Hi, I'm Kevin Tetz working with LMC Truck to bring you cool technical information and great how to videos on how to make your truck project even better.
In this video were going to be walking you through the installation of a three-color led tailgate light bar. Now these lights while they're DOT legal, but let's face it the lenses are cloudy, their incandescent bulbs, and compared to today's vehicles with full-on LED lighting these pale, literally, in comparison and you can do a lot better and it's very easy to do. This LED strip has full width red dual brightness LEDs for brake and running lights. On each end is an amber strip for turn signals and in the middle is a large white strip of LEDs for backup lights.
Now, if your vehicle has the four wire plug, well its simple plug-and-play with the plug itself and a couple of other simple wires to hook up. If not the kit comes with the four wire plug that's easily hardwired into your vehicle's existing system. But, the best thing is that it's a simple no-cut no drill installation using the provided self-adhesive strips. This kit has simple easy-to-follow instructions including a troubleshooting guide and a scale of one to five I'm going to give this about a three just because there's a little bit of wiring to do.
Now there is some vehicle prep that we need to do before we install it and we're going to walk you through that as well. Now since our strip is stuck to this sheet metal strip between the tailgate and the bumper we've got to have a good adhesion. I'm using alcohol to clean it off. Now our old truck has a trailer plug in the bumper but a lot of vehicles now don't have that 4-wireplug or easy access to the wiring so we’re going to show you how to splice into the main harness but do it the right way and that way we get a good solid connection and we get a foolproof electrical system that's not going to let us down.
Whenever you're doing a wiring project or electrical work it's just good practice to disconnect the battery first. This is the main chassis harness and it’s easy to get to and easy to unplug. Now we can just set it up between the bumper and the sheet metal and do our work from the top so this is much easier to work without a bunch of stuff falling in our eyes and it’s very simple to hardwire this in. You just match your colors. You've got yellow to yellow, dark green to dark green, brown to brown, and white is a dedicated chassis ground. Not a body ground, but a chassis ground. And we want you to avoid this type of connector because it can be unreliable and not make a perfect contact every time. So we're going to replace that while we splice our yellow wire.
Now, you are going to need some tools. We've got a test light just to test circuits. I like to use heat shrink tubing but you can also use electrical tape. I like to use a flame with solder and some rosin core solder wire strippers and just a lighter for the heat shrink tubing.
After getting rid of the Scotch connector we'll cut the yellow wire and connect all three yellows together along with the blue trailer plug wire and solder them for permanent connection. There we go...same thing with the green wire, soldering it up and then the brown wire making the connection permanent and foolproof. And we seal it off with heat shrink tubing .I've added some additional wire to allow us to ground the light to a better spot on the frame and soldered on a connector for a solid ground.
Now here's our control box for the LED light strip. We've got one wire that goes to 12 volt constant power and this one gets tapped in to the backup light circuit which we're 99% sure is this light green wire. We're going to verify by pulling tail light just double check. So here's our backup bulb the light green wire that we found in the main harness club that's a backup lights that's where we tap in the white one from the control box. The instructions clearly show you where to connect every wire and we're soldering every connection so we never have to think about it again. I always like to run a little bit of electrical tape around my connections. A little bit more security, just to keep things nice and neat.
Well there's one last connection to make. That's the control box to constant 12 volt power. This other wire here we've run up the frame rail and cable tied it safely away from everything else. And that way we've got constant 12 volt power just like the instructions say to. There are several ways to connect the battery. We've soldered on a ring terminal so it makes a good connection while looking nice and neat.
The adhesive strips are peel and stick and since we pre-cleaned the panel under the gate we just line up and center the LED light strip and press the adhesive firmly onto the painted surface. And, that is installed. Now that's not just a cool-looking accessory is a fully functioning LED lighting upgrade that's going to make your vehicle more visible and safer to drive.
We hope we've passed on some tips to you that will help you through an electrical project in making your connections the proper way. Don't forget to go through your LMC Truck catalog or go to LMCTruck.com to get some other ideas on LED lighting upgrades or anything else that you might need for your truck project to make it better.
Thanks for watching I'm Kevin Tetz.