HOW TO: Disable Daytime Running Lights

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Pwnin O'Brien
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HOW TO: Disable Daytime Running Lights

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Tue Feb 09, 2010 9:53 pm

Overview:The following tutorial will explain how to disable the daytime running lights in all R50 Pathfinders and QX4's. Only Canadian R50's come with daytime running lights and this is not necessary for any US spec R50's.

The daytime running lights can be disabled by engaging the parking brake before starting the vehicle. While the daytime running lights are disabled, the standard headlamps operate normally. This modification will trick the daytime running lights into thinking the parking brake is always on, thus disabling them permanently (at least until modification is reversed).

NOTE: Even though the daytime running light module will think the parking brake is engaged, the instrument cluster lamp will NOT illuminate. The instrument cluster lamp for the parking break will operate normally (turn on when parking brake is engaged, off when disengaged) if the following tutorial is completed properly.

Thanks to sc2nr for the detailed photos!

Disclaimer: I am posting this tutorial for educational purposes and cannot be held liable for any damage to your vehicle resulting from this tutorial. The following information is given to you at the best of my ability and if used correctly, will result in disabling the daytime running lights successfully. The following tutorial is based on the circuitry for a 2003 Nissan Pathfinder and may differ slightly for other vehicles.

I am also not responsible for any vehicular or bodily harm caused as a result of this tutorial. By continuing this tutorial you agree to this disclaimer and you agree to complete the modifications AT YOUR OWN RISK. Please consult all local and state laws before doing any modifications to your vehicle.

If you need help with any wire colors or wire/module locations, please post your question in this thread and hopefully someone will promptly help you.

Difficulty: 1 out of 4

Time: Approximately one hour, depending on your skill level

Materials:- Electrical tape- Patch Wire

Tools: - Flat head screwdriver- Wire snips- Wire strippers- Soldering iron (optional)- Socket wrench w/sockets

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 1 (Testing vehicle for compatibility)_________________________________________________________________________You want to start by testing your vehicle for compatibility with this modification. To do so, (with the vehicle off) engage the parking brake. Now turn the ignition to ON (without starting vehicle) and observe the daytime running lamps. If the the daytime running lamps are not on, then continue with this tutorial. If they are still on, then you have much bigger issues. Now turn the parking lamps on and ensure proper operation. Now turn on headlamps (low beam) to ensure proper operation. Now turn on your headlamps high beams to ensure proper operation. If everything operates as it should, great!

(Image 1) Parking break is engaged for testing

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 2 (Locate and prepare DRL module)_________________________________________________________________________The next step is to locate the DRL module and prepare it for the modification. The DRL module is located in the engine bay bolted to the passenger side quarter panel towards the very front of the vehicle (beside the battery). On 3.3L vehicles it will have two gray wiring harnesses connected to it, whereas the 3.5L models will have three gray wiring harnesses connected to it. To make access to the wiring harnesses easier, you will want to remove the battery from the vehicle (disconnecting negative terminal first) and then unbolt the DRL module from the quarter panel.

To make it easier to work on the harnesses, you can unplug all of the harnesses and move the DRL module out of the way if necessary. For this mod you will only really need access to the wires in the largest harness (for both 3.3L and 3.5L models). If you choose to ground the wire to a body chassis ground wire in one of the harnesses, then you will probably want to unplug the harness with the black chassis ground wire as well (in 3.3L models it is in the largest harness and in 3.5L models it is in the middle-sized harness).

(Image 2) You can see the DRL module (the brown box) next to the battery.

(Image 3) A better view of the DRL module with the battery shifted out of the way.

(Image 4) The battery has been removed and the DRL module has been unbolted from the quarter panel.

(Image 5) The largest harness has been disconnected for easier access to the wires.

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 3 (Cutting, patching and connecting)_________________________________________________________________________Now it is time to cut the parking break switch wire that goes into the DRL module. For all 3.3L models and 3.5L models the color is the same, the wire you will be cutting is the BLUE wire with the GREEN stripe.

The location of the wire is different for each model (but is in the largest harness on all models):3.5L Pathfinder - In between the empty space on the harness and the GREEN wire with the RED stripe. 3.5L QX4 - Between two empty spaces on the harness3.3L QX4 & Pathfinder - Next to WHITE wire with BLACK stripe

Cut the BLUE wire with the GREEN stripe a couple of inches from the harness so you have enough room to strip and patch the patch wire in. Now you need to cap or tape off the parking brake side of the wire (the side going into the vehicle). Make sure you cap or tape it off securely so it is air and moisture tight.

IMPORTANT:It is very important that you cap or tape off the parking brake side of the wire. The parking brake side of the wire will still be live and is still required to operate the instrument cluster lamp for the parking brake. If the wire touches any body metal or any other wire, it could cause erratic behavior of the instrument cluster parking brake lamp. You must isolate the wire properly.

Now you need to strip some of the sheathing from the harness-side of the wire, just enough to patch in the patch wire. I recommend soldering in a new patch wire (like in the picture below) but you can also use a butt-connector or a simple cap to join the wires permanently. Always wrap the wires in electrical tape to ensure a waterproof seal.

(Image 6) The harness-side of the wire has been stripped and is ready for the patch wire.

(Image 7) All exposed wire has been covered and sealed to prevent any corrosion.

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 4 (Grounding)_________________________________________________________________________Now you need to ground the patch cable. There are two choices here, you can either ground to a conveniently located chassis ground right next to the DRL modules mounting location, or you can ground to the black ground wire in one of the DRL modules wiring harnesses. I recommend that you ground using the body ground located next to the DRL module. You can see in the following image that the patch cable has been connected to the harness as well as the body ground.

If you choose to ground the patch wire to the existing ground wire, you will need to located the chassis ground wire in one of the DRL module harnesses (the wire will be solid black) and strip a small section of wire then patch the patch wire to the ground wire. This method is a little more permanent than the standard body ground as mentioned above.

(Image 8) The patch wire has been grounded to the body ground next to the DRL module mounting location.

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 5 (Reassembly)_________________________________________________________________________Now you can plug the harnesses back into the DRL module and re-mount the module to the quarter panel. Ensure the connections are tight and there are no exposed wires. You can also return the battery to the battery tray and reconnect the battery terminals (connect positive terminal first).

(Image 9) The DRL module has been mounted back onto the quarter panel.

(Image 10) The battery has been replaced and reconnected.

_________________________________________________________________________STEP 6 (Testing)_________________________________________________________________________Now you want to test your headlamps for proper functionality. With the parking brake disengaged, turn the ignition to ON (without starting vehicle) and ensure that daytime running lamps are off. Now test the parking lights and headlamps (both low and high beams) for proper operation.

(Image 11) SUCCESS!!!

GOOD LUCK!
Modified by Pwnin O'Brien at 2:58 AM 2/10/2010


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Empty V
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Re: HOW TO: Disable Daytime Running Lights (Pwnin O'Brien)

Postby Empty V » Wed Feb 10, 2010 12:46 pm

Nice job bro, thanks!

Billy

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Re: HOW TO: Disable Daytime Running Lights (Pwnin O'Brien)

Postby sc2nr » Wed Feb 10, 2010 12:55 pm

Wicked write up

glad I could help with the pictures from my install.

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Postby naladude911 » Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:41 pm

sick write up, il do this tonight or tomorrow.

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby fueler » Wed Feb 10, 2010 2:37 pm

in a 4runner, its as simple as unplugging the DRL module ! This is so much more work but nice writeup!

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naladude911
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Postby naladude911 » Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:29 am

why do we have to ground it? I couldnt ground it and just cut the wire today and it works

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Pwnin O'Brien
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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:03 am

naladude911 wrote:why do we have to ground it? I couldnt ground it and just cut the wire today and it works
Because grounding it will prevent any chance of current leakage. The wires that are bundled with the parking break wire are somewhat higher current (since they are for the headlamps) and current leakage can cause the DRL's to operate erratically. Just cutting it may work but grounding it guarantees that it will work without any problems.

It's also not generally a good idea to just leave the wire ungrounded/unpowered and I wasn't going to write a tutorial that could cause problems for users.

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naladude911
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Postby naladude911 » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:18 am

the wire is a pain in the a** to splice another wire to it tho

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:25 am

naladude911 wrote:the wire is a pain in the a** to splice another wire to it tho
From the pictures it looks pretty simple. You just cut back some of the tape that bundles the wires together to expose the blue wire with the green stripe. Then you just cut it, strip it and patch it. It should take no more than five minutes (or ten if using a soldering iron).

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Postby naladude911 » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:49 pm

I know but its a pain in the a** to splice. Btw, just cutting the wire did nothign lol, my DRL's still work. Ill ground it another day

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby sc2nr » Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:42 pm

naladude911 wrote:I know but its a pain in the a** to splice. Btw, just cutting the wire did nothign lol, my DRL's still work. Ill ground it another day
Ya, this was not hard at all. it took me about 20 mins from start to finish that was with removing the battery and soldering the patch wire. While taking Pictures for you to not have an issue anymore!

I hope you cut the wire with enough room to splice, that might be your problem

Just follow the instructions the first time and EVERYONE is for the better!!

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Postby naladude911 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 9:53 am

I tried grounding it today but I can't. I cut the wire too short and can't attach a ground wire. f***

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Tue Feb 16, 2010 9:59 am

naladude911 wrote:I tried grounding it today but I can't. I cut the wire too short and can't attach a ground wire. f***
I just realized that I forgot something in my write-up...

Nala's Difficulty: 6 out of 4

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Postby naladude911 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 10:25 am

Now what do I do

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Tue Feb 16, 2010 10:53 am

naladude911 wrote:Now what do I do
Alright, I need you to pay very close attention to what I am going to say because if followed CORRECTLY, this should fix your issue. This is also assuming that you left a little bit of the wire connected to the harness.

Now look at the front of the harness (I am not sure if the harness is a male or female harness, so I cannot say if there are pin slots like in the picture below or pins coming out of the harness). You need to very carefully remove the pin/wire for the parking break wire (the one you cut too short) from the harness. You can do this by using a miniature flat head screwdriver or a metal pick or something small enough to fit inside the slot that the wire/pin go into. You will need to push down or lift up on something inside the slot on the harness to release the actual pin for the parking brake wire. Once you release the pin you will be able to remove the pin with the remaining wire still attached. Now you need to carefully patch the grounding patch wire onto the remainder of the parking brake wire (DON'T make the solder/patch too large or you will not be able to insert the pin/wire back into the harness). Once you have patched the wire and sealed the connection, you can snap the pin/wire back into the harness in the proper position (the same position it was in when you removed it).

The following is general idea of what I am talking about...



If you post up some pictures of the harness (VERY detailed pictures, front and back of harness) I can help you better.

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Pwnin O'Brien
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Re: (Pwnin O'Brien)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:08 am

Check out the following video for more help on how to remove the pin (it's not the exact same type of harness but it gives you the general idea)...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLKn_5Wqs8g

Maybe this video will help you too, not too sure...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52clbzQ2reg&NR=1

I don't have the DRL module and I am not familiar with the wiring harness that goes to the DRL module so I can only help so much. You really need to use your powers of inference and problem solving techniques to figure out how to get the pin out of the harness.
Modified by Pwnin O'Brien at 4:14 PM 2/16/2010

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Re: (Pwnin O'Brien)

Postby WINNIPEGS_MOST_WANTED » Tue Feb 16, 2010 2:45 pm

Pwnin O’Brien wrote:
I just realized that I forgot something in my write-up...

Nala's Difficulty: 6 out of 4
I thought it was implied since it requires tools!

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Postby naladude911 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 4:13 pm

where in jersey do you live? wanna meet up lol

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby slickroger » Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:03 pm

If your having trouble with this I would strongly suggest against doing any further mods yourself.

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Postby naladude911 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 11:46 am

I got it fixed. I went to the shop where I got my subs installed and they soldered the wire in. It works! Looks so good with my audi lights.

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Wed Feb 17, 2010 12:44 pm

naladude911 wrote:I got it fixed. I went to the shop where I got my subs installed and they soldered the wire in. It works! Looks so good with my audi lights.
Excellent, glad to see you got it repaired.

Audi lights? Let's see 'em, post up some day/night shots.

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Postby naladude911 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:12 pm

tomorrow. They look sick. I just want to do the fog light mod next lol. How far away do you live

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:30 pm

naladude911 wrote:tomorrow. They look sick. I just want to do the fog light mod next lol. How far away do you live
I'm about 2hrs. from you, I live in Hackettstown (Warren County).

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Re: (Pwnin O'Brien)

Postby Empty V » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:32 pm

Pwnin O’Brien wrote:
I'm about 2hrs. from you, I live in Hackettstown (Warren County).
This is where Nala offers for his mom to pay for your gas to come out and solder a wire.


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Postby naladude911 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:32 pm

ehh kinda far lol

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:44 pm

Empty V wrote:
This is where Nala offers for his mom to pay for your gas to come out and solder a wire.
Hahahahaha

I just want to see this Audi light setup, more importantly the placement of the LED eyebrows.

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Postby naladude911 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:50 pm

you will like it

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Empty V » Wed Feb 17, 2010 5:06 pm

naladude911 wrote:you will like it
If you did it yourself I can guarantee it's ghetto and jimmy-rigged like your TV tray snow plow. If your mom payed for it it might be installed properly. Regardless it's gonna look extremely un-baller and very Nala.

Billy

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Postby naladude911 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:31 am

I pay for all of the mods in my own money that I've saved for 5 years.

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Re: (naladude911)

Postby Pwnin O'Brien » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:51 am

Still waiting on those pics...


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