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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A couple of weeks ago, I seem to remember reading something on here about being able to install a light in the Rear Liftgate? I wasn't worried about it at the time... but now I'm noticing just how dark it is back there, and how useful a light would be.

Anyhow, I can't find the thread or the instructions. Can someone provide some info on how to do it?
 

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You can follow these instructions... mostly... people suggest running the wires up the left side.

 

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Exactly what I was looking for. Thank you!
Did you get past the part where the bottom part of the trim is removed? There are no screws to remove there like shown in the video for the forester. Do you just pull that trim off, held only by clips?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Did you get past the part where the bottom part of the trim is removed? There are no screws to remove there like shown in the video for the forester. Do you just pull that trim off, held only by clips?
Honestly, it involves pulling apart WAY more of the trim in the car than I'm comfortable doing. I didn't realize I'd have to take half the liftgate apart to do it.
 

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Honestly, it involves pulling apart WAY more of the trim in the car than I'm comfortable doing. I didn't realize I'd have to take half the liftgate apart to do it.

I take that as a no... Removing the first part of the trim in the video, plus the 2 sides was fairly easy. It's the next part of trim I can't seem to remove. There are no screws to remove like the forester. I have trim tools and tried probing for clips with no luck. I don't want to break something by just pulling with all my strength.
 

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https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00XC2X9WY/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

This is what I'm doing. Plugging into 3rd row USB on the passenger side.

Might ditch the switch, and mount a 12v dimmer somewhere along the way.

Felt the light above is too far back when open to be effective?

Oh it's plenty effective even that far back. It's super bright. I believe there are photos of it in another thread. And looking back, if I had to do it again, knowing what I know now, it's not that difficult of an install. I can answer any questions anyone has about this install and how it differs from the youtube instructional video for the forester. Here are some another related threads about the install.


https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/3429-lift-gate-led-add-light-install-help.html
https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/4213-how-remove-re-install-tube-gasket-lift-gate.html
 

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Are you guys installing a light using USB in 3rd row? Where is it being placed at? I too find it extremely dark. The light now is so dim doesn't really show anything at night time. I am looking for something easy to install.
 

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Are you guys installing a light using USB in 3rd row? Where is it being placed at? I too find it extremely dark. The light now is so dim doesn't really show anything at night time. I am looking for something easy to install.

That's the first person I've heard of using that solution. Personally it's not a clean / hardwire solution that I'd be happy with but to each their own. Like I said previously, the subispeed lift gate light is a fantastic solution that is not that difficult and now that I've done it I can walk anyone through it.
 
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Are you guys installing a light using USB in 3rd row? Where is it being placed at? I too find it extremely dark. The light now is so dim doesn't really show anything at night time. I am looking for something easy to install.

That's the first person I've heard of using that solution. Personally it's not a clean / hardwire solution that I'd be happy with but to each their own. Like I said previously, the subispeed lift gate light is a fantastic solution that is not that difficult and now that I've done it I can walk anyone through it.

That’s good to hear I wasn’t sure how much good it would do since at night my body and head (I’m 6’) would cast a shadow in the cargo area.

Definitely prefer the cleaner solution, especially now that I looked at the lip of where I thought the usb stick would go
 

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Are you guys installing a light using USB in 3rd row? Where is it being placed at? I too find it extremely dark. The light now is so dim doesn't really show anything at night time. I am looking for something easy to install.
I’ll see how it works once I get it. I do have extensive car wiring/car audio experience so not worried about making the wiring clean.
 

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Are you guys installing a light using USB in 3rd row? Where is it being placed at? I too find it extremely dark. The light now is so dim doesn't really show anything at night time. I am looking for something easy to install.
So, just got the strip in, looks pretty easy to hide and almost invisible from where I stand.

Wires tuck in easily. If you didn’t want to drill you could probably make a lip/tab of some sort so it wedges in.

Beautiful soft diffused LED exactly where I need it. Going to try it at night to see if it’s worth hardwiring because the USB outlets are not hot when the car is off. I’d have to tap into cargo light wiring.

Otherwise I’d probably go with a the hatch solution mentioned
 

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Think it looks great! Downward facing soft warm light, that’s independently controlled will make life easier when digging around the back during the night.

However before I go and attach this I’m gonna see what

1) Extending the on time of the inside lights will do along with changing out the bulbs to brighter warm LEDs
2) Changing out the cargo bulb to a brighter LED

But it looks like it wouldn’t be difficult to pull power from the cargo light and also put a 12v dimmer switch under the 12v outlet using these internals (so it stays protected)

PWM Dimming Controller For LED Lights or Ribbon, 12 Volt 8 Amp,Adjustable Brightness Light Switch Dimmer Controller DC12V 8A 96W for Led Strip Light By Zitrades https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007V1B0W8/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_GZcUBbWNZ8EF2

Definitely no longer a plug and play solution but the light is exactly where I need it and will be dimmable.
 

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Think it looks great! Downward facing soft warm light, that’s independently controlled will make life easier when digging around the back during the night.

However before I go and attach this I’m gonna see what

1) Extending the on time of the inside lights will do along with changing out the bulbs to brighter warm LEDs
2) Changing out the cargo bulb to a brighter LED

But it looks like it wouldn’t be difficult to pull power from the cargo light and also put a 12v dimmer switch under the 12v outlet using these internals (so it stays protected)

PWM Dimming Controller For LED Lights or Ribbon, 12 Volt 8 Amp,Adjustable Brightness Light Switch Dimmer Controller DC12V 8A 96W for Led Strip Light By Zitrades https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007V1B0W8/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_GZcUBbWNZ8EF2

Definitely no longer a plug and play solution but the light is exactly where I need it and will be dimmable.
Nice work! This is good to know there are now multiple ways to light up the trunk area. People can choose whichever method they are more comfortable with.
 

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Oh it's plenty effective even that far back. It's super bright. I believe there are photos of it in another thread. And looking back, if I had to do it again, knowing what I know now, it's not that difficult of an install. I can answer any questions anyone has about this install and how it differs from the youtube instructional video for the forester. Here are some another related threads about the install.


https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/3429-lift-gate-led-add-light-install-help.html
https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/4213-how-remove-re-install-tube-gasket-lift-gate.html
Maybe I missed it, but couldn't find a night time pic of it installed on those threads? Interested in this solution as well. In the meantime the $11 LED strip has found a home under my monitor lighting up my desk :smile:
 

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Oh it's plenty effective even that far back. It's super bright. I believe there are photos of it in another thread. And looking back, if I had to do it again, knowing what I know now, it's not that difficult of an install. I can answer any questions anyone has about this install and how it differs from the youtube instructional video for the forester. Here are some another related threads about the install.


https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/3429-lift-gate-led-add-light-install-help.html
https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/4213-how-remove-re-install-tube-gasket-lift-gate.html
Maybe I missed it, but couldn't find a night time pic of it installed on those threads? Interested in this solution as well. In the meantime the $11 LED strip has found a home under my monitor lighting up my desk
It is post 95 in this thread. Though the pics don't quite do it justice.
LED interior lighting upgrade https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1521
 

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I'd like to take you up on this. Is there a written or video walk-thru available? What all do I need to purchase and where?

Here is the video walk-thru but it is for the Forester. It's still very helpful and similar. I can tell you the differences.


When removing the lift gate panels, the top and sides come off the same as the video. The bottom has screws in a different location than the video. It is held by 2 screws hidden under the handle on the right half. You have to pry the cover off the handle to reveal the screws. Another difference is obviously you are going to wire up the left side rather than the right side. Unlike the forester, there are 3 screws to remove for that left panel that holds the existing trunk light. One is under the hook. One is hidden under a very small circular flush panel. The 3rd is visible. Other than that rest of the video applies to the Ascent. You need phillips screwdriver and 10mm socket wrench.


I highly recommend you do not connect the actual new light until the very end. If the light does not turn on then the in-line fuse is probably blown. It is located very close to the existing hatch light on the way up, in line, like a small milky white cylinder holder with a spring. It holds a 2 amp buss little fuse (the smallest kind). You release it by pushing down on the spring and then rotate.


Some people have trouble with the tube gasket that connects the wiring from the rear headliner to the door. Here is a post for that:
https://www.ascentforums.com/forum/155-diy-how/4213-how-remove-re-install-tube-gasket-lift-gate.html


And the actual product is from subispeed.. it was on backorder for a while, don't know if it is in stock right now.

OLM JDM Precision LED Lift Gate Light - 2014+ Forester
 
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