Introduction: Cheap Bumper Lights
My 2001 Ford Ranger did not come with factory fog lights. I wanted to add some lights to my lower bumper valance, but I couldn't find a light kit that did not require a bracket to be fabricated. Since there is nothing behind the bumper in this area, the light had to be supported by only the plastic valance. Large semi trucks use clearence lights which are supported by internal mounting grommets, so I ordered a pair of Maxxima M34260Y Amber 6 LED lights online . The lights are sealed 2 inch grommet mounted plastic units. Installation took under 2 hours, and was very easy. I have photos and instructions enclosed, and also some helpful tips.
Step 1: Parts and Tips
1. Purchase a pair of pair of Maxxima M34260Y Amber 6 LED lights
2. Use a portable drill and wire crimper. You will also need some red & black wire to connect to your vehicle.
3. Purchase a hole saw with different diameters (under $10 at Home Depot). This way, you can use the 2 1/16 inch saw to make 2 inch “blanks” out of scrap plastic or wood. You can then use the blanks as guides for the holes you will drill in the bumper valance. Once you have the blanks lined up perfectly where you want them, just mark the center holes with a marking pen.
Step 2: Drill Baby Drill.....
Once you have the center hole marked and the pilot hole drilled, use the hole saw with a 2 inch bore. Hold the drill firm so the saw won't buck and mar the area. Make sure you use the correct size alignment drill bit for the hole saw.
Step 3: Install the Grommet
The grommet fits inside the hole and gives support for the light. It is soft plastic and will have a groove between the inside and outside parts. Make sure the groove seals over the hole you just cut in the bumper. Once installed, the unit should hold firmly to the plastic bumper. The light assembly will fit into the cup of the grommet. The soft plastic holds the light firmly, but you can still remove the whole thing without tools.
Step 4: Install the Light
Now push the light into the grommet until it becomes flush with the grommet. It should pop into the cup of the grommet. Make sure the light is held securely inside the grommet.
Step 5: Wiring
Most LEDs take very little power, so I had no problems tapping from the truck's parking lights. I ran a wire on each side up to the parking light leads and then tapped into them. LEDs are polarized, so make sure you don't mix up the positive and negative wires. You can also run power directly from the battery and use a relay or switch to control the lights. This is not listed in this instructable as I used power from the parking lights.
The end connectors should be included in the light kit. I also used plastic wire loom to protect the wire in the tire well.
Step 6: Enjoy
The lights are technically "clearance" lights, so they are not strong enough to illuminate the road ahead. For that purpose, I have large off-road lights above the bumper. I was concerned that any lights in my lower bumper would be susceptible to water damage, which is why I used sealed LED lights.
The lights look great and give a distinctive look to the truck.