Under-Dash Lighting

This is a brief DIY for under-dash lighting, with an end result like the following:

(Just an example, not my car, but neons will give you this exact effect. Other lights may vary slightly)

Materials needed:

2 12v lights -
Im sure there will be a lot of debate over what is best for this application. I have 2 8″ neon tubes I got off amazon for about $8 each and Ive had them for about 3 years. The downfall to most lights is that they are fragile and will most likely get broken if you or your passengers arent careful. Mine have been broken a few times, but luckily it was just the outer tube and I was able to fix it.

You could use cold cathodes, but again, they are fragile and they also pose another problem. The inverter box is going to prevent you from mounting them both properly, so it is recommended that you have 2 inverter boxes, one for each side.

Another option is an LED light bar, which I believe are a little sturdier, but the light output just doesnt look the same.

A few feet of wire-
Youre going to need some extra wire because chances are youll only get a foot or maybe less on the lights you buy. Id also recommend that you get two different colors, red and black would be good, just so you can distinguish ground and power.

A switch-
Just so you can turn the lights on and off whenever you want. You dont necessarily need one, but your lights will be on all the time otherwise.

A few connectors-
Youre going to need a few butt-splice connectors, a few female quick-disconnect terminals, and 2 pin connectors.

Butt-splice connectors
(Right)Female quick disconnect (shielded, but they are also available without the shield)
Pin connectors

Youre also going to need a means to strip wire and crimp these connectors. Youll probably be fine with some needle-nose pliers and some scissors if thats all you have.

Something to mount your lights-
Most lights will come with foam strips, but cable ties are probably more secure and give you more mounting options.
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First, youll need to get yourself at least 2 12v lights, whatever your preference is. I would recommend getting something without an inverter box, but if you must, having one for each side will make your life a lot easier.

Mount your lights on each side under the dash with the wires facing the center console. I couldnt get any good pictures of this with my phone, so youll just have to MacGyver something. Its not hard. Youll be fine. I promise. Cable ties are your best bet for this.

The next step is to remove the piece around your shifter. Youll need to remove the two lower trim pieces first. You can use a flat screwdriver to do it if you need to, just be careful.

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Now youll need to remove the uh… compartment with the outlet. You know what I mean.

Remove those two screws and it just pops right out (you may need to move the shifter back to pull it out). Also, as you can see my switch is mounted in the center console and the DIY covers mounting it in this general area (if you mount it next to the steering wheel, youll probably want to use the fusebox for your power and a screw in that area for your ground)

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Now youll need to pull the + and – wires from both lights into this opening from behind the center console. You may need to extend the wires if theyre too short (if you extend them, make sure you know which is which, either through color or a piece of tape on the postive wire, etc). There isnt really an easy way to do this. Just push the wires behind the console from the sides, then reach into the opening and pull them through. You may be able to use a metal coat hanger to fish them out.

If youre using a non lighted switch, you should have two prongs on it. One is the power and the other is the load. If you have a lighted switch, youll also have a ground prong.

For the non-lighted switch, connect both + wires from your lights to a female disconnect terminal and plug it into the load prong on your switch.
Connect both of the – wires from your lights to a pin connector terminal and plug them into this blue connector in one of the slots besides the one that goes to the gray wire (thats going to be your power). Now take a piece of wire, put a female disconnect on one side and put it on the power prong for the switch, and a pin connector terminal on the other side and plug it into the blue connector in the slot that runs to the gray wire.

For the lighted switch, you just have to run a ground to that extra ground prong and it will light up when its switched on.

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(I used spade terminals because I didnt have any of those pin connector terminals)

Thats pretty much it. You just need to hide any visible wires and put your car back together.

NOTE: Oznium recommends a fuse for all vehicle lighting, so if you feel its necessary, you can use a 1 to 3 amp fuse.

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