Hella 500 Fog/Driving Light Installation
- February 2002
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:

  1. Electricianís pliers
  2. An electric/cordless drill (not required but recommended)
  3. An automotive test light
  4. Extra 16ga and 14ga wire of various color (just to be safe)
  5. Electrical tape
  6. Zip Ties
  7. Exacto Knife
  8. Assortment of ring terminal connectors for 16ga and 14ga wire (I used 1/4" and 3/8" ring connectors in my application)
  9. 30amp Automotive Relay (included in most kits)
  10. Switch (included in most kits but usually arenít OEM models)
  11. A Good selection of wrenches and sockets
  12. Various size flat and philips screwdrivers
  13. 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.

#30 = 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

Grounding the Lights

Firewall Grommet

Switch

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 bumper mounts.

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:

Green = 12V power Black = to Relay Brown = Ground

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 connector.

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.



Euro Turn Signal Lights
An excellent aesthetic upgrade for your 2002 - lose the bubble turn signals. Installing the Euro Light Turn Signals is easy, buying them might be the hard part. La Jolla Independent Service has brand new turn signals for around $90-$100 - but I believe they are worth every penny considering how much better my 2002 looks with the flush Euro Lights. The Italian Turn Signals (2-tone white and orange) are really hard to find and usually cost more ($125 - $150).

Keep in mind, that your turn signals have only 2 wires - it gets grounded with the screws that hold the signal light in place. If you are having erratic signal responses (ie: signals work & dash indicator doesn't or vice versa) try switching the signal wires (they could be crossed) or cleaning the areas where the screws ground.
       

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