Since the vast majority of modern SUVs aren’t built for serious off-roading, those who want to use their vehicles off the paved roads need to do some preparations first. One of the most popular types of additional equipment is off-road lights that are aimed to improve visibility and thus safety when you embark on adventures on the rough terrain.
While only some of the most expensive and rugged production SUVs offer this sort of equipment as standard, DIY solutions are growing in their popularity. That’s because they are affordable and customizable, whereas their installation doesn’t demand too much of your time and effort.
Here are the steps that you need to take if you want to equip your SUV with off-road lights:
Positioning. The higher the location is, the more effective the lights will be. But take into account that you will need to run the wiring to the chosen position.
Measure thrice and cut once. Carefully measure the location, determine spots for drilling and mark them with masking tape. Use the correct drill bit specified by your lights’ installation manual and drill through the tape to save the body surface from excessive damage. Add a hole for the wiring if the manual suggests it. Add some paint to the raw metal to prevent corrosion.
Lights installation. Add a bit of silicone grease onto the mounting area for sealing. It’s especially important for roof-mounted lights. Then, attach the mounts and put the bolts into holes. Make sure that your new off-road lights are aimed properly. Add washers and nuts from the other side. Step by step, evenly tighten the hardware.
Adding a switch. Choose the position for the switch in the cabin. Depending on your truck’s interior arrangement and trim level, there may be extra buttons that you can use. Otherwise, make a hole and add the switch provided with the kit. Connect it to two wires; one runs to the battery, the other goes to the lights.
Connecting to the switch. Run wires from the lights to the switch. There will be two of them: the ground wire is black, and the other one supplies the power to the lights. Connect the end of the ground wire to the bare metal. Then, connect the other wire to the switch.
Connecting to the battery. Before doing anything with the battery, make sure both of its terminals are disconnected. Run the wire from switch to the positive terminal of the battery. The line must include a fuse. Add it if the lights installation kit doesn’t provide one. Reconnect the battery and make sure that the added wire is attached securely.