DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

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Debonair
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DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Tue Dec 15, 2015 12:31 pm

After thinking over a DRL setup on another members thread I decide to set up a system on my car. With this setup the DRL’s are on all the time in the parking light bulb position. I will be wiring in a relay to power them off when the headlights are on to save some wear and tear on the bulbs.

DRL Modules
The modules I used are the S1 Switchback DRL Module from Diode Dynamics. When the Turn Signal is activated the DRL will power off and remain off until the Turn Signal is turned off.

Image
Image

Bulbs
I am using JDM Astar bulbs. I have been very impressed with the brightness of all the bulbs I have got from them.

JDM Astar Super Bright 912 921 T10/T15 AX-2835 SMD LED Light Bulb - Amazon- Direct
Image

Alternate wiring option
If the switchback function is not wanted, the yellow input wires can be connected to the headlight positive. This would turn the DRL’s off when the Headlights are powered on and eliminate the need for an additional relay.

Current Wiring Diagram
Image

Needed:
DRL Modules – I used Diode Dynamics S1 Switchback DRL modules
194 Bulbs – I used JDM Astar Super Brights
Mini Fuse Tap (OE fuses are low profile but the mini will still fit and work fine)
20A Mini Fuse
Wire
Crimps
Shrink wrap
Terminals
Tools – Wire cutter & crimper, solder iron, torch/lighter, 10mm wrench & socket
Optional - SPDT Relay

IMPORTANT: Every automotive repair and modification manual, experienced auto mechanic, and car enthusiast will tell you to disconnect the negative battery terminal before starting any work on your vehicle. It is a safety precaution that will help keep you from getting shocked and, possibly more importantly, will keep you from damaging your vehicle's electrical system. The negative is the electrical systems ground and is represented by "-" or minus symbol and is usually black in color (red is positive). Disconnect the negative battery terminal before starting any electrical work on your vehicle.

Disclaimer: Use any and all of this information and instructions at your own risk.

Installation Steps:
These steps are organized to be the most logical when reading them. Some of these may overlap when actually being performed.

1. DRL Power Wire
  • a. Under the hood remove the battery cover, cover surround, and left side wiper cowl
  • b. In the cabin remove the glove box and lower cover
  • c. Create an opening in the rubber boot
  • d. Run the DRL power wire though and then pull from inside the cabin
  • e. Run the wire behind the center dash to the driver side foot well
  • f. Back under the hood Route the power cable from the rubber boot to the right-front (passenger) headlamp
  • g. Connect the DRL power cable to the DRL Modules white input wire
  • h. Run additional wire from this connection to the left-front (driver) headlight
  • i. Connect the DRL power cable to the DRL Modules white input wire
DRL Power Wire (RED) entering the cabin without and then with split-loom cover
Image
Image


2. Bulb Sockets
  • a. Under the hood remove the boomerang bracket from above the Parking Light by removing the single 10mm bolt - See "Front Parking" HERE
  • b. Remove the Parking Light socket from the headlight housing
  • c. Cut the factory socket off the vehicle one wire at a time. Leave enough wire on the socket side to add more wire to it.
  • d. Cover the OE Parking Light wires separate from each other so that there is no chance of them shorting out – I used shrink-wrap
  • e. Solder enough additional wire to the OE socket so that it can reach your chosen mounting position for the module. I used OE color wire.
  • f. Connect the sockets to the Module
  • - -i. Socket Green to Module White
  • - -ii. Socket Black to Module Black
  • g. Install your chosen 194 bulb into the socket
  • h. Install the socket into the headlamp
  • i. Repeat on the other side Parking Light & DRL Module
3. DRL Module
  • a. Under the hood locate a suitable mounting position for the DRL module
  • b. Mount the DRL Module
  • c. Complete the remaining wiring
  • - -i. Ground Input to Chassis ground point
  • - -ii. Yellow Input to Turn Signal Positive
  • - -iii. Yellow Output wire is not being used – I cover its end with shrink-wrap
  • d. Repeat on the other side DRL Module
4. Fuse Tap
  • a. In the cabin crimp or solder the DRL power wire to the Fuse Tap at the driver side foot well
  • b. Locate and remove the 20A “Power Socket” Fuse in the driver side foot well fuse box
  • c. Install the a new mini 20A fuse into the lower position (factory fuse is low profile and will not plug into fuse tap)
  • d. Install the included 5A fuse into the upper position
    Warning: Do NOT install the Fuse Tap into the fuse box until you are sure all wiring steps have been completed
  • e. Once you are sure all wiring steps have been complete plug the Fuse Tap into the “Power Socket” fuse slot
Fuse Tap installed
Image

"Power Socket" Fuse Location
Image

5. Reconnect the Negative Battery Cable

6. Test out the setup - YOU ARE DONE!

I finished this up last night so I only have a short iPhone video to share. I will get some daytime video and pictures ASAP.

MORE PICS TO COME




Once I have/make time I will be adding an additional relay to the circuit that will cut power to both modules when the headlights are powered on. This will allow the bulbs to be running less which in turn extends their life. I have NOT tested this relay setup so use at your own risk.

Alternate wiring to shut off DRL's when headlight is turned on.
Image


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Ilya
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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Ilya » Tue Dec 15, 2015 2:09 pm

lol. Dude. You make my HowTo's look like crap. All your schematics and stuff. :P.

Excellent work my man. Added to FAQ.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby iwk2much » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:22 pm

I like it, very impressed!

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights

Postby Debonair » Tue Dec 15, 2015 10:31 pm

IlyaKol wrote:lol. Dude. You make my HowTo's look like crap. All your schematics and stuff. :P

Excellent work my man. Added to FAQ.
Haha. I need them to help me keep track of these types of jobs.
iwk2much wrote:I like it, very impressed!
Thanks!

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby infinitedrift » Wed Dec 16, 2015 3:33 am

Loving it, nice work.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby rsilva800 » Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:25 am

Great write up.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:45 am

infinitedrift wrote:Loving it, nice work.
rsilva800 wrote:Great write up.
Thank you both. :dblthumb:

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Dec 28, 2015 2:27 pm

Here are a couple daytime pics of the DRL's on.

Image

Image

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby bkhann » Mon Dec 28, 2015 4:49 pm

Looks like a great setup.

Have you had a chance to install the relay to depower the DLR's when the headlights are powered?

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Debonair
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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Dec 28, 2015 6:08 pm

bkhann wrote:Looks like a great setup.

Have you had a chance to install the relay to depower the DLR's when the headlights are powered?
Thanks.

Yes...kind of. It's all wired in except the single wire that goes to the headlight positive. I need to get into the wheel well to wire that one in and then it's done. Once I have that done I'll get an update posted here.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby DoN_BLaZe34 » Sun Jan 03, 2016 10:22 pm

Random question, does that Power Socket fuse come on when the car is in ACC or On?

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:27 am

DoN_BLaZe34 wrote:Random question, does that Power Socket fuse come on when the car is in ACC or On?
ACC.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby DM37x » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:22 am

Great write up.

Is there a way to set the fog lights independent of the headlights? The car would even better with the fogs and park lights on together IMO. Just my 2 cents

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby rsilva800 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:36 am

DM37x wrote:Great write up.

Is there a way to set the fog lights independent of the headlights? The car would even better with the fogs and park lights on together IMO. Just my 2 cents
I'm gonna be working on that in the next few weeks, still ironing out a few details.

I will make a separate thread with a DIY.

Rob

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby M37owner » Thu Jan 14, 2016 7:45 am

I appreciate this post, as the DRLs mod is something I have been wanting to do for a while on my 2011 M37.

I'm wondering if there isn't a place under then hood (i.e. the under hood fuse box) to make the power connection. Going to the interior is a lot of extra work (unless it is absolutely needed). Have you researched this as a possible power connection point?

Thanks for the great post. :dblthumb:

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Feb 01, 2016 10:30 pm

M37owner wrote:I appreciate this post, as the DRLs mod is something I have been wanting to do for a while on my 2011 M37.

I'm wondering if there isn't a place under then hood (i.e. the under hood fuse box) to make the power connection. Going to the interior is a lot of extra work (unless it is absolutely needed). Have you researched this as a possible power connection point?

Thanks for the great post. :dblthumb:
Thanks! :biggrin:

I did not find a suitable fuse under the hood and believe me - I looked. Most of them are for crucial systems which I prefer not to tap into, so I ran the wire from in the cabin.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Feb 01, 2016 11:22 pm

Ok, so I finally had time to get the car jacked up, pull the inner fender cover, and hook up the last relay wire (#85). I connected it to the positive wire of the right front side marker (amber bulb on outside corner of the headlamp) rather then the headlight itself. It functions exactly the same. Healights off - DRL's on; Headlights on - DRL's off.

Pics and/or video to come.

Image

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Feb 08, 2016 7:59 am

Here is a short video of the relay in action. I am manually rolling the headlight switch on and off. They work automatically of course when the switch is left in auto mode.


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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby tmf2004 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:26 pm

Whats up Debonair... Tony from CL.... thinking about pulling the trigger on a M37 or M56 as a daily... Your M is looking good my man.... is this forum one of the popular M forums?

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:51 pm

tmf2004 wrote:Whats up Debonair... Tony from CL.... thinking about pulling the trigger on a M37 or M56 as a daily... Your M is looking good my man.... is this forum one of the popular M forums?
Hey what's up! I thought I recognized your username on your other post. Thanks for the compliment. :dblthumb:

This is by far the most active and best forum. There are a few others, but they are ghost towns. Find any promising M's yet?

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby tmf2004 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:57 pm

Debonair wrote:
tmf2004 wrote:Whats up Debonair... Tony from CL.... thinking about pulling the trigger on a M37 or M56 as a daily... Your M is looking good my man.... is this forum one of the popular M forums?
Hey what's up! I thought I recognized your username on your other post. Thanks for the compliment. :dblthumb:

This is by far the most active and best forum. There are a few others, but they are ghost towns. Find any promising M's yet?
well my local dealer has a 2012 M37 28k miles, 1 owner, certified... would like to go there this week and check it out, There's a few M37 Sport but this is going to be a daily and i travel pretty frequently on I-95. M56's seem to be pretty rare around here but i would love 420hp just saying... I need to get out of my KIA after 4 years.. the ride is horrible....

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby tmf2004 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:59 pm

Debonair wrote:
tmf2004 wrote:Whats up Debonair... Tony from CL.... thinking about pulling the trigger on a M37 or M56 as a daily... Your M is looking good my man.... is this forum one of the popular M forums?
Hey what's up! I thought I recognized your username on your other post. Thanks for the compliment. :dblthumb:

This is by far the most active and best forum. There are a few others, but they are ghost towns. Find any promising M's yet?
well my local dealer has a 2012 M37 28k miles, 1 owner, certified... would like to go there this week and check it out, There's a few M37 Sport but this is going to be a daily and i travel pretty frequently on I-95. M56's seem to be pretty rare around here but i would love 420hp just saying... I need to get out of my KIA after 4 years.. the ride is horrible....

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Mon Feb 08, 2016 10:40 pm

tmf2004 wrote:well my local dealer has a 2012 M37 28k miles, 1 owner, certified... would like to go there this week and check it out, There's a few M37 Sport but this is going to be a daily and i travel pretty frequently on I-95. M56's seem to be pretty rare around here but i would love 420hp just saying... I need to get out of my KIA after 4 years.. the ride is horrible....
Sounds like a promising car. The ride of the base 18's vs 20's is not very different. And the Sports get the big brakes too, which is the only sport upgrade part I wish I had on my base model.

The M56 seems to be pretty rare everywhere. I got lucky stumbling upon mine in base trim, which is what I was after. I was on my way to see a LS460 and stopped by just to see what it was like. Annnnnd then it came home with me. 420hp is very nice. :biggrin:

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby tmf2004 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 11:41 pm

Debonair wrote:
tmf2004 wrote:well my local dealer has a 2012 M37 28k miles, 1 owner, certified... would like to go there this week and check it out, There's a few M37 Sport but this is going to be a daily and i travel pretty frequently on I-95. M56's seem to be pretty rare around here but i would love 420hp just saying... I need to get out of my KIA after 4 years.. the ride is horrible....
Sounds like a promising car. The ride of the base 18's vs 20's is not very different. And the Sports get the big brakes too, which is the only sport upgrade part I wish I had on my base model.

The M56 seems to be pretty rare everywhere. I got lucky stumbling upon mine in base trim, which is what I was after. I was on my way to see a LS460 and stopped by just to see what it was like. Annnnnd then it came home with me. 420hp is very nice. :biggrin:
thanks, is the ride with the 18's very harsh or pretty smooth? I would like the BBK as well but daily on 20's could be a bit much.. i'm trying to eliminate road noise and would prefer a quieter cabin..

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:23 am

tmf2004 wrote:thanks, is the ride with the 18's very harsh or pretty smooth? I would like the BBK as well but daily on 20's could be a bit much.. i'm trying to eliminate road noise and would prefer a quieter cabin..
I think the ride is about equal with both, "sporty", but this is so subjective you really need to get in a couple and see for yourself. I drove a 13' fully loaded sport and then my 11' base, and dont recall noticing a significant ride comfort difference. Quality tires are a must for road noise.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby tmf2004 » Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:28 am

Debonair wrote:
tmf2004 wrote:thanks, is the ride with the 18's very harsh or pretty smooth? I would like the BBK as well but daily on 20's could be a bit much.. i'm trying to eliminate road noise and would prefer a quieter cabin..
I think the ride is about equal with both, "sporty", but this is so subjective you really need to get in a couple and see for yourself. I drove a 13' fully loaded sport and then my 11' base, and dont recall noticing a significant ride comfort difference. Quality tires are a must for road noise.
hopefully the car has Michelins... those are about the best i think.. My Hankooks on the Optima are horrible lol... what are you running?

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Debonair
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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:59 am

I'm running Yoko's but I was looking for performance with decent mileage, not quiet.

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Waverunner95 » Tue Feb 09, 2016 5:04 pm

Awesome writeup! Would you tell me if you've had any experience with headlight replacement? My feeling about the OEM lights is that they're not powerful enough. I base that on comparisons to other lux cars that have noticeably higher output.

I believe there are two issues, intensity and color temperature. I'm aware that going too high in temp does not help with the quality of the light. But what's up with the low intensity? Is it the quality of the ballast? Design of the projector housing? 35W vs 55W ballast and bulb?

Any thoughts much appreciated!

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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Debonair » Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:25 pm

Waverunner95 wrote:Awesome writeup! Would you tell me if you've had any experience with headlight replacement? My feeling about the OEM lights is that they're not powerful enough. I base that on comparisons to other lux cars that have noticeably higher output.

I believe there are two issues, intensity and color temperature. I'm aware that going too high in temp does not help with the quality of the light. But what's up with the low intensity? Is it the quality of the ballast? Design of the projector housing? 35W vs 55W ballast and bulb?

Any thoughts much appreciated!
Thanks!

For the headlights I personally think the biggest culprit is the Projector lens. The OEM bulbs are definitely too yellow as well, but even with replaced bulbs the output is not as sharp and defined as some cars from MB or Lexus. I have seen headlight retrofits using quality lenses and the look good even with basic/budget ballasts and bulbs.

Changing just the bulbs will help a lot. I ran some cheap Amazon 5K bulbs first. Their color was good and output about the same as OEM. Then I switched to the Osram Xenarc CBI bulbs. The color was a little too yellow for a month or so (break-in period) and then they turned a propper 5k'ish white. The real benefit of these bulbs is the output. The difference was immediately noticeable once they were installed. Worth the price? Maybe.

Osram Xenarc thread HERE

How to access and replace all bulbs HERE

Waverunner95
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Re: DIY: Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

Postby Waverunner95 » Thu Feb 11, 2016 4:48 pm

Interesting...you would think that a 2011 M37 (my car) (new about $47,000 although I bought mine used) would have comparable quality parts to Lexus or BMW and others...in general. For instance, my interior fit and finish (and of course design) are excellent. I did upgrade all the interior lights to LED and love the look including blue LEDs for the footwells.

Love the forum. Hope to spend much time on it!


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