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How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring

Postby jfanaselle » Tue Oct 23, 2007 4:07 am



This tutorial provides very specific instructions for installing a certain model of fog lamps on an SL model Versa using the existing factory wiring and factory switch. This is sort of a combination between using OEM fogs and aftermarket ones.


The fog lamps used are the Pilot PL-2088B. They were purchased at AutoZone for $19.99 plus sales tax. These are actually “driving lights,” but work well as fogs and use a standard H3 bulb. They are low quality lights, but they look great and the light output is decent so they’re certainly worth the money. You’ll see in the following steps that this tutorial is specific for these lights. If you choose to use different ones, please find out the measurements first. Unfortunately, I did not measure the lights before I installed them, but the step which involves cutting the plastic to install the lamp assembly could be modified if necessary.


Out of the package, the fog lamp assembly has a bracket installed. This bracket will not fit properly behind the fog lamp finisher without being modified, so I chose to mount them in a manner that doesn’t require the bracket.


Simply remove the two #2 Phillips head screws to detach the bracket


Detach the fog lamp finisher from the car by using a panel removal tool or a very thin flat tool (I used the blade from a pocket knife because I didn’t have a PRT or a small enough flat head screwdriver). Insert the tool between the finisher and the bumper on the side closer to the center of the vehicle. There are two tabs on each side of the finisher, one high one and one low one on each side. Simply apply gentle prying pressure near each tab to pop it out, and then pull the entire finisher to release the additional two tabs on the edge closer to the side of the car. When prying, place a soft cloth between the tool and the painted surface of the car so that you won’t scratch anything. I did not take a picture of the fog lamp finisher actually removed from the vehicle before cutting it, but you should know what it looks like.


Use a Dremel MultiPro or other rotary tool to cut the fog lamp finisher down. I used a spiral cutting blade (looks like a drill bit but is very sharp and has a weird pattern). You want to cut as close as possible to the edge of the circle, but don’t go right to the edge yet. Leave yourself some margin for error, incase you slip with the tool or something.


Now, use a drum sanding bit (has a small round piece of sand paper that spins really fast to remove material) to shave it all the way to the edge. If you don’t trust your hands that much, get it as close as possible and use a file to finish it off. Do not use a knife or other cutting tool because you will not make a perfect line and it will be noticeable.


Here is a view from the rear after shaving it all the way to the edge.


Now, pop the fog lamp into the hole. It should push all the way to the crease where the two parts of the fog lamps are pressed together (see second and third photos of the fog lamp for reference if needed). As long as the crease in the fog light is sitting perfectly flush with the hole, it should be perfectly straight. However, if you would like, do a quickie wiring job and wire them both directly to the battery so you can turn them on and adjust them if needed. Mine were perfect without adjustment and as long as your hole is cut right yours should be too.


Here is a view from the front with the fog lamp popped into the finisher. It’s very likely that you’ll be able to see a tiny amount of light seeping through some cracks where your hole isn’t perfectly round. Don’t worry… we’ll take care of that in the next step. If it’s very dramatic, you might want to use your rotary tool again and clean the hole up a little more.


To glue the fog lamp in place, we’ll need to use some silicone. Since there is likely some tiny gaps between your fog lamp and the finisher itself in places (unless you’ve cut a perfect circle!), be sure to use black silicone. I used silicone that was designed for repairing blacktop or roofs because it is designed to withstand abuse, which is exactly what it’s going to see in this install. I purchased the silicone at Lowe’s for around $6.00.


Squirt the silicone using a caulking gun around the point where the fog lamp meets the finisher. Apply it on the rear, not on the front. It’s not necessary to be precise, because we’ll spread it better on the next step. The point here is to get it all the way around so that we can spread it all over.


Using a latex or rubber glove, spread the silicone around with your finger. It’s likely that you’ll end up with an extra glob of it on your finger tip, which is ok as long as you have good even coverage. Be sure that you don’t end up with really thick areas because it’ll take longer to cure and will never fully harden. Silicone stays flexible forever, so there is no reason to make it thick.


Locate the wires for the factory fog lamps. The wire is located below the headlamp assembly, and it’s in it’s own loom tube separate from the rest of the headlamp wiring. It’ll be attached to something lower down in the car with some tape. Simply pull on it to break the tape and free it up. I accessed mine through the hood which was much easier than removing the splash guard from the bottom of the car. The driver side wire has a purple wire and a black wire. The purple is positive and the black is negative.


The passenger side has a white wire and a black wire. The white wire is positive and the black wire is negative. Cut both “pigtail” connectors off as close to the end of the wire as possible so that you have more wire to work with.


Pull the wire through the fog lamp hole in the bumper. You might have to reach kind of hard to make this happen. I have really long arms and I could barely reach down enough to poke the wire through the hole, so use a wire coat hanger or fish tape if needed. You can see from the picture that there is barely any wire available once it’s stretched down to the hole, so I chose to add about 5 more inches of wire to the driver side and 8 inches to the passenger side (for whatever reason, the passenger wire was a little shorter).


Use butt connecters to crimp the wiring together. Since this area will be exposed to a lot of moisture, use heat shrinkable tubing for added protection.


I used smaller heat shrinkable tubing on the individual wires and then a larger piece over the whole connection assembly. Be sure to put your tubing on the wires before you crimp them, then slide the pieces over the connectors and use a heat gun or lighter to shrink them down.


As said before, this area of the car is exposed to a lot of moisture. For this reason, you’ll want to wrap everything up with a good amount of tape after the connections have been made and the heat shrinkable tubing has been used. Use a lot more than you need – make sure to wrap at least a couple of inches beyond the connectors onto the wiring, and go back over it several times to ensure it’s covered good. When you’re crimping the actual fog lamp assembly onto the wiring, be sure that you set it on something soft on the ground so that you don’t scratch it. I laid mine face down on the concrete and put a small scuff on the plastic because the whole assembly was moving around as I was messing with the wires.


Now you can press the assemblies back into the bumper and clip them in place. They may move slightly, which is ok because there is some play in the fit of the parts. They won’t move enough to bounce the light around while you’re driving.


The installed assemblies should look like so.


Now it’s time to move on to the switch replacement. Here is a picture of the standard switch included on SL models without factory fog lamps.


Here is the factory switch for fog lamp setups. The switch can be ordered through the parts department at your dealership, but I’d highly recommend buying it from http://www.versaspeed.com instead. It’s cheaper and you’ll have it faster! I don’t know the Nissan part number.


Start by removing the 3 screws located on the bottom of the steering column. Note that one of the screws (the one being removed in the photo) is really deep in the plastic. You will need a decent length screwdriver to reach it. Additionally, this screw never actually came out of the plastic on my install, but was easy to re-install so don’t worry if yours stays in. During this step, it helps to adjust your tilt column to the highest setting.


After the screws have been removed, use a panel removal tool or a small flathead screwdriver to pop the upper and lower panel apart. Simply stick the screwdriver or PRT into the gap between the headlamp and wiper switches on the upper side and use a light prying pressure to pop them apart. There are additional taps holding the two pieces together toward the rear, so don’t be too forceful.


Here’s a picture of where the tabs are located. This picture is of the driver side but the passenger side is identical.


Next, remove the trim piece around the ignition switch. To do this, you can pry it gently with your screwdriver or PRT until you can get your fingers on it and pull. It is only pressed into a gap around the switch so it should remove easily. Note that my car is not equipped with the intelligent key. If your car is equipped with the intelligent key, this step may be slightly different but I can’t say for sure. Once the trim is removed, lift the top plastic piece off of the column by lifting up on it. During this step, it’s beneficial to have the tilt column loose so that you can move it up or down accordingly. You do not need to remove the bottom piece entirely, and I don’t recommend it because it’s connected to the dash on the lower part. I simply pushed it down enough to have working space on the switch.


Now we need to remove the switch. Do this by pressing on the two small white plastic tabs located on the top and bottom of the switch. The top one is located right where the tip of the screwdriver is pressing. For reference, you can look at the switch that you haven’t installed in the car yet to get a better idea of where the tabs are and how they work.


Once you’ve got both tabs pressed, simply pull on the switch straight out toward the outside of the car to remove it. It’ll unplug from the column. Install the new switch by pressing it in place until the two tabs click and then re-assemble the entire column in the reverse order that you disassembled it. You can see the new switch installed and where the fog lamp control is located on it.











You can see from the photos that the install looks very clean. I didn’t do a perfect job adjusting the aim prior to applying the silicone, but it doesn’t bother me enough to remove them and do it over. Another mistake that I made was not checking that they were perfectly level (note how the light pattern is slightly rectangular and isn’t perfectly parallel to the headlight beam). Be sure to make these adjustments prior to applying your silicone, or be prepared to remove the silicone if you want to adjust them after installation.

All in all, I am happy with the outcome of the install. If you didn’t know what the factory fogs were supposed to look like, you could easily mistake this for an OEM setup by the way they are mounted except for the blue lenses.

Modified by jfanaselle at 7:54 PM 10/24/2007


Modified by jfanaselle at 9:21 AM 10/25/2007

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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby Rockhound » Tue Oct 23, 2007 4:22 am

That looks great! You really did a clean install. Pretty awesome how the housing on those lights fits the factory hole so well...
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby matt_a » Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:01 am

That looks really good...nice job! I have a few questions. With the way you installed them using silicone, they are basically glued into place....right? Once that's done, how can you adjust the aim if you need to? Also, can you access the bulb if you need to replace them?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (matt_a)

Postby jfanaselle » Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:17 am

Thanks for the compliments guys. Matt, to answer your questions, you'd want to adjust the aim prior to applying the silicone. If you ever needed to re-adjust it, you can simply pop the finishers back off the car and pull the fog lamp off of the finisher. The silicone will give if you pull it hard enough. You'll also be able to peel the silicone off with a knife or scraper if necessary. This is how you'd replace the bulb as well. On these particular fogs, you need to pop the assembly apart right where the seam is on the housing (see the 2nd and 3rd pics). Because the silicone is applied over this seam, you'd need to remove the lamp to change the bulb.
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby matt_a » Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:24 am

jfanaselle wrote:...This is how you'd replace the bulb as well. On these particular fogs, you need to pop the assembly apart right where the seam is on the housing (see the 2nd and 3rd pics). Because the silicone is applied over this seam, you'd need to remove the lamp to change the bulb.
OK...so it would be a bit of a hassle, but it can be done. That's good to know, because I have never seen a set of fogs/driving lights yet that didn't eventually need a new bulb. I might have to think about this project. It looks good.
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby 07Vsdn » Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:25 am

awesome...

and i see you answered the aim question.
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (07Vsdn)

Postby bulld0g » Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:53 am

looks good...nice DIY with good pics
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (bulld0g)

Postby jfanaselle » Tue Oct 23, 2007 7:48 am

Thanks. I learned my lesson from not taking enough pics when I built my fiberglass enclosure. I've gotta earn that custom title somehow!
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby Ever Victorious » Tue Oct 23, 2007 8:29 am

No worries, you'll have it as soon as you stop teasing us with the possibility of the switch install and actually post it. hehehe
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (Ever Victorious)

Postby jfanaselle » Tue Oct 23, 2007 8:39 am

I purchased it from VersaSpeed last week and I'm just waiting for it to arrive. As soon as it gets here, I'll take pics of taking the steering column apart and finish everything up!
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby jfanaselle » Wed Oct 24, 2007 4:58 pm

Ok... the switch arrived this evening at around 6:00 pm but I just couldn't wait until tomorow to install it! I finished everything up and updated the how-to above. What do you all think?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby CodeRed » Wed Oct 24, 2007 5:17 pm

I think you did a really good job and deserve a custom title. What would you like it to be? Also I will be adding this to the tutorials section as soon as I get time off work and school....

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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (CodeRed)

Postby jfanaselle » Wed Oct 24, 2007 5:33 pm

Sweet! I'll proof-read it for mistakes or typos and edit accordingly. As far as custom title... hmm.... I don't know. Let me think about that one and I'll get back to you. Any suggestions anyone?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby irsa76 » Sat Oct 27, 2007 7:41 pm

Nice job.
One little issue though, as you stated the lights used are driving lights. These will not be of any use in fog as they lack the required lens/reflector design to produce the low, wide beam required for fog. They also lack the bulb glare sheild. As such technically they would be illegal to use with low beam. Now with a little rewireing this shouldn't be hard to fix, I would have to have both a foglight equipped Tiida, in my case, and the workshop manual to confirm this. Not that I would need to do it, I'm planning on running OE fogs and Cibie driving lights when I get mine.
Not knocking you, incorrect, or inconsiderate, use of lights is a pet peeve of mine.
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (irsa76)

Postby jfanaselle » Sun Oct 28, 2007 4:39 am

Well I understand your comment and you're definately right about them not throwing a low, wide beam like a fog lamp should. In southern californa, we rarely see foggy conditions that are bad. This was more of a cosmetic upgrade than anything in my case. And becauase these lights were only $20, I used them. Anyone performing this upgrade can certainly swap the lights out for whatever they wish. I simply wanted to post this so everyone can see how they are mounted, and how to use the factory wiring and factory switch.
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby CodeRed » Sun Oct 28, 2007 4:49 am

Pick a title yet?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (CodeRed)

Postby jfanaselle » Sun Oct 28, 2007 5:47 am

I honestly have no idea what I would want. I was hoping some people would throw suggestions out, but I guess not. Have any suggestions yourself?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (jfanaselle)

Postby puregravy » Sat Feb 09, 2008 1:07 pm

Does anyone know what the difference in installation would be if I dont have an SL? Is the mod still possible?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (puregravy)

Postby Gr8dave37 » Sat Apr 26, 2008 9:21 pm

I realize this is an old thread...well older....but I have the same question and would replacing the factory switch with the factory fog switch work as well since the car is not set up for fogs?
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Re: How to: Aftermarket fog lamps using factory wiring (Gr8dave37)

Postby bulld0g » Sat Apr 26, 2008 9:34 pm

Gr8dave37 wrote:I realize this is an old thread...well older....but I have the same question and would replacing the factory switch with the factory fog switch work as well since the car is not set up for fogs?
only on the SL's they are prewired for Fogs the S is not
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