: LED Vents Help
05-19-2008, 04:15 PM
I want to light my vents up with leds, I read the how-to, however, Im just trying to figure out the wiring.
I'm pretty retarded when it comes to wiring, so...this was my "plan"
I want to light up all 4 vents, with 4 LEDs. So I would need...
a Drill and Bit
Silver/chrome paint or foil
Wiring(What gauge thou?)
a fuse(one of those that prevents fires or shortages..I think..)
I want to wire all of my LEDs to my Fog Light switch, since I dont have fog lights, however the switch still pops out.. so I'm assuming I still have fog light capability.
So, Here is what I was going to do..
Run a + wire from the fog light fuse, to that other fuse(don't know its name..), then run the lead from that to the + wire coming from my first LED, then keep going across the dash connecting the red(+) wires together and then connecting the black(-) ground wires together. Leaving me with a black (-) ground wire at the very end, at which I can ground to a bolt or something.
Would this work? or am I completely stupid and don't know what the f I'm doing... lol
Any help would be sweet, thanks!
05-19-2008, 04:27 PM
you would be better off adding a switch imo but the foglight switch would work if you did the foglight mod.
you will have to do the foglight mod to allow you to have the vent lights on when your headlights are on, basically remove the relay and put a wire in its place, search for the how-to
also, you really only need one fuse, the foglight fuse alone will work fine
your progression of wiring is incorrect... heres an attempt at helping
"ground" and "+12V" are reference points, like going from "your house" to "work"
you use "2 gallons" of "gas" to get to work
generally, electricity uses "3.4 volts" of "energy per unit charge" to get across an LED. Also (and this only applies to LED's and a few other things), electricity can only flow in one direction across an LED
so basically, you need a +12V source (foglight fuse, which is somehow connected to the + terminal of the car's battery) and a ground reference location (the metal of the dashboard frame works fine here, since the frame is grounded to the - terminal of your car's battery)
LED's have a long and a short "lead" where electricity goes in and out. Generally the long lead is the "+" lead and the "-" lead is the short one. LED's are also very fragile; you need a small resistor to help them handle power surges and such. a 100-500 ohm resistor will work fine. here is how I would do it
so, as you see, you hook up the +'s to the -'s not the -'s to the -'s and +'s to the +'s.
any questions please ask im happy to help [:)]
05-19-2008, 04:31 PM
btw... im gonna really push you not to use the OE wiring here... its a major PITA that you dont have to go through. An easier way to use the foglight switch is to figure outwhich wire coming out of the headlight switch is for foglights, and tap into it, put a fuse before the resistor in my progression above, and youre good to go, no foglight mod necessary.
This is the way I would do it if I were using the foglight switch
+12V foglight wire from headlight switch->fuse holder from radio shack->resistor->(+lead,LED,-lead)->(+lead,LED,-lead)->(+lead,LED,-lead)->(+lead,LED,-lead)->ground
I should also note that resistors and fuses work in both directions, it does not matter which lead goes where
05-19-2008, 08:18 PM
Thanks for all the help. Looks like I was quite confused..lol.
How would I do it with a switch?? What power source would I be using? Battery? fuse box?
Could I wire it like... to the cigarette lighter fuse? Its a 20 amp and its not controlled by a stock switch...
so like this?
cig fuse ->resistor-> switch lead -> switch -> other switch lead to (+) LED wire then (-) LED and run it across, then have the ground at the end?
I plan on buying prewired 5mm LEDs from http://www.oznium.com , which have resistors.
05-19-2008, 08:34 PM
with a switch (you can get 12V-capable switches from radio shack) you can pull it from anywhere basically... Most people use the cigar lighter. It has a big orange/green wire and a black wire, the black is ground and the orange is +12V. And dont forget a fuse holder between the switch and your circuit elements.
Also, the resistor doesnt have to go after the fuse, but that is the best place for it in theory.
05-20-2008, 12:05 AM
So, cut the lighter wire in half, then splice the switch right into it, and crimp/connect it all together?
and by placing a fuse holder, you mean between the switch and LED's?
Sorry, never wired a thing in my life.. [shameful]
05-20-2008, 01:15 AM
You can actually splice a wire into it that runs to the switch instead of running a switch right off of it. DO NOT JUST CRIMP!! Solder (pronounced sodder) is your friend! and also do NOT just leave your solder job hanging out in the open!!! use electrical tape by starting and ending a couple of wraps up and down the wire of your splice, or use heat shrink.
this is what you need, note the type of switch you need is SPST (single pole, single throw)
just be confident that you can learn and keep at it! If you need to know how to do stuff like solder just go to google and type in: how to solder. Youtube also has several good videos on how to solder.
generally, there are good places to put things, some are by convention, some are more important for safety.
switches are usually placed between the load and the source. Here, the load is the resistor and the LED's, and the source is the +12V source.
fuses are usually placed between the switch and the source, as close to the source as possible.
resistors, if needed, are usually placed between the fuse and the load
the load is usually placed as close to the ground as possible.
05-20-2008, 12:38 PM
So...this is how it would be done? (I made a little picture..lol)
Would I solder the wires onto the resistor connectors?
and solder them onto the connectors on the switch? or is there special connectors?
05-20-2008, 12:41 PM
The resistor should be running directly to the LED's I believe.... (Easiest if you just buy prewired ones)
So batt straight to fuse...with LED's with there own resistor.
05-20-2008, 12:50 PM
solder can take the place of any connector, of all the wiring ive done in my car (believe me there has been A LOT) I only have 2 quick-disconnect connections, the rest are soldered wires or setscrew compression fittings. Resistors just have leads on them like LED's do, its a little tough to do at first but you will figure it out. Practice soldering LED's and resistors on a table before you go to your car. Remember it can always be un-soldered, just heat it up [:)] also remember resistors get really hot when youre soldering them, so wear gloves or use pliers or vice grips, clamp around the lead not the resistor itself.
I would move the resistor to between the LED's and the switch
you do not need to ground the switch, when it is open it is open thats all there is to it.
One more thing to note, LED's dont like a lot of heat, so dont leave the solder iron on their leads for too long.
05-20-2008, 01:06 PM
Ok, so the list of stuff I need is..
5 Prewired Blue LEDs - http://www.oznium.com/prewired-leds
5 LED Holders(to mount) - http://www.oznium.com/led-holder
Fuse holder - http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2103778&cp=&sr=1&origkw=fuse+holder&kw=fuse+holder&parentPage=search
Switch - http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062533&cp=&sr=1&origkw=automotive+switch+spst&kw=automotive+switch+spst&parentPage=search
2 spools of 18 gauge wires(red and black)
Solder Gun and Heat Shrinks
Drill /w bits
Masking tape(already have some)
Crimpers(have some, just in case)
Now... when I go to splice into the cigar lighter wire, could I use a razor blase to remove a strip to expose the wires? Instead of cutting the whole wire in half?
05-20-2008, 01:13 PM
dont know if those holders will fit around the pre-wired led's...
also I think the pre-wired led's are overkill. I would just buy a cheap 25 pack of loose led's off ebay and wire in one resistor at the beginning of the circuit like your diagram. remember that each resistor you have will make the lights dimmer.
get a solder IRON not a solder gun, the guns are a pita to use imo.
oh and you dont need red and black wires, its "better" or whatever but not necessary, you can save 5 bucks just using black everywhere, nobody will see it anyway.
05-22-2008, 07:22 PM
Well, I bought most of the stuff today at radioshack.
I've been dinkin around with soldering wires and stuff.
I even solder a ground from a switch to a 9v battery, then soldered wires on my led, and resistor and it worked. So, I'm learnin. I want to be sure I know what I'm doing before, I go out and do it on the car. :)
05-22-2008, 08:46 PM
way to go [thumb]
05-23-2008, 11:27 AM
just one other comment otherwise these guys got it down perfect for you!!!
ur going to want ATLEAST 3-4 LED's in each vent when i did mine i had to take it out and re-do them all i found 2 directionals just wasn't enough but hey you life and learn correct?
05-23-2008, 11:44 AM
I am using just 1 SMLED per vent
but those things are damn bright, about 5x as bright as regular led's...
another way to get them brighter is to make another circuit. the more led's you have on one circuit, the dimmer they will be. There is only 12 volts to go through...
05-23-2008, 09:52 PM
I wired them today....took all day... [rolleyes] but....
they work! [clap] but....
They seem really dim...[scratch], haven't seen them at night yet, but during the day they looked really dim.
Any reason why? I'm using
single 5mm blue LED in each vent....
20 amp inline fuse...
470 ohm resistor...
Thanks for all the help!!!! [thumb]
05-23-2008, 11:00 PM
well this does not affect the brightness but 20 amp is overkill for the fuse, I would do a 5 or 7.5 amp.
try using a smaller resistor if you can and if its cheap
like i said before, since led's ideally drop 3.4V and you only have 12V total to drop, they will be dim since 3.4*4=13.6
but when the car is on and youre at ~14.2V youre good to go... and in fact you need that resistor to drop the extra 0.6V!
05-24-2008, 02:40 AM
I'm a tard. I turned them on, when the IGNITION was on, and they were brighter.. I'm stupid.... LOL
However, they could be a bit brighter...
Now, I need to figure out where to put the switch. I drill a couple holes in the back on my ashtray, so the wires from the switch would fit through and now my switch is sitting in it. kinda looks like ass..lol
Where do people usually mount switches? I'll need a saw of some kind to cut through the hard plastic interior dash..
05-24-2008, 02:49 AM
Its generally a hole drilling deal... I drilled holes in my fuse panel cover for my 3 switches. A hole saw would be ideal but you could use a drill bit and just push outward to make the hole bigger.