This is a write-up on how to do the DRL/Automatic light modification on the Pontiac Vibe and Toyota Matrix years 2003-2008. The goal of this modification(henceforth â€œmodâ€) is to disable the Daytime Running Lights(henceforth called â€œDRLâ€) while keeping the function of the Automatic Sensing lights that react to low light conditions. In other words, the front lights will no longer be on during the day but if nighttime occurs the headlamps and tail lights will illuminate and the dashboard will dim automatically. The modification has been successfully performed by myself under factory default lighting. HIDs have also been proven to work. There is also an optional step which will allow for the Fog lights to become the DRL but with a manual control, you can choose to have them on or not. If done correctly this is an easy mod. If something gets mixed up it can get very complicated very fast. From my personal experience with this mod, TAKE YOUR TIME. I cannot stress enough the importance of checking and double checking your work. And then before you actually do anything; check the plans to see if your prep work follows the plan. I recommend that you look over the schematics and at least have an idea of happens under normal operating conditions, what the modification requires to work, and what the expected outcome will be and how it will look. By doing this if an error occurs you have a greater knowledge to help with any troubleshooting.Firstly we will go over how the DRL module and the car work under normal operating conditions. This is a little simplified because I donâ€™t fully know every aspect of the IC chips and components of the DRL module, and there are many features that are not needed to be understood for this mod to work. With the system at factory settings if the driver during day time were to have the car turned off with the parking brake applied and start the car, the head and tail lights would be off and the dash lights would be fully on. If the driver were then to disengage the parking brake a switch in the parking brake assembly would be depressed turning off the dashboard light for the parking brake and the head lamps would turn on at lower brightness. While not a big issue for the standard driver, it annoys some and also would ruin HID lamps. If the driver desires they can use the knob on the steering column to turn on the lights manually. Or, if the driver were then to drive around until dusk, the light sensor in the dashboard would sense the lowering light conditions and at low enough levels would automatically switch on the head lamps to full and also turn on the tail lights. It would also dim the dashboard lights. Unless a different mod was done, the fog lights were only on when the head lights were fully on,high beams off, and fog light control switch turned to "on". For the drivers who have HID lamps they were forced to either use the manual control switch and have the lamps on at all times shortening their life, or disable the DRL completely and lose automatic light control.The theory was then posed by Calata on how to remove the DRL and keep the automatic lights. By accessing the diagram below he theorized that by cutting a wire and attaching one of the leads to another wire, this could be achieved. Following the flow of electricity it was discovered that a separate signal is used to control the head lamps and the tail lamps. If you sever the connection at pin 6 and follow the red line from pin 14 to pin 2 of the "Head" relay you effectively remove the DRL and then wire the head lamps to turn on whenever the tail lights are illuminated, non braking. If you want to keep the DRL feature but instead of using the head lamps want to make the fog lights the DRL follow the blue line from pin 6 to pin 4. You will have control of the fog lights via the standard fog light control switch, which is not shown in the slightly simplified diagram below.Since you are not going to cut pin 4 other than to add a new wire connecting pin 6, you can control the fogs with the switch. If you decide you don't want lights on at all during the day, turn the fog switch to "off". You also will have the normal control of the fogs when the head lamps are turned on alsoNow on to the part I am sure you actually care about, the instructions. In order to perform this mod you will need a few things:10mm socketPhillips screwdriverSoldering ironKnifeSolderWireWire cutter/stripper.Flashlight that attaches to the head or other hands free method is best.Shop approved glasses. I really recommend using shop approved glasses during this modification. To access the DRL module you will need to get into a cramped space and if you drop your tool, the bolt, or the module it is more than likely to hit you in the face. Lets try and keep everyone safe and on the road.I also recommend those not familiar with the process of stripping wire or soldering to practice before you do this mod.Once you feel you are thoroughly prepared and ready itâ€™s time to start. Firstly make sure the car is off, doors unlocked, and the negative terminal is removed from the battery using the 10mm socket and safely stored away or covered so it cannot accidentally get reconnected. It is better safe than sorry. Open the driverâ€™s door and put the seat all the way back. You will need the flashlight and the screw driver. You will need to lay on top of the carpet. It is cramped and it is uncomfortable. Try and fit so you can get both your hands over your head and still be able to see up into the dashboard. Depending on conditions you will need to use the flashlight to see. As you look upward you will see the steering column, and running perpendicular is a pipe with a black box held in place by a bracket as pictured here. Unplug the wires from the module, might take a bit of effort. Phillips screwdriver remove the bolt. you should now have this The black box needs to opened. The box can easily be opened. It is opened on the plug end. Insert the knife carefully into the space between the lid and the box. The plug is connected to the PCB and it just slides out of the box. If you look down the front of the plug you can see some numbers . If you have the module orientated the same way I do in the picture the numbers are like this : 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 (pins 1 and 2 are the big ones separate from the others) 2 120 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 Pin 6 is the one that normally connects to the Head light relay which controls the head lamps. We need to remove this connection. In this image I am showing which lead is 6. Make sure you know exactly which one you want to cut before you actually cut it. When you cut the lead be careful. Leave yourself some room on both sides of the cut. Connect and solder a wire from the plug side of pin 6 to pin 14. There is enough room to route the wire around the plug and solder it to the underside of the PCB. . Pin 14 is hard to get to from the top, that is why I recommend soldering on the bottom.If you would like the fog lights as DRLs it is a simple procedure, just connect pin 4 and pin 6. I did it like this with the red wire :Now just carefully put the PCB back into the box and close it up. Put the module back into the car. Reconnect the plug into the module and make sure you hear a click. May take a bit of effort but
it will click. Reconnect the negative terminal of the battery carefully. Now that the car has power again test out what you did. I like to try and make sure everything works, brake lights, parking lights, fogs, head lamps.For the DRL cut/automatic turn on the car, put your foot on the brake, lower the hand brake and then raise it back up. Go to the front and make sure nothing is on. try manually turning on the lights via the switch and by covering the sensor with a thick dark piece of cloth. The lights should come on and the dashboard dim. Congratulations, you are successful!For the DRL reroute and automatic turn the car on, fog switch to on, lower the parking brake and then raise it again. If you go to the front of the car the Fogs should be on. Try both methods of turning on the head lights just to make sure they work too. If everything seems in order, congratulations!Issues I have had: instead of cutting the lead of pin 6, i used a flathead screwdriver to bend the wire. I instead cut the lead and also removed the lead from the plug. I then needed to remove the dashboard upper to cut wires and solder them that way. Much harder and longer to do. Cut the lead with proper tools. This is why I say to read, re-read, understand, and double check what you are going to do before you do it. i also when doing the Fog light section had a little solder connecting things I didn't want to. When the DRL was plugged in, power was being supplied to the car, and the driver's door opened the " light reminder buzzer" was beeping and the parking lights were illuminated. This is why I say to practice. While I am in no way amazing at soldering, I know this and try and take my time. At the same time I didn't plug the DRL module in all the way. This may have been why the lights were on and the buzzer. Make sure all connections are solid.In closing I hope I have been helpful and haven't scared you away from doing this mod. I am just trying to give you as much information as I can to make this quick and painless for you. Once again, you do not need to do anything with the fog lights, I had bluecrush contact me about it and it intrigued me and I had to do it for myself and for him too. Thank you for reading. Please feel free to contact me with questions either in this thread or by PM.
None. Vibe is gone.