Re: Question about NG9-5 taillight failures - Saabnet.com Bulletin Board
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There are two issues with the NG 9-5 tail lights.
The first regards the LED light bar on the trunk. It is poorly sealed which allows moisture in (or in the case of mine, small insects) causing it to fail. Mine still works well due to living in a somewhat drier climate. The supply of spares has long since been exhausted. Some of the spares were clearly meant for 2012 production as it contained a cutout for mounting a backup camera, something not available in 2010 and 2011. A member of one of the NG 9-5 Facebook groups has designed a fix which apparently works quite well.
The second regards the left and right tail lamps found only on cars sold in North America. While the turn indicators for EU cars relied solely on LED's, the NA turn indicators used the LED's in conjunction with a halogen bulb. The socket that the halogen bulb sits in was improperly designed. It will cause the bulb to fail prematurely and may cause further damage. At this point I would advise anyone who has not replaced the sockets to do so immediately. The OEM socket clearly says Visteon on it. The redesigned socket does not identify a manufacturer. As for the further damage I spoke of, a NG 9-5 owner in another group replaced only the bulb and not the socket when the bulb burned out. Only a few weeks later the replacement bulb burned out yet again. When the owner attempted to remove the socket he found that it had fused itself to the main tail lamp assembly. He could not remove the bulb or the socket. His only choice is to replace the entire tail lamp assembly which has long been unobtanium save for a few at a dealer in Germany.
There may or may not be plans for Orio/Saab Parts to manufacture replacements for the light bar. It's an issue for all NG 9-5's regardless of market. As for producing entire tail lamp assemblies for the North American market, who knows. The replacement light sockets are readily available and should be for quite some time. By the time the replacement socket was available there were roughly 800 or so on back order, an amazingly high number when one considers only 3,000 NG 9-5's were imported to the US.
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