How to install neon car lights

Updated April 17, 2017

Neon lights are not just for store signs anymore. As one of the most popular customisation projects, neon light kits for cars are making their place in car history. These kits can be easily purchased and almost as easily installed. In no time your car can look like its floating on a wave of neon-coloured light.

Decide on the location of your new lights. The lights will need to be kept clear of excessive heat from the engine, moving parts, exhaust system and the fuel line. Keep your car's electrical system in mind because you may have to work around it and you don't want to damage anything.

Disconnect the negative terminal on your battery. This will make sure that there is no electricity flowing.

Place the lighting where you want it and mark the location of the mounting brackets with a washable marker. Make sure that the brackets will not puncture anything important like wiring, brake lines or other key components of your car when they are mounted.

Pre-drill the holes for your brackets and then mount them using an electric screwdriver or a regular one. Make sure you align them to the spots that are marked.

Secure the transformer in the engine compartment. The specifics on this will vary according to the kit you are using. It will usually need to be located somewhere near the battery and secured to the frame or another non-moving part of the car.

Connect the transformer to the neon lighting circuit. The exact details on this process may vary depending on your kit and car.

Connect the power wire on the transformer to the positive battery terminal. You will want to use an in-line fuse attached as close to the battery as possible.

Secure the ground wire from the transformer to a metal part of the car frame using a screwdriver. Only attach it to solid metal.

Run the on/off switch wiring through a grommet in the firewall and into the dash. The switch and fuse should be between the transformer and power supply. It is illegal to merge the neon switch and your lights in most states, so keep them separate.

Mount your switch on your dash. Make sure it is in an area that doesn't interfere with anything.

Reconnect your battery and make sure everything works.


Enlist the help of a friend who has done this installation before. Seal your holes with waterproof sealant. This will help keep your frame from rusting and hold your brackets in place.


Check your local laws to make sure neon lights are legal in your area. Do not install these if much of your driving is on dirt or gravel roads, because the bulbs can break.

Things You'll Need

  • Jack
  • Neon lighting kit
  • Washable marker
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver (electric or regular)
  • In-line fuse
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