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2016 Sedona SX
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Discussion Starter #1
I'm going to be adding a circuit to have my LED positioning strips stay on whenever the engine is running. I've ordered a PowerProbe III that should arrive tonight. It should allow me to probe all the headlight connector pins and figure out which wire(s) power the LED strips. From that point, I'll probably use one of those add-a-circuit fuses, or simply wire in a fused circuit right from the battery. Eventually I would like to add a switch on the dashboard somewhere, but for now I could just leave it all under the hood.

I have seen a thread or two with people complaining about this issue. I'm hoping I can come up with a safe and cheap solution that almost anyone could follow.
 

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2016 Sedona SX
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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Okay, so that was pretty darn easy. There are two ways to do this: one way illuminates the rear parking lights as well as the front positioning lights (LEDs), the other way illuminates the front only. Both ways only turn the lights on with the engine running.

So after some testing, I found which wires from the headlight wiring harness power the LEDs. Turns out it's the yellow wire on the passenger side and green wire on the driver's side. At first, I tapped into the wire using one of these wiring clamps. That allows you to connect another wire without cutting the original wire. More on that later.





Then I bought one of those Add-a-circuit fuses and ran power wires from that to each of the tapped wires. I found a 10A fuse for Cruise Control Radar in the engine compartment fuse box. It powered on with the engine, and since I don't have radar cruise control on my SX, it would be perfect.




So what I discovered is that by not cutting the yellow and green wires, I was actually powering the entire parking light circuit, including the rear parking lights. While that might be OK for some people, my goal was really to only have the front LEDs on all the time.

To fix this, I simply cut the yellow and green wires near where they were tapped. That way the front LEDs are separated from the rest of the lighting circuit(s).

Now all the other lights function as normal, including the Auto-on headlights, except now the front LEDs are on whenever the engine is running.

Not too bad for about $10 in parts!
 

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2015 Sedona SX, 2019 Mercedes GLC300
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Nice write up. I'm sure a lot of people on this forum have wondered how to do this. Two suggestions though: 1) instead of electrical tape, get some of the corrugated plastic tubing to cover and hold the wire on to the loom - more factory looking and 2) solder and shrink tube is always better that a blue crimp connector, FYI there is some amperage running through that connection. Just aesthetics but always looks less add-on than factory. Good job!
 

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2016 Sedona SX
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102 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the suggestions. I do plan on cleaning it up with solder. Since the add-a-circuit had a crimp connection already I took the easy route.

Also, I figure the circuit is only pulling 3 or 4 amps. Those LEDs are so efficient
 

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17' Sorento SXL V6 AWD, 14' Mazda6 GT w/ Tech, 16 Aprilia Tuono V4 Factory, 14' BMW S1000R
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Are you sure these are not going to burn the LEDs out. On Sorento forum one guy tried this out and turns out the LEDs take 9v and 12v from the battery will burn them out.
 

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2016 Sorento EX 2.0T AWD
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To fix this, I simply cut the yellow and green wires near where they were tapped. That way the front LEDs are separated from the rest of the lighting circuit(s).

Now all the other lights function as normal, including the Auto-on headlights, except now the front LEDs are on whenever the engine is running.

Not too bad for about $10 in parts!
While I do commend your bravery and I think you just voided your warranty. Reason I hadn't done to my Sorento.

To achieve what you intended, you could have used a inline diode...cutting the wiré was a must but then you had to place the diode in between (before the wire tap). That would have kept the current from returning to the other parking lights and to the car's computer, which you could have been damaged when initially connected.

Look up the diode thing to bring your lights back to stock functioning. Led strips will keep working as desired.
 

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2016 Sedona SX
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Discussion Starter #7
Are you sure these are not going to burn the LEDs out. On Sorento forum one guy tried this out and turns out the LEDs take 9v and 12v from the battery will burn them out.
I checked and there was 12v going to the LEDs originally. Most LEDs have an operating range between 9 and 14.8 volts. So anything in that range should be fine for most LEDs.

While I do commend your bravery and I think you just voided your warranty. Reason I hadn't done to my Sorento. To achieve what you intended, you could have used a inline diode...cutting the wiré was a must but then you had to place the diode in between (before the wire tap). That would have kept the current from returning to the other parking lights and to the car's computer, which you could have been damaged when initially connected. Look up the diode thing to bring your lights back to stock functioning. Led strips will keep working as desired.
Thanks for the suggestion. I don't think a diode is necessary - the lights function exactly how I want them to right now. As far as the warranty is concerned, I haven't read it (I doubt anyone really does), but I don't think I voided any part of the warranty except maybe the LED lights. One could argue that they weren't designed to be on all the time and might burn out faster. Here's a good read on the (Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act which states among other things "If it turns out that your modifications are the cause of the problem, the dealer has every right not only to charge you for the diagnosis and repair, but to also void the portion of the warranty that has been compromised by the use of those aftermarket parts".
 

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I don't think a diode is necessary - the lights function exactly how I want them to right now. As far as the warranty is concerned, I haven't read it (I doubt anyone really does), but I don't think I voided any part of the warranty except maybe the LED lights.
It turns out that modern vehicle's wiring isn't as straight as it was in older years. When you cut a cable you aren't just cutting it, you are also altering the current/voltage/resistance balance of the electric system.

I could bet that nothing will happen in your case, yet I believe the risk and consequences outweigh the outcome.....IMHO.

I don't think I'm in a position where I can preach anyone as I've done mods to my car that could be easily deemed warranty-voiding...I guess it freaks me out cutting any OEM wire LOL.
 

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2016 Sedona SX
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Discussion Starter #9
.I guess it freaks me out cutting any OEM wire LOL.
Agreed. It freaked me out too. That's why I originally went in hoping to not cut any wires. This is the first new vehicle I've owned, but I've always been a modder, and I can't help but make my car/truck/van better in a way that suits me.

I hope I can be a guinea pig of sorts and report back with any problems (hopefully none) that arise as a result of this modification. So far, so good!
 

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Hey mletchworth, hows the converted DRLs holding up? Thinking of doing the same to my van too.

Another issue is that these position lights are not designed to be DRLs, so they are not as bright as DRLs are. Are they that noticeable during broad daylight? Actual LED DRLs are easily visible when say reflected in the rear hatch of the car you are stopped behind, for instance.

I'm still kind of mystified why these lights are not DRLs for the American market, since I'm pretty sure in other countries where DRLs are mandated, the LED strips would act as DRLs. So KIA actually did extra work to engineer the DRLs out of the US market vans for some reason!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hey mletchworth, hows the converted DRLs holding up? Thinking of doing the same to my van too.

Another issue is that these position lights are not designed to be DRLs, so they are not as bright as DRLs are. Are they that noticeable during broad daylight? Actual LED DRLs are easily visible when say reflected in the rear hatch of the car you are stopped behind, for instance.
6 months later - they're still working perfectly. They are noticeable in broad daylight, but obviously aren't going to be as bright as DRLs. Yes, I can see them reflected in cars ahead of me at a stoplight. But compared to other cars with DRLs, well there just isn't much of a comparison. Bottom line is you can see them if you're looking at the front of the van, and it looks cool. They're not bright enough to have any positive safety benefits during the day though.

If you want to test it, just turn on your headlights during the day. Maybe tape an index card in front of the main bulb to block the light. I could try taking a photo, but that never seems to do lighting projects justice.
 

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6 months later - they're still working perfectly. They are noticeable in broad daylight, but obviously aren't going to be as bright as DRLs. Yes, I can see them reflected in cars ahead of me at a stoplight. But compared to other cars with DRLs, well there just isn't much of a comparison. Bottom line is you can see them if you're looking at the front of the van, and it looks cool. They're not bright enough to have any positive safety benefits during the day though.

If you want to test it, just turn on your headlights during the day. Maybe tape an index card in front of the main bulb to block the light. I could try taking a photo, but that never seems to do lighting projects justice.
I just turned the light control to position lights and then looked at the front of the car, and I agree, the lights are noticeable but significantly dimmer than factory LED DRLs, although they are probably as noticeable as halogen DRLs. It's a simple enough mod, even if it requires severing part of a factory wire harness!

Just to clarify how this affects the lighting system and how you did the modification:

1. Normally when you turn the position lights on via the stalk, the LED strips turn on, lights in both the front and rear assemblies turn on, and the interior lights adjust too (the instrument cluster dims, the lights behind all the buttons turn on, although I think during daytime the light sensor in the car will keep the interior lights unchanged).

2. So now that you've cut those 2 wires, the LED strips will always be on as long as the engine is on, but what happens if it is on auto setting or you manually turn the stalk to the position light position? I am assuming that the front and rear marker lights turn on and the interior lights will adjust accordingly?

3. I also don't have radar cruise control, so which particular fuse is that in the fuse box?

4. Which particular add a circuit harness are you using? It seems to have 2 fuses of its own, and the ones I see on Amazon just have one fuse in them. I'm not sure if that makes a difference, or if a specific type of add a circuit harness is needed because there's two output wires coming from it to go to each LED strip.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
1. Normally when you turn the position lights on via the stalk, the LED strips turn on, lights in both the front and rear assemblies turn on, and the interior lights adjust too (the instrument cluster dims, the lights behind all the buttons turn on, although I think during daytime the light sensor in the car will keep the interior lights unchanged).

2. So now that you've cut those 2 wires, the LED strips will always be on as long as the engine is on, but what happens if it is on auto setting or you manually turn the stalk to the position light position? I am assuming that the front and rear marker lights turn on and the interior lights will adjust accordingly?
That is correct. Same exact function as before. LED strips are already on, and isolated from that circuit, but everything else in the position light circuit works exactly as it did before the mod.

3. I also don't have radar cruise control, so which particular fuse is that in the fuse box?



4. Which particular add a circuit harness are you using? It seems to have 2 fuses of its own, and the ones I see on Amazon just have one fuse in them. I'm not sure if that makes a difference, or if a specific type of add a circuit harness is needed because there's two output wires coming from it to go to each LED strip.
You need an add-a-circuit that works with ATR or APT fuses http://www.kia-forums.com/2016-sorento/226082-fyi-2016-kia-fuses-used-micro2.html

I got mine from Autozone but this one from Amazon should work.
Amazon

If you've never used one of these before, they work by splitting the fuse into 2 circuits. You put the original 10A fuse in the bottom slot and whatever fuse you want into the top slot (10A or less). I think I used a 7.5A, but 5A would probably be fine. LEDs have a pretty low draw.

 

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Discussion Starter #14
Oh, and here's what they look like from about 100ft away. Overcast day about 9am. I think they would be more noticeable on a darker van.

 

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2016 Sedona LX
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Convert positioning lights t DRL

Then I bought one of those Add-a-circuit fuses and ran power wires from that to each of the tapped wires. I found a 10A fuse for Cruise Control Radar in the engine compartment fuse box. It powered on with the engine, and since I don't have radar cruise control on my SX, it would be perfect.[/QUOTE]

Hey there. Came across this thread and I?m thinking of doing this myself. Couple of questions. What size of the add-a-circuit did you get? And how are the LED?s holding up after almost 10 months?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
This post has the info for the add-a-circuit http://www.kia-forums.com/1750321-post13.html including an amazon link. The size is for ATR MICRO2 fuses.

The LEDs are still doing great. From what I can find, LEDs have a general lifespan of around 50,000 hours. So if your average speed (including idling) is 20 mph, then these should last 1,000,000 miles. Who knows if that's even remotely going to be true, but I'm confident they'll last me the life of this van. There's also supposedly some decay with LEDs, meaning as they get used they get dimmer. These weren't particularly bright to begin with, but I've not noticed any difference since I did the modification.
 

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2016 LX Sorento FWD 7 Pass
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awesome thread, so im just running 12v power through an add a circuit in the radar cruise spot in the fuse box. Ill be doing this this weekend! (Just purchased a 16 LX and the silly warm blueish color annoys me)
 

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Just wanted to check in to see if you had any issues with the positon lights since wiring them? I want to do this to our 2015 Sedona, but want to make sure you have not run into any issues since doing it?
 

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