Controversy in Style: XKGLOW Lighting Solutions for your Audi, BMW, MINI, or Volkswagen

The automotive world is vast and full of countless styles, influences, and motivations from nearly every aspect of life in general. It is a beautiful hobby to have, in that automotive enthusiasm allows drivers and owners to express themselves and draw upon inspiration from other facets of their personal lives to create something that wholly reflects their vision. This automotive expressionism, especially in its purest form, often leads to brutal debate over whether or not the car is ‘cool’ or ‘well done’ without much thought as to what brought the build together in the mind of the owner. Several styles and trends have been ‘love-it-or-hate-it’ in the past few decades, but one of the most controversial modifications has consistently been underglow and full spectrum lighting. One company who stands on the side of self-expression and creativity is XKGlow, who produce some of the finest automotive lighting solutions for nearly every make and model with high-quality, usability, and functionality in mind.

Underglow is just one of those things that either make you drop your jaw at the unified theme of the car on which it is equipped, or something that makes a little bit of bile rise up your esophagus. For this writer, underglow was something that was amusing, became uncouth, and has now returned full circle to a smile-inducing aspect of any car. XKGlow offers the ability to give your smile muscles a work out with their full-spectrum lights for interiors, exteriors, and even headlights that you can control from either a fob or your smartphone for instant satisfaction.

The systems are incredibly easy to install and use. From your smartphone, you can control brightness, strobe, color, and create customized presets that give your car a unique light show to flex with at the next local car meet. While there are no performance benefits to additional lighting options, there is no replacement for the amount of joy you can give yourself by changing the color theme of your car at night at the touch of a button.

Make the risky choice and throw underglow on your build to see just how much fun everyone had in the 90’s rolling around with neons under their civic. You can balk all you want, but I know that when I flip the switch under my BMW and enjoy some mood lighting, nothing else bothers me. Seeing the smiles and smirks alike make part of expressing your individuality enjoyable, but at the end of the day, finding something that means something special to you alone is the only thing that matters. Express yourself with XKGlow on your next project to see what we mean when we say ‘smile-inducing’. 

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XKGLOW Lighting Solutions

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Best MK6 GTI Mods and Upgrades to Increase Power and Performance – The ECS Tuning Guide

The VW MK6 GTI, which ran from the 2010 to 2014 model years with the 2.0T TSI engine, is incredibly popular among tuners for its availability and potential for some incredible power. With the newest update just hitting dealerships and the last iteration showing up more frequently in used car markets, the MK6 GTI has just entered that sweet-spot for affordability. The earliest model years are less than a decade old, which means even the highest mileage examples of these cars are still realistic to purchase with a hope for reliability and minimal required maintenance. If you are one of the number of enthusiasts jumping to capitalize on the MK6 GTI bubble, chances are high the modification itch will begin shortly after purchase. Thanks to our knowledgeable Volkswagen team here, we have some ideas to help get that modification process started for your MK6 GTI that will make the question of ‘where do I begin’ much easier.

An effortless and affordable modification to make your MK6 more livable and unique is to update the interior lighting with our Ziza Interior Lighting Kits. These LED kits are incredibly popular because they install in minutes with nearly zero required skill while giving the interior a much more modern feel. Luxury vehicles with standard LED interior lights have a soft illumination that is neither too harsh nor too dim. Our kit will give your MK6 GTI a similar feel.

While interior lighting kits on their own are less than impressive in terms of actual modification, you will find the brighter interior more convenient on dark mornings and evenings with added enjoyment from the modern color bathing your interior. Among the simplest of our suggested modifications addressed, we can move on to more fun improvements sure to add enjoyment to your driving experience.

Induction systems are quite common initial performance modifications. They are a simple way to add some power and noise at a low cost and are incredibly available. Nearly every performance company with VW parts has an intake system with their name on the box. What makes the ECS Luft-Technik Intake System your optimal choice is our dedication to providing proven power results and equal attention to aesthetics and fitment. We take pride in our incredible commitment to precision in all of our kits. This and every other ECS kit include all mounting accessories and hardware to make your afternoon in the garage that much easier.

Our Luft-Technik Intake System boasts a hefty maximum power of 31 WHP on APR Stage 2 software and some simple supporting modifications. The intake will make an unimaginable difference in performance as you modify your engine and software accordingly. Initially, you will find the noise, appearance, and power amplification are incredibly satisfying. Further down the road as you improve your exhaust and software tuning, the performance difference will be more noticeable thanks to your induction system choice. Before making further power additions, however, key suspension upgrades should be made to optimize the efficiency, and enjoyment, of your future modifications.

While suspension modifications do nothing for your actual power output, they allow you to use your power more effectively by keeping your tires in contact with the road longer. This will allow fewer horsepowers to escape as a result of the vehicle’s shifting weight through corners. By upgrading the rear sway bar of your MK6 GTI you can assure less body roll and experience a more planted rear end. The ECS Ultimate Rear Sway Bar Upgrade Kit is a 23mm sway bar and a set of billet mounts and polyurethane bushings attached to adjustable end links.

The bar itself is more rigid and grants you a stiffer feel. Paired with those polyurethane bushings, the sway bar gives up the supple feeling rubber bushings and makes the increased rigidity of the sway bar more effective. Our adjustable end links included in the kit are incredibly important as well. Not only are they sturdier than the factory links which they replace, but they allow you to adjust the position of the sway bar to clear driveline components when you alter the vehicle’s ride height. The adjustability to account for ride height conveniently brings us to our next area of improvement.

Car modification tends to lean toward either form or function. Ideally, the form will follow function. When lowering your MK6 GTI, important aspects to consider are how you will drive the car most often and whether looks or drivability are more important to you. Most would recommend improving a daily driver with lowering springs and possibly changing the dampers. This cuts down on cost and gives you a more ‘flush’ look, but does not improve your handling to the degree we would prefer.

With affordability and performance considered equally, we have found the Solo-Werks S1 Coilovers to be the best choice. They carry a 3-year limited warranty, offer ride height adjustability improved handling, and demonstrate significant benefits over stock suspension components. Additionally, Solo-Werks S1 Coilovers are not any more expensive than replacement OEM parts. Since your second-hand MK6 GTI will be due for refreshed suspension, this kit and our Ultimate Sway Bar Upgrade kits will increase your performance, give you a more enjoyable driving experience, improve your car’s stance, and take care of some necessary maintenance concerns all at once. If you want to check out an installation for these, we have a convenient document outlining the whole process in a downloadable .pdf!

After taking care of some early modifications, the best way to tie everything together for a good first stage is to improve your engine management software. COBB Tuning is the preferred choice in nearly all forced induction cars for their highly successful Accessport. The V3 AP is their most recent update and features a larger screen for displaying a range of customizable gauges. By using their off the shelf mapping, drivers are able to determine the optimal software tune for their fuel octane level, existing modifications, and make overall efficiency changes in the total function of the system.

The COBB AP is more than just a chip; it is a handheld device that has an incredible amount of power while also simple to use. Being a standalone system, the AP gives you total control over the vehicle’s computer should you want to make any changes to your tune, monitor system functions, troubleshoot issues, and optimize the overall performance of your car with a few clicks on the device. Your first modifications should certainly include this powerful device.

This list includes our top recommendations to take your MK6 GTI from completely stock to unbelievably fun, engaging, and interactive. With these modifications, you are able to address performance output, handling, some maintenance, and convenience features that will completely change how you drive (and admire) your MK6 GTI. Stay tuned for more tips on modifying your MK6 GTI in the near future and please let us know in the comments if you have any questions, concerns, or advice!

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Our Best 5 First Mods for your MK6 GTI are right here for your convenience.

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Evil Touring: Evan’s E61 535xi/M5 Touring Build

One of the most incredible things about the car community is the use of forums and social media to coordinate, swap parts, share knowledge, and most importantly: post build threads. When we found Evan’s E61 535xi Touring build, we sifted through his sixty-plus page build threads and were absolutely floored by the amount of work and passion present in what we would call an unusual choice for a project of this type.

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We say unusual because, as Evan mentions several times in his threads, E61 Touring AWD models were almost exclusively automatic in the states, and were generally driven by your local well-to-do elderly ladies shuttling casserole dishes to church luncheons. Evan was able to see past the grandmotherly exterior and envisioned a brutally evil spirit lurking just below the paint.

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Developing a devastatingly quick Touring was not his original intention, however. Evan originally planned on taking a stock, one-owner E61, and turning it into a bit of an M5 clone powered by the original N54. He extensively modified everything from lighting, interior trim, and bumper covers, to more extensive custom fabrication under the hood and even some fairly aggressive coilovers from KW.

After quite involved aesthetic and performance modifications, Evan decided on a manual transmission swap for his wagon. Anyone familiar with manual transmission conversions in any car knows their difficulty. Evan approached the manual swap with the same attention to detail present in the entire build and was rewarded with one of the only manual transmission E61 Touring in existence, and an incredible sense of accomplishment.

The engine saw some heavy modification as well, but unfortunately for Evan, disaster was right around the corner. As the gruesome pictures show, the E61 decided it needed to remodel its block on its own. A complete and total self destruction is the only way to put the catastrophic detonation depicted here.

Evan found a 335is N54 for little money and went to work cleaning the valves, replacing belts, gaskets, studs, seals, and more. All the engine work paired well with nearly a complete rewire; Evan’s engine bay was given its due attention while the motor sat on a stand.

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When it was time to put everything back together, Evan took great care to make certain every inch of the rebuild was flawless and meticulously cleaned for a perfect fit-and-finish that would make any enthusiast drool. Final touches included a beautiful polished plenum from Evolution of Speed, which mated to a new fuel rail by the same company. 

This whole build could only be described as a fairly exploratory conversion: the N54 Touring saw an M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension, and of course the manual transmission. The transmission swap also took Evan into new territory for USDM BMW’s. His conversion included a RWD setup as opposed to his original AWD factory setup. This required a custom driveshaft, fabricated transmission support, and additional coding in the programing.

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Lastly, Evan sorted out a unique shifter that he pieced together himself in his now hybridized Touring. A gated shifter almost found itself at home in the wagon before ultimately it was decided to be fitted with a more traditional setup.

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Overall the Touring rebuild is a monument to absolute perfection. The pristine, show-quality, professional vibe one is imbued with as a result is astounding. Evan, we at ECS salute you and your immaculate 535i/M5 E61 Touring!

Tyler’s B8 A4 Daily Monster

Modifying cars for many enthusiasts is not only a hobby, but a form of expression you take with you everywhere. More accurately, this form of self-expression takes you everywhere. For our friend Tyler that was exactly the purpose behind this B8 A4 build.

Tyler sat down with me at a small sandwich shop in Ohio to give me a better idea of what he wanted his Audi to be. An avid enthusiast, Tyler is not new to modifying cars. Since his DC2 Integra GSR in 2001, Tyler’s car history is filled with Subaru and Honda enthusiast vehicles. All of his builds have been heavily modified. Specifically, most of his previous cars included big turbos, extensive performance modifications, were intended for dedicated ‘spirited’ driving: both on tracks, or back roads.

Alzor 349 19×9.5 square sets on 235/40/19 tires finish off Tyler’s stance with an aggressive, yet classic look.

The Audi he most recently built tells something of a different story. A few years ago, Tyler made the switch to German performance with the purchase of an Audi B7 A4. One of two automatics he has ever owned, he enjoyed the B7 for its comfort and reliability. While he is not looking for something to put earthquake-inducing power into, an important factor in his driving experience was to be able to enjoy the car every time he drove it.

His B8 is exactly that: a beefed up, mature, and comfortable daily driver. With a new Frankenturbo, new pistons and rings from Audi, aesthetic changes like the ECS Carbon Fiber Trunk Spoiler and Engine Cover, and a few bolt-ons, Tyler took his run-of-the-mill A4 and turned it into something special. This car is an extension of his personality. He is as much an outdoor enthusiast as he is a car enthusiast, as you can see by his bike and kayak racks. The Audi checks those boxes perfectly.

“The car was supposed to be something I could drive every day. That could take me kayaking, hiking, or snowboarding. Something I could rely on year-round and still enjoy”

This idea is apparent when one hops in the rear seat and looks over to see a Recaro baby seat. Tyler and his wife are expecting shortly, and have already purchased things like the seat and VW clothing to indoctrinate their new son as quickly as possible into the way of the car enthusiast. The inclusion of his new family addition is exactly what the Audi was ready for.

While His B8 makes significant power over a stock equivalent, the car remains comfortable over bumps and is never excessively loud. Even more surprising is the traditional manual transmission equipped with the Quattro rather than the now favored automatic. The signs of an enthusiast are all there, coupled with the reliability and panache of a classy every-day utility vehicle.

ECS Carbon Fiber beauty and performance pieces accent the natural beauty of the Audi under-hood, and do more for performance than just sit pretty.

Overall, Tyler is able to drive a well equipped and comfortable Audi that is still able to satisfy his enthusiast bug without making hardly any sacrifice. Isn’t that what tuning is about?

Tyler’s B8 A4:

ECS Carbon Fiber Trunk Spoiler
ECS Luft-Technik Intake
ECS Carbon Fiber Engine Cover
Maxton Gloss Font Lip
Honeycomb Grille
Alzor 349 19×9.5 et+40 square sets on 235/40/19
Black Forest Industries Shift Knob
ECS Boost Gauge and Vent Pod
Frankenturbo Upgraded Turbo
ECS FMIC
CTS High Flow Cat
Malone Stage 3 Software
Recaro Baby Seat!
SoloWerks Coilovers
Prosport Oil Pressure Gauge Red/Blue
ECS Exhaust Swivel Tips
ECS Wheel Spacers (8mm rear)
ECS Billet Aluminum Oil Dipstick Upgrade
Mishimoto Intercooler Charge Pipes
Carista OBDII Dongle
ECS Billet Boost Tap Kit
42 Draft Designs 4-Way Oil Pressure Splitter

 

VW MK4 Fog Light Wiring Kit

Want to activate the fogs in your MK4 VW? This wiring harness kit will allow you to use a factory set of fogs and wire them into your non-fog light equipped MK4 VW. This instruction manual will take you through the process and help you get on your way to a sharper look and higher visibility. Let’s take a look at the steps.

Step 1
Mount relay

Mount the fog lamp relay (lower arrow) in the engine compartment near the battery.

Here, we remove the plastic hood cable shield (two screws, top arrows), then drill a hole in the shield to mount the relay.

Drilling two extra holes let us tie wrap the harness wires to the cover. Mount the relay where you like. Just make sure the power (red) and ground (brown) wires in the relay harness can reach the battery terminals

Step 2
Locate pin 2 on light harness

Route one of the two yellow wires from the relay harness to a headlight connector. Use a small screwdriver or punch to slide the purple plastic terminal retainer (arrow) out of the electrical connector.

Insert a yellow harness wire into the pin 2 location of each headlight connector (This will supply power to the fog light through the main OEM connector). Push the purple plastic retainer back in place to lock all the wires in the connector, then repeat this step at the other headlight.

Service Tip: You may need to remove a small green rubber plug from the pin 2 location to make room for the new wire. This can be easily removed with a small flat-blade screwdriver or pick.

Step 3
Run the blue wire through the firewall to the interior.

Locate one of the two available grommets in the firewall to route the blue harness wire into the cabin.

Run the blue wire through the rubber grommet in the firewall, located just above the brake booster.

Remove the Torx® screws securing the underdash panel, then drop it down.

Reach up and pull the blue wire through the grommet into the interior, beneath the dash.

Step 4
Remove the light switch from the dashboard

  • Press in on the light switch knob and while turning it clockwise until it stops.
  • Then pull the switch straight out of the dash.
  • This car already has a Euro headlight switch with fog light setting. If your car has a stock switch with no fog light setting, you’ll need to order one (ES8602).

Step 5
Route the blue wire to the switch

  • Squeeze the retainer clips on the wire harness connector and pull the plastic connector out of the switch.
  • Route the blue wire up from the underdash area, and pull it through the light switch opening in the dashboard.
  • Secure the wire beneath the dash with zip ties. Route and secure the wire so it cannot get caught in pedal mechanisms or the steering column.
  • Plug the blue wire into the #8 terminal in the harness connector (arrow).

Step 6
Connect the blue wire to the switch

Push the blue wire into terminal 8 of the headlight switch connector. When it is fully inserted, it should click and lock in place. Tug the wire a few times to be sure it won’t pull out.

Step 7
Optional – Disable DRLs

  • If you want to disable your daytime running lights (DRLs), locate the TFL tab on the back of the light switch. Carefully break this tab off with needle nose pliers or a similar tool.
  • Install a Euro headlight switch with a fog light switch setting (ES8602).
  • Push the switch straight into the dash opening until it clicks in place.

Step 8
Connect the relay to power

  • Remove the battery cover.
  • Bolt the red wire with the inline fuse to the positive battery terminal.
  • Place the fuse holder where you can reach it later, should you need to replace the fuse.
  • Secure the wire to the main battery cable with tie wraps.

Step 9
Connect the relay to ground

  • Connect the brown (ground) wire from the relay harness to the negative battery terminal.
  • Test fit the battery cover. Make sure the cover does not pinch any wires when installed.

This concludes your installation and should have you all wired up! Let us know if you have any questions or comments below. Thank you for purchasing, see you next time!

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MK4 Golf/Jetta/GLI Fog Light Wiring Kit

Tired of lacking fogs? Use factory fog lights and our harness to add a bit of Euro flare to your MK4 Golf, Jetta, or GLI.
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Showstopper: ECS Tuning MK5 GTI Full Build Feature

From simple cosmetic upgrades to our massive Stage-5 Six-Piston Porsche Cayenne Big Brake Kit, the ECS MK5 GTI completely transformed. The GTI has experienced a Kafka-style metamorphosis being cocooned by an enormous list of modifications to arrive, stunning and gleaming, as it hovers above the ground before you.

 

ECS developed this build to create something unique; to be something contemporary yet traditional. As a show car, the MK5 catches looks and double-takes. As a driver’s car, one behind the wheel might discover a fiendish smile with every touch of the throttle or dive into a corner.

With each modification designed to fine-tune and enhance the performance of the GTI, this show stopper is more than just a pretty face.

Impossibly obvious and attention grabbing, the ECS Carbon Fiber Fender Flare Kit garnishes the corners with carbon fiber. For German performance cars, the widebody treatment is always reserved for the most extreme, race-bred applications. This performance and styling effect distinguishes the sporty model variants from the truly dexterous and radical performance cars.

The bolt-on ECS flares display exceptional fitment, and allow up to an additional 75mm of wheel and tire clearance for the use of fat rubber and a stunningly wide stance. the cavernous wheel wells, extended by the flares, encouraged our decision to develop a custom set of 3 Piece Custom Rotiform Style LVS – 11″ Wide, 19″ Diameter, completed with a Copper Face Finish.

Not quite hidden behind these stunning wheels are the massive ECS Stage 5 Six-piston Porsche Big Brake Kit, featuring the ECS 2-Piece Cross-Drilled and Slotted Rotors in the front and back. This 352mm finishing touch not only looks great behind the copper face of the wheels, but gives you the stopping power of a gravity well.

In designing the suspension, we chose a complete Slam Series Digital Combo Air Lift system with AutoPilot V2 digital air management. This Air Lift system gave us the versatility we needed to maneuver the most treacherous roads comfortably, fly through rhythm sections effortlessly, and drop to the pavement: all with the simple push of a button.

Between giant potholes, speed bumps, and uneven terrain, we constructed a 3/16″ (4.76mm) thick 5052 aluminum Street Shield Skid Plate. This skid plate is constructed and fitted to protect the exposed underbelly from a variety of impacts which can ruin an oil pan or other critical components.

Under the Hood:

 

There are modifications strictly for a vehicle’s curb appeal, and parts that exclusively intended for performance. Our goal was to include as many parts capable of utilitarian performance chasing and exude an aesthetic brilliance. We strove to create a part that has both proven performance gains and is aesthetically pleasing.

 

 

 

Our ECS Kohlefaser Luft-Technik Intake System features a carbon fiber box and polished aluminum tubes for stunning under the hood looks, and maximum power gains of +17 WHP at 5,750 RPM and +12 Lb/Ft of Torque at 5,700 RPM.

 

 

Complimenting the intake is the ECS High Flow Charge Pipe Coupler Kit that is capable of withstanding greater heat and higher boost pressure than stock. The kit does this all while achieving greater reliability, less turbulence and less restriction.

 

Moving down the sequence, we see the ECS 3.0″ Valved Turbo Back Exhaust System. Having a genuine appreciation for a smooth and sporty exhaust note that doesn’t drone or leave ears throbbing is something illusive. Smooth and refined is agreeably conservative, but there is a time and place for the sound of guttural anger.

 

 

With a remote key fob-controlled, vacuum operated, valve diversion, the exhaust flows at your convenience. With the valve closed, the exhaust is tuned and quieted through directionally louvered internal tubing. With the valve open, the exhaust follows an unrestricted, straight through path, and the dyno results confirm the difference. Don’t worry, though, you won’t need a chart. You’ll notice a Mr. Hyde style alter-ego emerge with a flattened throttle pedal. Bruce Banner would be proud.

Ever important to a highly modified motor is the brain controlling all of your critical systems. The factory computer was digitally altered and programmed with the aggressive APR Stage 2 Tune.

 

To harness all of this extra power, we have fitted the GTI with the ECS in-house designed Performance PendulumEngine, and Transmission Mounts. These mounts are composed of a perfected polyurethane formula to deliver smooth power transfer through the driveline to the ground, while equally present to minimize chassis feedback.

With a panoply of modifications, one could spend hours drooling over the complete parts list. While this is a dedicated show car, the performance capability is there thanks to the design of the components involved in bringing the MK5 GTI a viscous Moreauvian style genetic modification are all available through us here at ECS Tuning. Below this article you can browse the complete list of modifications and turn your own MK5 GTI into something terrifyingly gorgeous.

Exterior Mod List:

Lighting Mod List:

Performance Mod List:

Engine Mod List:

B6 Passat/CC Fog Light Harness Installation Guide

If you have a B6 Passat or CC and it was not equipped with fog lamps, you can always do it yourself! This harness will allow you to take factory fog lamps and wire them into your car quickly and easily. This is the ideal kit if your car was not equipped with fog lamps and this installation guide will take you through the task in steps.

So let’s take a look at the overview of what our process will be today:

(1) Remove existing grilles and install fog lights

(2) Connect ECS fog light harness to headlamp switch

(3) Connect ECS fog light harness relay to power and ground

(4) Connect ECS fog light harness to fog lights

(5) Reassemble vehicle

Step 1

Though not necessary, if you wish to raise the car to work on it, please use jack stands and wheel chocks.
Using a T15 Torx bit, remove the retaining screws on the lower right and left bumper grilles.
*Note* Our test car is already equipped with foglights. However, all fastener locations remain the same across the model lines.

Pry the grilles from the bumper opening. They are held in with plastic clips. Tug from the center line of the vehicle and out to release the clips. Repeat on the other side.

Step 1 Continued

Clean up the area where the fog light will mount.
Install the fog light using two T25 Torx fasteners. Repeat on the other side.

Step 2

The ECS fog light harness has seven connections:
Blue wire that connects to headlamp switch. Two yellow wires (with connector) and two brown wires (ground), one for each fog light. Red wire (fused) that connects to the fuse block. Brown wire that connects to ground for the relay.

Begin by removing the battery cables (negative first) with a 10mm socket. Use a 13mm socket and extension to remove the battery retaining bracket on the bottom left side of the battery box. Then remove the battery.

Remove the back half of the plastic battery box. It is held in place with three clips that will come loose with a few tugs.

Step 2 Continued

Now that the battery is out of the way, you should see the firewall and rubber grommets. Using a pick or a similarly sharp object, poke a small hole in the right grommet.

To get the blue trigger wire through the grommet and into the cabin, use a semi-rigid ‘fish’, like a vacuum line or a bent coat hanger. Tape the trigger wire to the end of the fish, and then push it through the hole you just created in the grommet, but not all the way through.

Step 2 Continued

Get inside the car and remove the under-dash trim panel. There are three T15 Torx fasteners holding it in place.

*Note* It is not necessary to remove the knee panel, just the panel above the pedals.

To make routing the trigger wire to the headlight switch easier, remove the drop-down storage tray. Open the tray half way, and depress the two pictured retaining tangs. The tray will then swing down all the way, allowing you to remove it from the hinge.

Step 2 Continued

Find the wire that you had pushed through the grommet, and pull it through all the way. Route the trigger wire up behind the dashboard and relay block, towards the headlight switch.

Now remove the headlight switch. Press the selector in and rotate it halfway between O and Auto to disengage the clips that hold it in place. Then pull the switch directly out.

Step 2 Continued

Disconnect the headlight switch connector. You will need to pry up the clip (pointed out in the photo) with a pick to release the connector from its cover. Remove the connector cover.

NOTE: You must have a Euroswitch or US foglight-capable switch in order to activate the fog lights.

Insert the small pin on the trigger wire into slot 5 (it is stamped on the connector). Replace the connector cover, zip tie the wires together, and reinstall the headlight switch.
Make sure the wiring is secured and reinstall the under-dash panel.

NOTE: The extra wire exists because our test car already had fog lights as an option. Your non-fog light car will not have this wire.

Step 3

Reinstall the battery, using the reverse of the removal procedure. Attach the positive cable, but do not attach the negative cable until all wiring work is done.
Now remove the fuse box cover.

Using a 10mm socket, remove the nut on the fuse block stud that is fourth from the right.
Place the eyelet of the red harness wire on this stud, and reinstall the power wire and nut.
Tuck the inline fuse into place so the fuse box cover can be reinstalled.

Step 3 Continued

Now connect the brown harness wire to the ground stud in front of the fuse box. You may want to clean this area prior to installing the wire.

Use a 10mm socket and extension to remove the nut. Pry the plastic retaining clip and the two ground wires off of the stud (doing this will make it easier to place the ground wire in the next step).

Place the brown harness wire into the plastic retaining clip as shown. Do the same with the ground wires on the car.

Reinstall the retaining clip, all three ground wires, and the 10mm nut onto the stud.

Step 3 Continued

Now wrap the excess blue, red, and brown wire and secure it using zip ties.

Due to personal preference, warranty concerns, and other modifications, we do not specify a mounting location for the relay. It should be in an upright position in a dry area away from moving parts.

For instructional purposes, we chose the fuse box cover as the easiest location.

Step 4

Route the yellow wires with connectors to each fog light. One wire is longer than the other, and will go to the right fog light.

There are voids in the engine bay behind the head lights where you can direct the wires down to the fog lights.

Secure with zip ties as you see fit.

Step 4 Continued

Plug the connectors into the fog lights. It is possible to do this with the fog lights installed in the car, the photo on the right is merely for illustrative purposes.

Locate the horns, which are to the side of either fog light. Use a 10mm socket to remove the nut holding them on their brackets. Make sure to hold the horn or it will fall.

Place the brown ground wire from the fog light connector on the stud on the horn. Tighten down the 10mm nut. Repeat on the other side.

Step 5

Install the fog light grilles using the reverse of the process we used to remove the old ones.

Tidy up any excess wiring. You want it to be secure to prevent rubbing against any surface, and to keep it from contacting moving components.

Reconnect the negative battery cable and reinstall the battery cover.

Double check your installation and test the fog lights. With the key on and engine off, put the headlight switch into the foglight on position. If all was done properly, you’ll have light!

This completes the installation of the ECS B6 Passat/CC fog light harness. We hope this installation guide has been helpful and informative. Thanks for reading!

Interested in purchasing?

B6 Passat/CC Fog Light Kit

Just because your Passat or CC was not factory equipped with fog lamps doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. This harness will allow you to use factory fog lamps and wire them correctly to your non-fog lamp equipped car.

 

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Schwaben VW/Audi Scan Tool: Gauge Needle Sweep for your B8 Audi A4

A common modification performed by Audi owners is an instrument cluster gauge needle sweep when turning on the ignition.  On many cars, the gauges remain at rest. With our Schwaben professional scan tool you can turn on the sweep option to give your cluster a more dynamic feel during ignition. We are performing this modification on our 2010 Audi B8 A4, but the procedure will be the same, or very similar, on most Audi B8 models.

This procedure requires coding the instrument cluster control module.  Please refer to our VAG scanner PDF on the installation tab of ES#2996394

Step 1:

Switch the ignition on (do not start engine) and plug the scanner into the OBDII port

Step 2:

Select “VAG”

3: Select “Audi”

4: Select “Systems”

​5: Select “Control Unit”

6: Select “Electronics 1”

7: Select “17-Instruments”

​8: Select “Long Coding”

9: Write down the original values before attempting to change anything

10: Select “Software Coding”

11: Select “Setting”

12: Use the keyboard to change the second digit of byte 1 to a 5

Note:The code begins with byte 0 and each byte is two digits long.

13: Select “finish”

14: Select “Yes”

15: Select “Done”

 

16: Select “Set Complete”

17: Select “OK”

18: Select “Save”

9: Sit back and admire your gauge sweep!

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“]

BMW E70 X5 Ziza Interior Lighting Package Installation

If you have an E70 X5 then you may have noticed the cabin lights leave something to be desired.

What are LEDs? LEDs are Light Emitting Diodes, solid state devices that emit light when connected to electrical current. They have no moving parts or wire filaments to burn out. They emit a whiter light, run cooler, and last longer that the incandescent (filament style bulbs) we are replacing in this tutorial.
Unlike filament bulbs, LEDs are polarity sensitive. They have plus and minus (positive and negative) electrical terminals that must match the polarity of the applied voltage. Installing the bulbs “backwards” in the light bulb sockets (with reversed polarity) will not harm them, but they will not light. Flipping the bulb 180 degrees in the electrical connector cures this problem.

This kit from Ziza will easily spruce up your interior and give your X5 an updated feel similar to newer high end models with the LED’s included in this package. This post will take you step by step through the installation process and help get you on your way to a brighter interior. Let’s take a look at what comes in your kit:

Pro Tip:

Make the job easier and prevent damage to headliners and other interior trim with ECS Tuning Trim and Molding Removal Tool Sets: ES2500877 and ES517779.

Bulb Types

This kit includes two bulb types, classified by their general shape.

FESTOON – Conventional incandescent festoon bulbs have a shape and general appearance that is similar to a glass fuse.
Metal caps attached to both ends of a glass tube are sealed to the tube and attached to the bulb filament. End caps mount the bulb in its holder and also conduct electrical current.
LED festoon lights have the same pointed end caps, but are attached to a bank of LEDs instead of a filament tube.

WEDGE – Wedge style bulbs get their name from the shape of the bulb base. The tapered end of the bulb “wedges” into the bulb socket.
LED wedge lights fit the bulb socket like a filament bulb, but are commonly polarity sensitive.

Let’s take a look at where we will be working around your X5. Ziza provides a diagram of all the bulbs we will be replacing:

General Tips

• When prying down on the assemblies to remove them, pry on the notched end of the lens. Insert the narrow tool tip between the lens plastic and any metal collar used to reinforce the lens mounting hole. Push in on the retaining clip first to compress and release it. Then pry down.

• The spring bulb retainer is also the circuit conductor. If necessary, gently bend the metal retainer so it holds the bulb tight. This will help prevent intermittent or flickering LED operation caused by a loose connection.

• Install the bulbs with the LEDs facing toward the lens.

Front Dome and Vanity LED Installation

Front Dome – Step 1

The front dome light console is secured in the headliner by plastic tabs at the rear and by a pair of metal spring clips at the front. The metal clips snap against the front edge of the headliner to hold the console in place.

Working from the front, use a trim removal tool to reach up between the front edge of the console and the headliner. Press against the clips just enough to compress them and release the console so it can drop down.

Front Dome – Step 2

To give you a better idea what the metal spring clips look like, and where they are located, here is a shot of the console after it has been removed.

The spring clips (arrows) must be compressed to release the console.

Front Dome – Step 3

There are three bulb holders in the front dome light console.

Front Dome – Step 4

Twist and pull each bulb holder to remove it from its socket.
Remove the original bulbs and insert a new 5-chip wedge base LED array in each bulb holder.
These are polarity sensitive. If they do not work when initially installed, remove and rotate the bulb holders 180 degrees.

Front Dome – Step 5

Insert the rear of the console into the headliner opening until the plastic tabs catch at the rear of the hole, then lift the front of the console upward until the clips snap to hold it in place.

Vanity Mirror Lights – Step 1

Using your fingertips or a non-marring trim removal tool, pry down on the light assembly as shown to release it from the headliner.

Vanity Mirror Lights – Step 2

Replace the original filament bulb with a 42mm festoon array. The light chips should be installed facing the lens.

The LED array is polarity sensitive. If it does not light when first installed, flip the array end-for-end, and retest.

Snap the assembly back into the headliner and repeat the process at the other vanity light.

Glove Box

Using a trim removal tool, pry down the glove box light assembly.
Insert a new 5-chip wedge base LED array into the bulb holder. Test operation and flip it over to reverse the polarity if the bulb does not work initially.
Reinstall the light assembly.

Rear Dome LED Installation

Rear Dome – Step 1

There are two rear dome light assemblies, located in the headliner at the top of each C-pillar.

Rear Dome – Step 2

Using a trim removal tool, carefully pry between the rear edge of the light assembly and headliner until you compress the metal retainer clip (arrow).

Lower the light assembly from the headliner, as shown.

Rear Dome – Step 3

The rear dome light assembly has two wedge base bulb holders.
Install a 5-chip LED array in the rear bulb holder and a 6-chip wedge base LED in the front.

Test the LEDs. If an LED does not work when tested, its polarity is reversed. Remove and rotate the bulb holder 180 degrees, then reinstall it in its socket.

Repeat this process at the opposite rear dome light.

Footwell: Rear Hatch Puddle LED Installations

Footwell Lighting Front – Step 1

Front footwell lights are located in the panels beneath the dashboard.
Using a trim removal tool, pry the light assemblies out and drop them down.

Footwell Lighting Front – Step 2

Twist the bulb holder to remove it from the light housing.

Replace the original filament bulb with a 5-chip wedge base LED array.

Test the LED. If it does not work initially, its polarity is reversed. Remove and rotate the bulb 180 degrees in the holder and retest.

Repeat these procedures at the opposite side front footwell.

Footwell Lighting Rear

Rear footwell light are located in the vertical kick panel beneath the rear seats.

Use the trim removal tool to pry the light assemblies from the surrounding trim bezel.

Replace the original incandescent bulbs with 5-chip wedge LED arrays.

Test the LED. If it does not work initially, its polarity is reversed. Remove it, flip it 180 degrees, and reinstall it in the bulb holder.

Puddle Lamps

Each of the four doors has its own puddle lamp.
Using the trim tool, pry down on the notched end of the light. Remove it from the door, and replace the original wedge filament bulb with a 5-chip wedge array.

Test the LED. If it does not work initially, its polarity is reversed. Remove it, flip it 180 degrees, and reinstall it in the bulb holder.

Repeat this process at each of the four doors.

Trunk Lamps

The two rear hatch lights are the same design as the ones used in the puddle lamps. Pry down the assemblies. Twist the bulb holder to remove it from the light housing, and replace the original filament bulbs with 5-chip LED arrays.

Test each LED. If either does not work initially, its polarity is reversed. Remove it, flip it 180 degrees, and reinstall it in the bulb holder.

This should be your final light and will conclude the installation instructions; enjoy your brighter interior and as always thank you for your business.

Interested in purchasing?

Master LED Interior Lighting Kit (Ziza)

Update your BMW E70 X5 interior with the LED Interior Lighting Kit by Ziza. Enjoy a brighter interior and stylish LED light with this kit for your BMW. 

 

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VW MK4 Golf/Jetta/GLI/337/20TH Fog Light Wiring Harness Installation

Installation

Step 1
Mount relay

Mount the fog lamp relay (lower arrow) in the engine compartment near the battery.

Here, we remove the plastic hood cable shield (two screws, top arrows), then drill a hole in the shield to mount the relay.

Drilling two extra holes let us tie wrap the harness wires to the cover. Mount the relay where you like. Just make sure the power (red) and ground (brown) wires in the relay harness can reach the battery terminals

Step 2
Locate pin 2 on light harness

Route one of the two yellow wires from the relay harness to a headlight connector. Use a small screwdriver or punch to slide the purple plastic terminal retainer (arrow) out of the electrical connector.

Insert a yellow harness wire into the pin 2 location of each headlight connector (This will supply power to the fog light through the main OEM connector). Push the purple plastic retainer back in place to lock all the wires in the connector, then repeat this step at the other headlight.

Service Tip: You may need to remove a small green rubber plug from the pin 2 location to make room for the new wire. This can be easily removed with a small at-blade screwdriver or pick.

Step 3

Run the blue wire through the rewall to the interior Locate one of the two available grommets in the rewall to route the blue harness wire into the cabin.

Run the blue wire through the rubber grommet in the rewall, located just above the brake booster.

Remove the Torx® screws securing the underdash panel, then drop it down.

Reach up and pull the blue wire through the grommet into the interior, beneath the dash.

Step 4
Remove the light switch from the dashboard

  • Press in on the light switch knob and while turning it clockwise until it stops.
  • Then pull the switch straight out of the dash.
  • This car already has a Euro headlight switch with fog light setting. If your car has a stock switch with no fog light setting, you’ll need to order one (ES8602).

Step 5

Route the blue wire to the switch

 

Squeeze the retainer clips on the wire harness connector and pull the plastic connector out of the switch.

 

Route the blue wire up from the underdash area, and pull it through the light switch opening in the dashboard.

 

Secure the wire beneath the dash with zip ties. Route and secure the wire so it cannot get caught in pedal mechanisms or the steering column.

 

Plug the blue wire into the #8 terminal in the harness connector (arrow).

Step 6
Connect the blue wire to the switch

Push the blue wire into terminal 8 of the headlight switch connector. When it is fully inserted, it should click and lock in place. Tug the wire a few times to be sure it won’t pull out.

Step 7
Optional – Disable DRLs

  • If you want to disable your daytime running lights (DRLs), locate the TFL tab on the back of the light switch. Carefully break this tab o with needle nose pliers or a similar tool.
  • Install a Euro headlight switch with a fog light switch setting (ES8602).
  • Push the switch straight into the dash opening until it clicks in place.

Step 8
Connect the relay to power

  • Remove the battery cover.
  • Bolt the red wire with the inline fuse to the positive battery terminal.
  • Place the fuse holder where you can reach it later, should you need to replace the fuse.
  • Secure the wire to the main battery cable with tie wraps.

 

 

Step 8
Connect the relay to ground

 

Connect the brown (ground) wire from the relay harness to the negative battery terminal.

 

Test t the battery cover. Make sure the cover does not pinch any wires when installed.

Interested in purchasing?

Fog Light Wiring Harness

Wiring harness to activate fog lights located inside the headlight housings

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