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How to bring your car out of the dark ages...HID/LED

This is a discussion on How to bring your car out of the dark ages...HID/LED within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; ...

  1. #1
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Ugy Lower Corner of AL

    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    How to bring your car out of the dark ages...HID/LED

    Wire cutter
    Wire Splicer
    Screw Driver with cross tip and star bit
    10mm socket
    8 mm socket
    Ratchet for the sockets
    Flashlight (for viewing in access panel for the lights)
    Electrical Tape and or Heat Shrink Tube
    Wire Loom
    Solder Iron
    Heat Gun
    Zip Ties


    HID Headlights:

    High Beam Housing LMC Trucking Part # 36-0303 Need 2 $34.95ea

    Low Beam Housing LMC Trucking Part #: 36-0302 Need 2 $34.95ea

    (On these 2 I went with 35W, 8000k Color Range. Using the 55W will require a relay to be added from DDM Tuning)

    Low Beam Light Kit DDM Tuning Need 1 kit (comes as a set of 2) $36.94

    DDM HID Kit, 35W, 9005, 8000K (Kit / Package) Bulb Type: 9005 Wattage: 35 Watt, Bulb Color: 8000K

    (Bulb Color has different ranges. Higher the number the Bluer the light)

    High Beam Light Kit DDM Tuning Need 1 kit (comes as a set of 2) $36.94
    DDM HID Kit, 35W, 9009, 8000K (Kit / Package) Bulb Type: 9005 Wattage: 35 Watt, Bulb Color: 8000K
    (Bulb Color has different ranges. Higher the number the Bluer the light)

    Fog Lights DDM Tuning Need 2 kits (these are sold as one per kit) $29.95
    DDM HID Kit, 35W, 880, 8000K (Kit / Package) Bulb Type: 880 Wattage: 35 Watt, Bulb Color: 8000K

    Rear Lights

    3rd Brake Light LED EBAY $120

    Pontiac Firebird Trans Am WS6 High Rise Third Break Light 1993 - 2002

    Reverse EBAY $17.99 (Comes with 2 bulbs)

    3157 LED 2835-21SMD Projector Auto Light Bulbs, Color White (2 Bulbs)

    Brake/Turn Signal EBAY $17.99 (Comes with 2 bulbs) Need 2 sets

    3157 16SMD 2835 Red White Switchback LED bulbs for Turn Signal Lights (2 Bulbs) w&vxp=mtr

    License Plate Lights EBAY 11.49/pair SYLVANIA PREMIUM LED MINIATURE White 194 me=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

    SIDE Marker Lenses EBAY $59.95 98-02 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am Smoke FRONT + REAR Bumper Side Marker Light (4 pieces total) R&vxp=mtr

    Front Side Corner Lights EBAY $11.49/pair


    Rear Side Corner Lights EBAY $11.49/pair


    DRL/Front Turn Signal EBAY $20.99/pair

    Amber/Red Switchback 3157 5730 LED Bulbs for DLR/Turn Signal

    Resistors Amazon $4.49 (4 in a box, I ordered 3 boxes so I had spares)

    4PCS 25W 8Ohm LED Load Resistors for LED Turn Signal Lights 1-3&keywords=load+resistor+25w+fix+led+bulb

    HID Lights

    Lay out your new stuff, preferably on a table nearby so you’re organized. I had mine laid out as pass side low, then high on the left side of the table and then driver’s side the same way.

    For Trans Am guys you need to turn on the headlights, then disconnect the battery leaving the lights up. For Camaro guys (you lucky Bastards) just pull out your lights and start with the wire connectors.

    Remove the plastic surround using a cross tip screw driver. Sit to the side. (Side note - I not only cleaned mine up but also touched them up with some paint because it was looking faded.)
    Next remove the 4 star head screws from each lamp mounting bracket (See plastic surround for clean up/paint note). Disconnect the wire from each headlamp and sit it to the side. Now on my car the high beam wire connector was routed kinda funny so remember how yours are before you pull it out so you can have better access.

    At this point you can test if you want to see what wire is + vs -, mine was black was -, color wire was +. I’ve read that some of the newer years the wiring was different.

    I cut the terminal about 3” from it, next remove the plastic sheath about an inch.

    At this point I primed both the new harness (that comes with the New Housings) and the car wires with solder. I placed a piece of heat shrink tubing on then using a pair of vice grips to hold the 2 wires together I solder them. Slide the heat shrink over the joint and apply heat. If not using heat shrink you can use electrical tape. Just make sure no stray wires are sticking out.

    Please forgive the crappy solder job, I went back after this pic and cleaned it up but forgot to take another pic

    Last edited by SMWS6TA; 11-30-2016 at 08:35 AM.

  2. #2
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Ugy Lower Corner of AL

    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    Now grab a low beam housing and insert the new bulb from DDM Tuning Kit. Do not use the O ring they provide, it will not seat the light properly. Next connect the ballast to the connector you just soldered. Leave the wiring loose because you’ll need to figure out where to best route it. Insert the new lamp into the pocket routing the wires through the back. Now connect the 2 wires form the ballast and then screw in the mounting bracket with the 4 star screws.

    Repeat for the remaining lights.

    Now reconnect the battery and see if you have lights on. Don’t panic if no lights are on. These bulbs are single polarity. Meaning they have to be connected correctly. If a bulb is not on go to the connector that you spliced in and flip it 180*. Now it should be one. If not you need to check the rest of the harness, may even need to use multi-meter.

    The polarity also applies to the rest of the LED lights as well.

    Now once all the lights are working go in and using zip ties to secure them in place to ensure they do not get in the way of the headlights opening/closing.


    This is too easy. Using a cross tip or star bit screw driver remove the single screw holding in the housing. Now if you ordered smoked lenses (like I did) just swap the out here, otherwise remove the bulb and replace with the new 194 LED bulb. Now after you gone through all of the side markers remember what I told you about polarity. Check the bulbs before you screw them back in.

    Rear Lights

    Lift the hatch up, remove the 2 side panels, peel back the carpet and unscrew the 5 plastic nuts holding the lights in place. Carefully remove the tail light. It’s at this time that if you have not done a drill mod on the light I highly recommend doing so. Use a 1/8” bit, drill on the underside directly below where the light bulb sits a hole under each brake and reverse light . This will allow for the housing to drain when they fill with water. You don’t need to go far into the housing; I taped the bit off about a ½”. Then I ran a thin bead of black rtv across the top edge of the light to help seal it. Did this 5 yrs ago and never had my lights fill up with water again.

    Outside corners, simply replace the 194 bulb with the LED bulb.

    Brake and turn signal lights – swap out the bulbs for the LED, next grab one of those 25w resistors and splice into the red & black wire using the connectors that come with the resistors on both lights. You should install 4 total resistors, 2 on each light.

    Once it’s all hooked up like in above pic, time to check again. Remember check the polarity of the bulbs. Run through brake, turn signal and reverse to make sure they are working. All good now clean up those drain holes before you install the light. I used a narrow long screw driver and a shop vac, I was amazed at how much dirt was in them. Insert the light.

    FRONT DRL/Turn Signals (I save the pain for last…..)

    This will test your patience …you were warned.

    Open the access panel on both sides. Only do ONE Side at a time from here on. Remove the bulb and turn lights on. Using a multi meter you need to check which is the constant 12v and which one is the 12v that the flasher uses. On my car the center wire was -, the color wire was the constant 12v and the third wire was the flasher 12z.

    Now once you’ve determine which is what, try to make them so you know. It gets important if you had to replace the housings light I did. Once you cut you need to figure out where the new wires go because as I found out they are not necessary marked correctly for this application. So for here on I’m going to assume you have great connectors and didn’t need to replace them like me. Take a resistor and splice in using their connectors on the – wire and the flasher wire. The constant 12v does not need to have a resistor. Insert the new LED bulb. Turn on light, you may have to turn the key on to get the DRL to light up. If nothing…flip the bulb around 180….(I think I’ve said polarity here a few times…).

    When in DRL mode the light should be solid, turn the flasher on and it should blink. If so you’re done on this side and can button it back up. Move on to the other side.

    The bulbs I have are white/red. White for DRL’s and Red for turn signal. Not sure why they look orange, but they are red.

    Now if you have the misfortune like me you had to replace one or both harness. Multi-meter is your friend on this. Check that the wiring is correct before you tape or seal up. It’s very important you get them right otherwise you’ll blow the led’s and could cause a electrical fire if not fixed correctly.

    I also had to file out the DRL housing for the new connector to fit correctly. I also took the time to drill drain holes on the bottom and rear side for drainage.

    If you hold the connector like so you should have the ground on the left, constant 12v in the center (this is the DRL) and the flasher is on the right (turn signal) For the relay the ground and the flasher is what you connect the relay to. Caution these things get hot quick, I got burned a few times.

    Hope this helps…
    Last edited by SMWS6TA; 07-07-2016 at 07:48 PM.

  3. #3
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Ugy Lower Corner of AL

    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    Somehow forgot the reverse lights

    I'll take some more pics at night to show drivers view.

  4. #4
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Ugy Lower Corner of AL

    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    Now that I've hooked all up I think I'll need a relay harness so that the fogs will work without issue. Seems it doesn't have enough voltage when the headlights are on, I'll confirm with DDM Tuning. I'll update when I know more.

    Issue fixed without the relay harness. see post further down.
    Last edited by SMWS6TA; 11-30-2016 at 08:36 AM.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator
    pajeff02's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Mansfield, PA

    Black & Blue
    '02 WS.6 / '07 Suburban

    Nice write up, Scott!

  6. #6
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Ugy Lower Corner of AL

    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...


    Ok after some researching into the wiring the ground for the fog lights is also tied into the High beams. If you have gone completely over to HID bulbs for FOG, Low & High you'll find that on some cars when you turn the highs on the fogs will come on and turn off the highs or not at all. That is because the stock wiring can't handle the load of the HID's at the same time You'll see your lights flicker but not quite turn on. The solution is easy and cost almost nothing to do.

    Disconnect the battery (your going to be messing with the fuse box).
    Look for the fuse box that has the FOG light relay.
    Loosen the box to where you can access the underside where the wires are coming in.
    You will have to break a couple of zip ties to loosen the wires.

    Look for a light green wire that is between the brown and orange wires.
    Now go as far as you need to get enough wire to be able to cut the light green wire and add a piece.
    Cap or tape off the section of wire that is not going into the fuse box/relay.
    Now add wire to the lt green wire going into the fuse box/relay. Have enough to be able to reach to the ground post that is on the fender next to the fuse box. I waited till I had everything button back up to cut and install a connector to the post so I had enough.

    Now reconnect your battery. Go thru all of your lights make sure they all work. You will now be able to have fog lights on all the time as long as the light switch is on. They will stay on in all positions except off.

  7. #7
    Junior Member hardtrailz's Avatar
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    Jul 2016
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    Blue Green Chameleon
    2001 Trans Am Vert

    Is there an advantage in doing the green wire vs just pulling the relay for the fogs and doing a jumper wire? I dont care about the indicator light on the switch and just want the fogs on with highs and lows.
    2001 Trans Am Vert

  8. #8
    Mike The Guz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Lawndale, CA

    Artic White
    2002 Camaro SS

    Nice write up. I ended up using this LED flasher so that I did not have to use load resistors for my 02 Camaro. They work great for the turns and hazards.
    2002 Artic White SS 35th Wheels|Full Hotchkis Suspension|Koni SA|Magnaflow CME|SLP lid|

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