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How to: Diode Dynamics SS3 Pro Fog Lights Install

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ecoboost_xsport

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City, State
Orangevale, California
Year, Model & Trim Level
2015 Ford Explorer Sport
Diode Dynamics SS3 Pro Foglights Install

I did this mod some time ago, but just now getting to do the write up for it.

So I always wanted to have better lighting on this vehicle and went to HIDs years ago. Lately LED technology has been getting better so figured I'd try out what was on the market. I wanted to stay away from cheap overseas kits found on places like eBay. Did some research and learned about Diode Dynamics (Automotive LED Replacement Bulbs & Lighting Upgrades). Stuff is either made or assembled here in good ol' US of A.

Anyway, started out looking for foglight upgrades and I liked what they were offering with their SS3 Pro kit (Stage Series 3" SAE/DOT Type A Fog Light Kit). It's SAE/DOT legal so that's cool as well.

The kit required some changes as it wasn't plug-and-play (even though it was supposed to be listed for my application). They may now have what is needed though.

Finished installation:
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The foglight bracket once removed:
ISprxwZZkcqGlA?width=498&height=1024&cropmode=none.jpg


LED housing installed into the bracket:
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The issue came up when installing the bracket assembly back into the vehicle, it wouldn't seat properly. Here is how far the bracket is away from bolting up when the LED housing is installed:
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There are 3 screws that hold the bracket in place. Here is what it looks like behind the bumper without the bracket (I put my ball cap in the opening so the glare from the sun wouldn't wash out the pic, LOL):

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And here's one of the holes on the bracket:
M9uyOfmZiNN5aQ?width=498&height=1024&cropmode=none.jpg


Had to get creative so I found some old hardware and spacers in my bucket-o-spare-hardware, LOL:
PZmvDCAYRwgEXw?width=498&height=1024&cropmode=none.jpg


Don't ask me where that spacer came from, but they are about 1/2" long to fill in the space needed. I had 6 of them, 3 for each side. Here is how it looks on the bracket:
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And everything finally installed, now there is only a very small gap but I was okay with this:
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D2VSUvq7c74jCw?width=498&height=1024&cropmode=none.jpg


Here is the look on and off:
g1K9BULL5K3uZQ?width=1024&height=498&cropmode=none.jpg


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I need to get some photos from the drivers viewpoint at night, but holy crap these things light up the road...WAY better than the stock fogs or the HIDs I had prior to these. Now I just wish there was some high end LEDs for the headlights that fit into our housing (I've tried a few sets and most won't actually fit properly)
 



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As I am headed to the countryside full time in the next year, those look mighty tempting. Besides looking fantastic, being able to see all the deer and other critters that wait for you to get close before popping out on the road is a strong argument!
 






What you might want is to add 'driving' lights. Fog lights are just for that, 'fog'. I travel unlit country roads and find the high beams work well. Fog lights don't make much of a difference except for lighting up a little more of the side of the road as you are driving by. Upgrading the 'fogs' to a brighter light will negate their usefulness when needed for foggy or similar conditions. Adding actual 'driving' lights would be a better choice without eliminating the fog lights.

Peter
 






What you might want is to add 'driving' lights. Fog lights are just for that, 'fog'. I travel unlit country roads and find the high beams work well. Fog lights don't make much of a difference except for lighting up a little more of the side of the road as you are driving by. Upgrading the 'fogs' to a brighter light will negate their usefulness when needed for foggy or similar conditions. Adding actual 'driving' lights would be a better choice without eliminating the fog lights.

Peter

Thanks for your input. This was simply a How-To for anyone interested. I don't get much fog where I'm at and this car is not a daily driver, so I don't really care. Use the how-to or don't...doesn't bother me either way as it works great for me, I'm simply sharing my experiences...

And ensure you do research on these lights. They were, in fact, made to meet DOT and SAE fog designs. They aren't simply "bright lights".
 






Thanks for your input. This was simply a How-To for anyone interested. I don't get much fog where I'm at and this car is not a daily driver, so I don't really care. Use the how-to or don't...doesn't bother me either way as it works great for me, I'm simply sharing my experiences...
My post was intended for Fasterdamnit. Appreciate your writeup and I'm sure it will be helpful to some of the members.

Peter
 






What you might want is to add 'driving' lights. Fog lights are just for that, 'fog'. I travel unlit country roads and find the high beams work well. Fog lights don't make much of a difference except for lighting up a little more of the side of the road as you are driving by. Upgrading the 'fogs' to a brighter light will negate their usefulness when needed for foggy or similar conditions. Adding actual 'driving' lights would be a better choice without eliminating the fog lights.

Peter
I disagree. I want more light to the sides. That is where the last second interlopers hide right up the moment you are close. The 9011 high beams are a nice upgrade and I will enable fogs+high beams today or tomorrow. Also- my experience with Thule fog at Travis AFB is that the yellow fogs work better in dense fog.
 






My experience with the fogs lighting up the side is that unless you are crawling down the road, the minimal lighting that the fogs provide to the side of the road won't allow for any timely manuvering. That is why I don't even bother with them. That could also be because of the HIDs I had in my 2011 and the LEDs I have now.

Peter
 






My experience with the fogs lighting up the side is that unless you are crawling down the road, the minimal lighting that the fogs provide to the side of the road won't allow for any timely manuvering. That is why I don't even bother with them. That could also be because of the HIDs I had in my 2011 and the LEDs I have now.

Peter

I really need to get a photo up, but these things light the side of the road up incredibly. Only problem is I never took a photo of the light output before the install, so it will be tough to make it a true comparison.

But hey, sometimes we just want cool **** on our cars that serves no purpose whatsoever...doesn't sound like you're a fan of foglights...that's good to know and thank you for your valued input but I think we got it from here.
 






...........................................doesn't sound like you're a fan of foglights..........
Well you got that totally wrong. I have no issues with fog lights and could care less what people do with them. My comments on them are based on my personal experiences only.

Peter
 












So I finally got around to taking some comparison night shots. I did not take any photos of the HID fogs, so this could arguably be an invalid comparison, but figured I'd show at least something. I took four photos at each position while parked. In my attempt at making it equal and fair, I took each photo using my Samsung Galaxy S9+, mounted on a suction windshield mount. All shots where made in Manual Mode:
  • F1.5
  • 1/10s shutter speed
  • 4.30mm focal length
  • ISO400
  • No Flash

Order of shots in each grouping from top to bottom:
  1. Low Beam and Foglights
  2. Low Beam
  3. Low Beam and High Beam
  4. Parking Lights

1st Grouping:
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2nd Grouping:
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And finally, a light output comparison video:
 






Perfect!
Well done!
 






I got the HID 9005 dual beam hi/lo and it's hella bright. The high beam switch is really just a shade toggle. I like the amber LED fogs over any HID stuff. I have the H11 HIDs in my fogs and they are barely yellow-ish.
 






I got the HID 9005 dual beam hi/lo and it's hella bright. The high beam switch is really just a shade toggle. I like the amber LED fogs over any HID stuff. I have the H11 HIDs in my fogs and they are barely yellow-ish.
Nice.

I should mention, the low and high beams in those photos I posted are also 9005 dual Hi/Lo HIDs...
 






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