the junk yard and picked up some rear lights from a 1996 Thunderbird, since they are all red, and do not have the black strip on the bottom, and look better.

Here is the finished lights. The top is tail lights only, and the bottom is brake lights. They work with the turn signals also.

I cut each light open and added 2 additional high output led strips to each. Now the original leds work the tail lights, and the 2 new ones are wired to the brake and turn signals. After testing, I resealed them with epoxy. If anyone wishes to do the same, I can email you a sketch of where to cut, and what LED strips I used. This is how they should of come from the factory.








To add Brake and Turn Signal function to the tail lights mounted on the trunk, you will need to remove them, and cut them open to add LED strips. These lights are not glued together, they are industrially melted together, so using a heat gun will not help to melt any glue, just melt the lights.

I decided to add 2 strips, 1 near the top and the 2nd just above the factory led strip. The photo below is how I cut mine. This allows easy access to install the strips, feed the wires through to the same place the factory led strips wires are routed. The lower cut is high enough to stick the new led to the inside of the housing, just above the factory led, and the upper strip just above the Thunderbird logo so it does not interfere with the light.


Use a piece of stiff wire to put through the slit near the backup lights, and connect to the new strip wires to pull the through. Use small needle nose pliers or forceps to reach in and pull the wire through the hole.

To keep the reflective evenness of the lights, the opening you made needs to be covered with either the piece you cut out, or you can make a reflective patch. Some silver duct taped to the sticky part of a larger patch can be placed over the opening so the silver covers the opening, and provides the reflective surface inside the lights, and does not show up as a dark spot.

The + wires need to be spliced into the brake/turn signal wire at the corner lights, and the - wires to the black wires at the corner lights.




Getting it ready for the Strip