I recently fitted some LED bulbs to my reversing lights because LED and because they weren’t very bright. Unfortunately, the addition of LED’s didn’t really help. Most of the light was going back through the plastic of the reflector.
Began by taking the worst lamp unit out and gave it a bit of a clean up in the sink. (Read: gave it a thorough clean with q-tips and soap and lots of water).
Taking a picture with the flash on shows that the reflector now reflects better because the plastic inside isn’t covered in grime and the reflective surface is a bit cleaner. However, the reversing light is still very dull.
Out with the Dremel.
A bit of smoke and hot plastic later and the reflector housing is off. Indeed, the plastic is made from this kinda tan colored ABS which isn’t very reflective. You can just about see the remains of the silver paint that used to be on it at the bottom. Heat and age have made it all flake off.
Cleaned out and taped up the sections I didn’t want to paint. Stupidly I forgot to take a picture of the afterward, but I used shiny aluminum paint which, although not as shiny as the original chrome, is a lot better than how it was.
Mixed up some “5 minute epoxy”, using the traditional matchstick and random piece of card.
With a combination of cynoacrylate and the epoxy glue, I fixed the reflector back onto the lamp assembly.
After a quick polish with some plastic polish, the result is visible.
The light on the right is brighter than the one on the left now; before it was the other way around.
After going through the same rigamarole with the left light cluster, it looks a bit better than before.
Machine polished the left lens because it was very scratched, particularly over the reflector. Looks better now, the white marking is where the plastic has crazed in the sun.
I think I’m going to be on the look for Renault 9 rear lights, because those actually line up with the rear swage line. For now though, these ones are working better.