TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

How to splice into the ambient lighting

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by invisik, Nov 23, 2014.

  1. invisik

    invisik Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    620
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    #1 invisik, Nov 23, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2014
    Hi all,

    I've always thought there should be a light under the cubby..... so I decided to add one, but wanted it to come on and off with the ambient lighting. I asked around to find out where there might be a good place to tap into the ambient lighting circuit, but no one really knew. So last resort I decided to take a door panel off and splice into it at one of the lights.


    To remove the door panel, I followed that part of the instructions from Teslatap's door projector article http://teslatap.com/modifications/projector-logo-lights/ I bought a $5 set of plastic door panel removers from Amazon, they were sufficient.

    WP_20141025_002.jpg

    I unplugged all the wires so I didn't have to hold up the door panel. It is easy to find where the wires go back to as they are all a specific length. The ambient light fixture is mounted under the armrest.
    WP_20141025_003.jpg
    The connection is in the middle part of the door. Unclip the connector and peel back some of the black cloth tape, it's super sticky.
    WP_20141025_009.jpg
    The wires coming to the ambient light are purple and black. I've spliced in and I put some Super 33 electrical tape over it.

    So here's the part I'm not happy about. I could not find a way to get my wire inside the car through the existing wire loom. It is packed in so tightly and is bound about half way into the door, I didn't want to chance trying to push something through it. So there's a somewhat inconspicuous area that, after wrapping the wire in Super 33 it's not noticeable at all. (well except to me) I ran it up to the top/front edge of the door panel across the open space and into the dash trim (it slides down).
    WP_20141025_011.jpg

    Running the wire to the cubby area is a piece of cake, I didn't get any pictures of that. All the panels come off fairly easily along the way. My LED light is not permanently mounted yet as I'm experimenting with the angle of the light.

    Otherwise it all goes back the way it came out. Plug the connectors back in. When putting the door panel back on, I think it kinda hung by the top and then the bottom parts snapped in.

    All in all it worked great an the light works fine with the ambient lights... it even dims and brightens on the two ambient lighting levels.

    Thanks all, hope this is helpful to someone.

    -m
     
  2. 4SUPER9

    4SUPER9 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,324
    Location:
    California
    This is definitely my next mod. Thanks.
    I am wondering, is the loom accessible within the front kick panel? If so, maybe the purple wire can be located there.
     
  3. invisik

    invisik Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    620
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    Hi, thanks, I hope it goes well for you.

    The loom is there and visible... there are multiple purples and so many within the bundle that I couldn't see--I had no idea where to being and didn't want to cut into every purple to see if it was the right one. If you make any headway on that, please update he thread as that would be a much better way to go about it.

    The other thing that was also going to be difficult was the loom feed is exposed in the middle of the door, like a foot and a half from the entrance point at the door hinge area. It wouild be difficult to try to trace a wire that you can't se for 1.5 feet.......... :/

    Thanks.

    -m
     
  4. FrederikC

    FrederikC Teslafied.eu

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Messages:
    37
    Location:
    Danmark
    I have put a aiv speaker cable into the door using the rubber loom - so there is room.
     
  5. invisik

    invisik Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    620
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    How did you get it through?
     
  6. FrederikC

    FrederikC Teslafied.eu

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Messages:
    37
    Location:
    Danmark
    I remove the speaker and loom between door and car and pulled cable all the way. Then you have the cable inside the door.
     
  7. Bun707

    Bun707 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Chandler, AZ
  8. 4SUPER9

    4SUPER9 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,324
    Location:
    California
    I was getting ready to tap into the ambient lighting, when I realized that it appears to be photosensitive, meaning that it is only on when dark. While true that I would not be in as much of a need of additional light during the daytime, I was thinking of using this as lighting for within the center console. I am now thinking that accessing the dome light would be more useful. Has anyone done this?
     
  9. invisik

    invisik Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    620
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    Check out the behavior of the light in the passenger footwell... that one is on more along the lines of the dome light and easy to get at.

    -m
     
  10. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,422
    Location:
    WY
    Cubby already has 12v @cigar socket that is live when car is ON. Run any new LEDs off that. Miniscule load so no matter. :confused:
    --
     
  11. mmh

    mmh Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2014
    Messages:
    122
    Location:
    SLC
    invisik, can you offer any advice or tips for getting the door panel off? I too wanted to add some custom lights a few months ago, but was unable to remove the door panel. It felt like I was putting way too much force on that door and feared I was going to break something.
     
  12. invisik

    invisik Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    620
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    Hi mmh,

    Yeah, it's a little scary the first time, but the if you start along the bottom (as per the Teslatap article in the original post) you can't go too wrong. The plastic pegs basically just need more force to get them started to pull out--they go straight in... I don't recall thinking they would break off. At the top of the door panel there are like hooks that you hang the door panel from the top first, and then push in the plastics pegs around the lower edges.

    I used a plastic tool from Amazon that's for removing door and other panels on cars (Was like $5 or something). It helped get some leverage on the panel and made it a little more comfortable feeling when working on it.

    At your own risk, of course, use a little more force :)

    -m
     

Share This Page