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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

Well, I've been looking into putting some interior lights in my Focus, and am growing more confident with how I will be doing it. I know for sure I will be using an "add a fuse" and connecting it to the interior fuse panel.

Now, it all boils down to which fuse I'm going to use. I want to use one that, no matter how many lights I have in the car, it will not affect the performance of that fuse (ie, tapping into the running lights, and consequently drawing power away from them).

I was considering using the Horn fuse. It's not something that's required all the time, and as far as I know (if I'm wrong, please correct me), shouldn't really be affected by a slight drain (ie, it will still work, even with all interior lights on). Now, I know this is a fuse that is always on, but I will be using redundant switches so that the lights will not be mistakenly left on.

Any input?

*Edit*

Yeah, I just realized, maybe the cig lighter fuse might be a better idea.
 

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I have done some pretty extensive wiring to my car (start switches, lights, ac invertor, extra cig lighters), and either of those switches sound good to me. When pulling power, i like to choose fuses for non-vital components, like horn, cig lighter, even radio. Better those than cluster, airbags, exterior lights, stuff like that. I say go for it, usually a blown fuse is the worst that happens.

A thought....i dont know what "redundant switches" you are using, but may i suggest a standard four pin automotive relay....they work so wonderfully and are very simple.

Also, let me know how your setup turns out in terms of organization. I have wired and re-wired my components multiple times, and have gotten to the point where I have done things the best possibly way in terms of wiring, but its messy looking.

Good Luck!

Nick
 

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Discussion Starter #3
By redundant switches, what I mean is that I will have one lead coming from the fuse, and connected to a single switch, then from that it will be connected to four other switches via one of the Ashtray switch panels that OrangeSVT is selling. That way, none of the 4 switches will work unless the single switch has a closed circuit. I'm going to try to find a switch with a cover, and that possibly illuminates only when on, so it cannot be flipped accidentally, and I will be able to tell, even from outside the car, when it is enabled.

I'm curious to know what you mean by a standard 4 pin automotive relay. I tried googling the term, but came up with nothing.

Cheers.
 

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I wish I had a picture of the actuall unit, but sorry, I don't. Basically, its a small, black, plastic box, about the size of those little boxes rings come in. It has 4 pins sticking out one side, which are actually male ends of quick disconnects, so cennections are easy with female ends on your wires. Technically speaking, heres how it works:

Two pins are connected to a coil of wires. When 12 volts are put across that coil, it creates a magnetic field. The other two pins are connected to a switch. The magnetic field pulls that switch closed. So what you could do, is hook the coils up to a fuse that is only hot when the key is in the "on" position, and then hook the other pins to your lights. This way, the lights can only come on with the key in the on position. And you can still add your control switches to your lights further down the circuit, but this will initial protect your system.....no key, no lights. If I didn't explain well enough, here is a picture I got from the nice people on FJ



Oh yeah, they cost like 3-5 bucks, I got mine at radio shack. I use 2. One is hooked to my starter switch, basically to take current off my starter switch and the thinner wire running to my console. The other is hooked to my AC inverter, to make sure I cant leave it on while I'm not in the car.

Nick
 
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