I have a raspberry pi 2 Model B v1.1 and 7 color flash sensor. I want to flash the led to get my hand into practice. This is my first program with raspberry pi and unfortunately i failed to flash the led.

I am not using breadboard. I am using pi pin. For that i have used three female-female wire. One for connecting to 5v, one to ground and one to 11 number pin as a channel for supplying high or low voltage so when i use GPIO.output(11,True) led will flash. But it is not working. Here is my code.


import RPi.GPIO as GPIO
import time

mode = GPIO.getmode()
if mode == GPIO.BOARD:
elif mode == GPIO.BCM:

I have attached an image to show the connection. wire connected to 5v is in number 2 pin, ground in number 6 pin and channel number 11 is used.

enter image description here

What might be the cause for not flashing the led?

  • Are you sure this device is safe to connect to a 3V3 GPIO. Where are its specs?
    – joan
    Oct 18, 2016 at 8:53
  • 343 GPIO? Sorry i did not get you
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 8:55
  • The device is powered by 5V, but the GPIO pins output 3.3V logic. You need to find out if the device is compatible with that.
    – goldilocks
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:13
  • oh sorry its my mistake I wrote number 1 pin in the question but i have connected it to number 2 pin and is not working. Sorry for my mistake in question.
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:17
  • 1
    "Connected to pin number 2" -> If you are still talking about the power that's not the issue. The issue is the GPIO pin, which you've referred to as 11. That's a 3.3V signal. If you do not have the specs and cannot identify the device but have everything else right, then this is likely the problem.
    – goldilocks
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:24

2 Answers 2


I can think of the following.

  • Broken LED
  • Not connected to pin 11
  • Not driving the LED according to its specifications
  • LED connected back to front
  • I have updated my question with image to show connection.
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 8:50
  • LED is a new one, though. I have bought 37 in 1 sensor kit and its used just today.
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 8:51

As per this, there are two commonplace ways of conceiving of the board pin numbers. Based on your photograph, you are assuming the BOARD numbering scheme, but you have not actually specified one way or the other.

While it says there setting that is mandatory, it could be importing the module under an alias (GPIO) sets it for you (or there actually is a default and setting it isn't so "mandatory"). I do not use python so don't know. You should try an if/else clause to test the value of GPIO.getmode() against GPIO.BOARD, GPIO.BCM, or None to see which it is.

If it is GPIO.BCM that is not pin 11, that is pin 18 (or perhaps 17, if you started counting from 1, it is hard to tell which row that connection is on).

  • so before setting the mode i have to do GPIO.getmode(). If mode == GPIO.BOARD i have to use number 11 pin as a channel and if mode equals to BCM use channel 17 ?
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:28
  • Presuming you were counting from 1 and that connection is the inside row yes. This is about the number you would use in the code when the connector is where it is now. There's a diagram and more explanation here: raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/q/12966/5538
    – goldilocks
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:32
  • I have now used 12 pin(BOARD) and 18 for BCM. Still it is not working. If i did not set GPIO at first before getmode() i get an error. With above code it is not working too.
    – Tushant
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:50
  • Then unless you can determine what logic level the device is compatible with it is probably because it is supposed to be used with 5V logic. The logic level and the supply power are not necessarily the same, but if they are, then that device won't work directly with the Pi, because while it has a few 5V pins to provide power, the logic of the GPIOs is 3.3V. Devices/sensors sold for the Arduino are usually 5V logic...
    – goldilocks
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:56
  • ...Sometimes they are sold "for the Arduino or Raspberry Pi" but this is ambiguous -- it could mean they work with either, but it could also be sneaky in that in fact a level shifter or something similar is actually needed for one or the other. More about that here: raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/49775/5538
    – goldilocks
    Oct 18, 2016 at 9:56

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