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Old 24-07-2017   #1
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Reversing Light is Pants....

Has anybody else noticed how rubbish the Reversing Light is on their car, it one tiny little lamp at the back Passengers side that illuminates absolutely nothing...

Was parking in a pitch black parking space the other night, and even with the reversing Light it was like I was still reversing in the dark...

My only gripe about my otherwise brilliant car...
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Old 24-07-2017   #2
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

It's not there to illuminate where you are reversing but just to indicate to others that you are, in fact, reversing.
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Old 24-07-2017   #3
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Quote Originally Posted by Pedrolami View Post
It's not there to illuminate where you are reversing but just to indicate to others that you are, in fact, reversing.

Every other car that I have owned the Reversing light has in some way illuminated the rear area of the car so I could see where I was reversing, not so with this car.
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Old 24-07-2017   #4
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

You may be able to replace the bulb, however you are limited in what is both legal and safe. If the bulb is too bright, it may start to melt the housing.
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Old 24-07-2017   #5
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Yes it is PANTS.

I'll most probably be looking at doing something to improve mine.

Initial thoughts are a higher output LED replacement bulb?

Or possibly a stick on multi white light LED strip across the lower edge of the back bumper this illuminating both LHS / Middle / RHS of vehicle.
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Old 24-07-2017   #6
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Never ever thought about it,always relied on the reversing sensors.
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Old 25-07-2017   #7
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

It is on the work Ford Focus too. Absolutely useless. It's no good saying that it's only for letting other traffic know you are in reverse because in the real world of manoeuvring you need to see what's behind you in the pitch dark. Think ditches in the country, or low gate posts and walls, and stupid painted rocks.
I hate the Ford mostly for this big failing, although it fails big time elsewhere too.
My own car has good parking sensors front and rear, reversing lights that both indicate and light up what's behind, and a brilliant rear camera too. Sorted. It's standard and legal, so why can't the other car designers manage it as well!
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Last edited by Ulpian; 25-07-2017 at 13:48.
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Old 25-07-2017   #8
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Yes, it is poor. My wife's Suzuki has twin 21W reversing lamps and is great. I'm assuming the 500X is a single 21W which behaves more like a 5W. I must study it and see if I can think of an improvement before winter.
Fiat seem obsessed with providing the legal minimum - one rear fog as well.
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Old 25-07-2017   #9
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Yes it's terrible and for those of us without street lights it's a big deal. Every car I had before I started buying Fiats was always bright enough to actually see where you were reversing. However every Fiat I've owned has had the same problem with naff reversing lights including the Fiat 500 and Fiat Panda 4x4 exacerbated by the fact that there's only one and it's on the passenger side!
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Old 26-07-2017   #10
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

I've thought the same! Living on a road where I have to parallel park all the time, it would defo help! Has anyone actually used an upgraded bulb at all to make it a bit brighter? An LED one possibly?
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Old 26-07-2017   #11
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Quote Originally Posted by butcha View Post
I've thought the same! Living on a road where I have to parallel park all the time, it would defo help! Has anyone actually used an upgraded bulb at all to make it a bit brighter? An LED one possibly?


There are LED alternatives available, not strictly street legal, but the chances of anyone catching you out are minimal. I haven't tried them but they should be considerably brighter without generating heat
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Old 27-07-2017   #12
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Yes, that was what I thought of doing. Normally I wouldn't fit a bulb that isn't street legal, but I'm unlikely to suffer any consequencies, and it's not going to dazzle anyone.
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Old 28-07-2017   #13
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

When anyone get round to playing with the bulb then they should:

1) Measure voltage across bulb - I'm thinking this is a multiplexed feed like the side and brake lights and is probably just being given 6V or 9V and not the full 12V. This may have an implication for replacement LEDs

2) If you have the equipment (clamp on current meter capable of measuring DC current) then get that measurement as well.

According to the Handbook the reversing light bulb is a standard P21W 21Watt bulb so should be drawing 1.75A

The rear fog lamp is a P21W as well.

When I look into the reversing light lens the bulb is located well above the "emission slit" this alone is not ideal and what emerges is down to reflector design. Quite odd.
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Old 28-07-2017   #14
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Yes, when I had a quick look a while ago I thought the alignment was strange. May be worth seeing if anything can be done about it.
My 500 hatch had the same single 21W lamp, but that wasn't too bad, so a duff reflector/lens setup would explain things.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #15
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Re: Reversing Light is Pants....

Today I replaced my P21W bulb with an LED replacement:

Halfords 382 P21W SUPER BRIGHT LED BULB - 500 LUMENS - COOL WHITE - 6000K - 5 YEAR GUARANTEE

Claims 130% brighter than standard bulb

Points to note:

1) LED bulb just fits (longer than standard bulb and bulb sits in a recessed shroud

2) Car does not complain

3) Definitely brighter in daylight - yet to try in dark

4) Not that cheap - 20 for two (10 trade - 5 each ) - I'm happy with that as I could test fit at store

5) I will NOT upgrade the rear fog OR any other vehicle light for legal/insurance purposes. The reversing lamp is an intermittent use device not used in normal driving etc. I could fit after market approved reversing lamps but that is such a gross step to take. These would well out illuminate the bulb upgrade. I will we be asking my insurance company as well.
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Last edited by s130; 4 Weeks Ago at 19:11.
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