A while back, I installed extra interior LED lighting in the front footwells, in the bottom of the B pillars and the hatch. I tied the footwell lights to the dome lamp circuit via the Body Control Module (BCM); they're on a timer/dimmer and work marvelously. I tied the B pillar LEDs to the original hatch circuit, which worked just fine until I discovered that the B pillar LEDs only illuminated with the hatch LEDs. That is to say, the dome/footwell lamps are on a separate circuit so the B pillar lamps don't illuminate when a door is open; they *do* illuminate when the hatch is opened.
I didn't like that, and didn't realize it until after we completed the project. I thought I had tested it, using a rear door switch, but the car fooled me into thinking I had it wired as desired...i.e., the B pillar lamps would illuminate with the dome/footwell lamps. No. And during testing, the hatch was always open, so that circuit was always active. Bummer.
So, I decided to address that issue. I ran a wire from the + side of the B pillar circuit on the driver's side forward to the connector for the footwell lights. Done. Now, when any door is opened, all interior lights illuminate.
Then I got to thinking: high-end cars have courtesy lamps at the bottom of the doors that illuminate the ground when the door is opened. Nice feature. I had four LEDs from superbrightleds.com:
Just have to drill a hole in the bottom of the door panel; for power, I tapped the circuit for the backlighting for the door lock buttons. That circuit is tied to the interior lights/daytime running lights. What that means is that anytime after sundown, the backlighting is on for the interior gizmos like door lock switches, dash switches, etc.
Of course, I didn't know that at the time of installation. All I knew was that the door switch would activate the interior lighting/door lock switch backlighting, so I thought we were good to go.
*Edit: Drilling the hole. The instructions for the LEDs say to drill an 11.5mm hole. No, really. Eleven point five millimeters. WTF has an 11.5mm drill bit?!!
I tapped into the circuit for the door lock switches (yellow wire) for 12v and the black wire for ground using wire taps. Made up a wire harness from an old towing wire harness I found in my junk box. Tested it a few times. Seems to work. My concern was that the circuit would be able to handle the extra load; however, we're talking LEDs, and the draw is so low that theoretically there should be no issue. Legacy of the Incandescent.
Test video #1:
The first test video shows the makeshift circuits I created. The circuit is on a timer/dimmer. Seems to work.
2nd test video:
I've only done the driver side door so far, but the results look promising. The downside is that the light is on after dark; it illuminates the footwell and door jamb somewhat. However, my left arm blocks the light from being a nuisance, and since the install I've forgotten it's even there.
I'll do the passenger side and redo the driver side wiring harness because it is really poorly done, and I've purchased a (rather expensive) crimping tool to make the connections using Molex connectors.