How to install a Royalty Core Light Bar Truck Grille

Lots of people see these new grill replacements for their trucks for sale and on cool truck builds but they don’t really have a good understanding of the logistics of how to install them. You either don’t know at all and won’t buy the product due to uncertainty, or you buy it without thinking how it works and regret it because you can’t figure it out.

There’s a new video out explaining a lot of information about these steel mesh aftermarket grilles for trucks and how to do the install. Here’s the video detailing how to install a Royalty Core grille replacement on a Toyota Tundra using Vision X LED offroad light bars:

The first and most important thing most truck enthusiasts probably don’t know is that you have to cut out the center section of your original grille first, in order to install the new one. On some vehicles that middle section will just pop out and there’s no cutting involved, but most of the time you’re not that lucky!

This is what the grille on the Tundra looked like before being cut up to fit the Royalty Core grille.

This is what the grille on the Tundra looked like before being cut up to fit the Royalty Core grille.

This is what the Tundra grille looked like after being modified. The middle is cut out so the new grille insert can fit in place properly.

This is what the Tundra grille looked like after being modified. The middle is cut out so the new grille insert can fit in place properly.

Once you have the original grille removed and the center section cut out, if you do it properly the new aftermarket steel mesh grille should fit in place. To hold it in place the new grille should come with some type of mounting mechanism. The Royalty Core grilles come with a bolt and anchor type attachment that works really well:

Royalty Core grilles have some of the best mounting hardware on the market. This method makes it very easy to install.

Royalty Core grilles have some of the best mounting hardware on the market. This method makes it very easy to install.

Royalty Core grilles have some of the best mounting hardware on the market. This method makes it very easy to install.

Royalty Core grilles have some of the best mounting hardware on the market. This method makes it very easy to install.

When you get the new grille insert in place then it’s time to install the light bars. Most of the time they will come packaged separately and it’s up to the installer to mount the lights. This is good because the lights add a lot of weight to the product and can make the grille hard to handle.

The LED light bars mount to the back side of the grille so just the face of the light is showing.

The LED light bars mount to the back side of the grille so just the face of the light is showing.

Royalty Core uses Vision X brand of LED light bars. This is because Vision X has the world's brightest light bars: more than double the light output of any other company, light bar per light bar.

Royalty Core uses Vision X brand of LED light bars. This is because Vision X has the world’s brightest light bars: more than double the light output of any other company, light bar per light bar.

When the light bars are mounted and aligned to the grille you can re-attach the truck grille to the truck. Now that the grille is heavier than it was at first it’s a good idea to get some help!

Re-attach the grille to the truck.

Re-attach the grille to the truck.

With the new grille mounted to the truck and secured using all the factory mounting points it’s time to run power wires to the light bars. The best way to do this is to start with a universal relay harness, wire it to the battery and to a switch inside the vehicle, then safely through the firewall and up onto the hood and finally connected to the new light bars.

Drilling a hole in the dash and mounting a switch; passing wires through the firewall; connecting power wires to the battery; and running power wires up onto the hood all require a fair amount of skilled installation ability. If you don’t understand already how to wire in a relay harness either hire a professional to do it or research the safe methods and learn how to do it yourself. Just be warned that this is definitely considered custom electrical wiring installation.

Run new wiring from a switch inside the cab, into the engine bay and safely up and onto the hood to power the new lights.

Run new wiring from a switch inside the cab, into the engine bay and safely up and onto the hood to power the new lights.

The way the install was done on this particular truck grille was to use a set of GTR Lighting LED Halo style in-dash switches. These are some of the nicest looking switches around and fit in most spots on the dash.

Custom mounted halo switches from GTR Lighting.

Custom mounted halo switches from GTR Lighting.

At the top of this post there’s a video to show all of this information in more detail. It’s about 20 minutes long but really goes in depth on the ins and outs of this type of install. Before you decide which grille to purchase, and if you can handle the job yourself check it out. Or click here to watch the video now.

2010 Toyota Tundra featuring a Royalty Core steel-mesh grille with a pair of Vision X LED offroad light bars installed.

2010 Toyota Tundra featuring a Royalty Core steel-mesh grille with a pair of Vision X LED offroad light bars installed.

How to Roof Mount Install the new Vision X 51″ XPI LED Light Bar

Have you seen this new LED light bar technology from Vision X? They’ve invented a light bar that uses individual reflector style LED optics instead of the traditional style, and THEY ARE NOT ALL STRAIGHT! This is a totally innovative way to design a light bar, just check out the effect when turned on:

The other thing that is different about the new XPI series of LED light bar is the mounting method. There was no option for side / end-cap mounting, only with the supplied brackets, and these supplied brackets are not designed to mount on the roof using an N-Fab bracket kit, so we got creative and made it work! Here’s how we did it:

 

Vision X 51" XPI LED Light Bar install parts

These are the install parts that came with the Vision X 51″ XPI LED Light Bar.

The Vision X 51" XPI LED Light Bar mounting

The Vision X 51″ XPI LED Light Bar comes with two options for mounting. Bottom style “foot” mounting like this.

The Vision X 51" XPI LED Light Bar

This second option is installing mounting feet to both ends.

 

We wanted to do something a little different. With roof brackets already installed on the Tundra, we wanted to do a roof mount install. If you’re like us and want to install the¬†Vision X ¬†XPI LED Light Bar on your roof, keep reading and we’ll show you what we did.

Bolt size for the Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar

By bringing the Vision X bolt that was included with the XPI light bar to the hardware store, we were able to find its size. M6x1.0

Bolt size for the Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar Bolt

The bolt we decided on was a Hex Flange Bolt, M6 x 1.0P x 16mm

Bolt and washers for the Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar Bolt

We also picked up some locking washers and a pair of heavy duty Grade 8 washers (not pictured here).

Bolt and washers for the Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar Bolt

On the right you’ll see the bolt that was included with the XPI light bar. The one on the left is the one we put together. We wanted something stronger and longer to support a roof mount install.

lock tight for the Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar Bolt

We added some lock light to the bolts.

Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar

XPI light bar has two sets of holes on each side that both bolt on the mounting feet. Since we’re doing a roof mount, we got to choose which hole to use and decided on the top one. That brought the Light Bar closer to the roof.

Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar

With one side bolted on, we went to the next side.

Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar

Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar

Vision X  XPI LED Light Bar Roof Mount install

Vision X XPI LED Light Bar roof mount install completed.

This style of mounting method worked, but I don’t think it would be recommended by Vision X! If you want to copy what we did, beware that you do so at your own risk!

After doing the install and driving around with it mounted on the truck for a while, here are some new tips and tricks:

1. Install a rubber washer between the light bar and the roof mount brackets. This will help with any vibration you might have and keep some positive pressure on all of the hardware.

2. If you have vibration issues try removing the long metal bracket that supports the underside foot-mounting system. To do this you have to break the seal on the end caps, which voids the warranty, but then you won’t have that loose metal bar clanging around. Be careful, we can do it for you if you don’t want to try it!

3. It’s really easy to point the light bar up too high or down too low. Play around with it, keep the tools in your truck and mess around with it at night until you get it just right!

If you want to order a Vision X XPI (Xmitter Prime Iris) light bar please contact Headlight Revolution for all of your LED needs!

The Difference Between H16 and 5202 Bulbs

If you go to the PIAA.com website store and look at their H16 replacement halogen light bulbs for cars and trucks you will see this picture. PIAA, an automotive lighting superpower in the aftermarket world, is one of the few replacement light bulb companies out there who has gotten this right!

According to PIAA.com H16 is not the same as 5202!

According to PIAA.com H16 is not the same as 5202!

The H16 automotive light bulb is part of the H9/H11 bulb family and it is very similar to H8, H9, H11 and H15. It is characterized by having a traditional right-angled style connector input base, a large rubber o-ring below the metal tabs and 3 metal tabs spaced evenly apart around the base to lock it in place. The biggest difference between H8, H9, H11 and H16 are both the wattage levels that they run at and whether or not they have a painted on reflector cap at the top of the glass tube. H16 is most commonly used in fog lights, whereas the H11 is most commonly used in headlights. Therefore, you’ll see H11 bulbs that look almost identical to H16 bulbs but have higher wattages than H16 and they will also have a slightly different pin configuration, but with some manipulation you could swap an H16 and H11 around if you really wanted to.

So where did the confusion for H16 and 5202 bulbs come from? Well, first of all until very recently there were hardly any vehicles out there that used an H16 bulb in America. Then, I’m guessing some uninformed light bulb manufacturer in Asia somewhere one day decided that they didn’t know what a real H16 bulb was and there was some confusion. One thing led to another and they started classifying 5202 light bulbs as H16, 5202, 9009, etc… This is wrong!! You will never see a Sylvania or Philips or other OEM bulb labeled as H16 that looks like a 5202. Here are some popular LED versions of these different bulbs:

5202 LED Bulbs from GTR Lighting:

 

H11 / H16 LED Bulbs from GTR Lighting:

I hope you learned something new about different types of replacement automotive bulbs from this article and really the goal here is to educate people on different lighting products so you can make the right decision next time you spend your hard earned money. From an enthusiast standpoint, the last thing you need is to order a part for your vehicle, it shows up and it’s the wrong thing…. ugh.

So if you have a 2014 Toyota Tundra and you’re trying to find some cool LED fog lights for your stock H16 fog light bulbs, try one of these!

The world’s BRIGHTEST Toyota Tundra!

Have you seen this truck? Well if you’re a fan of lighting and a fan of trucks, then you owe it to yourself to check out the 99,000 Lumen Toyota Tundra from Headlight Revolution!

99000 Lumens

This tricked out truck puts out 99,000 Lumens of light when everything is turned on!

Between the GTR Lighting HID Kits in the headlights and the Vision X and JW Speaker LED offroad lights, this thing will quite literally turn night into day! Check out the full specifications of this truck here. This truck uses a 35w HID low beam, a 55w HID high beam, LED fog lights from JW Speaker and 3 high power Vision X LED offroad light bars to create an absolutely insane amount of light! If you ever wanted to know what OVERKILL looks like, this is it – but hey if you’re trying to show off how awesome LED and HID lighting upgrades are, why not go all out – right? Check out the video below showing off this truck in it’s entirety – including the lights; and visit www.HeadlightRevolution.com for more details on this awesome 2010 Tundra!

Toyota Tundra LED Reverse Lights – 2 Different Options

If you have ANY type of truck one thing you’re probably wishing is that the reverse light function was better. I’d like to tell you that the Headlight Revolution has taken it upon themselves to offer a Tundra-Specific reverse light upgrade package that anyone can install! First in this video you see how to install LED reverse light bulb replacements and show you how much brighter they are than stock. Next you see how to add a high-power LED projector light onto the rear bumper of the truck for an absolutely astonishing amount of light. The great thing about the 9w projector light used in this video is that it has a 120 degree light output beam pattern which is perfect for backing up at night.

Check out the video and see for yourself, that you truly can see in the dark!

HOD Bulbs Review – New Hotness or Just a Big Hot Fail?

HOD Headlights

A new fad in automotive lighting: H.O.D.

One of the most common upgrades done in the automotive lighting world is replacing your stock halogen/incandescent headlights with blue halogen/xenon type bulbs. They are still incandescent and they still partially use xenon gas, and sometimes they use more electricity and are rated at a higher power than your original bulbs. Some companies like Putco, Street Glow, Nokya and GP Thunder have done a good job at producing a regular style blue headlight bulb. They look good, the last a decent amount of time, and they are brighter than stock in a plug and play form.

Enter the “H.O.D” bulb… HOD stands for, this is not a joke, “High Definition Olive Lamp”… are you kidding me? The name comes from a translation of the original Chinese name of the bulb after describing the shape as being round like an olive. Today retailers are marketing the product by calling it a High-Output-Discharge bulb, which sounds much better but it’s not the original name of the technology. Your best bet for better lighting is an HID system for your vehicle, there is still nothing brighter than a true xenon high intensity discharge system. Even the best LED headlights still cannot compare to HID.

When you find an HOD bulb for sale, it looks just like the others out there. Do your own research and hit up Google for these brands:

Oracle HOD
Pegasus HOD
Startway HOD
Vance Hypersports HOD
and
Eagle One HOD

Comparison of HOD Bulbs

Oracle HOD, Eagle-One HOD and Pegasus HOD bulbs in a comparison – identical.

All of the packaging is the same for each “brand” and they all equally perform poorly. I was blown away when I watched a testing and review video on the Tundra forum about using these bulbs in high beams – you can’t even tell they are turned on! Watch this video for a demonstration of HOD bulbs in the high beam position of a Toyota Tundra:

If you want to learn more about HOD bulbs, and what proponents of the product are talking about, check out this blog:
http://hodlamp.blogspot.com/2009/05/hodthe-replacement-of-hid.html

Basically, what this all comes down to is, until the technology in made better, don’t waste your money on an HOD bulb product. They are all the same, just re-branded for each company selling them, and they don’t perform as well as many factory headlight bulbs. They are cool looking, they are blue and attractive in their packaging, but provide no real functional value to the enthusiast.