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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Procedure updated. See page two for a new, easier method to do this mod.



** Had this kicking around PO, maybe it'll help someone here as well. **

I’ve been meaning to install foot well courtesy lights for a while. I don’t understand why the prelude never had them as they are a pretty tasteful lighting addition.

Anyway, I mentioned doing this and wiring them so they come on automatically and someone requested that I do a write up. After some “research” and failed design concepts – one involved somehow wiring them to the dome light all the way IN the dome – I figured out what I needed to do and took up the project during the last two days of summer before college picked up again.





First you have to gather the necessary materials and tools required for this task:

#1
Starting from the top going left and right:


  • - typical clamp on lamp, 100 pack of zipties, ratcheting multi bit screw driver
  • - 16 gauge red wire (for positive), 16 gauge black wire (for negative), 18 gauge blue wire (for outputs from relay), double stick mounting tape, assortment of electrical tapes
  • - Three position flip switch from radio shack, 12v 30a automotive relay from RS -!!(SEE NOTE IN INSTRUCTIONS)!!- , wire stripper/crimper/cutter/splicer/dicer/shyster, needle nose pliers, wire snip
  • - Assortment of instructions (prelude wiring diagram for alarm installation, relay wiring options, etc), 25 pack of 16-14 gauge female spade connectors, 100 pack of quick splices
  • - Prelude wiring diagrams: Honda*Prelude Car Alarm Wiring Information
  • - Relay wiring types: http://www.fastronixsolutions.com/Relay_Wiring.pdf
#2
- My LeBra taken off for cleaning, some rustoleum I used to paint the battery bracket, box o’ tools, giant bug lamp to keep the damn mosquitos from eating you and the f-ing moths out of the car

**Not pictured is what I used to mount and install the lights with. I went to a junkyard and picked up some marker light holsters from an Acura TL; at a different point in time unrelated to this day. You can see them in some of the later images.**​



Get to work by removing the glove box first. Open her up and she’ll only come down only so much. Well, these little “feet” brace themselves on a rail and you have to pop them out.


#3
This is what these things are on the side of the glove box if you’re wondering. They simply pop out from the outside of the box. I forced them out with the fingers but you can use the needle nose pliers on the two prongs that hold it into place. Remember! There are two, one on each side of the glove box. (To answer inquiries, that is an auxiliary input for the stock radio. I like the stock radio and this little box hooks into the CD changer jack so I can use my phone or MP3 player to listen to music. Get one at WWW.PIE-OUTLET.COM)​



Removing the feet allows the box to open more fully, but it is still attached at the side to an air piston. It makes it open and close more smoothly.

#4
It is circled in the middle and hooks up at the bracket on the right. The piston just pops right out. Afterwards, unscrew the box from the dash; it’s held by two hinges, the right most one is circled on the left.​


Next it is time to remove the center bezel and radio. I did this because I found it easier to shine light into where I was working and to manipulate wires more readily with the radio removed. DO NOT REMOVE THE RADIO IF YOU DO NOT HAVE ITS ANTI-THEFT CODE!!!!!


#5



The bezel is clipped in by a few dash screws. The best way to pull it out is to get a flathead wrapped in a soft cloth and jam it in approximately where I did in the picture. Just jam it in and pry the screw driver back and forth until it gives, then you can use your hands to pull it all the way off.​
#6
This is what I’m talking about. Once you put pressure on this little tab (NOT TOO MUCH!) you gain leverage and the bezel just pops right out
After the bezel is out you can remove the radio.​
#7
It is held to a bracket which is screwed down to the dash by four screws. It is very easy to see them and they are to the left and right of the actual radio face. Take it out after it is unscrewed and set it aside. (AGAIN, DO NOT DO THIS IF YOU DO NOT HAVE THE CODE! SAVE THE HASSLE.)​




I mounted the lights in essentially the only positions that I could see, at least. I angled them slightly so they would point towards the middle of the mats; where feet usually are.


#8
This is the passenger side. You should recognize this from after having to remove the glove box. It’s on the left side of the bracket that holds the box. Just behind it, to the right of the mounting bolt, is a little gap perfect to stuff a bulb holder.​
#9
Here’s an undershot of how the mounting looks like, and the angle. It’s up to you if you wish to do it the same way I did. Just position it how you like and ziptie it to something sturdy so it doesn’t move around or buckle.
#10
The driver’s side one is a little different. There’s no bracket or anything at the level of the passenger side light to mount it to so I mounted the light to the bracket that holds the valve controller for the HVAC, which changes from where the air flow comes from (ie: feet, face, windshield, both, etc).​
#11
This is a better wideshot to give you an idea of where I mounted it if you can’t find the same place in your car.​




Wiring is the next step and it is relatively simple, if you go my way and get all the right parts. You can stick with simply the switch and relay and save some cash, but without the female spade connectors and quick splices you are going to make your time miserable and ten times worse.
I stress taking time on this as well as any project. This involves some electrical work and especially the overall look and design of things. You don’t want to rush as it will screw you up and you will only kick yourself for not doing it properly the first time (I’ve had a few cases of this, ranging from painting to doing something similar to this).

I’ve included a crude diagram of how exactly the wiring was done in my car, as well as the instructions I used (on top of the link offered above) to wire the relay.

[*** NOTE: I made a change after the installation was done. DO NOT buy the radioshack relay. It’s a ripoff and a waste of money. The thing is poorly designed and buzzes whenever it turns “off” for a few seconds. Relay’s are not supposed to do this. Save yourself the $7 and go to a junkyard. I just yanked a relay from a 00 Chevy Malbu. However it doesn’t matter what car, all it matters is the relay have a diagram imprinted on it and it have the terminals 85, 86, 87, and 30.]



#12
This is how my lights are wired. Red lines represent red wires for positive leads, while black lines represent black wires negative leads. The blue lines are blue wires I used for inputs from the door trigger to relay and from the relay to switch, as illustrated. You do not have to do this, I just like things to be color coded.

**NOTE: the door trigger wire is a pain to get to. It is at a wire cluster in the driver kick panel which is clipped to a bracket BELOW the fuse box/panel. I recommend having a multimeter handy and testing this wire to make sure it is the wire. It will give off a negative impulse when the door is opened. You’ll have to remove some of the carpet and the dead pedal to get to this.​
#13
This is from my alarm installation manual, so if you don’t like my diagram you can go by this. I didn’t have a fuse holder so all I did was use two male spade bits and attach them to a 20amp fuse and wrapped it in tape inline between the power source and relay.

For the 12v constant to power the relay I used the white wire coming from the ignition, as stated in picture #17. BEFORE DOING ANYTHING WITH THIS WIRE disconnect your battery. Have your radio code ready or take the risk if you’ll lose your radio disconnecting the battery. Either way, you don’t want to short something or zap yourself. Also, this wire is 10 gauge so the quick splice you bought (maybe) will not work. You will have to manually splice into by peeling some of the jacket off, making a hole in the wire, and threading the wire from the relay into and twisting it around the ignition wire.​
#14
This is what I did to get a 12v line to power the lights directly so I could turn them on and off manually. This is below the radio (hence me telling you to pull it out) and you’ll know when you see it. There are two wires coming out from the cig power socket. The black one is ground and the orange one with white dashes is the 12v power. Use a quick splice to get into this wire and feed the red wire up along and wherever, to the switch.​
#15
To ground the lights I used the same ground point as the cig power socket. It was nearby and it is at a place of easy access. This bolt is 10mm. I did it the crude way as you can see :D . I could have gotten a ring adapter like Honda did but I didn’t have any and this was the only application I’d need one in.​
#16
This is the location of the ground point if you don’t know where it is. It’s behind that funky shaped piece of carpet on the driver’s side.

Mount the switch wherever you’d like. I wanted it hidden so I mounted it within arms reach under the steering wheel, a little bit to the left. I didn’t mount it directly to the little piece of plastic right under the wheel that comes off. I mounted it to the left on that part of the dash that is covered by the soft vinyl. I peeled some off and drilled two holes for the zip tie and mounted it above the plastic, then just glued the vinyl/padding back on.

#17
This is what it looked like. The zip tie goes through the holes and the switch sits behind that plastic so you can’t see it at all.​



Well!! That’s it! Everything should be complete and hopefully working at this point. Don’t be an idiot like me and worry you messed up somewhere by actually closing all the doors and seeing if things work. It’ll be best to try it out at night when you can see the light.

As far as the switch, if you get the same one as I did from RS, it is a three position switch. If it is in the middle, it makes no connection and the system is off. If it is to the left, then the lights come on manually (when the ignition is on), if it is to the right, then the lights come on with the door trigger; on my set up at least.

If you work at a consistent pace this project shouldn’t take more than 3 or 4 hours. I know that seems like a lot but its reasonable, trust me. Go at a steady pace and take your time to do things right and it will pay off in the long run. It actually took me a total of 10 hours myself, but I’m a little bit OCD and would pause for a bit every now and then to “think” or I’d be arranging the wires and running them so they’d be “perfect.” I also did some housekeeping and tidied up the wires coming from my alarm. Made them look like less of a mess. Additionally I wired the “trunk is open” wire to the hood pin switch so the trunk would also be protected.



Anyway, babble aside, here’s what the final product looks like:

#18
This is with only the foot well lights turned on.​
#19
This is with both the dome and foot well lights turned on.​
#20
This is the bulb that I used for this project. You can use any 194/168 bulb (or whatever 12v lighting source you used in this project). It’s an LED with an inverted cone shaped head. This allows for the greatest light dispersion and prevents “spotlighting” that typical, dome headed LED’s produce.

UPDATE: i bought my bulbs from here: eBay Store - warden jp2002: White, SMD SMT Power LED series, Multiple LED series
they cost pennies to make so you should be able to buy them for pennies. unlike some of the sleezebag stores on eBay.​


i snapped a video the other day aswell:




I'll reply to any question as best i can. I'll have updates emailed daily.
On that note, good luck and I hope this helped!
 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Don't be discouraged! Only way I learned was just doing things .... and breaking lots of other things in the process. :hehe:
 

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Don't be discouraged! Only way I learned was just doing things .... and breaking lots of other things in the process. :hehe:

very true. tht is about the only ay to really learn to do thing is by actually doing them. i like your idea but im going to use 7 led pods i pickeed up for like 5 a peice. WAAAYYYY more light output.:scool:
 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
very true. tht is about the only ay to really learn to do thing is by actually doing them. i like your idea but im going to use 7 led pods i pickeed up for like 5 a peice. WAAAYYYY more light output.:scool:
Haha, I wasn't going for a spa in the footwells. The led's I have cast a nice ambient glow. I can also switch to any 194 bulb I want, which is the beauty of my method. :sleeping:

Good luck though. Let me know if you need any expertise. :p
 

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Standing ovation!

PS - QuickSplices are for hacks. you should always strip the insulation off, and make a proper connection with solder, that you KNOW will conduct, and wont potentially cut the wire you're attempting to splice into.
 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
True, I did this months ago though. A time where I would try melting the solder into the wire by placing the solder in between the gun tip and wire. :laugh: So far it's held up since they're just LEDs. In fact I'm going to redo this since I realized I don't have a fuse on the 12v+ line from the cig. lighter lead to the switch. Instead I'll just splice that wire into the lead between the existing fuse and relay.

I think I did it the in this write-up because the cig lead gets cut from the battery when the switch is in the off position. I guess I didn't want to manually control the lights when the ignition was off?


Either way, I'm glad I drew up a schematic since I forgot how I even wired this stuff. :D
 

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Heres mines i went another route though i wired up mines through the dome light so when the doors open they turn on. And my lights are not leds they are cold cathode lights which are made for computers. I went with them because they do not require a resistor and will not flicker down the line. I have these lights for about 6 months now and they havent started flickering yet.;)

 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey mine turn on with the door too! They just don't fade with the dome. Oh and if I did have them fade, the LEDs wouldn't flicker since I have LEDs in my dome. 8)
 

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Hey mine turn on with the door too! They just don't fade with the dome. Oh and if I did have them fade, the LEDs wouldn't flicker since I have LEDs in my dome. 8)
Mines fade :headbang: no flickering

im about to put a pair in my trunk massive light in the dark
 

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That's a waste of time.... you give us the name rice burners lol... JK. Why waste with all that lighting anyways, I guess i just don't understand...
 

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beautiful job on each. my black interior is a bi*ch at nite.
 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
it changes the look when getting into the car completely. I can have it so the dome doesn't turn on but only the footwell do when I open the door. This paired with the red LED's in my door courtesy lights is just pure awesome at night.
 

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Abscissa & Ordinate
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah but they are HORRIBLE in terms of brightness. Their color is great but I didn't expect them to be so dim. You want something with multiple LEDs in it, preferably 6 or one high power SMT LED.

This is what I have currently in my map lights: (dome is one of those inverted ones)
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/2pcs...ptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

Although I'd recommend some of these since they fit better and are also ungodly bright:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/NEW-...ptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories
 

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"THE DOCTOR IS IN"
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But I have more variety and can swap out bulbs just like that! :flipa:
I love your DIY's man.. eveytime i do one, i try to follow your way of explaining things... This DIY is very usefull, and i think you did a very clean job, so reps to you bro.
 
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