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Cargo/courtesy light wire

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by 17Mica, Jan 3, 2019.

  1. Jan 3, 2019 at 4:33 AM
    #1
    17Mica

    17Mica [OP] New Member

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    Trying to wire aftermarket RECON Big Rig Ice Lights, having difficulty locating the Courtesy or Cargo Light wire, also is this wire present on both sides of cab in the wiring harness under the threshold cover?
     
  2. Jan 3, 2019 at 5:12 AM
    #2
    War Machine

    War Machine SSEM # 5 SKDM # 23

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  3. Jan 3, 2019 at 6:49 AM
    #3
    Pudge

    Pudge Super Secret Elite Member #7

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    Driver side kick plate. I think it's a skinny brown wire depending on what year you truck is.

    2017-11-14 11.42.46.jpg
     
  4. Jan 3, 2019 at 7:36 AM
    #4
    HappyGilmore

    HappyGilmore Ex 1st Gen Member

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  5. Jan 3, 2019 at 8:07 AM
    #5
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    You can access the cargo light circuit underneath the rear driver side passenger scuff plate. I like using this location instead of the driver side front seat location because you only have to remove the scuff plate instead of the front seat scuff plate and driver kick panel. You don't say what year model your truck is and the wire colors for the cargo circuit have changed over the years. It will be one of the smaller gauge wires in the bundle beneath the scuff plate though. An easy way to test the wires is to use a PosiTap to tap the wire, and then use a test light or multimeter to test the wire. Hook up the test light or multimeter to the PosiTap then press the door close switch. If the power goes off on the tap, along with the interior lights/cargo light, you have the correct wire. The cargo light circuit only runs on the driver side of the wiring bundle in the channel below the scuff plate I believe. One question, how many watts total are your Big Rig Lights? The reason I ask is, if they pull higher watts/amps, you may need to use a relay from the battery and use the cargo light circuit as your trigger wire for the relay. The cargo light circuit is only 7.5 amps and you have lights already on that circuit competing for those 7.5 amps. The LED lights I installed pull very little amps so I was able to tap directly to the cargo light circuit. Total watts divided by 12 volts will tell you how many amps your Ice Lights will be pulling.. Shout out if you need more information.
     
  6. Nov 20, 2020 at 7:07 PM
    #6
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    How do you wire it up with a relay? And what size of relay?
     
  7. Nov 21, 2020 at 6:31 AM
    #7
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    Here is how I wired up my light bar using a relay. Same principal applies for wiring up any additional accessory you want to install...What exactly are you wanting to wire up? If it is just some low-amperage led courtesy lights, you may not need a relay since led courtesy lights only add a few milliamps of power draw. If you are adding an accessory that is more power hungry, and can overload a circuit, you need to use a relay. A relay is just an added switch. Its trigger wire can be tapped from a low-amperage source and all it does is close the switch in the relay to turn on power from the battery to the accessory.
     

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    Last edited: Nov 21, 2020 at 6:37 AM
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  8. Nov 21, 2020 at 8:38 AM
    #8
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    Thank you much! I am installing bed leds... but they are at about 9amp draw...so when I tapped into the cargo light... the lights wouldn't come on
     
  9. Nov 21, 2020 at 9:12 AM
    #9
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    So I'm thinking I still use your wiring through relay instructions and use the trigger wire from the cargo lamps rocker switch right? (If so which wire in the rocker switch?)
     
  10. Nov 21, 2020 at 11:12 AM
    #10
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    You are using bed leds that are 108 watts?? Watts divided by 12 volts = Amps you are adding. If that is correct, I would run a relay (a small one such as 40 amp capacity) and wire it up like my write up. I would use the cargo light circuit wire, under the driver side, rear passenger, scuff plate as my trigger wire going to the the relay. Make sure you use appropriately sized/gauge wire and install an in-line fuse near the battery positive terminal going to your relay. Same applies to the negative wire/gauge size going to ground. You can use a smaller gauged wire (trigger wire) going from your cargo light circuit going to your relay since it is not a large load-bearing wire. The bed lights should light any time you use the fob to lock/unlock the truck, open a door, or turn on the inside switch. You don't want to tap the cargo rocker switch. The scenario of what will happen, wiring it as I indicated, is you unlock, open a door, or use the rocker switch to turn on the cargo lights, and the cargo light circuit trigger wire closes the circuit in the relay, switching on the accessory (your bed LED's) powered by your relay. Hope this makes sense. If not, try me again..
     
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  11. Nov 21, 2020 at 1:21 PM
    #11
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    Maybe I got it wrong then??... the strip has 60 5730 SMD LEDs... which when i looked up said they draw .15 ampere each... is that 9amp? [60x.15=9amp]... but on that same table is says they power each is 0.5 w... wouldn't that mean 30 watts?
     
  12. Nov 21, 2020 at 2:36 PM
    #12
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    Ok, if each light is .5 watts X 60 of them = a total of 30 watts divided by 12 volts = 2.5 amps of added lighting. Do you plan to use all 60 of the lights on the strip?
     
  13. Nov 21, 2020 at 4:28 PM
    #13
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    Yah, gonna use them all... was this amperage still too much for tapping into the cargo wire? Cuz it wouldn't come on
     
  14. Nov 22, 2020 at 5:11 AM
    #14
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    Did it blow a fuse when you hooked them up to the cargo light wire circuit? Normally, when a circuit gets overloaded, a fuse blows. That is the purpose of the fuse, to protect the circuit, and not let wiring burn up. Since that circuit is only a 7.5 amp circuit, I would be very reluctant to add 2.5 amps of load to it without using a relay. If you disconnect the new bed lights, does the cargo light come on then? Are you sure that your tap made good contact when you tapped the cargo wire? The cargo circuit wire is a smaller gauged wire and, if you used a clamp-type tap, it may not have made good electrical contact. I much prefer using PosiTaps for tapping wires because they have a slot the wire you are tapping goes into and holds the wire centered for the tap. Plus, the PosiTaps don't chew up the wire you are tapping into. If your cargo light still works, after you made your tap, I'm betting that either your tap didn't make good contact, your ground wire for your bed lights isn't, or you tapped the wrong wire in the bundle. Keep in mind that if you re-tap the cargo light circuit wire, and it makes good contact, you still might blow a fuse due to the increased load. By the way, are you sure that you tapped the correct wire? How did you test for it being the correct wire?
     
  15. Nov 22, 2020 at 8:34 AM
    #15
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    I did use t-taps and the cargo light never lost connection it was always working... I will try again with positaps... do I need to worry about the t-taps that are still on the wire since it never caused the cargo light to not work?
     
  16. Nov 22, 2020 at 9:14 AM
    #16
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    I would not leave them attached to the wire. Take them off and put some electrical tape around where the T-tap was. Did you check your ground for the lights as well? How did you confirm that you had the correct wire identified to tap?
     
  17. Nov 22, 2020 at 9:55 AM
    #17
    andymckinnon

    andymckinnon New Member

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    I used a multimeter to check and grounded the lights on an existing ground in the panel
     
  18. Nov 22, 2020 at 10:32 AM
    #18
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    When you used a multimeter to check/verify that you tapped the correct hot wire, did you press in on one of the door closed switches to confirm that the power to the wire/tap faded to "off" like the dome and cargo lights do?
     

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