OK, full disclosure first. I am an engineer at JW Speaker (maker of these lights
), so yes, I think these are awesome.
Now the rest of the story:
I'm a recent Leaf owner (2013 SV w/QC) who has been lurking on the forums here for a bit. I totally get the desire to upgrade our lights
to LED. After all, we all have to be at least a BIT
geeky to own Leaf's in the first place. I see many great posts about ways to upgrade your High beams, Fogs etc to LED but the Vehicle Lighting Engineer part of me cries a little bit everytime I see a post about putting in those LED retrofit bulbs. Let me start out with one blanket statement, those LED bulbs are NOT LEGAL for on-road use, but when has that ever stopped any car modification??
SO, enter my employer, JW Speaker: Maker of the finest LED vehicle lighting. 100% designed and made in the good ole' USA. You may not recognize the name exactly, but you've seen our stuff around (some pretty big OEM customers)
While tearing apart my new-to-me-leaf (i'm an engineer remember) I noticed that the factory fog lights
were VERY similar in shape to one of our standard products, the 6145 JEEP Fog
(for various Wrangler models) so I investigated further, and lo and behold, they were very nearly drop-ins.
I undertook the full project this weekend and produced a basic write-up of how to retrofit these into your lovely leaf!
Remove bottom cover, or at least the front of it so you can reach up to grab your factory fogs
Remove fog lights
. These are actually really easy to remove. At the VERY top of each fog
light is a single 10mm head bolt. LOOSEN this (not remove) and then pull BACK on the whole fog
assembly. It comes out really easy, like field dressing a deer
Have some beer
Marvel at how close in size and shape the factory fogs are to your new awesome JW Speaker fog lights
Remove 3 screws from each fog
light that hold the light to the mounting bracket.
Remove JW Speaker fog
from ITS bracket. Loosen the aiming screw not the back until you can pop it out. Then use the nearest flathead screwdriver to gently pry the mounting boss of the light out of the bracket. Set light aside
Look at how closely the new bracket almost fits the old one. There will be two tabs on the factory bracket you need to Dremel off, as well as some clearancing side-to-side
Take a file or Dremel with a small sanding bit and elongate the mounting holes on your really expensive new JW Speaker fogs to fit factory bracket
Attach new Speaker bracket to factory mounting bracket with the 3 screws from earlier.
Pop JW Speaker fog
in from the FRONT of the mounting bracket. It make take some persuasion but it will pop right back into place.
Go to fridge for more beer
Put aiming screw back into the bracket on your new fog
. Tighten it until it looks about level or so.
Pop whole assembly BACK into bumper. Tighten top 10mm bolt to hold it all back into place.
The hardest part... Cut the factory connector off and splice in new JW Speaker connect. Black wires to black wires, Red to the other colors (like a white and purple IIRC)
Pop on lights
and then use adjusting screws to set the fog
levels the way you want. You'll notice they have a really nice sharp horizontal cutoff that merges well with LED low beams.
VIOLA!! (I'll get night shots some other time)
I'm not an instruction manual expert so I apologize if these are hard to follow. I did my best
Now for the nitty gritty: Where do you buy these? Online is the easiest. Just google search JW Speaker 6145. They're not cheap (unless you work there like me... hello engineering samples) They come in both black and chrome. I went with black, but i would probably do chrome next time to match the headlights a little better
Now, I get that these are expensive! BUT, they are 100% Street LEGAL!!!
with DOT markings and ECE for you Euro-folk. Believe it or not there are strict regulations when it comes to light pattern, intensity, color etc to keep lights
legal. We know what we're doing when it comes to lighting. The 6145 feature proprietary D-Lens optics that produce a great fog
pattern with a 100% horizontal cutoff for fog
use. You can certainly buy cheaper chinese knock-offs, but every time you do an American company is hurt and a Bald Eagle dies.
http://www.jwspeaker.com/products/led-j ... odel-6145/