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Thread: DIY: Footwell Lights

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    BMW 318is

    DIY: Footwell Lights

    I saw an old post about doing foot well lights by GregH so I thought I would give it a go.

    The BMW parts I used were:

    63 31 8 360 588 Lamp (2x)
    61 13 8 377 072 Socket Housing (3-pin connector) (2x)
    61 13 0 005 197 Bushing Contact (4x)

    If you take out your dome light and take a look at the wires you will see a Brown/Red wire (power) and a Brown wire (ground). These are the wires to use if you want the new foot well lights to work with the dome light switch settings.

    Using these wires the foot well lights can be set to come on with the dome light when you open the door and they fade out, or you can turn them on with the dome light.

    I did not want to run wires from the dome light down the side pillar, so I thought I have to be able to find the wires when I remove the glove box. I found a Brown/Red and a Brown wire and I exposed the core to see if these would work - THEY DID.

    It was then just a matter of connecting a few wires into these two cables, making holes in the panel under the glove box and steering wheel, and connecting the lights.

    I really like how it looks and it will make it so much easier to find things if they drop on the floor. Was also easier to vacuum with the lights on.


    This is where I found the red/brown and brown wires that looked like they went up the back and into the side pillar going up to the dome light.



    This is a picture from underneath to show the new wires I connected. I also put in two wires to run over to the driver’s side. The two black wires go the the foot well light, the red & brown wires go over to the driver's side.




    This is the light inserted in the hole I cut on the passenger side.



    Foot well lights off during the day with my car in an open car port. Still had the old material seats adn the old steering wheel



    Foot well lights on also during the day in the car port.

    Last edited by jarozila; 10-12-2008 at 10:00 PM. Reason: Updated picture links

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    1995 328i Black 2 Door
    Nice work Jaro. I'm thinking about doing something similar with my car soon.

    I'm trying to work out whether I will install a 3 way switch and connect them to constant power so I can just turn the foot well lights on without the domes.

    Lighting: Red/Clear tails & Clear Side Markers/Umnitza Chromium Angel Eyes/6000K H1 Prolumen HIDS/White LED Interior Upgrade
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2004
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    germany
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    6/96 318is
    A neat idea. If you also replace the main dome light with one out of an E39 or E46, you could use the controller I created for that to also turn the footwell lights on and off. That would be slick. You could control either the main cabin lights or your footwell lights from the center button.

    I would need to write a little more code to do that but that shouldn't be a problem.

  4. #4
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    It is really sad. I am like a kid with a new toy...

    I open door and lights come on, close door and turn key to start car and lights go off. Its like magic.

    I tended to keep the dome light off but now with the footwell lights I left them on when I went out earlier and it looks sooo nice.

    Not easy to take a picture at night though!!

    Last edited by jarozila; 10-12-2008 at 10:01 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jijacob View Post
    How much was it total for the parts?
    The list price was AUS$69 (not including our Goods and Services Tax) about US$56 at current exchange rates. If you get a bit of a discount from your dealer then less.

    Here is a picture of the parts in question.

    Last edited by jarozila; 10-12-2008 at 10:02 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBURGS47 View Post
    so does mine... I'm pretty sure this is stock for 96+
    Yeah mine has this as well.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhstealth View Post
    wow havent seen this thread in awhile...
    I was also surprised to see this tread again. I am curious to know if anyone else has done this.

    I have since painted the footwell globes amber as well as the other main globes. I left the map light globes clear. I quite like the softer amber glow. I have also changed to Alpine head unit's buttons from a green glow to an amber glow, and put in leather sports seats.

    Orange_02 small.jpg

  8. #8
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    1995 Cosmos M3
    Amber-colored interior lighting > * interior lighting
    ex-1995 Cosmos M3 Coupé - deck spoiler / koni struts + shocks / x-brace / clears / unstaggered contours / yokohama avs es100 / alu thermostat housing / emp water pump / porterfield r4-s pads / gc rtab shims / bavauto ss brake lines / fdm / ie rsm plates / kicker sub + box + amp / sylvania silverstar lows / lamin-x / loc-tite'd opn / lots of refurbishing
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoggs View Post
    You know what would look slick... If you made the floor lights amber... oooohhhh aaaahhhh
    I know it is hard to see in that picture, but the footlights are amber. It just did not come out well in the picture. I did the footwell globes in amber first and liked it so much I then did the other globes - dome and rear. I will have to try to take a better picture!

    Quote Originally Posted by jhstealth View Post
    With changing your headunits color how hard was that? i want to do it to my motorized tv's display because when its closed its all blue and the cuts in the buttons for hte numbers look just like bmw's if it was amber it would be perfect.
    With my unit the faceplate with the buttons comes off. I noticed that there were two screws in the back of the face plate so I managed to get it open. Inside there were 5 globes that each had a green rubber dome over them. Once I took these off I had clear globes which I then painted amber. I have not worked out how to change the green LED display to amber. Even just changing the buttons to amber had made a huge difference. For now I can live with the green LED display...

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    e46 M3 6MT
    My car came with those... It seems like a lot of cars from Oz did not, however.

    I'm going to try changing the color of my faceplate today. It's an Alpine 9315 and I know it has amber bulbs in there because it lights up amber when i go to change the EQ settings. The rest of the time it's just an ugly blue....

    Ground Control Street/School coilovers, 19" HRE 441R wheels, ACS exhaust
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  11. #11
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    98 M3/4/5
    where to order in the US? my 98 is missing the housing/socket/cover on the drivers side (although there is already a plug for it under my dash). The passenger side is intact - no surprise since it came from the factory in 96+ I believe. So I just need the housing/socket/cover, but can't seem to find it.

    1998 BMW///M3/4/5

  12. #12
    Join Date
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    Seattle (Eastside), WA
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    2001 325Ci cabriolet
    convertible models do come with these, not as bright though
    My '94 325 doesn't...

    I wish it did.
    - Chris




  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Perth, Australia
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    96 328i Coupe
    I just fitted small neons in the footwells, and NO it does not look rice!
    They are red but appear amber when lit.
    I followed the LeatherZ installation in regards to wiring even though it is for the Z3.
    Works and looks a treat.

    Thanks for the inspiration Jarozila

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    96 328i Coupe
    Lazyboy

    I bought mine from MotoQuipe at $30 each. 2 x 200mm Neon.
    You can get em anywhere like Repco, SuperCheap Auto.

    Go to LeatherZ.com and follow the wiring write up.
    You need to take out the glovebox.

    PM if you need more info

  15. #15
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    (Stowmarket)Suffolk
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    E36 1998 318 Convertible
    I am thinking of footwell neons in my 318 e36 vert, where should i run the power from, was just going to break off from the rear of the ciggarette lighter as its easilly accesible and between the two footwells so no wires will need extending etc?

  16. #16
    Join Date
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    German E36 328i & M3 cab
    My car only had 1 footwell light. After doing some searching, I quickly found the original plug on the drivers side. So I ordered a new light from the dealer, and installed it.

    But as my car is facelift model, I wasn't suprised the wiring was there.
    '98 BMW M3 3.2 SMG Cabrio • Alpinweiß III auf Schwarz • Deutschland-ausführung
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Levitheno1 View Post
    I am thinking of footwell neons in my 318 e36 vert, where should i run the power from, was just going to break off from the rear of the ciggarette lighter as its easilly accesible and between the two footwells so no wires will need extending etc?

    When I first thought about putting in footwell lights I did consider using neons. I ended up using the BMW parts - lights, as I wanted to try to duplicate an original fitting.

    Rather than tap into the cigarette lighter I decided to try to find the wires than ran down from the dome light in under the glove box. I wanted the footwell lights to come on in conjunction with the dome light as per a factory fit. There is also lots of room to run cables over to the other side and to hide them.

    As it turned out it was not too hard to find the correct wires and the installation was not really hard. I am really glad I did this.

    I noticed yesterday there were quite a few posts from 'ChrisProia' in this thread. What happened to them??

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    '98 328is con to M3
    Yea my 98 has them stock...

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Canada
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    ...
    im doing this right now
    i found a cheaper solution

    get sme c pillar lights $10
    and the harness free

    boom

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Grosse Ile Michigan
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    18
    My Cars
    1995 BMW 318is
    I did the same thing on my car,

    except i went to auto zone and bought 2 packs of L.E.D. lights with 3 in each.

    taped it into the power of my head unit so when the car turns on so does the led.

    less than 10 bucks and 2 hours of work, look really sweet too

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Bulgaria, Europe
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    E36 320i '93
    Where is the original place to be mounted?
    I think if there were lights in the back seats it would be niceeeeeeee. Hm thinking now how to mount them.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Melbourne, Victoria, Aust
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    E46 330Ci
    Is it possible to have them come on when you turn the cars lights on, so they stay on in the foot wells - but have it so that when the cars lights are off, they only come on with the dome light?

    Or would this require a separate toggle switch?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by komet View Post
    Looking good ! what paint did you use and where did you get it ?
    It came with a child's kit to make a fake leadlight. I have since been into a craft shop that sells art paints and they sell a range that is designed to be used on glass. They have an orange paint as well as a red. I used orange with a little bit of red to get a colour that I liked. Just use very light coats.

    The paint is not designed to be put on house globes - ie 60W globes, but I have not had any problems. When I first had the lights on there was a little bit of smoke but not since then. If you use this paint perhaps leave a stip of clear glass to vent off excess heat. You can always face the strip of clear glass on the globe towards the back of the light unit so that it is not noticable.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bimmeracer3 View Post
    Do you think it would be possible to wire it so that it comes on when the dome light is activated and/or when the door is opened regardless of whether the dome light is activated?
    I am not sure I quite understand. My footwell lights work in conjunction with the dome light and the door. I can either turn them on with the dome light, or they will come on when I open the door. The footwell lights can also be just turned off so that they don't come on when you open the door - neither will the dome light.

    Do you want to just have the footwell lights come on without the dome light?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by jarozila View Post
    I am not sure I quite understand. My footwell lights work in conjunction with the dome light and the door. I can either turn them on with the dome light, or they will come on when I open the door. The footwell lights can also be just turned off so that they don't come on when you open the door - neither will the dome light.

    Do you want to just have the footwell lights come on without the dome light?
    My footwell lights work in conjunction with the dome light and the door. I can either turn them on with the dome light, or they will come on when I open the door.
    Thanks what I would like to accomplish.

    Chad Andreo Photography
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