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Hopkins Tail Light Wiring Kit Installation - 2016 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

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How to Install the Hopkins Tail Light Wiring Kit on a 2016 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

Today in our 2016 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, we're going to take a look at and also show you how to install the Hopkins custom tail light wiring kit for towed vehicles. Part number is HM56200. All right, now here's a great look at what our wiring kit's going to look like before we start installing it. You can see here's the heart of the system. This is a weatherproof sealed box. Inside, it contains diodes. Now, these diodes are designed to prevent back feeding, so we won't have any back feed coming from our RV into our towed vehicle, so we're not going to have to worry about any electrical issues there. Now, we've got our signal wire here.

It's a 4 pole. This can easily be swapped out for a 4 pole round, 6 pole round, whatever it is that you'd like to hook up. We've got an extended length of that. This is going to run all the way back to our converter. We're sending the signal from our RV into our converter box, and then it's going to send that signal out.

The yellow wire side goes to our driver side. As you can see, it's just going to connect directly behind our tail light right in the factory wiring so we don't have to cut, we don't have to splice, we don't have to alter the wiring in our Jeep at all here. The one with the green wire, this is going to go over to our passenger side, and this allows us to essentially treat our vehicle just like a trailer. We plug it into the back of our towing vehicle, and as we operate the headlights, the blinkers, the breaks in our towing vehicle, the lights on our towed vehicle are going to work. The Jeep's lights are going to correspond with that and just keep us legal and also keep us safe so people know what our intentions are. Now, to make everything kind of go together here, they're going to give you a dust cover to go over the end of the wiring. We are going to be switching this our for a 6 pole, so we're actually going to be cutting that off.

We won't be using that. They also give you a mounting bracket for a 4 pole, some screws to help you get that mounted. As you can see here, we've got some zip ties. Now, I recommend getting a handful of longer zip ties. Some of the items that we're going to go around are pretty big, so having some maybe anywhere from like maybe 15 to 18 inches, somewhere in that range should be pretty good.

We've got a little self-tapping screw here. That's going to be for connecting our ground wire. You can see we've already got a ring terminal on it. If you're going to be using the 4 pole, it's already set. Now, the beginning installation, we're going to take off our 2 tail light housings here on the rear. I need to pull off these 2 screws that are located here on the inside via Phillips bit. Now, we should be able to slide kind of towards the middle of the vehicle and then it'll pop out for us. See right here on the back side, we're going to have our factory plug. We're going to press down on that tab and just give it a little wiggle there to separate it. I'll set this aside somewhere safe. We'll do the same thing for the other side. Now, on some models in the back of the driver side tail light, you're going to have two plugs. We want to separate the upper plug, and then the lower plug here, see it's just got a Christmas tree fastener that holds it in place. You want to pull that out and we'll set that aside. We'll do the same thing for the other side. Down inside we're going to have expanding foam insulation in there. We want to remove it off the floor. Then right down on the floor we're going to have a small panel. You can see you just lift up on one edge of it. It just has a couple of little keepers that kind of hold it in place. When we remove that, that's going to allow us the area to pass through all of our wiring. Now, with our passenger side opened up here, we'll head over to the driver's side and we'll get that opened up as well. Now, we want to take some of our dielectric grease, about half of it, and we're going to put it on each of our connectors here. We can just slide that factory wiring plug right in. Hear that click. You should be able to pull on it, make sure it's connected. Now, the rest of our wiring we can pass down through that opening that was created when we moved that foam out of the way. You'll see we have both of our harnesses coming out right down there. Now, that's where we're going to leave it for right now. We'll head underneath and route our wires over to the other side. All right, now let's take our longer wire with the orange, the green, and the brown wiring coming from it and we're going to pass this up and over the frame rail here. Here's where some of those longer zip ties can come in handy. We're going to use this cross tube and we're going to secure our wires to the top side of it to get it as far away from the tailpipe here as we can. Then we're just going to make sure that we get our wiring secured out anywhere we might have an area with rubbing, maybe braiding, and then of course we're going to trim the ends of those zip ties off just so it looks a little nicer. Now we'll pass our wire right up through our hole there, pull it out of there where we can get to it, make sure we pull out all of our slack. Now we'll use the other half of our terminal grease here and we'll be plugging this one into our factory connector as well. You can see we've got some excess wiring here. It's pretty typical. It's nice, too. It gives us plenty of room. We can choose our own routing option. What I'll do is just kind of gather this up and then another zip tie or even if you want to, some electrical tape you could wrap this up with just to keep it secure. You see that's going to be secured right to that factory wiring. Now on that small little access panel that we took out, we want to make an area for our wire to pass through. You see on this flat side faces the rear, that's the area I'm going to use. I want to just make a small notch in between these two catches. Those are what hold it in place. We don't want to do away with those. Little notch right in between them there. As you see, it doesn't need to be all that big, just large enough for that wire to pass through. I'm going to place it down in and as I do, I'll catch that wire right in there and finally just push it closed down on the floor. Now we're going to take a little bit of black silicone sealant and just fill in that hole so we won't have to worry about any moisture getting inside. All right, now with our wire connected over there in our passenger side, we'll know about how much length we're going to need so now we can get this driver side tidied up. I'm going to stick our converter box and all of the extra wire here up inside and we'll store that inside of the vehicle. Once we get that tucked up in there, we just want to pull that foam pad down, kind of get that hole sealed back off like it was from the factory. Now once that's inside there we'll get that all zip tied off. Right now we'll use a longer zip tie and secure it off something nice and solid here. There's wire movement here. You've also got your fuel filler neck, a couple options, whatever seems to be more appropriate for your application would be the one you want to use. All right, now we'll get our connector plugged in here. This is going to be from our new harness. It goes right in there. You want to hear that click. You'll be able to push/pull and then we'll slide that right back in. We'll get our screws threaded back in there and we can snug them up. All right, same process here on this side. Now I need to start running our 4 way up to the front of the vehicle. To make it easier, since I'm going to be changing this out, I'm going to go ahead and snip this off. We'll hang onto it because it has that ground wire on it. If that's long enough, we're going to reuse it. If not, we're going to need a short piece of wire and a ring terminal. We'll get to that later. What I'm going to do now is run this from the rear of the vehicle here, avoiding moving parts, avoiding sharp objects, sources of heat, things like that, right up to the very middle front of the vehicle. Any time we have an opportunity as we run this forward, we'll want to use a zip tie that's going to help prevent it from moving around on us. Now once we get to this point, rather than running right along here, along the exhaust or on the outside of the frame rail where there's not a lot to attach to, we're going to go right through the center of it. That'll keep it protected, up out of the way. If we happen to bounce over some sticks or a rock here and there, we don't want to worry about it. Now, to continue our run through that frame or to help us get our wire through the frame, I'm using a piece of airline tubing. You can use a thick piece of wire, like a coat hanger as well, just something a little bit stiffer than the wire so you can kind of poke it up through there. Once we get it up here, we'll be able to bring it out to the inside of our frame, which is great. It's going to protect it from the tire area and stuff like that. It's a nice large hole located pretty much right under the power steering here. All right, now as soon as we come out of the frame there, we want to put a zip tie in place, that way we won't have to worry about it sliding back through the frame or anything like that. Now, our pitman arm's going to be located right here, so we want to be sure that we use a couple zip ties going around that. We never want that to pull on our wire or anything like that. Now if we continue following that wire along, once we get up here closer to the front of the car, there's a connector that goes into the frame there, a little Christmas tree holds that wire in place. I want to get a zip tie pretty close to that. That's going to give me excellent support. Now we should be able to take our wire, and in our case our base plate had us cut an opening right in behind it so our wire's going to pass right through. If not, you can bring it out right above that under panel there. Now, in case you ever need to make any changes, it's not a bad idea since we have so much left over to just loop some up and then we can store it right under here, just zip tie it off. Here at the front, as we talked about before, we're going to be using a 6 pole round. This is from Roadmaster. The part number on it's RM-146-7. That's going to offer a 6 pole plug and then that flex is going to go to a 7 pole, which is going to plug into the back of most RVs. Pull the boot off. We want to slide it down our wire to start. Tuck that back there for now, figure out how much wire we're going to need and cut that off. I'm going to strip the ends of these back. Now I'm going to pull that ground wire off the back of the 4 pole plug. If you're using your 4 pole plug, there's a piece of metal right underneath here where we're going to be securing this. You can just do that now. I need to have a ground, however, of course for the lighting system here. I'm going to twist the two grounds that I'm going to be using together. We'll start by making that connection behind our 6 pole. Top of the plug here, looking at the back, our ground is going to be this one in the top left corner there. This is a little Phillips screwdriver, a little flat blade. Thread it, place those down in, and then it's just a matter or tightening the screw back down. If we come down one, that's going to be our left turn, one more's going to be our right turn, and then one up here's our trailer marker. The yellow, that's going to be our left turn. The green's going to be our right turn. Brown's our trailer marker. At this point, I like to use a little bit of tape and kind of wrap this all up. I'll do it all the way back to where it goes into the vehicle itself, just to keep it a little bit more protected and also looking nice. Slide that over. What we have are the two self-tapping screws that came with our base plate. Now, if your base plate doesn't have the mounting tabs here, to secure your items too, you could also use part number 18140, just a tail ready short bracket. We'll go underneath there and get our ground connected and we'll be ready to test it out. Where we want it, I'm going to start my hole first with my self-tapping screw here. Once you've got your hole started, slide your ring terminal over the top of it and get it secured down. All right, we'll start by testing out the signal that will act as our turn signal and our brake signal. You got our running lights there. Look at that right turn signal, that left turn signal. Check the brakes. All right, perfect. Now, with everything working as it should, that's going to complete our installation of the Hopkins custom tail light wiring kit for towed vehicles, part number is HM58200, on our 2016 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited.

Frank S.


Where does the second ground wire go or come from?

Etrailer Expert

Jon G.


The first ground wire mentioned is for if you're only using the 4-Way connector. Later in the video we cut off that same 4-Way and connect those wires to a 6-Way that will match up with the umbilical that goes to our motorhome. We used that same ground wire that we cut off of the 4-Way to make a ground connection for the 6-Way.

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