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Old 10-26-2012, 09:25 PM   #61
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Thanks so much to Chaddz3 for the highly detailed, well thought out, photographed and diagrammed fog light installation info.

I am new to the Ford brand, having just recently purchased a base model C-Max Hybrid.
The reason for my reply is that I also wanted to have a few a la carte options which unfortunately is not the way Ford does it. Fog lights were my number one request but I face the same issue with the BCM not being equipped to handle them.

Our Fordcmaxhybridforum.com has discussed the fog light issue and as yet no one has successfully installed them in any configuration. My dealer service manager spoke to two Ford tech advisors who said it was just not possible ... no reflashing the BCM, no getting a different BCM since everything is VIN based ... no way no how.

I haven't yet decided whether to give up on the project or bypass the BCM. I also can't confirm that since it is a hybrid, it is supersensitive to electrical changes, voltage drops, etc., which could result in electrical problems.

I would like to add an idea: I actually purchased one part (used) for the fog light system before I was aware of these stumbling blocks, that being the switch (C-Max uses the same switch), which came from ... a Focus, I think 2012, which as you know has the built in fog switch on the left. Would it be technically possible to remove a section of the actual fog button, then insert and wire some type of aftermarket switch (toggle, rocker, other) and then have the wires come out the back of the entire switch? Or, is there too much circuit board/whatever in the way to make this work?

Thanks
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:44 AM   #62
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Chaddz3 is more of the expert on this, but I'll share what I can ...

For lack of a better term, Ford "discourages" this type of modification. I would think you could install a different BCM and get the dealer to enable fogs in IDS - but only some dealers know how to do this, and only some of those are willing to do so.

In addition - on the Focus, the S didn't have fogs, but the 2012 SES and 2013 Titanium did, so there are BCM models with them. I'm assuming there is a C-Max Hybrid with fogs, so there should be a BCM that would work, but maybe not.

Bypassing the BCM is almost certainly easier.

Electrical changes are somewhat of a concern, but likely over-rated. (I have heard of people running 500W RMS or more subwoofers in a Prius, for example - not the same car, but same principle.) If the uplevel C-max hybrid has fogs, I wouldn't be concerned about adding them to the base model.

On the Focus Headlight switch:



Chaddz3 has stated that the switch sends data (not power) to the BCM. So you can't use the switch as is.

The easiest solution is what Chaddz3 did where you install a toggle switch somewhere else.

Outside of that - it would be simplest if Ford had a switch without a button on the left, but the non-Fog switch has the dash dimmer there. I would imagine there would be someway to mount some type of contact switch in place of the fog switch and/or to design a circuit that read a press of the existing switch and closed a standard switch - but I don't know how easy that would be.
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:33 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hybrid dude View Post

I would like to add an idea: I actually purchased one part (used) for the fog light system before I was aware of these stumbling blocks, that being the switch (C-Max uses the same switch), which came from ... a Focus, I think 2012, which as you know has the built in fog switch on the left. Would it be technically possible to remove a section of the actual fog button, then insert and wire some type of aftermarket switch (toggle, rocker, other) and then have the wires come out the back of the entire switch? Or, is there too much circuit board/whatever in the way to make this work?

Thanks
If you were really gifted with electronics, the switch could probably be altered to drive a fog light circuit off the original fog light button, but it would require major redesign of the whole light switch circuit, as everything ties in to a controller chip on the back side of the printed circuit board inside the switch.

THe other idea (if i understand it right) is to remove the fog light button and install some kind of switch mechanism for the fogs (independant of the original switch electrically, just sharing the housing.)...hmm... Possibly.. The switch is contructed as follows...

(going from the front (facing the driver, to the rear where it faces the dash..)

all the buttons install from the front side of the switch and press in until they lock in to place.. I can't really tell where the locking clips actually are to release them to pull the fog button out, but i'm sure it has to come out somehow..then it would just be a matter of mounting some other type of small switch that would fit without interfering with the printed circuit board which rests right under the back piece with the barcode label on it. there looks to be around an inch of clearance between the front of the switch assembly and where the circuit board lives (once you get the fog button removed.)

The circuit board itself is the same shape as the switch assembly.. and goes across the entire assembly from left to right and top to bottom.. there is one access hole directly center toward the top you may be able to route wires through, and it looks like it shouldn't interfere with the knob mechnanism of the switch.. (if your careful). The biggest concerns would be getting everything to fit togehter tightly and not have any interferance with the dimmer buttons or the knob assembly...)

If you have an extra switch and feel like doing some "engineering" it might be worth trying... I've thought about doing it myself, but been busy with my RC10L lately... so all Focus mods are on hold until after winter R/C racing season is over..
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Old 11-02-2012, 06:39 PM   #64
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Thanks for the additional tech details.

Yes, my idea was to share the housing, although I don't think I'm that skilled and wouldn't want to create interference, neither mechanical nor electronic. Since the circuit board is the full width, I don't know if an inch of depth is enough.

Another question since you seem to have good knowledge of car electrics. Since I have a hybrid, do you think installing fog lights which bypass the BCM, just simply wired to battery, ground and switch, would negatively (npi) effect the electrical system in general? People have mixed opinions as to whether or not to mess with a hybrid system but as I see it, it does just use a regular 12v battery for regular electrics and the Lithium Ion to drive the electric motor for the drive wheels.

And to Tiger-Heli, yes the SEL model has fogs standard so the parts are available.
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Old 11-02-2012, 06:53 PM   #65
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Man, you guys have a LOT of free time on your hands.

Next time order a car with fog lights....................
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Old 11-02-2012, 07:10 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hybrid dude View Post
Thanks for the additional tech details.

Yes, my idea was to share the housing, although I don't think I'm that skilled and wouldn't want to create interference, neither mechanical nor electronic. Since the circuit board is the full width, I don't know if an inch of depth is enough.

Another question since you seem to have good knowledge of car electrics. Since I have a hybrid, do you think installing fog lights which bypass the BCM, just simply wired to battery, ground and switch, would negatively (npi) effect the electrical system in general? People have mixed opinions as to whether or not to mess with a hybrid system but as I see it, it does just use a regular 12v battery for regular electrics and the Lithium Ion to drive the electric motor for the drive wheels.

And to Tiger-Heli, yes the SEL model has fogs standard so the parts are available.
I don't see why it would, as long as you tap the same power source used to drive the rest of the lighting system.. I don't have alot of experience with hybrids per se.. but if the propulsion power system is separate from the standard electrical system.. you should be fine.

I would use some kind of relay system in your fog light wiring with fuse protection just for safety..

You could either use a setup like the one i used on my focus (adapted to work with the lighting system in your C-max... ) or. if you want just a simple toggle switch setup... wire it as follows...

1. Connect a wire (at least 14 gauge) from batt positive to terminal 30 of any 4 lug 40 amp general purpose relay.. (put an inline fuse in this wire somewhere rated to at least 15 AMPS)..

2. From Terminal 87 on the relay to your foglamps.. (again min 14 gauge)

3. from fog lamps to a good solid ground..

For your switch..
1. Run a 16 or 18 gauge wire from either battery positive (or preferably from an igntion switch controlled 12 volt power source or from the parking light circuit so they go off when the headlights are turned all the way off.. This way if you ever forget to turn the fogs off one day, it doesn't drain your battery) and inline put a 10 AMP fuse to your toggle switch...

2. From the toggle switch .. run to terminal 85 of your relay.. then run another 16 or 18 gauge wire from terminal 86 of the relay to a good solid ground..

This will prevent higher amp load of the foglights from having to go through the switch.. and can keep the higher load closer to the fog lights or battery in the engine compartment area..

The relay only uses a couple of amps or so to switch on and off, which keeps helps keep power going through your switch to lower safer level which will help increase switch life and less likely to cause issues in case something shorts out under the dash either during installation or if something goes wrong with the wiring down the road..
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:12 AM   #67
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Thanks for the additional instructions.
Here's another thought on my last ditch effort to use the factory switch. If this process has been discussed in a previous page, please excuse the duplication.

I read that you made your own relay boxes but would it be possible to make a control module, for lack of a better term. I mean, assuming the factory switch that has the fog button uses one more pin on the back than the switch that doesn't (I have not compared the two), then could you just attach a wire to that specific fog pin and have it connect to this new box? Could that box then be attached to the relay, fuse, battery and lights?

Sorry for my lack of proper electrical terms. The fog button simply activates some other device in the existing module, so why can't we just make an additional module, make sense?

On the other hand, I guess I could wait it out and either hope that Ford makes an accessory foglight kit, as they did with some versions of the F-150 or trade mine in for an SEL model in a few years. If the decision to offer such a kit is based on sales volume, I don't think it would ever happen.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:26 AM   #68
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Errrm - no.

Read the thread again. There are no additional pins on the fog button so nothing to connect the extra wire to, the button sends DATA on the same lines to the BCM which contains an additional module.

You have three options:
  • Re-verse engineer a module similar to the SEL BCM that would accept the OEM fog switch data and not conflict with the other modules on the data bus. (but it would probably be easier and cheaper to just buy a SEL BCM and have the dealer enable fogs in IDS).
  • Modify the switch as Chaddz3 hinted at so that the fog button on the switch somehow activated a standard electro-mechanical switch.
  • Use Chaddz3's solution and don't bother with the factory switch, but install a standard toggle or rocker switch elsewhere.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:51 AM   #69
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Thanks for the clarification.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:54 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger-Heli View Post
Errrm - no.

Read the thread again. There are no additional pins on the fog button so nothing to connect the extra wire to, the button sends DATA on the same lines to the BCM which contains an additional module.

You have three options:
  • Re-verse engineer a module similar to the SEL BCM that would accept the OEM fog switch data and not conflict with the other modules on the data bus. (but it would probably be easier and cheaper to just buy a SEL BCM and have the dealer enable fogs in IDS).
  • Modify the switch as Chaddz3 hinted at so that the fog button on the switch somehow activated a standard electro-mechanical switch.
  • Use Chaddz3's solution and don't bother with the factory switch, but install a standard toggle or rocker switch elsewhere.
The first option might be possible.. but may be cost prohibitive.. It can be done, but you would probably have to find a SEL BCM out of a wrecked one. The dealer will only sell one based on VIN... Also since alot of dealers will not flash modules with data other than what was originally assigned to the VIN of the car that is in the shop.. You'll have to find someone with an IDS system (or spend the money to buy your own).. then flash it yourself.. (may be risky). I don't know if you would be able to flash the SEL BCM using a non SEL VIN, and using a SEL VIN during the flash may cause a no start condition after wards (at least it does on the F150's when using the XLT VIN on an non XLT from what i understand)...

like i said it might be possible, but considering the costs involved with buying an IDS setup and the cost of an SEL BCM, thats a lot of money to gamble on just to find out it wont work.
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