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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thoughts?? Too Ricey? Useful? Meh?
I’m not even sure if it would fit or be possible, but it looks like it would be a relatively cheap and hopefully functional addition. This seems to be different from some other versions I’ve seen that have a blue constant “idle” glow (which could get some unwanted Law enforcement attention).

https://youtu.be/ho18Bd48bcY
 

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Thoughts?? Too Ricey? Useful? Meh?
I’m not even sure if it would fit or be possible, but it looks like it would be a relatively cheap and hopefully functional addition. This seems to be different from some other versions I’ve seen that have a blue constant “idle” glow (which could get some unwanted Law enforcement attention).

https://youtu.be/ho18Bd48bcY

Could see that being blocked somewhat by the rear bumper protector if you have that.

I don't think it's needed. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Well, It’s apparently been too long since my last accessory installation LOL.

After seeing a few posts recently of people being rear ended (maybe the most common kind of accident I’ve heard of with the Ascent on the road so far), I decided to see if maybe this mod / accessory might give me even a slight percentage of improved safety (by alerting following drivers). <shrug>. That ...and I thought it would function well and look cool too ? .

I went ahead and bought the LED strip off amazon and a trailer hitch plug off eBay and installed the LED strip. It was actually pretty straightforward - the hardest part was taking the time to solder wire extensions and adding a couple of extra (spare) leads to the trailer harness plug.

Here is the item I purchased:
LED Strip Trunk Tail Brake Turn Signal Light Flow Type Ice Blue Red Yellow White https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075M9L2WF/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_rTlLBbST2PMJX

And here is the trailer hitch wiring harness that I got - really only purchased for a R79 connector compatible plug:
https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https://www.ebay.com/ulk/itm/263520530605

Basically I used the wiring diagram of the trailer hitch plug (R79 trailer connector) I posted elsewhere to figure out which wire lead goes where. Reposting the diagram below. RED Positive comes from pin 1 and black ground is Pin 8. Pin 3 yellow is the reverse signal input. Pin 6 is the brake light input. Pins 2 and 4 are the turn signal inputs. I didn’t use Pin 5.

I used a 9V battery to help confirm the wiring inputs on the LED strip and to test out the functionality. I did not use the green lead (which would light up the blue/green LEDs as a default to give a sort of aqua color when the car is at idle). There are a number of reasons for this but probably the most important is that it could lead to a police ticket since I believe you are not allowed to use blue lights when driving unless the vehicle is being used for law enforcement or other similar official purpose.

I followed some of the steps to install the OEM trailer hitch to gain access to the wire harness (which really entailed removing the small hidden storage unit in the trunk underneath the cargo liner).

Next, I plugged in the modified harness to the trailer hitch wiring. I used zip ties to help keep things neat and tidy. The LED strip already has an adhesive tape strip on the backside, so it’s really a simple task of peeling off the backing and pressing into place. I routed the wiring through a rubber grommet hidden behind the drivers side brake light access cover. You can sort of see where the wires were routed in one of the pictures. Finally, I used a piece of 3M VHB double sided stick tape to secure the brake light module up under the LH plastic cover.

Total install time was about 2 hours (most of it spent working on the wiring harness and soldering wire extensions). I think the hardest thing for others to try and replicate would honestly be finding the R79 connector plug followed by the wiring.
 

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I really like your video showing it working. How hard would it be to run the wiring so that you could have this attached along the bottom edge of the door, rather than on the bumper? My concern is that this location will collect dirt and the light would make it more difficult to clean, and/or that I would be more likely to damage the strip loading and unloading things (the kids are not gentle when they come in and out the back door).

I did get a kit to replace the hatch panel with an LED light, so I'll be opening that up to install at some point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Bottom edge of the door? Like as in mounted along the inside edge of the rear hatch? I’m not sure it will work that great from a lighting perspective like that since the LEDs would then be pointing in towards the car and you would be relying on reflected light.
As for the wiring, it’s possible but you’d probably have to solder in a super long extension since now you would have to go up and over the rear hatch, through the rubber grommet, and down the side (akin to how you would wire up the rear hatch LED mod)
 

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That's really ridiculous.

I you were 15 years old, maybe on a Honda lmfao
Cannibal869, I do not find it ridiculous. Increasing visibility when you are stopping or lane changing seems to me to be a good idea, as these are two points where accidents are more likely to occur when a trailing driver doesn't know your intent. Also, if you were 11, 15, or 50, liking something is fine at any age. There's nothing wrong with simply liking something, even if younger people might also like it. Thank you for sharing your photos and information on the install.

I forgot to take a look at my tailgate to see if it would fit. I'll try to remember in the near future. My thought is that the strip occupies the same space between the hatch and the bumper regardless of which it is attached to. As I like the visibility of the lights, but don't want to worry about damaging them or cleaning out the dirt there, sticking them to the door just struck me as a possibility.

(fwiw, my other car is a Honda... a 14/15 year old Odyssey with a quarter million miles on it and still going strong)
 

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Honestly i love the concept of it. I would consider it myself because adding more rear visibility is always a plus. Good Job OP.
 

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I'm definitely not 15 (15x3 and then some) and I like it.

I still have to install my aftermarket horn (which I've had 3 months) and want to do the rear hatch LED (so I can see what's in my trunk) and would like the door puddle subaru emblems.

This would be another cool mod, but I'm way behind already! :D

Plus I'm getting ready to sell my house, so time is not in free supply!
 

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If it makes the user happy, then all the best. Haters gonna hate.

That does look pretty neat - I may do this on a trailer build as my Ascent would be more of a camper hauler. Thanks for sharing.
 
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