How to Install Aftermarket Fog Lights

January 27, 2012

Some vehicles are equipped with fog lights when they shipped from the factory, but others are not. Drivers can add these auxiliary lights to a vehicle to help them see the road in foggy conditions, and also to provide a different look for the front of a car or truck. Good choices and correct installation can make fog lights a neat addition to the grille or front of a vehicle.

Aftermarket Fog Lights: Legal Considerations

Not all aftermarket fog lights are approved for vehicles by the Department of Transportation. Be sure to research all laws regarding the specific auxiliary lights you plan to install on a vehicle. Having illegal lights on a vehicle can get you in trouble. Make sure the ones you purchase are approved for use on the road. Along with this research, drivers might want to look at specific brands like Hella and KC to see which lights are favored by motorheads everywhere.

Types of Aftermarket Fog Lights

There are different kinds of fog lights available for a DIY install situation. Some kinds of fog lights are simply mounted to the grill of a vehicle, instead of being mounted into the body of the car or truck. These are generally easier to install. Other aftermarket fog lights require specific measurements to make sure they fit into a housing on the vehicle.

Wiring Aftermarket Fog Lights

Some experts recommend disconnecting the battery from the car before working on an installation of fog lights or other aftermarket parts that connect to the wiring system. Car owners can look at specific kit instructions to see exactly how to add these auxiliary lights into an existing wiring system for a vehicle. Depending on the kind of kit, it may be necessary to get direct access to the hot wire and ground wire. Use all appropriate caution in dealing with these wires, and follow instructions precisely.

Testing Aftermarket Fog Lights

After you're finished installing these parts on your vehicle, there is another step that's pretty important in setting up your aftermarket fog light addition. Reconnect the battery and turn on all the lights on the vehicle to make sure that your fog lights are not overpowering your factory direct headlights. You may need to turn your lights on at night to see accurately what kind of contrast is between your headlights and the fog lights you have just added. Drivers should avoid installing lights that will blind other oncoming drivers.

These are some of the main considerations for putting aftermarket fog lights onto your vehicle. Just like with other customizing parts, aftermarket fog lights are subject to specific motor vehicle laws that limit how car and truck owners can customize their vehicles. Doing your homework up front can save you problems later, not just an installation, but in knowing that your additions to your vehicle comply with applicable safety standards.