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Old 01-16-2014, 01:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Red Dashboard lighting on 2014 & 2015 Outbacks

Hi everyone,

Last weekend, I rode with a buddy of mine, who bought a new 2014 Forester. The dashboard & climate controls light up in red. I have noticed this on other new Subaru products, WRX, & others. I'm red-green color-blind, & red dashboard lighting would be a real problem for me.

Considering a 2014 or 2015 Outback this coming spring/summer. I'll have a look at the dash on the 2014 when I test drive soon, but I was wondering, based on other 2015 Subarus, how likely it is that the 2015 would light up in red, thus eliminating the vehicle from consideration?

Thanks for your comments.

Gary
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I imagine that the red lighting will still be present in any new Subaru going forward. I believe the reason for a good red color to be used in interior vehicle lighting is because our eyes don't react to the red spectrum of light (hence why a red light would be used to help develop film, etc...) and so I believe it helps the eyes not get light-blinded when driving in the dark. I know I enjoy blue lighting (such as is inside of Hyundais and others) but it can be tough for me at least to keep focused or read an all blue display.

As for solutions, I bet, depending on where you're at and who'd be willing to help (or just do it yourself), a cheap and not-too-involved project would be to pull some of the dash paneling apart and change the bulbs to a new color. I can't imagine it would cost more than $50-100 and a few hours of time to fix this issue so that the Outback (and any other car, for that matter!) can remain on your list!

Good luck, I'm sure there's plenty here that could back up what I mentioned or be able ot help more.
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Old 01-16-2014, 04:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The bulbs or panel mounted compact LEDs and would require very fine soldering on a PCB to change out.

Pardon my color blind ignorance, but can you flat out not see the red backlighting? I had a friend mildly color blind, his issue was the inability to tell red from green when then were right next to each other, otherwise he was fine.

One option could be to open the dash and add a filter or lens to the LEDs.
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Old 01-16-2014, 04:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainanator View Post
The bulbs or panel mounted compact LEDs and would require very fine soldering on a PCB to change out.

Pardon my color blind ignorance, but can you flat out not see the red backlighting? I had a friend mildly color blind, his issue was the inability to tell red from green when then were right next to each other, otherwise he was fine.

One option could be to open the dash and add a filter or lens to the LEDs.
"One option could be to open the dash and add a filter or lens to the LEDs"
Great suggestion....
OR
Might there be a "film" that could be applied to the entire plastic bezel that covers the gauges?
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noslackline View Post
"One option could be to open the dash and add a filter or lens to the LEDs"
Great suggestion....
OR
Might there be a "film" that could be applied to the entire plastic bezel that covers the gauges?
How do you change pure light produced only in the red spectrum (LED lights tend to produce specific wave lengths -- wave lengths correspond to colors) to another color using a filter? The filters I know about filter out light based on wave length or polarity.

The suggestion is a good one for white light, but if you filter light where red light is the primary source of illumination, you might get a little red illumination still because the filter isn't perfect or another color because there is a little bit of light from another spectrum in the light, but it would be very dim since the primary light spectrum has been filtered out.

It's kind of like pouring dirt into an oil filter and expecting oil to come out.
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Old 01-18-2014, 08:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainanator View Post
The bulbs or panel mounted compact LEDs and would require very fine soldering on a PCB to change out.

Pardon my color blind ignorance, but can you flat out not see the red backlighting? I had a friend mildly color blind, his issue was the inability to tell red from green when then were right next to each other, otherwise he was fine.

One option could be to open the dash and add a filter or lens to the LEDs.
Green and brown are my worse colors, but dark red, which the 2014 Forester has on the dashboard, is a huge problem. At night, the dashboard looks black; at night this would be very dangerous as I couldn't see anything lit up. Pontiac used to do this with their Grand Am and Grand Prix models.

The good news is I test drove the 2014 2.5 Premium today. Dashboard, at least to me, is mostly white, with some purple, yellow, and a brighter red (that red is one I can see).

I don't know what Subaru plans on the 2015 models, but I found this encouraging concerning the 2014 Outback.
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Old 01-18-2014, 11:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theshield44 View Post
Green and brown are my worse colors, but dark red, which the 2014 Forester has on the dashboard, is a huge problem. At night, the dashboard looks black; at night this would be very dangerous as I couldn't see anything lit up. Pontiac used to do this with their Grand Am and Grand Prix models.

The good news is I test drove the 2014 2.5 Premium today. Dashboard, at least to me, is mostly white, with some purple, yellow, and a brighter red (that red is one I can see).

I don't know what Subaru plans on the 2015 models, but I found this encouraging concerning the 2014 Outback.
Purple and yellow? Your view of the world must be different than mine.

It's also good to hear you are not completely Red blind. A guy at my work is completely red blind. We clean floors. I can remember going to a job with solid green carpet someone has spilled Koolaid on and he never did see the spot even though he was standing on it. I had never met anyone that bad.
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Old 01-19-2014, 12:09 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Just curious if you can see the green and red traffic lights? Do they appear as green and red to you?
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Old 01-19-2014, 05:55 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Just curious if you can see the green and red traffic lights? Do they appear as green and red to you?
Novablue - I would love for all of you to be in my world for just one day; I'm sure it would look very different.

awd-gg - Green traffic lights are no problem. In sunny weather, the red is a problem unless I'm wearing my sunglasses, so I make sure to do that.

Problem solved.
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Old 01-19-2014, 11:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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This is a true story that happened to a friend when he was in grade school. The teacher called his parents to the school and tell them their child is retarded( yes, that's the actual word used) because he cannot tell the difference btw colors....and suggested they pull him out of school or go to special need school.... they later found out(thank god) that he was color blind....nothing happen to the teacher, not even an apology.....these were the 'good old days' , I guess!
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