Owning a car is exciting because you get to go anywhere you want whenever you like, but making your ride look special can enhance your experience tremendously. Whether you add custom features, heated steering wheels, automatic high beams, hidden compartments, or even special taillights and headlights.
Installing some cool LED lights for your car can make it look futuristic and unique, making you and your vehicle the center of attention on the road. If you’re thinking about transforming your car this way with customized features, then read on to learn how you can install some LED lights on your vehicle.
Why LED Lighting?
The choice of LED lighting is excellent for your customization plans because of several factors.
You will gain appealing benefits that go beyond just good design and attractiveness. The lighting system will give you brighter light, making it quite convenient when you drive at night. It’s safer because of the sharp cycling aspects of the flashing bulbs, making you grab the attention of other drivers or pedestrians quicker.
Efficiency is another excellent perk of this type of lighting system, consuming 90% less power than your traditional headlight or taillight. Lower heat generation levels are appealing as well, thanks to the low consumption levels, increasing the safety of your lighting system tremendously because it will be cool to the touch.
The best perk of all is the longevity that comes with this system, giving your lights longer life and it should last for many years.
The variety of colors that LED lights can provide are quite exciting, giving you the choice between white, blue, red, green, amber, yellow, or even purple. The ability to switch between colors is an excellent feature to have, allowing you to enjoy and play around with the colors as you see fit.
The system is flexible and it gives you several types to choose from to fit the vehicle or even your mood! It’s designed to be mercury-free, making it a safe option for you and the environment. With minimal to no toxic materials, your car’s lighting system can increase its resale value significantly.
The Types Available
Several types are available for you to purchase or build, but purchasing/ordering a set of custom-designed lighting can be easier.
The designs can be single, double, triple, or quadruple beams. Advice from the LED Baja Designs Squadron Sport manufacturers and suppliers suggest that the number of watts the 4-LED lighting system works for side/pickup, scene lighting, and near field applications. This means that every design has specific lighting capabilities and your choice depends on your lighting needs.
Your car’s size will also play a role in your decision because some designs might not fit the vehicle. The system can come separately with each type in a singular bezel or it can come as auxiliary lights, bars, and kits.
The bezels can be black, white, or silver and you might order a different color if the manufacturer provides custom bezels as well. The auxiliary design is small bulbs that can be mounted anywhere on the vehicle, giving it a stylish look with a variety of styles depending on your preference.
The lighting kits are thin lines of light that look like wires and you can install them anywhere from under the body of the car, around the tires, or on the sides. The bars are long and have several bulbs that you can place on the roof of your car or the sides. The choice all depends on how you plan to customize your vehicle.
Is Customization Worth It?
It depends on what you’re adding to the car because some customization plans can be too expensive or detrimental to the car. However, learning the pros and cons of modifying your vehicle can help you quickly decide if you should customize or not.
Lighting systems don’t pose a huge problem to you or your vehicle. It will not void any warranties and there are no legal concerns to worry about.
LED lights are safe, and that is enough reason for you to consider it because it gives you more than just style. This addition will not ruin the body or make it more vulnerable to damages, making this choice of modification the best kind.
Customizing our possessions can increase our satisfaction levels. It makes you unique and different because not all drivers are the same.
When you get the sense or feeling that something is made just for you, it will make you happier because no one else will have something similar. Customizing your vehicle gives you a sense of control, going beyond what the original manufacturers wanted with the look of the car.
Feeling that you aren’t driving something generic makes that feeling of control quite empowering. If the extra additions and upgrades don’t pose a threat, aren’t too expensive, and don’t bother people in public, then they are worth the effort and cost.
One of the complicated parts of installing this system is the wiring, but the steps can be simple enough if you follow them correctly.
Each design has two main wires at the back of the bezel with a sealed weather-packed connector and the locking tab is on top. You have the A and B positions and you need to connect them right for the system to work. The A position has a black wire that should be attached to the ground and the B position has a white wire that should be attached to the DC positive hot lead.
Consider checking each plug and connector to make sure you have the right mates for them. Some manufacturers send the mates with the order of bezel LED lights.
Having a circuit or fuse breaker for protection is crucial and you must use the right circuit protection that has a rating of between 5 to 10 amps. This makes it higher than the total current draw, but you must be sure to calculate the correct rating for the circuit protection.
Calculating that rating for the circuit protection is done correctly when you divide the sum of wattage or total watts that is drawn on the circuit by the charging/battery system voltage. You will know the number of total amps/current drawn by the circuit.
Sometimes you may need a relay if you use a switch that has a lower current rating than the current draw. Follow the manual thoroughly to make sure the wiring is done right.
Steps Before the Mounting Phase
You will need to follow these steps to have an easier time with the mounting phase of bezels around the headlight and taillight area.
Step 1. You should unscrew the 16 expanding rivets on the car’s lock plate rim and then remove them.
Step 2. Start removing the three attachment screws to remove the headlights, pulling them out of the body smoothly.
Step 3. You will see plug-type connections and you need to disconnect them, including the low, high, and position beam.
Step 4. You must take a look at your car’s body at the front and back, checking to see how you should attach your new system.
Most vehicle designs don’t have a metal part on the front apron and that will require you to remove the front apron entirely to know which parts are safe for drilling. This will be easy after removing all the rivets and license plate screws.
Step 5. Once the trim and apron are taken off, you can start removing the headlight cleaning system’s nozzles. You can do this by pulling the nozzles upwards and then release the cover cap using a screwdriver.
Step 6. Once the area is clear, you will see which spots are perfect for drilling and then you calculate the position to do the same drills on the apron and trim you removed.
Mounting the LED Systems
The mounting part is a little simpler than the wiring steps and you will need your instruction manual again. Every manual has a template after the instructions pages and you must cut the template out.
You should place it on any flat surface that you want and then you should start tracing the template on the mounting surface. You will need to cut out the material after that and make sure it’s the correct size for the light to slide in the opening you’ve just cut.
Position the light flush carefully through the opening and then mark the outer mounting holes. This is where you start drilling holes after you’ve marked them. Then you will need to plug the system’s weather-pack connector into the harness you have for it, sliding it through the opening on that mounting surface you’ve just made.
When you are done, you will need to attach four countersunk screws and nuts to keep them secured. This works for the bezels, bars, and auxiliary lighting systems.
Is It Possible to DIY These Steps?
Yes, it is possible to do it yourself, but it will be tough. You must have the patience and skill to follow the instructions thoroughly to make sure that the installation process goes well.
Even though DIY work can be appealing because of the money you can save, you need to consider your time and effort too.
If you’re an enthusiast and you love working with your hand, then it will be an excellent learning experience for you. You can brag to your buddies how you managed to customize your ride all by yourself. The fulfilling emotions and fun you will have can be worth the hassle.
You may even meet some like-minded people when you research or shop around for tools and materials. Overall, the choice is up to you, your time, and your budget.
The LED Strips
A fairly easier system to install is the kits of LED strips that you can attach anywhere on your vehicle. Whether you decide to do it inside or outside, the design and colors will look quite amazing when you’re done.
You must clean the surface areas and dry them, making the surface ready for the adhesive tape the strips have. The cleaner the surface is, the better it will stick. The strips come in rolls and you need to unroll it enough to suit the length of the area you’re planning to customize.
After you cut it, peel the adhesive tape gently to avoid creasing it and then stick/place them on the area firmly. Make sure it is stuck firmly to avoid any air bubbles from forming.
When the adhesive is ready and placed, connect the LED wires/strips to the controller that came with the roll. Make sure the adapter is connected to the mains, allowing you to turn the lights on easily.
If the surface is rough and not smooth enough, use/install some mounting clips to keep the wires/strips firmly attached and stable. Also, for the areas around the tires and on the edges of the vehicle’s body, you should make sure that the strips you have are waterproof.
Your car might drive through muddy puddles randomly and the moisture that splashes over it can make the adhesive weaker, pushing it to peel off and drop randomly. However, waterproof wires/strips will prevent that.
Can I Use a Remote?
Yes, you can use a remote to control the power of the light and to switch between colors. It will be convenient to use them because they work the same way as any other remote.
You must read the manual and follow the steps to change settings whenever you like. Some remotes can be programmed, but it’s quite difficult. You will see arrow buttons pointing up and down, allowing you to change colors yourself without an automated system.
Whether you hire a professional or go for the DIY route, your car will look fantastic with a beautifully-designed LED lighting system.
Consider researching the different methods, colors, and installation tools that you will need for the process to go smoothly. This is your vehicle and you have every right to change how it looks depending on your preferences.
When you purchase any vehicle, it will always feel average and similar to any other car in the street. If you have a creative spirit and you want to add special additions to your car’s design, then you will manage to make it stand out.