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Wire Gauge (not mains to PC)

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  • Wire Gauge (not mains to PC)

    Hey everyone, I have a few question. I'm about t ogo out to my minivan and start planning how I want to hack into it's electrical system. My first question is adding a relay to the dome lights. What gauge wire should I use? Is there any easy way to find out how much draw my lights are using, so I can use an approiate relay (yeah - Im probably just going to use my super-mundo 10 amp one here), or is there somewhere I can find the information?

  • #2
    Well a bulb in a dome light takes about 5w of power at 12 volts, so thats about 0.4 amps (5/12)

    Edit: Im kind of confused about your question; What do you want to do with a relay in the dome light? Use it for a screen?

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    • #3
      no - adding a relay to control the dome lights.

      Additionally: I went out to find a spot to tap into my dome lights. I checked both fuse boxes and nothing. Does anyone know where there routed to in a 1995 dodge caravan?

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      • #4
        I have the same van , its like interior lighting(the name) or something. I dont remember if its the box outside or inside.

        Edit: Sorry for asking this (im kind of slow today) Why do you want a relay to controll the dome lights? I thought they opened when you open the door.

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        • #5
          Yes, but I wanted to have the hooked up in parallel with a wireless relay controller with a keyfob. That way I can throw my lights on before I get in the car. My girlfriend always gets freaked out thinking someone is in the back. This way I can throw the lights on and look before I get in the car. Save some time.

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          • #6
            I see , thats a great idea.But I dont think its going to be easy to find were the wires go. But maybe you can pass some new wires (taking out the headliner and the plastic on the sides.)

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            • #7
              Well, I found out which fuses will control it. The "Engine off Draw" 15amp fuse in my engine compartment. I think I'll be better off opening my fash again and running the wires from the acutal switch. I still need to figure out what gauge I want to use. I have 5 dome lights. 3 o nthe rooof, and two on the hatch that light up. I'm probably going to radioshack and just buy some "test lead" wire and use that.

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              • #8
                the dome lights on your van are turned on and off by the pin switches in the doors and they control a ground signal to the BCM(body control module). you can simply pull on of the switches out and tap into it with a relay set to apply groung. a bosch relay would work great. the other option would be an inexpensive keyless entry system that would do locks and lights and not use the factory fob anymore.
                The Car 2005 Scion xB

                The Truck 2004 GMC Canyon

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                • #9
                  This is what I had in mind.
                  http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ory=14932&rd=1
                  The Car 2005 Scion xB

                  The Truck 2004 GMC Canyon

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                  • #10
                    Actually - that's not a bad idea. however I just installed a keyless entry and electric locks

                    However - I don't want to replace it. I only have to do this now and then (parked with GF). I figured I would just use a channel on the key-fob I already have.

                    However I love the door Idea. I still need to open up the sliding door to install the electric locks. Perfect time to do it.

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                    • #11
                      The unit you bought should have an extra output that may need a relay to run but it would be easy to add if the module is already there. It will probably have a jumper that will switch between 12v+ and 12v- output just for th elights. I have never seen an aftermarket keyless that does not interface with the interior lights. If you need help figuring it out let me know what unit you have and I can tell you where to hook it up and how.
                      The Car 2005 Scion xB

                      The Truck 2004 GMC Canyon

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                      • #12
                        mine does not have any light module. I can easily rig a relay to pulse with the locks. however it'll do just that - pulse. I'd rahter have it hooked up so I can hold the lights on.

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