Chevrolet Cruze Forums banner

Good, BRIGHT LED Taillight bulbs?

5815 Views 19 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  thespr
I bought some dark smoke tail light tints to put on my tail lights only, not headlights.

The law in Ohio is that the brake lights need to be visible from 500ft back (166 yards) behind the vehicle.

I'm not 100% sure if my stock bulbs will shine bright enough through the tint so I was wondering if anyone knew of the best/brightest LED tail light bulbs for my 2013 Cruze LS.

On that topic, are they pretty easy to install? For some reason when I replaced my headlight bulbs they were **** to replace, all the videos I saw they just gently turned the new bulbs into place but mine took a RIDICULOUS amount of strength to turn, cut my hands all up while trying to do it but they're in there now.

1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Diode Dynamics would be my first stop. Here's a link: Tail Light LEDs for 2011-2016 Chevrolet Cruze (pair)

Don't have experience with these LED tail light bulbs though, hopefully someone can chime in.
  • Like
Reactions: 1
Do you know if the 2013 Cruze uses the Standard Socket or "CK Socket."

I found some bulbs on Amazon I'm interested in but it says 95% of American cars use the standard socket but I just want to be 100% sure.
I wouldn't be surprised if your stock bulbs were fine, honestly. My Cobalt's tails have been Niteshaded since summer of 2008, and I've never had an issue - plenty of light, even during the day.

See less See more
If you don't mind spending a bit more money on quality, you can go for some VLEDS - V3 TRITON RED 3157CK

Not sure if that is the right bulb for the brake lights in the Cruze, but that's the bulb style you'd get. It's LED but diffuses the light and shines the same way the stock filament bulbs do so light is evenly dispersed. They're very bright.
  • Like
Reactions: 1
The laws here in Ohio state that they need to be visible from at least 500ft away:

(A) Every motor vehicle, trackless trolley, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or vehicle which is being drawn at the end of a train of vehicles shall be equipped with at least one tail light mounted on the rear which, when lighted, shall emit a red light visible from a distance of five hundred feet to the rear, provided that in the case of a train of vehicles only the tail light on the rearmost vehicle need be visible from the distance specified.

Are you sure stock bulbs would be able to shine ~166 yards away and be visible even through a 20% dark smoke tint?
The law in Michigan is the same, and that's what I went by when I did mine.

Plenty easy to see when the brakes are lit, so I have no worries about being visible from 500 ft. And mine are almost black (you can see a little red through the tint in the light, but not a ton).

Assuming this picture still works, from when I originally did it.

See less See more
Hmm.. okay I'll go ahead and put one of my tail lights on and then test it after work today. If the light seems fine then I'll hold off on new bulbs for now.

Just saving the bulb sizes in this thread here so if they aren't bright at all then I can get them ordered ASAP:

Brake Light: 3057
Reverse Light: 921
Turn Signal Light: 7440A

Thanks a lot! I'll update after I put the tint on one of my lights after work tonight.
Here's all the bulb numbers I've had saved. I got these from the online PDF manual
Back-Up Lamp - 921K
Front and Rear Sidemarker - 194
Front Parking/Turn Signal Lamp - 7444NA
Rear Turn Signal Lamp - 7443NA (Notice front and rear are different due to dual filament in the front turn signal bulb)
Stoplamp/Taillamp - 3057K LCP
  • Like
Reactions: 1
I'm just concerned a little for the brightness during day time. I went to Target on my lunch break to get a squeegee for the application of my tail light tint and when I was walking back to my car and I unlock it from the keyfob the turn signals blink and I can already barely see them. Not sure if that's because they're amber and it's day time which makes them like unnoticeable but I'll have my mom hit the brakes on my car when I get home while I'm outside of the vehicle to see how bright they are before applying the tint. Would just hate to apply one light, have it be not bright enough, then have to remove it lol.
It's entirely possible they might or might not be bright enough - your lights are a lot larger than mine are. My brake lights are the same lights as the turn signals which are the same light as the tail lamp, haha.

So definitely test it. Even if they're just bright enough, LEDs aren't a bad option. I've actively been thinking about swapping to them, just to get some of that LED-y goodness.
I found these for brake lights:

However, regarding reverse lights and turn signals, mostly every LED bulb that I find says it needs a resistor installed or it'll blink very quickly?

I just need simple, bright lights to shine through the tint.
For a turn signal, every one I've seen gets hyperflash without the proper resistor. Usually there's a small harness available to fix that.
Yeah I wouldn't know the first thing about installing one of those at all. From what I've seen for Ohio law, I just need a bright Brake Tail light, everything else isn't really bound under law from what I've searched. So as long as I have very bright brake lights would that be enough? The ones I linked above are pretty highly rated for being extremely bright red.
I've got the Diode Dynamics HP11 in my stock tail lights and they work well. You're probably looking at the XP80 to get the brightness you need.
I went ahead and ordered these since 1-day shipping for $1 was available on them: 2PCS Aaron Red 3157 (3156 3057 3056) High Power 5730 33SMD LED Bulbs for Turn Signal Brake Tail Lights: Automotive

They fit in a standard (not CK) 3057 socket and apparently that's what the 13' Cruze LS has so. I read the reviews and most people say they're bright as ****. Even with low life span it has a 1-yr warranty so I can just send them a picture of them not working and receive another free set.

Do these look good enough just for the time being? Is it bad that they're red and my tail light lamp is red as well? Should the Tail Light bulb be shining bright white into the red lamp or is it better that the bulb itself is red along with the lamp? Not 100% sure on this.
Should the Tail Light bulb be shining bright white into the red lamp or is it better that the bulb itself is red along with the lamp? Not 100% sure on this.
Red. Definitely red. I tried that with a front side light. With a white LED, it went from a nice amber to more of a lemonade color. With a amber LED, it was, well, nice and amber.

So I'd imagine that a super bright white LED would turn your tail light from "red" to "redish". Not cool. With a red LED, it will be red - as in cars that come with LED taillights.
I am a fan of Diode Dynamics as well. As for the reverse lights, I already had purchased the Philips ones before the DD bulbs and they are the brightest reverse lights I've ever seen.
Alright cool cool, glad I didn't make a mistake with the whole "red vs white" brake light situation.

I'll be receiving my bulbs today along with my Carbon Fiber vinyl stickers for my front/back bowtie so I'll take some before/after pictures since I'll be putting the black bowties/20% smoke tail light tint/tail light bulbs in all at the same time.
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.