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Thread: gauges, WB, made EASY! Writeup included

  1. #76
    SF Contributing Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    What's connected to that fuse now? IOW, what's drawing the power? And which fuse is it?
    1995 Supra NA, Baltic Blue, targa, TRD LSD, Recaro Sport seats, Cusco carbon fiber front/rear strut tower bars, 97+ front turns
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    1995 Supra TT, BPU+, Baltic Blue, targa, TRD front/Cusco rear strut tower bars, 98 headlights w/ 6k HIDs, 97+ front turns, BNR turbos, Tial BOV, HKS Super Drager exhaust, SSR Professor SP1 wheels, Racelogic TC, VPC/GCC
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  3. #77
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    so here is my relay connections
    #30 to a 30amp fuse to + of battery
    #87 to positive of strip that supplies to my WB gauge and WB sensor
    #86 to an add a fuse that connects to HTR 7.5A then switched to seat heater 15A. no change
    #85 to chassis ground

    the relay is rated as such from radioshack
    at 136mA, looks like my relay is on when my car is in the off position.

    does that help in clarifying how I wired it?
    Last edited by shenofjo; 04-07-2014 at 06:19 PM.
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  4. #78
    SF Contributing Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    ^ Try a different relay. Maybe it's defective?

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  6. #79
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    found the problem. human error! i swapped the constant 12V with switched 12V. no wonder the relay kept drawing power and the gauges the relay power didnt turn on until the switched 12V turned on to power the relay.

  7. #80
    Hardcore Night Warrior chevydude's Avatar
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    Thanks, Slither for the tech article. I used this application to wire four gauges on my '66 Chevy Impala. A water temp, oil, battery, and tach. Here are a few pics. To mount the relay and terminals, I held them against the chassis where I wanted them, grabbed my Dremmel and made pilot holes in order to ease the installation of screwing them on. I didn't use an add a fuse that's exactly as you did/others, but something similar in concept yet different in design as seen in the top photo. These old Chevys have male terminals for accessories, so I just did what was said here, and checked for a switched 12v connection. I think that was said here, that or I thought that's what I'd need to do.






    I also had a third terminal strip made out as a connection for grounds as seen here. The larger yellow gauge (I think I used 12 or 14 it was in the summer!) is the ground wire. Initially I wanted to buy a black wire of the same gauge, but didn't find it reasonable to get 15 feet of wire for only 7 inches or so of use.



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  8. #81
    SupraForums Member aphlux's Avatar
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    Curious, has anyone considered using a spare relay in the fusebox for this? I might do this tomorrow, I already have the strips made.
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  9. #82
    Hardcore Night Warrior chevydude's Avatar
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    Let us know how it goes!

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    Awesome idea. i will definitely be using this. It will clean up that horrid mess i have behind my radio. Thank you

  11. #84
    Cardinals! codex's Avatar
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    Interesting to come across this thread now.. As I'm making something nearly identical for my car, with the addition of regulated 9v and 5v circuits for other electronics not specifically designed to run off 12-14v.
    - Jeff
    1994 Supra 6-speed Twin Turbo
    2001 Lexus IS300


  12. #85
    SupraForums Member NgoFcukinWay's Avatar
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    Based on Slthr's initial drawing, which fuse location does pin 86 go to in the fuse box? Would that, too, go into the seat heater slot like bitshftr mentioned below or to something like the cigarette fuse?

    Quote Originally Posted by bitshftr View Post
    Dominator, a good source of ignition power is the unused seat heater fuse socket in the fuse box at the driver's left kickpanel. Stick a "flag" terminal into the top contact of that fuse socket, add an inline fuse, then run that wire (14 or 12 gauge) to wherever your gauges are. This is your "ignition power bus". Tap into that wire with Posi-taps (or something similar) for each component that needs ignition power. You will not need a relay since the gauges don't draw a lot...the seat heater circuit is rated at 15 amps...but good practice is to add up the current draw of each thing you're connecting to the circuit to make sure the total doesn' exceed the circuit's rating.

    If I am understanding this whole thing correctly, the IGN power would be its own third and independent strip. Will this require a 12v power source from the battery along with a relay or would its power source just come from the SEAT-HTR location of the fuse box with the use of an add-a-fuse?

    For light source, I run an "illumination+" bus using the same concept, but my source is the cigarette lighter illumination+ wire. I use a Posi-tap on this wire, which is 12v hot when the parking lights or headlights are on. Note that there's also an illumination- (negative) wire connected to the cigarette lighter, which is grounded through the dash-light-dimmer rheostat. I generally run an "illumination-" bus off this wire, which I use as illumination- for the backlights of added buttons, and some stereos. Neither of my gauges allows for the use of this wire though.

    Which wire of the cigarette lighter needs to be tapped? I can't really find a solid source for the pin-out that will show this.
    1993.5 Toyota Supra ....with stuff.... .... and it's sorta broken....
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  13. #86
    SF Contributing Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NgoFcukinWay View Post
    Based on Slthr's initial drawing, which fuse location does pin 86 go to in the fuse box? Would that, too, go into the seat heater slot like bitshftr mentioned below or to something like the cigarette fuse?
    Relay terminal 86 is the input of the relay, which receives power from the car's fuse box. The intent is to tap into any fuse that is hot when the ignition (key) is in the ON position. I'm recommending the unused seat heater fuse socket, since it is hot with the key in ON and START (so the device doesn't cut on, then imediately cut off during start, then cut back on again, like other ON-position fuses will). That seat heater fuse is also a 15amp circuit, which can handle quite a bit of stuff attached to it, which really negates the need for the relay.

    Relay terminal 87 is the output of the relay, which energizes the entire strip in Slither's drawing.

  14. #87
    SupraForums Member NgoFcukinWay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bitshftr View Post
    Relay terminal 86 is the input of the relay, which receives power from the car's fuse box. The intent is to tap into any fuse that is hot when the ignition (key) is in the ON position. I'm recommending the unused seat heater fuse socket, since it is hot with the key in ON and START (so the device doesn't cut on, then imediately cut off during start, then cut back on again, like other ON-position fuses will). That seat heater fuse is also a 15amp circuit, which can handle quite a bit of stuff attached to it, which really negates the need for the relay.

    Relay terminal 87 is the output of the relay, which energizes the entire strip in Slither's drawing.
    Ok. cool. I understand that much now. Certain gauges like my Greddy P/H/W boost gauge has a line for IGN switch and Illumination. Could I set up a third strip for that? Which fuse would I use in the fuse box for that one if the main Battery strip will be using the SEAT-HTR fuse? Which line off of the cigarette light can be used for the illumination?

  15. #88
    Cardinals! codex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NgoFcukinWay View Post
    Ok. cool. I understand that much now. Certain gauges like my Greddy P/H/W boost gauge has a line for IGN switch and Illumination. Could I set up a third strip for that? Which fuse would I use in the fuse box for that one if the main Battery strip will be using the SEAT-HTR fuse? Which line off of the cigarette light can be used for the illumination?
    I believe the +12v Illumination wires used for Greddy gauges is simply an analog signal wire used by the gauges to determine brightness, and so there shouldn't be much of a power draw. Unlike the new switched +12v ignition power circuit useful for many devices that only draw power from it, you shouldn't need to create a whole new circuit for this since you won't be pulling multiple amps off this +12v illumination line.

    An example is my Greddy Multi D/A Gauges.. I'll run another test with them to show this, but they use +12v constant from battery, +12v switched ignition, and +12v illumination. I'll get current readings from all 3 to see how many amps all 3 lines draw. I suspect it's mostly just the +12v battery line.. maybe also the +12v switched, but I highly doubt the +12v illumination is more than a signal line.

    Here's a quick shitty Paint diagram of the switched circuit I'm going to use:

    I'm using 10AWG wire for power from battery-fuse-relay-fused distribution block. The gauge of wire is important for how many amps you plan on having flow and the length of the circuit. 10AWG will easily handle 30 Amps for 10' of wire in the circuit without a problem, and I don't plan on ever going near 20A, so I'm sticking with a 20A fuse.

    I'm using 18AWG for the add-a-circuit fuse from the seat heater to the relay to ground. I'm only using a 1A fuse at the seat heater's add-a-circuit fuse holder as it shouldn't draw much power ~ 136mA.

    V=IR: with a 80 Ohm resistance at the relay coil, at 12V it's pulling 136 mA when ignition is on.

    Although probably not necessary, I'm using a 1N4007 diode as a flyback diode parallel to the coil to reduce any chance of damage from reverse flow when the coil switches off. The 1N4007 is rated for up to 1000V. The car's electrical system can probably handle this reverse voltage spike without a problem, but the diode was $0.15 and good practice with any relay that doesn't have one built in.

    When a relay switches off, the magnetized field around the coil shuts down, which causes electricity to flow in the opposite direction back up to the seat heater fuse and beyond. Although only for a very brief time, this short spike in voltage can be many times higher than the input voltage. This explains it well:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ow-QWA6VGFE

    I'm using a fused distribution block at the +12v side so I can pick individual fuse ratings for each additional component, and the sum of these fuses shouldn't surpass the main fuse I have near the battery. The negative side also as a non-fused distribution block as a central source to place all the grounds, with two separate ground wires going to two locations on the chassis. I didn't diagram the grounding side of the circuit as that should be about as simple as it gets.

    Here are some of the items I'm using:
    Fused distribution block:
    http://www.amazon.com/HELLA-H8496011...dp/B000VU9D20/
    Add-a-circuit, this goes in the seat heater fuse location
    http://www.amazon.com/Bussmann-BP-HH.../dp/B004AHADCO
    Bosch-style relay (you can get them cheaper than this, and you only need SPST, not SPDT, but either will work)
    http://www.amazon.com/Metra-Install-.../dp/B000P61E36
    Ground-side terminal block
    http://www.amazon.com/Position-Doubl.../dp/B005I03WOI
    10AWG in-line weather resistant fuse holder
    http://www.amazon.com/-line-ACT-Wate.../dp/B0002KR88A
    Last edited by codex; 06-04-2014 at 09:31 AM.

  16. #89
    Cardinals! codex's Avatar
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    Just ran the current tests through my gauges.. so here's an FYI on how these gauges draw power..

    This is the AEM Wideband Failsafe, which I've only got hooked up to +12v switched ignition and the wideband sensor right now. It spiked to around 1.7A of power for a few seconds while starting up, then varied from 0.9A to 1.2A:


    This is the Greddy Multi D/A Gauge with Boost dial, and only the boost sensor hooked up. It is only hooked up to 12v battery and 12v switched ignition.

    Here is the 12v switched ignition current.. which only shows 1 to 2 mA of current, so it clearly only uses the 12v switched ignition circuit as a signal:

    ..and the 12v battery current.. which shows about 140 mA of current - clearly the main draw of power for this gauge:


    For some gauges, most I suspect, you could have quite a few of ~150mA of current spliced off the factory lines without a problem. Other gauges, like this AEM Wideband Failsafe, are drawing a decent amount of power and are well-suited to the custom switched 12v line. In the case of the Greddy Multi D/A gauges, I will probably just run another fused line from my battery to the fused distribution block without a relay to have a constant +12v source for these gauges.

  17. #90
    SupraForums Member NgoFcukinWay's Avatar
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    Codec, definitely good info, but more than I need at the moment. lol

    I guess I wasn't clear enough about my question. Since the relay is going to utilize the Seat HTR fuse for its own 12v Switch, Where would be a good place to tap in for the gauge itself for a 12V switch, since there are 2 different items requiring a 12v switch? Or should I just tap into the same Seat HTR line for that? I've got everything else figured out now, I just need to know of which source to tap into for the gauge's own 12V switch source rather than the relay's 12v switch.

    *edit* scratch that. Just figured it out. lol
    Last edited by NgoFcukinWay; 07-02-2014 at 09:35 PM.

  18. #91

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    Using this for sure

  19. #92
    SupraForums Member slither's Avatar
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    This is the main reason for this, chances are you will never have more electronics(minus radio stuff which is its circuit anyway) than a 30+ amp relay can supply
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  20. #93
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    Wow, this thread/topic has come a long way! Thanks...

    I just recently added a relay/accessories circuit at the dash, using fused 4-gauge (way bigger than needed) from the distribution block to the 30-amp relay, to the switched 12v distribution block for the wideband, gauges, and general accessories... to create separate circuit, away/different from the circuit that the ECUs are on.

  21. #94
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    I removed my Greddy boost gauge which originally was wired to the clock wires. Now I upgraded to innovate scg-1 and wired it via this thread with relay and all, I removed the boost gauge from clock wires. What should I do with those wires as I can hear more interference from my stereo now in key on position, while no static at all in position 2. Taping it up with electrical tape isn't enough apparently. Thanks

    edit: solution found. static came from running the antenna and defrost antenna together into the stereo with a Y connection. removed the defrost antenna wire and no more static!
    Last edited by shenofjo; 07-27-2017 at 12:22 AM.

  22. #95
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    Now that i have a bunch of gauges and sensors wired up, I think i am starting to have issues... I started hitting boost cut with BCC installed already. which is weird! I tested the power strip and it shows 11.99 V on my voltmeter. Am it supposed to get more than 12V? am i running too many thing electronics on one strip with only 10gauge 12 V and ground wires?

  23. #96
    Now...Whitesupra94
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    If you're using an 'add a fuse' on an existing circuit (say the stock MKIV radio circuit, rated at 7.5Amps), then the total of the two fuses in the add a fuse must be BELOW OR EQUAL the original 7.5Amp fuse, correct?

    It would seem to me that without knowing what the upstream wire(the wire feeding the driver side kick-panel fuse box for the radio circuit), we cannot safely increase the Amperage past the original circuit Amperage.

    Am I correct, or am I missing something here?

  24. #97
    SF Contributing Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackSupra93 View Post
    If you're using an 'add a fuse' on an existing circuit (say the stock MKIV radio circuit, rated at 7.5Amps), then the total of the two fuses in the add a fuse must be BELOW OR EQUAL the original 7.5Amp fuse, correct?

    It would seem to me that without knowing what the upstream wire(the wire feeding the driver side kick-panel fuse box for the radio circuit), we cannot safely increase the Amperage past the original circuit Amperage.

    Am I correct, or am I missing something here?
    You are correct. The OEM fuse is 7.5amp because the wiring and connectors in that circuit are sized to handle 7.5amps max. Now, if you knew for certain that your downstream radio circuit loads were only 5amps, then the add-a-fuse could be 2.5 amps max.

  25. #98
    Now...Whitesupra94
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    Quote Originally Posted by bitshftr View Post
    You are correct. The OEM fuse is 7.5amp because the wiring and connectors in that circuit are sized to handle 7.5amps max. Now, if you knew for certain that your downstream radio circuit loads were only 5amps, then the add-a-fuse could be 2.5 amps max.
    After reading about how the add a fuse works, I think this is actually incorrect now. I'm hoping you could explain more.

    A couple of questions:
    1) Does the driver kick panel fuse box receive input directly from the battery? If not, what/how much is being supplied to that fuse box?
    2) It seems that the 'add a fuse' / fuse tap methods actually do create a completely independent circuit next to the original circuit...so even if I'm using a 7.5A fuse location in the car (stock radio) the secondary slot in the 'add a fuse' will be able a completely new circuit and able to receive however much the fuse box itself is capable of handling (but limited to whatever the downstream components can handle it). Can you confirm this?

  26. #99
    SF Contributing Member bitshftr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackSupra93 View Post
    1) Does the driver kick panel fuse box receive input directly from the battery?
    Not exactly. Power flows from the battery, through the engine-bay fuse box, through a fusable link, and at least one other fuse, then on to the kick panel fuse box.

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackSupra93 View Post
    If not, what/how much is being supplied to that fuse box?
    Amps (power) don't get "supplied" to the fuse box. Accessories "pull" amps from the circuit. If you short the hot terminal of one of the fuses to ground, the battery will try to push its entire capactity through that circuit, which is why fuses blow.


    Quote Originally Posted by BlackSupra93 View Post
    2) It seems that the 'add a fuse' / fuse tap methods actually do create a completely independent circuit next to the original circuit...so even if I'm using a 7.5A fuse location in the car (stock radio) the secondary slot in the 'add a fuse' will be able a completely new circuit and able to receive however much the fuse box itself is capable of handling (but limited to whatever the downstream components can handle it). Can you confirm this?
    Kindof. But you are limited to the size/capacity of the upstream wiring and connectors that feed the hot side of the fuse socket that you are connecting the add-a-fuse to. If Toyota put a 7.5amp fuse in the radio slot, it's entirely possible that the wiring and connectors upstream of that fuse socket are only sized to handle 7.5amps of current. Pulling more is how you start a fire. This is especially true of later-model Toyotas, like my 2008 4Runner, where most of the wiring is smaller. They only put the bare minimum of copper required for each circuit into the car's wiring.

  27. #100
    Now...Whitesupra94
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    Quote Originally Posted by bitshftr View Post
    Not exactly. Power flows from the battery, through the engine-bay fuse box, through a fusable link, and at least one other fuse, then on to the kick panel fuse box.



    Amps (power) don't get "supplied" to the fuse box. Accessories "pull" amps from the circuit. If you short the hot terminal of one of the fuses to ground, the battery will try to push its entire capactity through that circuit, which is why fuses blow.




    Kindof. But you are limited to the size/capacity of the upstream wiring and connectors that feed the hot side of the fuse socket that you are connecting the add-a-fuse to. If Toyota put a 7.5amp fuse in the radio slot, it's entirely possible that the wiring and connectors upstream of that fuse socket are only sized to handle 7.5amps of current. Pulling more is how you start a fire. This is especially true of later-model Toyotas, like my 2008 4Runner, where most of the wiring is smaller. They only put the bare minimum of copper required for each circuit into the car's wiring.

    Thanks for the reply. I think we're on the same page, although my electrical terminology isn't the best. It does seem like once you've added a circuit, the limitation is how much current can be drawn before the wires upstream fail, which makes sense. This is something I've seen very little information on, and haven't seen talked about much.

    Do you have any insight on the wiring coming into that fuse box and how much it can handle? I've already got something in my seat heater slot that needs to be isolated, so that choice is out. I've been trying to find what the cigarette lighter fuse location and the radio fuse location can handle, but I don't think I'm going to know until I get down in there..and even then, I'm not sure how easy it will be to determine.


    Since SEAT HTR fuse is off limits and upstream of the others is hard to determine, it seems like the safest approach would be to use a relay (like mentioned in the original post) that is switched by either RADIO or CIG LTR fuses, but draws power directly from the battery. Do you agree?
    Last edited by BlackSupra93; 04-15-2019 at 07:40 AM.

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