5th Gen Mods, Headlights, Install, LED Bulbs, Off-Road, Overland

Headlight Revolution Level 3 Reverse Lights for The 4Runner – Features Diode Dynamics & GTR Lighting

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Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR Lighting & Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Reverse Lights – Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner

Why Upgrade?

Reversing in the backcountry can be a challenge, even in light conditions.

Turn the lights off and trails become more narrow, inclines become cliffs and trees seem to grow more menacing like a scene from a horror movie. Even parking lots seem to be getting more tightly packed these days. Then add tint that is at the “Legal Limit” and upgrading the stock 4Runner reverse lights becomes almost mandatory.

A majority of my forward-facing lights have been switched over to LED, minus the front turn signals. For those articles covering the High Beam Supernova V4s, see the full article here. If you’re interested in the Low Beam Ultra 2s, I will be writing that one soon.

For the rear, I wanted something that could match the front without adding rear auxiliary lights.

So, once again I turned to Headlight Revolution as they are open in their research and have been a company I trust (not sponsored). One of the unique things that the Headlight Revolution has for their taillight solutions is three different levels depending on your lighting needs and budget.

All three levels go up in pricing with level 3 being the most expensive. Choosing the Level 3 upgrade was a little easier with a Black Friday Sale and the old adage of “Buy Once, Cry Once”.

Headlight Revolution Level 3 Reverse Lights

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner

This “Level 3 kit” is not made by Headlight Light Revolution. Its actually a package of two other brands, GTR and Diode Dynamics.

Here is what you get with Level 3:

  • 2 GTR Lighting High Output 1,000 Lumen LED Bulbs – T15
  • 2 GTR Lighting High Output 1,000 Lumen LED Bulbs – 7440
  • 1 Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Module

The four GTR High Output LED bulbs replace the reverse and turn signal bulbs on both sides. With each bulb having an output of 1,000 Lumens, in reverse that will create an unbelievable total of 4,000 Lumens!

You may be asking: “But what about my turn signals?”

That is where the Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Signal backup module comes in. It connects into the factory wiring allowing the factory LED brake light to also act as the turn signal.

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Installation Overview

With the Diode Dynamics module, the install of Level 3 is slightly more involved than just replacing bulbs. Yet still very easy as it remains 100% plug and play.

Check out the install and review video, the reverse lights start at 7:39. Also, don’t forget to hit Like and Subscribe:

Let’s get started! 

Headlight Revolution Level 3 LED Headlight Step-By-Step Install

Step 1. Remove Rear Light Panel

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 1. Remove Rear Light Panel

Using a trim removal tool remove the rear light panel. Use caution as the inner sheet metal is sharp.

Step 2. Set up Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Signal Module

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 2. Set up Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Signal Module

This is the most complicated step in the installation. Connect T-Tap to Green wire.

Step 3. Plug Black Wire To T-Tap

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 3. Plug Black Wire To T-Tap

Plug the black wire connection to complete T-Tap. Complications complete!

Step 4. Remove Turn Signal Bulb

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 4. Remove Turn Signal Bulb

Remove the upper turn signal amber bulb.

Side Note: The packaging for the GTR high output LEDs doesn’t have any real distinguishing factors besides maybe something on barcodes. I just used the size difference between the turn and reverse lights as the means of separation.

Step 5. Connect GTR Bulbs To Factory Harness

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 5. Connect GTR Bulbs To Factory Harness

Connect the matching GTR bulb into the factory harness and install the bulb into the housing, the connector will be the wider of the two.

Step 6. Remove Lower Reverse Bulb

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 6. Remove Lower Reverse Bulb

Remove the lower clear reverse bulb. The matching GTR bulb will be more narrow than the turn signal.

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 6. Remove Lower Reverse Bulb

Step 7. Connect To Factory Harness

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 7. Connect To Factory Harness

Connect the GTR bulb to the factory harness, and install the bulb into the housing.

Step 8. Disconnect Factory Harness From Brake Light

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 8. Disconnect Factory Harness From Brake Light

Disconnect the factory harness from the center LED Brake Light. Connect the corresponding pins from the Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Signal module.

Step 9. Find Metal Mounting Location To Secure Heat Sink

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 9. Find Metal Mounting Location To Secure Heat Sink

Find a metal mounting location to secure the heat sink. This part will get hot and the body sheet metal will help dissipate heat.

What’s a good metal mounting location?

A good location will have the best angels to drill while still being out of the way if you needed to get back in later. Also, be sure not to use any part of the outer layer sheet metal because you will drill a hole to the outside.

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Step 8. Disconnect Factory Harness From Brake Light

Step 10. Repeat on the side.

As there is no difference between the passenger and driver sidelights you just repeat on the opposite side.

Once complete, test all of the functions of the lights prior to reinstalling the panel cover. I did not fully seat one of the bulb connections and had the extra step of removing the cover to fix my error. Once testing is complete, replace cover and marvel at the retinal burning reverse lights.

Final Review

Testing the High Output Bulbs in the Backcountry: Final Review

Most people would say that 4,000 lumens for reverse lights is way too bright and for a normal ride, I may agree, but for an adventure beast like a 4Runner… I love it.

I can actually see out of my tint at night, at least while backing up. The GTR High Output bulbs have incredible brightness and intensity, and I believe these are the brightest reverse lights currently available.

While not as critical to operating on independent planes, the reverse lights also match the same 6,000k color of my front LED headlights.

Another unexpected benefit is the improved daily driving and parking lot safety aspect. Even during daylight hours, the lights are so bright I don’t have pedestrians or other vehicles mistakenly crossing by when I have it in reverse. I am fairly certain that at nighttime, people in parking lots confuse the reverse lights for headlights. I almost expected the lights to be too bright while towing my adventure trailer.

However, it throws enough light on the sides that I can still easily navigate backing up without being blinded by reflection. The Tail as Turn module works perfectly and more effectively than I initially thought, it is hard to capture in stills so please see the above video. You would think that the only regret that I have is the cost, but honestly once I turned them on I only wish I did this upgrade earlier.

Final Thoughts

Headlight Revolution Level 3 GTR LED Headlight + Reverse Lights Install and Review for the 5th Gen 4Runner: Final Thoughts

Headlight Revolution put together a perfect package that balances the brightness of GTR bulbs with the ingenuity of the Diode Dynamics Tail as Turn Signal Backup Module that knocks it out of the park.

Comments or Questions? Leave them below!

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