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HOW TO wire up VXR8 DRLs

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  • HOW TO wire up VXR8 DRLs

    Been a few DRL threads on the VXR8 section lately, and since I've just done this today I thought a wiring how-to might be useful.

    This thread describes wiring up DRLs on a 2009 LS3 VXR8. I don't imagine the earlier models are different but if you're following this please check your wires before splicing!!

    I'm starting this assuming your DRLs are already mounted on the front end somewhere, maybe like this:

    You need these tools:
    • A 12 volt probe, a pointy one.
    • A Philips screwdriver.
    • Socket set with 10mm and 13mm sockets.
    • Wire stripper.
    • Wire cutters.
    • A Stanley knife.
    • A connector crimping tool.
    • A soldering iron and solder.
    • Electrical tape.
    • Cable ties.

    and these components:
    • A plain ol' automotive relay, normally open type.
    • An inline fuse holder, ideally splash proof.
    • A few metres of cable.
    • One ring connector, 8mm internal diameter.
    • One ring connector, 6.3mm internal diameter.
    • Four 15A insulated female spade connectors.
    • Depending on where your DRLs are mounted and how long their cables are, you may need connectors to extend the DRL cables to reach the relay and earthing point.

    All components must be rated at least double the current your DRLs will draw. Mine claim to be 1 watt per LED, and 16 of them means 1.3333 amps.
    I used a 30A relay, 10A blade fuse in a 30A holder, and 10A cable. This gives me some wiggle room if I want to fit brighter DLRs at some point without rewiring everything.

    First thing to do is find an ignition switched positive, so your DRLs come on with the ignition.
    Locate the under-bonnet fuse box. A few wiring looms connect to the underside of the fuse box. The one we're looking for goes from the front underside of the box and heads rightwards into the engine bay.
    Gently remove about 6 inches of the corrugated plastic cable tidy. There may be some tape wrapped around it, this needs to come off. Inside you'll find a lot of wires, several of them pink with a blue stripe. You're looking for a plain pink wire, slightly thicker then the pink/blue ones. I've isolated it with some pliers here:

    Use the 12v probe to check it's the correct wire. Penetrate the insulation with the tip of the probe, lamp should be off until the ignition is switched to stage 2 or the engine is running.

    Once you're happy you're got the correct wire, remove the tape holding the loom together.

    You should probably disconnect the battery at this point. I didn't, but it's the safe thing to do.

    Strip a 1cm section of insulation from the pink wire. You're just looking to cut the insulation not the metal. Take your time and apply gentle pressure - damaging the wire is a bad idea.
    Should end up with something like this:

    Next you need to decide where to mount the relay and fuse.
    I chose a mounting point on the front of the fuse box, because it's close to a permanent 12v supply which is needed to power the DRLs:

    Green arrow shows the screw where I'll be attaching my relay. Red arrow shows the 12v permanent supply.

    Solder a length of wire onto the stripped section of the pink wire. This is your switching feed to the relay.
    Let the joint cool, then protect with electrical tape. Wrap some fresh tape round the loom to hold it together.

    Connect the inline fuse to the 12v permanent supply (red arrow in above pic) using the larger ring connector. The smaller one doesn't fit.
    Connect the other end of the inline fuse to the relay switched supply using a female spade connector.

    Connect both DRL positive leads to the switched output side of the relay.

    Connect the DLR negative leads to a good earthing point. Like the jump-start earthing post on the right side of the engine bay (use the smaller ring connector for this one):

    If you're running wires from one side of the bay to the other, a good idea is to follow the existing lighting loom the runs along the edge of the slam panel / top of the radiator.
    Buuuuut if you do this remember to feed your wires behind the rad mounts before connecting them up. I didn't. . Had to remove the rad top mounts which can be a pig if they're a bit stuck.

    Connect the ground side of the relay solenoid to a good earth.

    Before tidying up all the wires and fixing the relay in it's intended location, test your install.

    Fit the inline fuse if you're not already done so, and reconnect the battery if it was disconnected.

    With the ignition off, the DRLs should be off. If they are on, check your relay connections before proceeding.

    Now switch the ignition to stage 2. The relay should engage and the DRLs should now be on. If they are off, switch off the ignition, check the relay connections, fuse, permanent 12v connection and earth connections, then try again.

    Now start the engine. The DRLs should still be on.

    If it's all good, switch off the engine, then fix the relay in position. Tidy up your wiring, taping your cables together where necessary, and cable tie to existing looms.

    Where the plastic cable tidy was peeled back from the loom for the pink wire we spliced, refit it. Be patient with this, it's fiddly and can take a while.

    Trim the cable ties, refit any engine bay trim and you're done.

    Switch on the ignition, step back and admire

    BTW don't be a prat with the knife like I was last weekend

  • #2
    Fantastic write up........exactly what i'm looking for
    VXR Arctic Edition.......3" Infinity Cat-Back stainless, 2.75" cobra Pre-Cat, Team Heko's, Cruise Control, Anti hi-jack, M-Tec cosmos blue dipped and main, LED number plate bulbs, Courts boost pipe, Full SMD conversion by Stampede.


    • #3
      Originally posted by mik View Post
      Fantastic write up........exactly what i'm looking for
      Do some for Brutus whilst you're at it

      Sent from my iPhone 5
      Brutus is finally finished!!


      • #4
        Excellent write up, top job!
        VXR8 GTS Sting Red
        6.2 litre Supercharged LSA V8 (779bhp and 765lb ft torque)
        Modified and tuned by Walkinshaw Performance UK


        • #5
          Thanks for the feedback guys


          • #6
            Very good guide I've got an idea of putting some behind my fog light covers, so this will come in very handy top job.


            • #7
              Cheers Cottee glad you found it useful