Hella 500 Fog/Driving Light Installation - February
Here's a walk through for the installation of 55W Hella 500 driving
lights. My kit came with a relay, wiring, connectors, switch,
and fuse connection. This project took me about 4 hours to complete
including breaks and stopping to take pictures. I've installed
fog lights on my truck before, so this was not too difficult for
me, but if youíre a novice plan on it taking a little longer.
You will need various tools and supplies to complete this project:
- Electricianís pliers
- An electric/cordless drill (not required but recommended)
- An automotive test light
- Extra 16ga and 14ga wire of various color (just to be safe)
- Electrical tape
- Zip Ties
- Exacto Knife
- Assortment of ring terminal connectors for 16ga and 14ga wire
(I used 1/4" and 3/8" ring connectors in my application)
- 30amp Automotive Relay (included in most kits)
- Switch (included in most kits but usually arenít OEM models)
- A Good selection of wrenches and sockets
- Various size flat and philips screwdrivers
- 3/8 wire conduit (not required buy highly recommended for
that clean wiring look)
Youíll need power to the relay, ground to the relay, switch to
the relay, and lights to the relay. I used the red 12ga fused
link power wire that came with my Hella kit for power to the relay,
14ga black wire for power to the lights, 16ga blue wire for ground
to the relay, and the 16ga yellow wire that came with the Hella
kit for the relay to switch connection.
= 12V power from positive terminal of battery
#87 = Power to lights*
#85 = Ground
#86 = To switch
*Make sure the wires running to each
light are the same
length, otherwise one light will be brighter than the other.
Take a look a good look at what you have to work with as far
as running the wiring. Plan out the route of the wires very carefully.
Itís a lot easier to do it right the first time rather than going
back later and trying to correct a mistake. Keep in mind what
will be in the way such as moving parts, heat, and how to best
protect the wiring.
Once youíve decided on a route start at the relay connection
and work outward toward the mounting location of the lights. You
can go in any order at this point, whether you want to go to the
dash first, or the lights first. I chose the lights as I knew
they would be easier and less time consuming to get out of the
way. Youíll want to choose a mounting location for the relay at
this time as well. You donít have to mount the relay yet, but
put the socket in the general area to ensure proper wire lengths.
Youíll also want to look for a place to go through the firewall.
Always be extremely careful and be 100% certain before drilling
through any vehicle's firewall!
My Hella 500 driving lights required some slight wiring
to the bulbs. I took the bulbs out of their housings and connected
the provided blue 16ga ground wire to the
tab. I used a 3/32 drill bit to drill two small holes in the rubber
grommets provided for water resistance. I used a utility knife
to make a small slit to connect the two 3/32 holes. This allows
the wires to pass through yet makes the area as watertight as
possible. Most auxiliary lighting will be similar.
Wiring the Lights
I put the
bulbs back in the housings and tightly secured them. I then got
the mounting hardware together and mounted the lights loosely
to the the bumper of my car using a universal fog
light mounting kit that requires NO drilling, available at
most franchise auto parts shops. I then used a test light to find
a good ground source for the lights. Each light will need to be
grounded. I found two relay bolts that were just behind the radiator
on each side. I used an automotive test light to ensure a good
ground connection. These test lights are cheap and available at
most auto parts stores. They have an alligator clip on one end
and an ice pick type tool on the other. You can hook the alligator
clip to the positive lead from the battery and use the ice pick
end to poke various locations on the truck. Once a good ground
is found the handle of the tool illuminates.
I used 1/ 4" ring connectors for the ground connections. Ground
connections will need to be directly tied to the body. The front
bumper area is not a good location for ground connections. I then
connected each of the 14ga power connections to each lights power
wire. Finally, I wrapped up the wires securely in the 3/8" wire
conduit and used zip ties to secure the wiring along the front
Now it was time to begin work on the center console. The switch
that will come with most kits is quite bulky and not even close
to factory switches. I searched eBay and various 02 suppliers
and was able to find a OEM BMW 2002 fog light
switch. It is the same shape and size as the Hazard switch
but it's purple and fits perfectly in the center console location
covered by a dead switch. The color scheme for the BMW 2002 OEM
switch is simple:
= 12V power
= to Relay
I pushed the yellow 16ga wire through the firewall at
the grommet pictured earlier. It comes through the firewall just
below the glove box. I then used 16ga red wire for power to the
switch and 16ga black wire to ground the switch. I just found
a hot wire using my tester and tapped off that for the switch.
I chose a wire that would only receive power when the ignition
key was turned. This would ensure I never left the lights on and
ran the battery down but still allows me to turn the lights on
anytime I chose as long as the key is at least in the on position.
Basically when you hit the switch the switch pulls power from
the hot wire, sends this 12V to the relay which closes the relay,
in turn pulling 12V directly from the battery, sending current
to the lights. The relay takes all the stress, keeping the switch
nice and happy. I grounded the switch on metal using a 3/8" ring
To wire the included switch the top pole goes to ground, the
middle pole goes to the relay, and the bottom pole goes to the
12V source (hot wire).
Put the center console back together and check over everything
one last time. Here is what everything looked like once complete.
As you can see it looks factory...except for the carbon fiber
faceplate and VDO gauges.
Hereís what the lights look like mounted
to the vehicle.