Programed LEDs for the Car

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by bamtt06, Sep 18, 2014.

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  1. bamtt06

    Thread Starter New Member

    Sep 18, 2014
    I am currently working on a project for a friend who wants programed lighting effects in their car.

    NOTE: I am very much a beginner at this. This is my first circuit project.


    I am basing everything off the Arduino micro-controller, but have plans to make a bare bones version on a circuit board. I am using a pot to control the intensity/speed of effects and a button to control the changing of effects. The car will give me the 12V (to 14V ish) output, but will spike at the beginning when the car is turned on. Since my micro-controller would probably fry if it was on that, I took apart a car charger for a phone and I am using it to regulate my voltage to power the micro-controller. The LED strips (currently in place) are for 12V. So I am using a TIP122 for each signal powered by the 12V source. I am currently in the testing phase and made a prototype which includes a 12V source for the LEDs and a 5V source for the micro-controller, but I am running into problems...


    1. When I am running my dim effect (just increasing and decreasing the voltage from 0V-5V) using an analog signal I will get a phase or flicker effect in the lights. Is there a reason why I would get this?

    2. When I do the strobe effect (using digital High and Low and a delay) I will sometimes it random bursts of voltage that emit the light and craft a flicker that is inconsistent with the strobe. Also, the LED isn't as bright as it usually is. I have a similar effect when I use my phase effect (analog signal). Is there a reason why I would get this? I think that this problem might be related to the problem above.

    3. The LEDs are in parallel with one another. When one LED is lit it is really bright, but as LEDs are turned on the LEDs start to dim. I tried to add more voltage to increase the power, but it didn't really do much. How might I make it to where a single LED is just as bright as all LEDs on?

    I know the programming is correct, because debugged it and was getting the values I was wanting. Just wondering if its the way I set things up. If someone could help me out on this, it would be greatly appreciated. Please let me know if I'm on the right track or if I need to improve somewhere. Thanks.

    If anyone would like to see the code I have written for the project or the circuitry, I can get that up later.
  2. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
    Hello bamtt06,
    Unfortunately, your topic involves modification of a motor vehicle, and is therefore not permitted for discussion on this forum according to the Terms of Service paragraph 6, which in part states:

    Because of this, the topic will be closed as soon as a Moderator sees it.

    I will also suggest that an LED "light show" in an automobile interior would be very distracting to the driver, quite possibly leading to unsafe operation of said automobile, particularly under dim light conditions; and strongly recommend that you don't attempt to install it in an automobile.
  3. MrChips


    Oct 2, 2009
    The Sgt has explained why this thread is now locked.
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