Ambient light Upgrade M3

Djgabriel2004

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#1
As everyone knows Ambient light in Tesla is not the best so I decided to Upgrade the Foot well lights with Abstract ocean ones, however after a few days driving it with them i felt that it needed a little bit more.

There's easy ways to hook up 12v wire in a regular car but not in Tesla and the job gets a little bit complicated if you want them to be controlled with the Tesla Screen.

Here is the first Tesla Model 3 Ambient lights controlled from the Screen.

Let me know what do you think.


image (3).jpg image (4).jpg image (6).jpg image (8).jpg
 
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#2
Interesting mod. Please share more about the equipment and process. Looks like you added an LED strip along the dash trim.
 
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#4
What is the strip across the dash, is it EL Wire? It looks cool. Does it reflect back on you from the windshield? Are you powering it from the under dash wires?
 
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Djgabriel2004

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#5
Hi All,
Here is a DIY for the Ambient Lights.

Estimated Cost $150, Estimated Labor time ~3hs

IMPORTANT IMPORTANT IMPORTANT: don't do that if you don't have basic electric knowledge or if you don't feel confident with that mod. Also Tesla Might void your car warranty if you do it.. soooo do it on your own risk.


At the beginning I tried with EL wire but The model 3 Doesn't have any place to put it and also I didn't like how it looks during the day so I found this kind of optic fiber with a Laser light that fits perfectly in the M3 A/C Vents.

IMG_4628.JPG

There's a Small Gap at the end of the each side of the Air vent where you can pass the fiber thru and it will hold it. don't pull to hard because the Fiber can break.

IMG_4509.JPG

you need to remove the Plastic triangle, pass the fiber thru the holes and grab it in the foot well (Remove the plastic where the foot well light is (1 screw and 2 little plastic things that you need to pull out)
IMG_4492.JPG

Since Tesla has the Self healing fuses where it will cut the power if it detects more power draw than what it is expecting I had to find another Ambient light where I can attach it get the power from. (It might be because I have the Abstract ocean foot well lights so I assume they are pulling more energy than the Stock ones)
I decided to Take the power from The Ambient light that is in the door where is the cup holder (Since it's a small LED I assume it has a little bit of GAP so It allowed me to Connect the Laser without tripping the Fuse)

- You need to remove the door panel (there's a 3rd Screw under the Plastic red Reflective light) check the this video if you are not sure how to do it.

After you remove the Door panel it will look like this. Try to Avoid disconnecting any wires that goes to the panel, you know, just in case.
IMG_4517.JPG

The best way to pass the wire thru the rubber booth is from the door to the car so you might need to remove the speaker. there's some youtube videos with good ideas... I used a Bike brake wire plus a zip tie.

The wire needs to be spliced to the LED bulb wire, RED-RED and BLACK-BLACK also follow the original harness and tape it every 5 inches or so to avoid any lose Vibration remember (vibration=noise)

IMG_45131111.jpg


You can see the way I ran the new wires in this video so if service has to remove the panel the new wiring wont bother.

There's space where you can put the Laser and the 12v to USB converter under this plastic

image (3).jpg


Hope you liked that mod. and let me know if you have any questions.


Materials needed

-2.5M Optic Fiber plus Illuminator (Link) This code will give you a discount: WELCOME-EG18
-12v To USB Converter (Link)
-24 AWG wire (Link)
-Low Voltage connector (Link)
 

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#6
Man thanks for posting the door panel removal video! I'm having issues with my passenger good and I'm wondering if they forgot to put back in the insulation.

So basically you spliced it into the door cubby light?

Lasers and fiber optics this is great. I can't get the Optic Fiber plus Illuminator link to load but it might be the proxy I am behind.

Would something like this work instead of the laser?
 

Djgabriel2004

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#8
Hi All,
Here is a little DIY for the Ambient Lights.

Estimated Cost $150, Estimated Labor time ~3hs

IMPORTANT IMPORTANT IMPORTANT: don't do that if you don't have basic electric knowledge or if you don't feel confident with that mod. Also Tesla Might void your car warranty if you do it.. soooo do it on your own risk.


At the beginning I tried with EL wire but The model 3 Doesn't have any place to put it and I didn't like how it looks during the day so I found this kind of optic fiber with a Laser light that fits perfectly in the M3 A/C Vents.

View attachment 21854

There's a Small Gap at the end of the Air vent where you can pass the fiber thru and it will hold it. dont pull to hard because the Fiber can break.

View attachment 21856

you need to remove the Plastic triangle, pass the fiber thru the holes and grab it in the foot well (Remove the plastic where the foot well light is (1 screw and 2 little plastic things that you need to pull out)
View attachment 21857

Since Tesla has the Self healing fuses where it will cut the power if it detects more power draw than what it is expecting I had to find another Ambient light where I can attach it. so the next one is the Ambient light that is in the door right where the cup holder is.

- You need to remove the door panel (there's a 3rd Screw under the Plastic red light) check the here the video.

it will look something like this.
View attachment 21863

The best way to pass the wire thru the rubber booth is from the door to the car so you might need to remove the speaker. there's some youtube videos with good ideas... I used a Bike brake wire plus a zip tie.

The wire needs to be attached to the light bulb wire, RED-RED and BLACK-BLACK also follow the original harness, put tape every 5 inches or so to avoid any lose Vibration remember (vibration=noise)

View attachment 21865


You can see how I ran the wires in this video

There's space where you can put the Laser and the voltage to USB converter under this plastic

View attachment 21866


Hope you liked that mod. and let me know if you have any questions.


This is a video during the day.
Materials needed

-2.5M Optic Fiber plus Illuminator (Link)
-12v To USB Converter (Link)
-24 AWG wire (Link)
-Low Voltage connector (Link)
 

GDN

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#9
Very nice. In a few days can you give us more update on if you get any windshield glare at night? Any other drawbacks after a few days. I much prefer this to the EL lighting. Most of that is too fragile and I can't see it holding up too long. Much better pricing on what @glamisduner found, but I am about only doing a mod like this once. I would just want a faint glow from the light, not bright, not reflecting off the windshield at night etc.

Very nicely done from what I see so far. Thanks for documenting.
 

eXntrc

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#10
That looks really sharp @Djgabriel2004 . Thanks for sharing!

I'm thinking about doing this myself, but like others I would like to know about windshield glare. Also, how many feet / meters did you buy? In your photos the foot wells look pretty bright so I'm wondering if you have a lot of fiber coiled up in there or if it just goes straight across?

For those having trouble with the link to the fiber optic kit, here's the one originally referenced:

https://www.ellumiglow.com/laser-wire/opaldrive-laser-wiretm-2-5m-system

And here are several other options, including even multi-color:

https://www.ellumiglow.com/laser-wire
 

Djgabriel2004

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#11
That looks really sharp @Djgabriel2004 . Thanks for sharing!

I'm thinking about doing this myself, but like others I would like to know about windshield glare. Also, how many feet / meters did you buy? In your photos the foot wells look pretty bright so I'm wondering if you have a lot of fiber coiled up in there or if it just goes straight across?
I got 5m but it’s too much so I had to cut it. 2.5M will be enough. And the foot wells are illuminated by the abstract ocean Blue lights.
I’m (5’11”) and the glare (which is minimum) is way over my line of vision and it doesn’t Bother me at all. The night vídeo I posted was my first try so So you’ll see a lot of fiber hanging on each side 🤣
 
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AO - Pete

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#12
Nice work. I wonder if the footwell circuit (which is stupidly sensitive) would settle with the new load once the car has been through a sleep cycle. The AO footwell bulbs do draw 3x the power (0.99w, vs. 0.31 for the factory bulbs), but after a sleep cycle the car is happy again. If so, it would be easy to create a Y connector that spurs off one of the bulbs, to save all the other splicing and trim removal.
 

Djgabriel2004

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#13
Nice work. I wonder if the footwell circuit (which is stupidly sensitive) would settle with the new load once the car has been through a sleep cycle. The AO footwell bulbs do draw 3x the power (0.99w, vs. 0.31 for the factory bulbs), but after a sleep cycle the car is happy again. If so, it would be easy to create a Y connector that spurs off one of the bulbs, to save all the other splicing and trim removal.

Thanks Pete, that’d Be awesome however i tried but it didn’t recover after the deep sleep cycle. It did it when I left the AO light by itself. I assume that solution is possible if the car has the stock footwell LED, but yours looks way brighter than stock ones, also the Blue Light from the laser and the LED is almost identical. (In the pic looks kinda purple but it’s blue blue)
 
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eXntrc

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#14
@AO - Pete if you manage to come up with a solution to tap at the footwell and still have the AO lights I'd be very interested. I would like to do both mods just like @Djgabriel2004 did. I think it looks fantastic. Unfortunately, I think I'd want to do the dual color laser modules, which I'm assuming is going to draw twice the power and make an even tighter fit on the power budget.
 

Djgabriel2004

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#16
Looks like the only options are 1M, 2M and 5M but you mentioned 2.5m. Would 2M be too short?
The link I posted is for a single color 2.5M. I think car has 1.87m wide so you’re going to be kinda short with 2M if you want to put the laser where I put it. unless you find a closer space where to put it. Otherwise get 5m and make a roll with the excess fiber. (If you get Single color You can cut it)

The Dual color will be one laser on each side and it will make a fixed color mix (not color changing) so you can’t cut it. and definitely you’ll need to do the roll and hide it.
If you still want to go with Dual color I’d recommend you to get the power from both doors. (You’ll have one laser on each side of the fiber) To play safe with the power draw
 

eXntrc

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#17
The Dual color will be one laser on each side and it will make a fixed color mix (not color changing)
When I say color changing what I mean is getting a different color on each side and turning on fade mode for both sides. The result is a fiber that changes between Color A, Gradient of A -> B, and Color B over time. You can see the effect in the following video at 58 seconds:


Fade could also be turned off for a fixed color gradient of A -> B.
 

eXntrc

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#18
Oh, I see. @Djgabriel2004 it looks like you went with the Capsule module rather than the Opal Drive? Did you do that for brightness or just smaller install size? The capsule module appears to be 3X brighter than the Opal Drive, but it doesn't appear to support the fade mode I mentioned above. Do you feel the 70 mW of brightness is needed? If I went with a Dual Drive Opal I'm guessing that would be 20 mW x 2 for a total of 40 wW.
 

AO - Pete

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#19
@AO - Pete if you manage to come up with a solution to tap at the footwell and still have the AO lights I'd be very interested. I would like to do both mods just like @Djgabriel2004 did. I think it looks fantastic. Unfortunately, I think I'd want to do the dual color laser modules, which I'm assuming is going to draw twice the power and make an even tighter fit on the power budget.
Thinking more about it, I don't think we'd be able to tap the footwell lights. The reason we had to redesign them is that the car reduces the voltage on the circuit to dim the lights when the car in is gear. The lights in the door don't dim, so for this it's a more stable circuit.

I'm still going to poke around to see if there's a more convenient circuit to tap into. The dash actually comes out quite easily (relative statement, but possibly less of a faff than the door), but the 3 is so different to any other car when it comes to tapping for a switch 12v feed, and I don't remember what's under there.