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Halogen backup light bulbs

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Chris-R, Jul 21, 2005.

  1. Chris-R

    Chris-R Senior Member
    Messages: 321

    Hello fellow snow lovers:

    I've done a search on the forum but can't quite find the answer to my question so here it goes. I was thinking of replacing the factory backup lightbulbs on my GMC Sierra 2500HD with halogen lightbulbs. I don't want to install separate 55 watt halogen lights under my bumper nor do I want to install one of those trailer hitch systems. I was looking at JCWhitney and StylinConcepts. They both have some 50 watt replacement lightbulbs. I figure each bulb will draw about 4 amps or so. Is this too much for the factory wiring? Thanks for your help.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2005
  2. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    Hi! Just an FYI but I've heard stories of halogen bulbs in backup lights melting lenses! Halogen bulbs get real hot and depending on the clearance I could believe that this could happen.

    How long you have to leave them on to do this is another story though! :)
  3. Joe Lombardo

    Joe Lombardo Member
    Messages: 63

    Don't waste your money I tried that and they were no better than the original bulbs, I ended up sending them back and installing the lights under the bumper.
  4. boba

    boba Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    In time under the bumper lights only get broken by snowbanks.

    AW Direct has DUAL 55 watt halogen bulb lights. Mount them on the top of the bed rails and tie the wiring into the trailer backup light wire.

    I have been using them for years. It is like daylight when backing up. I have left them connected all the time. Yet to burn out a bulb.
  5. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    I would use a fog light relay to switch the power for the bigger amp lights. The park/backup light switch is not designed to flow that much current. Or be used so many times an hour.
    ($75 switch for a Ford, and it's no picnic to change either)
    Use the + lead from the backup lights to trigger the relay and switch the relay's - trigger lead so you can turn off the big lights when you don't need them. Run the power line (with a fuse) your switching from the battery so it does not effect other circuits or pops fuses.
    Snow piles are death on under bumper mounted fog and backup lights.
    I am a slow learner, I killed 2 sets before I realized it!
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2005
  6. Playboy

    Playboy Senior Member
    Messages: 335

    I have heard the same thing about the replacement bulbs burning the lenses but in my old F250 I had them and had no issues. They where a bit brighter but still not enough.
    Why do you guys back your truck into snow banks?
  7. scholzee

    scholzee Senior Member
    Messages: 243

    I have them in my 96 s10 Blazer because the back windows are factory deep tint. They did not help me see any better, In the mirrors they are slightly brighter and from outside the truck better, so that will help others see me. No problems with them melting the lens, I will be installing so auxiliary lights before this winter. We have a local junkyard you can take your own parts off, I was thinking of using corning lights from a vehicle that would mount flush in my bumper end caps. That should be high enough for most banks and strong enough cause I can feel when the bumper is in the snow.
  8. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    It only takes one time backing into a snow pile to kill a light. I don't make it a habit but it happens. Some years we get a boat load of snow that does not melt for 2 months,snow is stacked as high as we can get it. And that's how fog lights get ripped off
  9. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    GUYS......Remember.........Gm trucks equipped with the VYU plow
    prep. option have a seperate 10 amp. back up light circuit to tap
    into if necessary.................
  10. Playboy

    Playboy Senior Member
    Messages: 335

    Brain fart..... I forgot about that. I saw that when I was looking to see what was in the VYU.
  11. justme-

    justme- 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,138

    Just how long DO you have the truck in reverse??

    I have the halogens in my K5- much brighter than stock bulbs, but still not enought light for me for plowing.

    As to lights under the bumber- go to your local farm supply, truck stop, or tractor trailer parts shop and get 2 4-1/2inch RUBBER sealed beams. Mount them under the bumber- 35 watts each- one is plenty of light. When they die replace them. I have backed into enough snow banks- that doesn;t affect them at all. The bulbs burn out before there is any damage.
  12. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    Justme, I believe the people having problem were those with older trucks that rigged them with separate switches for off road use.

    Better to err on the side of caution than to ruin a $100+ taillight lens...

    I've seen them in friends trucks and halogen backup bulbs are not much better - the light output is limited by the lens not the bulb and the plastic lens has a poor pattern and does not do a good job... To me it wasn't worth it.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2005
  13. Jt13speed

    Jt13speed Senior Member
    Messages: 366

    Have you guys ever thought of mounting those lights not under, but on top of your bumper? There is a guy in my town that has those lights mounted on the top of his bumper, and they are far enough to the sides where he is still able to open his tailgate without hitting the lights, looks like its a pretty good idea to me.
  14. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

    Actually I thought about mounting them on my ballast "box" that I built... that way they're up high and they come off when the ballast box comes out.