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Fog Lights

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  • Fog lights are designed to help illuminate the road. Most of the "factory" versions I have seen do not do a very good job, especially domestic vehicles. Fog lights as tidester stated have a very sharp cutoff (direct line on top) to reduce the amount of glare reflected by particle droplets (snow, rain, fog, even dust). Most of the better quality fog lights too be used for that purpose also produce a yellow or amber light that reflects less than white. Many of the BMW, Mercedes, Volvo, Jag utilize projector fog lights as they cast a more even amount of light. They also often have a single red rear facing one. You might notice on some of these at night when on that it appears to have 1 brake light on all the time, but then they step on the brakes and they all turn on normally. Check here for more info http://www.rallylights.com/hella/Beams.htm . Different manufacturers and DOT rules also make things difficult. DOT does not allow fog lights to be on with high beam so many manufacturers only allow them to come on with low beam and turn off when high beams are used. Unfortunately they often don't allow them to turn on with parking lights only as some do. When it's REALLY poor visibility I've found that even the regular headlights reflected too much. I normally add aftermarket fog lights (hella DE with an ion bulb too make them yellow) and allow them on with parking lights and high beam. The parking for reason as stated above and high beam as extra illumination when I can use high beams. The Hella DE's make a NOTICEABLE difference in lighting in front of vehicle and to the sides (they go almost straight out 180 degrees).

    The BIGGEST things are good quality lights with excellent pattern control and a MUST is PROPER aiming. Directions are listed many places. Basically lights need to be lower to the ground than headlights. Park car facing a wall 25 ft away. Measure from ground to center of light on vehicle, go to wall and measure, the top of the cutoff line should be 4" less than what you measured at car. This way they are aimed slightly down, illuminate the road well, and don't blind oncoming traffic.

    Many people that are adding them to their vehicles have no clue on this, don't care, they just want it to look good and "sporty". Unfortunately it's dangerous that way.
  • adrakaadraka Posts: 1
    Hello, I bought some old pre-lux fog lights at a garage sale and have managed to get my hands on an instruction manual for some other lights that come with a kit to help guide me along, I think I have the wiring down and have bought all the necessary wiring components. Now for my problem, I have a heavy duty round bumper on my old toyota 4x4, I cannot figure out how the lights are "suppose" to be mounted, although I can figure out other less orthodox ways to mount the lights. I am searching for some basic instructions that might show me if I need to purchase some sort of harness, or perhaps something else that I haven't even thought of. Can someone help me figure out where to find instructions on the internet, or have a definitive answer of exactly what I need? I have been hunting on the web for some idea, but have found nothing that helps. The lights are round, say pre-lux 36A on them and are pretty heavy-duty, the wires come out of the bottom where there is a nut screwed into the light, and that is it! Thanks to anyone who can assist me.
  • bigfurbigfur Posts: 649
    Are a joke in my own opinion. Took them off of my 01 Silverado and installed PIAA P-400 four way fog/driving lights. One set of white lights is on when my day time running lamps are on (not bright). An amber set come on when i switch the headlights on once again, not really bright. Inside the truck i can manually switch on the bright fog/driving lights and they make a HUGE difference in visibility as far as what i can see. In rain or fog the bright amber allows me to see the road alot better i think. On any given dark back road the driving lights will light up more than you could ever need. I dont use the driving lights that are bright on the road with traffic very much as i think they are pretty brighter than my trucks high beams.
  • I have an '02 civic ex and just bought some PIAA after market fog lamps. I would like to get them installed and have never worked on any automotive electrical stuff before. Any ideas on places to get them installed or cost estimates? Thanks for the help. If you think its an easy do-it-yourself kinda job any suggestions on how to get throught the firewall? Thanks
  • crazzcrazz Posts: 1
    Hi i was wondering if anyone had information on installing foglights on a 05 rav4, like making them work off the headlights. they say the lights are controled through the ecm. if anyone has this info i greatly appreciate it. i really want to install the lights so they work off the low beam side of my headlights.

    Thanks a million
    - Rich
  • tevertever Posts: 1
    I would like my Fog Lights to come on by the factory installed switch when I want. Not just in the normal drive mode. I also have the keyless entry. Manual schematic also. Need to find where to get R/T blue stripes for my 98 neon. Car is the Neon Pkg. (Stone Chips).
  • one of my toys is a 67 MG midget... Very,Very small car by todays standards. I dont think I could put enough lites on her. Its just that I like to be seen in all kinds of weather and night and day.. It has 1 road lite and 1 fog lite in front, the road lite is on just about all the time.... its kind of like running lite on todays monster cars. The rear fog lite I think gives people behind me a chance to slow down by seeing a brighter red lite than my brake lites are..
  • I dont know about other states, but NJ it is illegal to run foglights with your high beams on, you will fail inspection. As for just your foglights...I dont think thats legal either. I notice on my new MC I can only use foglights with parking lots or lowbeams....Hope I helped :D
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    I have an 03 Suburban, I need a new drivers side foglamp. I was wondering if anyone knew where I could pick up a new one cheap, or an aftermarket set. I would want the aftermarket set to fit in the mount in the bumper and if possible use the same wiring connector. Thanks, Catam.
  • eharri3eharri3 Posts: 645
    I've done a ton of researh lately on this when buying driving and fog lamps so I figured I'd chime in. That 'scattered light near the car' is actually the purpose they are intended to serve, to light the ground immediately in front of you and the road markers edges where you won't be able to see when there's heavy fog or precipitation, so you can keep the car pointed straight down the road. Fog tends to hover a foot or so off the ground. Properly aimed, well designed fogs throw out a broad, but not very far-reaching beam with a sharp cutoff that starts immediately in front of the car, goes under the fog, fills out the dead spot before the head light beam, and go slightly beyond that while also lighting some of the sides of the road. If the weather's that bad out, you're going slow anyway so what is immediately in front of you is more important than what is a foot ball field away.

    They don't go very far or very high because if they hit the moisture or fog they'll be reflected all over the place and create glare. So don't expect your fogs to improve long or medium distance night vision when it's clear out. Get driving lamps for that.

    I find most OEM fog lights are weak and low-wattage and aimed way to low, to the point where they're basically illuminating the ground underneath the front bumper and not much more. This was the way the ones on my Dakota Quad were and based on that I assumed fog lights in general must be pretty much worthless. I then tried an aftermarket 55 watt set from Pep boys for 45$ and aimed them carefully. Before with the OEMs on they lit up an area maybe 3-4 feet in front of the truck and threw a very narrow, limited amount of useful light 8-10 feet to the side. The new ones completely fill in the dead spot between the front bumper and where the headlight beam starts and light up whole houses on the side of the road. It's amazing, even inexpensive entry-level aftermarket lamps will out-shine the overpriced OEMS. The stock ones on my Dakota Quad cost anywhere from 150-200 from a dealer for a complete kit and put almost no useful light in comparison. Even just one single Dodge fog light at a dealer costs nearly twice as much as an inexpensive complete aftermarket kit.

    So I guess in short I would say yes, most OEM fogs are there purely for decoration. I think they put the cheapest ones they can get from their suppliers on there just to be able to say they offer fog lights on their vehicles. But alot of aftermarket ones make a real difference in inclement weather.

    Also, I did alot of experimentation with aiming using the precise textbook methods on PIAA's website and elsewhere on the web as well as my own subjective measures of where I thought they would be most effective. Turns out the angle of aim where I get the most useable light on the ground with minimal useless light thrown up in the air happened to coincide with the PIAA method, which has the top of the beam about 3-4 inches below beam center on a wall at 25 feet on level ground. Too high and I had alot of weak, unfocused light in the air doing nothing for me. Too low and they didn't light up enough of the road in front of me.
  • bigfurbigfur Posts: 649
    Have an 01 Silverado...similar front bumpers...and installed four way piaa lights into the factory fog light openings with very little trouble. Work great and light up a long ways.
  • jbolltjbollt Posts: 734
    I am a new owner of an 07 Camry Hybrid. Unfortunately, they do not come with, or even offer fog lights, as the XLE model has as standard. Has anyone researched the installation of the factory lights in the 07 Camry Hybrid, or how about after market?

    I see there are several posters in the Camry Hybrid threads with the same quiery, so I thought I would post here to see what anyone has to say.

    Thanks
  • mahirimahiri Posts: 26
    I just bought a civic si and am considering getting fog lights installed, in part b/c i live in sf. Please excuse the following stupid question: Are they only for looks or will they really come in handy in san francisco? thx.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    Depends if a) you get really good ones or not and b) if they are aimed/focused properly. Yeah, if they are quality items, it makes a difference in parts of San Francisco, like going over the GG Bridge or in the Sunset district. But I doubt you'll need fogs in North Beach!

    The fogs should cut a wide low beam and allow you to see the sides of the road better. If they are aimed too high they will just bounce back at you.

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  • mahirimahiri Posts: 26
    When I bought the car, the dealer offered me a fog light option for $619. Are fog lights from the Honda dealer probably good ones? I'm hesitant to go after-market because I want them covered under the new car warranty.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    My opinion is that dealer-added accessories tend to be good quality but overpriced...so your decision is kind of a toss-up. I didn't add them on my new car because the price seemed too steep, but now I'm still searching for an aftermarket product that fits well and is of good quality. I may have to resort back to the dealer option at some point.

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  • I am also the owner of an 07 Camry Hybrid. I also wanted the fog lights as well.

    Take a look at this link, and let me know if this helps (unless you have found this already).

    http://www.blinglights.com/shopbling/store/comersus_listCategoriesAndProducts.as- p?idCategory=56&curPage=2
  • jbolltjbollt Posts: 734
    thanks karuso..i will check them out....have you installed them?
  • wellieswellies Posts: 1
    Hi,
    Can some one tell me should, when i switch my rear red foglight on, the side lights come on at the same time, or should only the rear red foglight come on. Thanks, Rob Wilson.
  • I think you can get them from www.autopartsway.com at a good price. Check if they have your model. I always buy from them my auto parts.
  • wtd44wtd44 Posts: 1,211
    Just remember that it's "red right returning" when you are inbound to docking. :confuse:

    About a year ago I impulsively bought a sale-priced set of universal fog lights from a nearby Harbor Freight Tools outlet. I recently (finally) decided to install them on my 2004 Jeep GC Laredo. Luckily, I didn't need any extra parts or whatever, thus holding the home installation to the original $10.00 purchase price as the total expense. The kit works like a champ, and only required some 8 or 10 hours of my time to cleanly install... aaaaaargh!
  • I just recently bought an 01 Sequoia and the previous owner started to install fog lights but never got around to hooking them up to a switch. I would like to know what is the best way to hook them up so that I can switch them on/ off in the cab and also have them turn off when I turn off my regular lights. I have been looking around for a description for dummies like me but can't seem to find one. I know enough about electrical to install them but I need some help to make sure I don't fry my other electrical. Thanks
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    Most are wired either to a separate relay circuit and switch so as not to overload the headlight circuit. They suck a lot of juice and they really should be on their own circuit. I wouldn't advise wiring them to the headlights although I do notice that most automakers will not allow them to go on with the high beams on--not sure why they do that.

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  • Do you happen to know of any websites that have some good step by step instructions and wiring them? It would be great to see some pics if you know where that information might be. Trust me I have looked and can't seem to find a comprehensive guide to installing fog lights.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    Usually instructions are included when you buy any kind of decent quality kit. You get the switch, relay, wiring, the whole SHE-BANG, along with instructions. On your vehicle, you should ask the dealer what their kit costs---your vehicle may already be pre-wired.

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  • Ok so here's the deal. The previous owner put in lights that hook directly into the oem wiring but when you plug them in nothing happens. Do you know if I need to tap into the wires running from the lights to the fuse box and then run a switch?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    I think you should run a circuit right from the battery, put in your own fuse, your own relay and your own switch. You might check to see if there is already a relay in the relay box that is supposed to handle fog lights. It should be indicated in the owner's manual or on the lid of the box. I wouldn't mess with someone else's (obviously) screwed up wiring. If you fry a harness you are in deep doo-doo.

    Here's a complete diagram for you!

    How To Wire Up Fog Lights

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  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    If it's the OEM wiring harness, my guess is that the previous person installing it didn't install the relay and fuse for the OEM Foglight circuit. This is why it likely isn't working.

    -mike
  • Checked on the fuse it's intact, oem wiring is good and ready to connect to lights, lights look like oem, not sure if relay is in place but there are no open spots that are missing a relay. The upgraded version (Limited) has a multi function switch on the steering column so I'm wondering if I was able to get the other switch installed if it would fix the problem.
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