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How to hardwire interior LED car lights

Updated July 18, 2017

Interior LED lights, which provide lighting across a variety of wavelengths and degrees of brightness, offer convenience, safety, and the possibility of customising your vehicle. LED lights offer myriad advantages, including their small size, longer lifetime, relatively low energy consumption compared to their incandescent counterparts, faster switching, and high reliability. After mounting your LED lighting kit, the process of wiring your lights is relatively straightforward, requiring only limited materials that you can obtain at your local hardware store.

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  1. Disconnect your car battery before you start working.

  2. Connect the positive terminal of your car battery to 12-gauge AWG cable.

  3. Connect the 12-gauge AWG cable to an in-line fuse, per fuse manufacturer's instructions. The in-line fuse protects your LED lights from any excessive, and potentially dangerous, infusions of voltage from the car battery. Locate the fuse within 18 inches of the battery, but as far away as possible from the car engine and from any particularly hot areas of the hood.

  4. Drill a hole in the firewall of your car, which separates your engine from the interior of your car. Fill the hole with rubber grommet, preventing the 12-gauge AWG cable from rubbing against the metal of your car and potentially damaging both. Pull the 12-gauge AWG cable through the hole in the firewall.

  5. Connect the 12-gauge AWG cable to the control switch, per manufacturer's instructions.

  6. Connect the control switch, using 12-gauge AWG cable, to the interior LED lights.

  7. Reconnect your car battery. When you ignite your engine, you should be able to use the control switch to turn your LED lights on and off at will.

  8. Warning

    If wired incorrectly, electrical circuits can cause harm, and even death. Do not attempt this procedure before consulting an experienced professional.

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Things You'll Need

  • 12-gauge AWG cable
  • In-line fuse
  • Control switch
  • Drill

About the Author

Tricia Lobo has been writing since 2006. Her biomedical engineering research, "Biocompatible and pH sensitive PLGA encapsulated MnO nanocrystals for molecular and cellular MRI," was accepted in 2010 for publication in the journal "Nanoletters." Lobo earned her Bachelor of Science in biomedical engineering, with distinction, from Yale in 2010.

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