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The Official OEM Tail Light Difference Thread

 
Old 08-23-2013, 03:57 PM
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Lightbulb The Official OEM Tail Light Difference Thread





Seeing another thread asking about tail lights made me want to create another “difference” thread, similar to the one I did for the A-Spec lip kit which can be found here: https://acurazine.com/forums/third-generation-tl-2004-2008-93/unofficial-spec-difference-thread-853331/



****Before we begin...ALL 3G TL tail lights are interchangeable. Listed below are the different types.****



2004-2006 Tail Lights
  • These tail lights are solid red and were equipped on every USDM 2004-2006 TL. The whole outer lens is red while the reflector, turn signal, and area in front of the LEDs are clear. The housing/bezel is chrome.

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2007-2008 Base Tail Lights
  • These tail lights were on every 07-08 NON-TL Type-S. Compared to the 04-06 lights, the outside lens is clear, meaning if you take apart the assembly, the only red parts are the housing, lower reflector, and the corner turn signal piece. Also, you’ll notice that the area in front of the LEDs is clear.







2007-2008 Type-S Tail Lights
  • These tail lights have a dark chrome housing compared to the red or bright chrome housing on the 04-06 and 07-08 Base lights. Just like the 07-08 Base tails, the outer lens is clear, but the area in front of the LED board is red, as well as the turn signal and lower reflector. These tail lights were standard ONLY on Type-S models.







2006-2008 CDM (Chinese Domestic Market) Tail Lights
  • The CDM tail lights are the least common out of the 4 total. They are most similar to the Type-S tails but these have a clear corner lens for the turn signal, meaning you could swap in an amber bulb if desired. Also, these tails have an extra set of reflectors, mounted vertically where the LEDs are. They mount to the car the exact same way and have the same connecting wires on the back.



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*The picture above does not show actual CDM tails, rather ones that were modified to look similar. You can see that the vertical clear reflectors are missing. I had a hard time finding actual CDM tails installed






Originally Posted by jnc2000 View Post
  1. Small flat head screwdriver
  2. #2 Phillips screwdriver
  3. Jack and jack stands
  4. 10mm wrench / socket
  5. 8mm wrench
  6. helper

NOTE: These pictures do show bumper removal with the A-spec kit installed. If you do not have the A-Spec kit you're proccess will be slightly different.

The first step is to jack the vehicle up. Make sure to use jack stands.



After the vehicle is secure, you'll want to remove the screws securing the rear bumper to the vehicle behind the wheels. You may need to remove the rear wheels thus was my reasoning for jacking the car up in the first place.




Next, pop open the trunk. Take note of the two smaller plastic covers in the bottom corner. You'll need to pop these off with a small flat head screwdriver take care not to scratch the paint. Behind the cover you'll see a 10mm bolt. Remove the bolt from both sides.





Next step is to remove the 10mm bolts from the bottom of the bumper. In these pictures, take note at the black bolts, not the silver screws. You'll want to remove all the bolts.
--This is where the A-spec and base bumper will differ. The base bumper you'll also be removing some additional screws / plastic pieces.






This is the part where you'll need a helper. After taking all the screws off you'll want to start at each corner and gently pry the bumper cover off. You'll feel/hear it snap off - thats good you want that. It sits into plastic grooves and you'll need to work it out of those grooves. When its all loose you'll know.. take the bumper and set it aside.

This next picture already shows the light removed... but I'll use it for illustrative purposes. I'll show the removal of the light below.



Next, you'll want to remove the stock light. You'll repeat this process for both sides... so it doesn't matter which side you start on. There are two 10mm bolts and 1 Philips screw you need to remove. on the outside. the screw goes up into the light itself, and the bolts into the car body. Start by remove these three pieces of hardware.



Next, on the inside you'll want to remove the 8mm bolts that are threaded onto securing the light to the interior sheet metal. There are a total of 4 per side. Once all these are removed, unplug the wiring harness and the light should just pop off.




With the light off the next step is swapping the LED board. There are 4 small Phillips screws that you'll need to remove. When you are swapping the LED removing the LED board, make sure you remove the foam grommets too as you'll need to reuse them when you install the new light.




Next, you'll want to reinstall and route the small plug from the stock light into the Type-S tails. This can be tricky so take your time.






Reinstall the LED board - put the screws back in and make sure to reuse the foam gaskets. To install the light - go in the reverse order from the initial removal. Take care not to over tighten any bolts.

Repeat these steps for both lights.

Grab your friend and put the bumper back on. Loosely fit the bumper on the vehicle and check alignment. then press the bumper into the fittings. You'll hear it snap into place. Reinstall all the hardware and sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor.



*If I used a picture owned by you and you would like it removed, please let me know and I’ll have a moderator edit my post. I used your picture strictly for educational purposes.

*If you see that any of the above information is incorrect, please let me know so it can be corrected.

**Big thanks to jnc2000 and KB1Spec for information found in their threads and their pictures

Last edited by CLtotheTL32; 08-23-2013 at 04:01 PM.
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:07 PM
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Very well put information
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:17 PM
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Good standard information here Tyler, well laid out.

And I like that first shot of the Type S tails, very nice
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:24 PM
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Great info. It is much appreciated. I didn't know about the CDM lights until now.
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:25 PM
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Sweet! This was definitely needed.
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Old 08-23-2013, 05:34 PM
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Great post. Lots of info.
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Old 08-23-2013, 06:52 PM
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Glad you posted this, it will help me out here soon
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Old 08-23-2013, 07:41 PM
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Nicely done, Tyler.
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:18 PM
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Great DIY!! Thanks for taking your time with this.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:23 PM
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Outstanding work Tyler. I'm changing you from Unofficial to Official-Congrats!
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Old 08-24-2013, 12:53 AM
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Awsome CLtothTL32, But still a PITA to do.. HAHA
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Old 08-24-2013, 01:23 AM
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Actually you don't need to take out the whole rear bumper. When I did my I just loosen some bolts on the bumper and barely enough space to use my socket wrench and nudge in to loosen the bolts of the bracket of the tail lamp.
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Old 08-24-2013, 01:27 AM
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FYI here is the CDM tail lamp with the vertical reflector and also the comparison of the USDM modded tail lamp

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Old 08-24-2013, 03:39 AM
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both your aspec and taillight differences thread get so many thanks, but my seat difference thread is like dead....should i make a headlight difference thread? LOL
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Old 08-24-2013, 08:16 AM
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Good info, but in the bumper removale DIY you do not need to completely remove the bumper as it states. Infact, all you have to do is pull out the upper portion of the bumper just enough to get to the two bolts under each tail light.
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Old 08-24-2013, 10:51 AM
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I didn't even know the CDM taillight existed. Kinda cool.
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Old 08-29-2013, 04:48 PM
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Such a great thread. I need this valuable information. Thanks
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Old 09-06-2013, 10:23 PM
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the CDM's are not flat!
there's a little protrusion that sticks out, which I think is pretty neat!

you can kinda see it in this photo
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:33 AM
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CLtotheTL32, Thanks for the great write up!
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Old 09-04-2018, 01:30 AM
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Taillights

Is it possible to get the CDM tailights
if so how &where
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Old 09-04-2018, 03:19 AM
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They cannot be bought new. Only chance you have is to purchase them second hand from someone selling theirs. Also expect to pay big $$$ as they're extremely rare now.
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Old 09-05-2018, 10:00 AM
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Depending on how you look at it. Its not worth getting it. I see some floating around on Ebay selling copies of the CDM style tail light. I used to do tail lamp conversion back in the days where I swap out the outer lens of the base TL tail lamp with the TL-S tail lamp
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Old 09-05-2018, 10:38 AM
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Where can I purchase the 2006-2008 CDM (Chinese Domestic Market) Tail Lights? All TL's should have had amber turn signals!

I see someone is selling only the driver's side on ebaY. Asking them where I can get the other side is like talking to a brick wall.
.
.
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Old 09-05-2018, 04:27 PM
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I think everyone and their brother has tried asking that eBay seller for the passenger side. I can confirm that they responded to me a looong time ago saying that they do not have the passenger side available.

Good luck lol

Last edited by wusty23jd; 09-05-2018 at 04:30 PM.
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Old 09-05-2018, 04:41 PM
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Where is that CDM 4th brake light at tho
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Old 09-05-2018, 06:05 PM
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Poor man's version of CDM tail lights with amber LED turn signals
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Old 09-07-2018, 01:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Superunknown View Post
Where is that CDM 4th brake light at tho
Here is the 4th brake light


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Old 09-07-2018, 08:01 PM
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I have an irrational need to find one of those.
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Old 09-10-2018, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by wusty23jd View Post
I think everyone and their brother has tried asking that eBay seller for the passenger side. I can confirm that they responded to me a looong time ago saying that they do not have the passenger side available.
I was one of those people. I called them to ask and remember getting a brain dead pleeb on the other end of the phone.
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Old 09-10-2018, 09:25 AM
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Ugh, that's frustrating. The demand for these is so high too. It's a shame that both sides aren't available right now.
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Old 03-04-2019, 11:02 PM
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I got a pair of these, cleared with carbon fiber inserts for $300 2nd hand. I sold them with my last TL, and seriously thought they were some cheap replica housings.
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Old 03-04-2019, 11:05 PM
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Originally Posted by 1black_seven View Post
I got a pair of these, cleared with carbon fiber inserts for $300 2nd hand. I sold them with my last TL, and seriously thought they were some cheap replica housings.
*cough


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Old 03-04-2019, 11:10 PM
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Originally Posted by mdnborg View Post
*cough

Fuck don't remind me
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Old 03-09-2019, 01:24 PM
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Does anyone here know how to clean the inside of a taillight? I cut mine open and some water got in (very little) after noticing I didn’t seal this small area.

Also anyone selling CDM’s?
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Old 03-09-2019, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by navicolb View Post
Does anyone here know how to clean the inside of a taillight? I cut mine open and some water got in (very little) after noticing I didn’t seal this small area.

Also anyone selling CDM’s?
Distilled water.
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Old 03-09-2019, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by mdnborg View Post
Distilled water.
so im guessing just swish it around inside right?

whats the drying process, sun bathe, blow drier?
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Old 03-09-2019, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by navicolb View Post


so im guessing just swish it around inside right?

whats the drying process, sun bathe, blow drier?
Don't use a hair dryer, you'll just blow more dust in. Sun dry or leave it in a dry area for a few days.
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by mdnborg View Post
Don't use a hair dryer, you'll just blow more dust in. Sun dry or leave it in a dry area for a few days.
thank you man! By chance are you @mb.3g on Instagram?
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:52 PM
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He is lol
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by wusty23jd View Post
He is lol
lol I thought so
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