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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:40 am 
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I have a focus which only has a reversing light on one side and it's utterly crap, barely illuminates anything. This winter with recent changes to the street lighting from sodium to LED it has made reversing into our driveway really tricky especially in bad weather. SO i am thinking about adding extra reversing lights, something simple like flat LED strips attached to the rear bumper. Anyone done anything like this and got any advice?

I am sure the easiest way to wire them would be to tap into the existing reverse light wiring since it's close by and would come on automatically but I would be worried that any fault in the LED's could cause the reverse light to fail and I am sure it would have implications for MOT testing. Also I would quite like these extra lights to be very bright, which in general use could cause problems for other motorists.
With that in my mine my current thought is to wire them on their own circuit controlled by a switch on the dash, that way we would only turn them on when needed which in most cases would be when we are on private land with no other motorists around.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:47 am 
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I understand that the requirement for reversing lights are that they should ONLY come on with the appropriate gear selection and that there is a limit to the wattage of the lamp used.

Specifically, many cars have current monitoring for the lights such that you cannot parallel to them without reprogramming the ECU to compensate else it throws up a fault condition.

A low powered relay switching a separate wired-in supply to whatever lighting arrangement you deem fit will work perfectly but I suggest you disable it before any MOT test.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 10:08 am 
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My plan for a separate manual circuit will avoid those problems.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:11 am 
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I've never had a vehicle with a reversing light which was actually any use as far as giving me a decent view in the dark, perhaps they're not intended to. :dunno:

Your solution will work with the right lamps etc, but would some carefully placed reflectors do the job just as well?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:41 am 
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What about an after market reversing camera kit? I have a reversing camera that is very useful and it works well in the dark too. It depends on how modern your infotainment screen is as to how cheap it is to fit as you can buy just a camera as many can just plug in apparently.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:59 am 
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Done it many times in the past just get one from halfords tap into the existing feed you are allowed a maximum of two reversing lights as far as I know.

http://www.halfords.com/motoring/bulbs- ... sing-light

I used replace the standard bulb with a stop tail bulb modified with a bit of solder to give a tiny bit more light, never got spotted on an MOT :huray:


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 12:17 pm 
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ayjay wrote:
I've never had a vehicle with a reversing light which was actually any use as far as giving me a decent view in the dark, perhaps they're not intended to. :dunno:

Your solution will work with the right lamps etc, but would some carefully placed reflectors do the job just as well?


Reflectors would likely work, but could be very awkward to fit as it's an uphill drive with a 90deg turn. Also while at home is the main time I have trouble, it has also been an issue in other places too. I think extra lights are the best solution.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 12:18 pm 
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dewaltdisney wrote:
What about an after market reversing camera kit? I have a reversing camera that is very useful and it works well in the dark too. It depends on how modern your infotainment screen is as to how cheap it is to fit as you can buy just a camera as many can just plug in apparently.

DWD


Well I don't have any infotainment screen at the moment and I think a camera would be a lot more hassle and expense than lights.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 12:28 pm 
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Okay, just an idea :thumbright:

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:16 pm 
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Camera is a good idea, I fitted one to my van.

click here Not as expensive as you may think.

If I were going to add reversing lights, LED strip would be the last thing on my list, reason being its not waterproof. You can get some that claims to be waterproof, and yes it has a "gel" over the LED's but how is it fixed? by tape that gets wet and comes detached after a while. Then you have got to connect it and solder the plug in connections and stop them from falling down and getting wet.

I would get some thing like These and wire them in parallel with your reversing light, mount them on the bottom of the bumper so they are out of the way and are good when its dark, no extra switch as you will at some time forget they are on.

Or even at a push, spend even more money, buy some dull and boring plain white lights from a motor factors and put LED lamps in them

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:19 pm 
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Offsake... I had a focus a few years back. Reversing light was sh1te. Turn on the rear fog lamp. All will become clear... :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:46 pm 
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wine~o wrote:
Offsake... I had a focus a few years back. Reversing light was sh1te. Turn on the rear fog lamp. All will become clear... :lol:


I tried that, doesn't help too much in our case. Best I have found up until now is to pop on the hazards, of course this isn't ideal as you might imagine.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 30, 2018 6:12 am 
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I have fitted a reversing camera to my Mk 1 Kuga, quite difficult because of the split tailgate. However makes a lot of difference especially at night.

Also fitted Cree LED bulbs in the reversing lights, car passes the MOT ok. Also as a side note depending on the age of your Focus I don't think Ford use the CANBUS system, certainly not on my Kuga.

HTH

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 30, 2018 7:48 am 
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The car is 10 years old, no idea what the CANBUS system is.

RE: LED strips, I didn't mean the type you get on a roll or anything.

I have ordered a set of LED running lights, these are small, waterproof and flat. Supposedly quite bright but not blindingly so. They are very common at the moment as it's a popular car mod, goodness knows why, so they were cheap and I will give them a test.

I am sure a camera would be lovely but finding space etc for the screen would be a hassle and I have my doubts about the cheap units.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:10 pm 
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rear lights are used to be seen by, not for the driver to see

I had a Nissan note, I swapped the reverse bulbs out for 21w ones both sides, It made no difference to the rear visibility

Tbh put some lights on you house or drive way on a dawn/dusk sensor or timer


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