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The backup camera is a great idea but it doesn't work too well at night.   I decided to install some backup lights to assist.   These are Whelen 700 Series high intensity LED floods:

LED lightheads

I'm going to install them so they will both automatically come on when the truck is shifted to Reverse and also be able to manually fire them using the Cargo Light switch.

Here is the the schematic for the cargo lamp:

Schematic for Cargo lamp

And here is the schematic for the reverse lights:

Schematic for reverse lights

Both pretty simple circuits - computer controlled like everything else in this truck.

In order to have two different power sources (reverse lights and cargo lights) I have to seperate the circuits with diodes.   A quick trip to Radio Shack gets me a package of rectifier diodes with a 3A rating:

Radio Shack diodes

Diodes, of course, will only allow the flow of current in one direction.   So when the reverse lights are on, the cargo lights will not be forced on and vice-versa.

Originally, I was going to use an automotive relay to provide power to these lightheads but it turns out they only draw 300mA each so I decided to cut them directly into the truck's wiring.

Before installing though, I need to make sure that having them mounted to the bumper is not going to affect the sonar (shoulda checked that before ordering them - doh):

Sonar test

A quick test shows they have no effect on the sonar so next to mount them.   They came with nylon expansion clips and stainless screws:

Mounts for LEDs

My camera is rather large, so I could not really manipulate it under the truck to get pictures but here it is from the back (kinda):

Inside of rear bumper

For the cargo light line, I soldered a wire into the wiring harness in the driver's side trough (brown wire):

Tapping the factory wiring harness

I pulled it through the firewall and fished through the frame to the driver's side tail lamp.   I performed a similar surgery into the reverse light wire (red/blue) and the diodes were installed in the tail lamp.   The blue wire in the photo is the long pull from the cargo light line and the red is the reverse lamps:

Diodes to prevent current backfeed

Its not pretty but it is protected:

Wiring inside tail lamp mount

And here is the finished product.   Looks good, IMO:

Mounted LED backup lightheads

Mounted LED backup lightheads


And here is where it counts.

Backup lights off:

Camera view - lights off

Backup lights on:

Camera view - lights on