My fix for wagon (sport combi) 3rd brake light - Saab 9-5 Bulletin Board -

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My fix for wagon (sport combi) 3rd brake light 1 Members Like This Post!
Posted by Mark in Marine [Email] (#1837) [Profile/Gallery] (more from Mark in Marine) on Sat, 7 Jul 2018 19:39:30
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I need to credit Red Aero on another board for getting me going on this. The CHMSL (center mounted high stop light) was inoperable on my daughter's 2006 SC. I followed her on a recent drive, and not only noticed, but was somewhat alarmed at how hard it was to perceive the 2X change in the taillights when she hit the brakes.

Red Aero said he had repaired his SC (wagon) third brake light using a DRL LED that he already had ( I ordered exactly those lights, at a cost of $17 shipped for two two-packs (four of them). They are an intense white, but through the red lens, they are nice and bright red.

On my daughter's 2006 SC, some previous owner or maintenance person had apparently tried to pry the housing out from the outside, and the nuts had been cranked down crazy tight. Not only had the LED strip stopped working (the circuit board was corroding and delaminating), but all three studs were pretty well cracked away from the housing.

Because I needed to 'rebuild' the housing, I much prefer this LED solution to a Walmart solution posted on YouTube ( The LED assembly I used is weather-ready, it's easy to glue in place, and now it's inside the light housing. I used a Dremel to cut out the "rungs of the ladder" at the back of the light (toward front of the car). I deleted the black cover, since it no longer protected anything. As you can see in the pictures posted to my gallery, I cut out the bottom of the red housing to allow me to silicone (red RTV) the LED to the housing up against the lens. I used JB weld and cedar blocks cut to fit to restore the studs to the correct positions and give enough strength to keep it all together. The trickiest part was soldering the fine wires of the LED unit to the lead wires and connector for the old light - the SAAB wires look like copper, but they may be an alloy that does not like any excessive heat. Polarity is what you would expect: Black is ground (for both LED and the car). I used a thin coat of Permatex Black Ultra on the gasket, so the fix should be well-protected from weather.

Time will tell, but there was no "Rear Light Error" before replacement, and none observed when I tested.

Mark in Marine

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