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How do I wire my 3rd brake light (camper)

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by Cutter_, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. Jan 31, 2019 at 11:55 AM
    #1
    Cutter_

    Cutter_ [OP] I probably could have googled this

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  2. Jan 31, 2019 at 12:33 PM
    #2
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    Seems like overkill Cutter and more trouble than necessary
    I have a camper that I need to attach and detach its lighting frequently.
    This is what I am using. They come in various lengths.
    It works well to connect and reconnect and will handle 12v up to 3amps, which should be double what you will draw.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B076DH2WP5/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
     
    Cutter_ [OP] and Taco critter like this.
  3. Jan 31, 2019 at 12:44 PM
    #3
    Cutter_

    Cutter_ [OP] I probably could have googled this

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    Sweet, I know how to feed the 3rd light wire, but how do I tap into the left brake light?
     
  4. Jan 31, 2019 at 12:48 PM
    #4
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    As far as connecting to your BRAKE light, on second thought, you might want to go with a prefabricated wiring harness in lieu of the above.
    Its never good to wire into existing tailights as it breeds future trouble!
    I have this Hopkins harness on my 2003 Tacoma and it works flawlessly for connecting trailer lights with no splicing.
    You can then get an adapter connector to connect your two wire light to this.
    [​IMG]

    https://www.amazon.com/Hopkins-4331...&qid=1548967260&sr=8-1&keywords=hopkins+43315
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019
  5. Jan 31, 2019 at 12:54 PM
    #5
    Cutter_

    Cutter_ [OP] I probably could have googled this

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    I'm not connecting to a trailer, I want to wire my camper shell brake light to my truck itself
     
  6. Jan 31, 2019 at 12:56 PM
    #6
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    You would cannibalize this harness to adapt it to the brake light...
    This is a suggestion to avoid splicing directly into your tail light.
    You would only use 2 or 3 wires of the 4 wire plug, which has several feet of extension.
    So the plug would rest where your camper top sits on the truck bed.
    Connecting and disconnecting just the 4 wire plug itself... Got it?

    Of course if you want to splice into your brakes you can still do that.
    You can get directions for doing that on this forum or anywhere on the internet.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019
  7. Jan 31, 2019 at 1:13 PM
    #7
    Cutter_

    Cutter_ [OP] I probably could have googled this

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    I see what you mean, and I wouldn't want to splice.
     
  8. Jan 31, 2019 at 1:20 PM
    #8
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    Cutter_ [OP] likes this.
  9. Jan 31, 2019 at 2:25 PM
    #9
    Cutter_

    Cutter_ [OP] I probably could have googled this

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  10. Jan 31, 2019 at 2:41 PM
    #10
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    No, you understand it rightly.
    If you ever wanted to have a running light as well on your camper top that would be the 3rd wire.
     
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  11. Jan 31, 2019 at 2:48 PM
    #11
    Rock Lobster

    Rock Lobster knows nothing, yet an expert in everything.

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    They make 2-wire trailer connectors .That's what I use on my softopper. Picked it up at the corner auto parts store. Easy peasy. m_74215_primary.jpg
     
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  12. Jan 31, 2019 at 3:49 PM
    #12
    Mulepadre

    Mulepadre Mulepadre

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    The question was about how to and whether to splice the connector into the the tail light...
     
  13. Jan 31, 2019 at 5:18 PM
    #13
    Rock Lobster

    Rock Lobster knows nothing, yet an expert in everything.

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    The point was I saw a lot of parts being shown, I wanted to show a simple part that I used.

    But ok fine, I'll opine on part A of the question since you asked. :thumbsup: I spliced mine into the left tail. I'm comfortable using a soldering iron and shrink-tubing, so that's what I used. Simple, clean, effective. There are many ways to skin that cat though - crimp-unions with electric tape are relatively robust when done right. The euro-style 3 port wire terminals are darn near idiot-proof, but they're overkill for such small gauge wires here. Just don't use T-taps . Those can wear and break over time.

    After I spliced I routed up to the left cubby, which is where I store the trailer connector part I talked about earlier. Plug it in when the softopper is up, unplug when it's folded down. Visible wires are a major peeve of mine. I don't like seeing wires on my Christmas tree, I don't like seeing them on my house audio/entertainment system, and I dang sure hate seeing them on my truck. Keeping the plug in the cubby keeps it neatly tucked out of sight.

    As far as the 3rd brake goes, I used a cheap 36" red led bar. Its plenty bright and has such a low power draw that the incandescent bulb that it's parasiting from doesn't feel it.

    Again, cheap, simple, easy peasy.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2019

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