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Old 10-15-2017, 09:32 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Florida
Posts: 35
Isata 3 Tail Light Converter Problems / Observations

After reading many posts on this subject, here is my take and solution. Many believe that the failures were caused by moisture intrusion. I think this is entirely possible in some cases. In my case, after 2 failures with no evidence of moisture, I believe there are additional modes of failure. It has taken me many weeks of testing and research to come to a solution. What I have not read in these forums is that in order to properly dim an led light fixture, a pulsed wave modulation signal is required. You only need this when you are running your head lights. Brake, flashers, and turn signals operate at full brightness and do not need PWM. The PWM signal is generated from a circuit contained in the LED housing. When you turn on your headlights / running lights, the PWM signal is what causes the led display to be dim. When this happens there is an unwanted side effect of this signal feeding back into the tail light converter. If you will notice, on the newer tail light converters, they claim to be updated to deal with this issue. As for me, the newer Hopkins premium unit that claims to be updated with this feature still failed within 100 miles of operation. I am towing so there may also be an issue with the capacity of these units as well.

After much frustration, I decided to build my own converter. It is rated for 3-4 times the capacity of the Hopkins or Curt converters. So far we are over 3000 miles into a 5000 mile trip. We have encountered heavy rains and we drive with the headlights on most of the time. No problems so far.

I am not an electrical engineer and would be interested from someone with knowledge in this area to add any info to what I have found.
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