Toyota 4Runner 1996-2002: How to Install LED Brake Light into Spoiler

Brighten up the back of your ride by replacing your stock fixture with an LED version.

By Jennifer Heuertz - February 9, 2016

This article applies to the Toyota 4Runner (1996-2002).

Third gen 4Runners are equipped with non-LED high mount brake lights. If you happen to have upgraded your tail lights to LED, that third brake light just isn't going to match. You need it to be just as bright as those tail lights! Replacing your stock light with a new LED is a simple swap with big impact.

Toyota 4Runner How to Install LED Brake Light into Spoiler

Materials Needed

  • Ratchet and socket set
  • Phillips head screwdriver or Torx wrench (varies by model)
  • Plastic trim panel tool or flat head screwdriver
  • Drill and riveter (if you chose to replace spoiler clips)

Step 1 – Remove the spoiler

Open the lift gate and locate the spoiler mounting bolts. They will be hidden by plastic caps that pop off with a flat head screwdriver. Remove the bolts and disconnect the wiring. Gently close the lift gate. Pull down slowly on the spoiler—it is still connected to the vehicle with clips. Disengage the clips, being careful not to break them. Toyota recommends replacing the clips any time the spoiler is removed. Remove the spoiler from the vehicle.

Figure 1. Disconnect the brake light electrical connector from the lift gate wiring harness.

Step 2 – Remove the brake light

From the rear of the spoiler, remove the fasteners securing the brake light assembly. Pull the assembly from the spoiler. Be careful when pulling the wiring through the opening in the spoiler.

Figure 2. Pull the brake light from the spoiler.

Step 3 – Install the new light assembly

Thread the wiring back through the spoiler and install the new brake light. Install the fasteners at the rear of the spoiler, tightening securely.

Step 4 – Install the spoiler

To replace the clips, they must be drilled out and new ones pressed in. As long as you were careful during removal, you should be able to reinstall the spoiler without replacing the clips. Thread the wiring through the grommet and install the spoiler. Reconnect the wiring and install the spoiler mounting bolts, tightening securely.

Step 5 – Test the operation

Have an assistant sit in the driver's seat and press the brake pedal while you watch for the new brake light to come on.

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