I replaced my car interior light with a Chinese LED strip about 80 cm long, the usual ones with 3 LEDs in series with a 75 ohm resistor. This is the circuit.


The diode helps drop some excess voltage, since the battery provides up to 14V and the LEDs are too bright.

As I marked it in the schematic, the ground are always connected to the car chassis. The long wires are about 1.5-2.5 metres long.

With the car in a dim location, whenever the windscreen wiper starts or stops, but also when I turn off and on the wiper lever without the wiper actually starting because it just completed a wipe, the LEDs briefly light up very dimly.

This happens both with the front wiper (connected to the battery via a lever switch and a fuse, about another couple of metres of wire) and the rear wiper (same as in the front wiper, but maybe 3-4 metres of wire). Both wipers motors are connected to the chassis as ground.

Since the circuit is open, how can that happen? do the wires act as capacitor and briefly charge and discharge through the LEDs after the inductive voltage surge, causing a brief emission of light?

  • A link to the led strip is needed.
    – Andy aka
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:10
  • Where is the wiper connected in circuit, and how long are the wires.
    – Purnendu Kumar
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:13
  • Done, as much as I could.
    – FarO
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:42
  • Does your vehicle have an ecu?
    – JIm Dearden
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:44
  • @JImDearden yes, one old Magneti Marelli for electronic injection, from 1993.
    – FarO
    Nov 15, 2016 at 10:47

3 Answers 3


With long wires you have an inductive coupling to stray noise. Put capacitors across each switch such as 0.01 -1uF ceramic.

  • I will clean the switches and try this too.
    – FarO
    Nov 20, 2016 at 15:57

Need more information please. What year, make, model is the car? What is the part number of the diode strip, and a picture of the strip would be helpful.Stray capacitance can exist between any two conductors within close proximity to each other with some form of dielectric between them, and given that only a small current is needed to turn an LED on, I would say that it is a possibility that the door switches could possibly be poorly manufactured and even when "open" could be close enough to create a capacitor air dielectric effect and allow stray electrons to jump across essentially creating a capacitor.I would say that that it is more likely that there is more to this circuit than you may realize. Most newer cars use rectifier diodes in door switches to prevent feedback and to allow for door sensing circuitry to determine which door is open. You could install rectifier diodes in this circuit and that would most likely solve your problem, however, the year, make,and model of the car would be helpful because there may already be more to this circuit than just this LED strip, especially if the car is newer than a 2000. If the car has an alarm system, or the dashboard tells you when a door is open, this circuit is a lot larger than this. I have access to pull vehicle wiring diagrams. I will find out what else, if anything else is in this circuit for you.

  • FIATI Panda from 1993. I also think the door switches are poorly manufactured, or that after 23 years they got rusty or similar. The circuit is simple, as shown in the figure: I have the schematic of the whole car electric circuit. I will clean the switches and also add the capacitor as suggested in another answer and see what happens.
    – FarO
    Nov 20, 2016 at 15:56

you can solve the problem by using a LED strip with constant current driving LED strip, the input voltage can be 9V~18V, then that may solve the problem.

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