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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everybody,
So I liked a few of the links I saw where people had put driving lights behind the lower grill and thought I would put some in myself. (I thought it looked nice and stealth) I bought a set of these after reading how people had some pretty good success with the less expensive lights. I also wanted to stay with a roundish light to match the headlights. Also, the size of them was a great fit for the install. And lastly, I wanted to be able to have them on all the time and not get flashed or piss off other people... So, after pulling the bumper apart, fabricating mounts out of galvanized/painted angle brackets, wiring everything in and putting the whole assembly back together, I now have functioning lights behind the lower grill. However they are very, very dim... I know they are only 55w Halogen bulbs, but shouldn't they do something? I think the side marker lights on the mirrors put out more light. (just kidding, but it feels that way)... I wired the system according to the instructions using the supplied harness with a little tweaking from the forums here. I have it set so that I can turn them on or off by a switch but that they will lose power whenever the ignition is off. I did this by using an "add a circuit" through the ignition fuse on the kickpanel fuse box. The ground for the switch is to the Toyota used ground behind the kickpanel and the ground for the lights is a screw into the frame bar in front of the radiator. See my attached diagram that looks like it was done by a 3rd grader.

Is there any reason that these are so dim? Are they just POS lights? Maybe just a crappy harness? Aren't the stock headlights 60W at low beam, so shouldn't 55W be kinda bright? Before I tear them out and shove them up Kragen's butt where they won't illuminate anything, I just thought I would ask... Thanks to anyone and everyone for any help.
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

Its a set of 20 dollar lights.(that don't even come with a relay). The wiring harness alone for my Light Force lights is more the two times the price of that kit.

Just because some lights are the same wattage does not mean they are going to have the same output. Nor does double the wattage indicate "twice" as bright. There are a lot of other factors to consider. (i.e. bulb quality, lens quality, lens design, reflector shape, reflector material, wiring harness, etc)

First, you should be running a relay. All good offroad lighting kits i have bought have all had relays. You are running a whole lot of power through a very inexpensive switch.

2nd, being behind the grill will reduce some of the light output.

Having a bad ground can reduce output as well. The way you have them wired with an add-a-circuit is fine, but i would still use a relay.

This is a good picture of how the setup should look.



A much better set of lights at a pretty affordable price is the IPF 968s. A lot of folks run them. I think Costco sells the pair for 89?
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

Thank you... I know, I am well aware of "you get what you pay for", I just didn't expect them to be that bad. And I know the grill will cut down on them somewhat, but these don't even light up the garage door when I am parked in front of it! I am just more disappointed that I wasted my time more than my money, but now I can take the bumper apart in no time flat...

A question about the IPF's, can you use them all the time? Or are they off-road lights? Meaning, can I run them on the street?
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

So, if I build my own harness with a relay, do you think that would boost the output to a respectable level? I should be able to tap into most of what is there and just run heavier gauge wire for the relay-lights run right? Any recommendations on wire size for battery/relay and relay/lights runs? Thanks
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

So, if I build my own harness with a relay, do you think that would boost the output to a respectable level? I should be able to tap into most of what is there and just run heavier gauge wire for the relay-lights run right? Any recommendations on wire size for battery/relay and relay/lights runs? Thanks
Rather than building you own wiring harness, here is a good and complete foglight/drivingl lights wiring harness by Hella;

Amazon.com: HELLA H84994051 Lamp Wiring Harness: Automotive



It comes with 30A relay, 20A inline fuse, lighted switch and the wires to the lights, power and ground are 14AWG.
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

you need a relay between the "Power" and "In Dash lighted Switch". Any 12V automotive relay will work.

connect pin87 to lights (positive +)
connect pin30 to a good 12V (positive +) source (pref. to battery.) don't forget the *fuse
connect pin86 to "In Dash Lighted Switch"
connect pin85 to ground


*the fuse rating for 2x55w lights is (i think) 25A. (you might wanna do research on that.) :)

The reason why it's so dim is because it sounds like your only running 10A to your lights.
:cheers:

CAN SOMEONE VERIFY THIS FOR ME
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

you need a relay between the "Power" and "In Dash lighted Switch". Any 12V automotive relay will work.

connect pin87 to lights (positive +)
connect pin30 to a good 12V (positive +) source (pref. to battery.) don't forget the *fuse
connect pin86 to "In Dash Lighted Switch"
connect pin85 to ground


*the fuse rating for 2x55w lights is (i think) 25A. (you might wanna do research on that.) :)

The reason why it's so dim is because it sounds like your only running 10A to your lights.
:cheers:

CAN SOMEONE VERIFY THIS FOR ME


I cannot verify it, but I can definitely get behind it!
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

Get a relay in there and then check your grounds...check your grounds again....and maybe again. Good luck.

Besides that the grill will greatly diminish the light output. Hella/Optilux makes some other economy lights that may be a better quality also.... If you decide to upgrade.
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

I went with the wiring setup that was recommended. I made the harness myself as I did not want to 1: wait for Amazon to deliver 2: I already had a switch that I fab'ed installed.

Suffice it to say, there is a HUGE difference in output. They won't make the flowers bloom or the grass grow green, but at least they work now. I will give them a better test tonight once it is dark.

Tech notes: I used 10awg from battery to relay (with 25amp in-line fuse), relay to ground, and relay to lights where they pigtail into the existing manufacturer wire. I just used the original power wire off the switch for the last connection.

On a side note, can I zip tie the wire to the silver ac line? I am assuming that is what it is...

Thanks everybody!
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

It is an AC line.... I steered clear of mine. Between you and I I was thinking about condesation on that line...water....electricity....blah blah blah. It wouldn't be the first time I over thought something.
 

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Re: Dim Driving Lights after Install-Help!

If condensation is gonna screw it up, what am I supposed to do about rain?.. I can move the line in two seconds with a simple clip of the zip tie I used to hold it there. Too bad, that ac line is in just the right place.

Oh yeah, the lights work great now, with a significant difference at night. Yes, the grill drops off some light, but they are doing their job. Thanks everybody.
 
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