Auxiliary Cargo Area Lamp
There has been some discussion about how to get a decent light in the rear
of the Toyota 80 Series Landcruiser.
There have been several solutions to this problem, mainly run the lamp
Neither of these solutions offered the convenience that most of us would
prefer, to have the lamp operate when one of the rear doors or tailgate
is open. Based on the assumption that this option would be available in
some trim level specification, I checked the cct diagrams. Nothing obvious
was found (apart from some errors in the cct's).
the aux battery power outlet
a dedicated run of power cable
However I did discover a satisfactory solution hidden in the lining
of rear of the vehicle after some investigation. There is already a wiring
loom which is activated when any of the rear doors are open. This meets
the requirement exactly.
The test vehicle is an Australian spec. 1994 manual RV Getaway trim level.
This is essentially the local GXL trim, less such things as CD, wheel arch
flares, power antenna, and a lower grade carpet. This vehicle has the upper
and lower type tailgate, not the barn doors as in the Standard or Deluxe
trim levels. Vehicles with barn door type of rear doors have not been investigated,
and these instructions may not apply to those models which come fitted
with rear barn doors.
Tools and Parts
The following items are used in the installation process;
Electric drill and 1/8" drill bit
Two self-tapper metal screws (approx. 1/4" plus thickness of lamp mounting)
Screwdriver to suit screws (above)
Electrical tape (approx. 4" length)
Suitable lamp arrangement
Small flat blade screwdriver
Knife or hole punch
OPTIONAL: Electric soldering iron and resin core solder
OPTIONAL: Electric connectors (two male & two female)
We will position the lamp at a desired location in the rear of the car,
and connect it to some existing wiring. A Blue cable with yellow tracer
and silver bands will provide the POSITIVE power supply, and a companion
red cable with yellow tracer and silver bands will provide the NEGATIVE
power supply. If your vehicle does not have the cables as identified in
The following procedure requires some care. Damage to the headlining
or/and trim will result if care is not exercised. It is suggested that
you read all of these instructions before commencing the task.
You now have a functional rear interior lamp that will operate while any
rear door is open. This will make life a little easier when setting up
camp or cooking on the tailgate after dark.
Open the rear doors
Remove the trim from the body on the upper edge of the door opening, where
it secures the headlining to the body. You may have to remove some of the
interior trim along the 'D' pillars to get the end of the beading trim
Remove the two small metal clips on the top left side of the door opening
with the small flat blade screwdriver.
Carefully pull the head lining from the body, commencing in the centre.
Be careful not to rip the headlining.
Unbundle the cabling that feeds the high level brake lamp from inside the
body. In amongst those wires is a loose connector with two wires. This
is the cable you need. Pull it out from the bundle, until it is just clear
of the body/headlining.
Ensure that the lamp you have selected to install into the rear of the
car has any required switches installed, and has a lead approx. two feet
Disassemble the lamp
Position the lamp in the desired location by hand
Ensure that any mounting holes will not foul existing wiring, the rear
window washer hose, or will protrude thru the single thickness skin of
the vehicle body.
Centre punch the centre of the lamp mounting holes. Remove the lamp.
Use the 1/8" drill bit in the electric drill to pre-drill the holes for
the lamp. Ensure that the drill does not run, or just clears the hole being
drilled (to avoid body damage).
Identify a suitable point that is hidden by the lamp (when in position),
and make a small hole in the headlining for the lamp power cable.
Thread the lamp power cable through the small hole.
Position the lamp, and secure it into the drilled holes with the self-tapping
metal screws. Be careful not to crimp or pierce the lamp power cable.
Follow one of the following courses of action, depending on if you are
using electrical connectors (step 17), or just solder tinning the tips
of the lamp leads (step 16),
Soldered Lead Ends
Tin the ends of both of the lamp leads for a length of 1/4"
Insert the +ve lead from the lamp into connector with the blue
cable with yellow tracer and silver bands
Insert the -ve lead from the lamp into connector with the red
cable with yellow tracer and silver bands
Use electrical tape to secure the cable from the lamp into/onto the connector
Using Electrical Connectors
Remove the original connector from the wiring loom in the car. The
Fix one female connector to the -ve lead from the lamp
Fix one male connector to the +ve lead from the lamp
Fix one female connector to the blue cable
with yellow tracer and silver bands in the car
Fix one male connector to the red cable with
yellow tracer and silver bands in the car
Join the lamp and vehicle cabling with the connectors
Use electrical tape to secure the cable connectors from the lamp into/onto
the vehicle cable connectors
Test the lamp for operation (ensuring that the rear door is open). If this
test fails investigate the cause and rectify the problem.
Neatly reposition the cabling under the headlining so that it does not
touch the headlining
Reposition the headlining (the original glue should hold it in position
for a short period of time)
Reinstall the trim beading carefully, pushing it on by hand. Be careful
not to force it, or the beading will be damaged. The outside of the top
of the beading should go between the rubber weather seal and the metal
of the body. There is not much room in that area, so ensure you do not
snag the weather seal as the beading is re-installed.
Reinstall any other trim remove
Install any covers or lenses onto the lamp
Restore all of the tools to their rightful places
Have a couple of #6's while you admire your work.
I have found that the flouro type lamps produce the most and whitest
light for a given power consumption. Mine draws under one amp, producing
a lot more of light than the factory fitted interior lamps while using
less of the aux. battery capacity.
Copyright D.J. Zilm 1998
Mail the author for more info.