Swapping Steering Wheel Buttons On 2010-2013 Mustangs

When installing a new performance steering wheel on your newer Mustang, you may need to retain some function on your factory wheel that your new wheel may not come with. For example, our project 2013 GT came with Sync, and our Boss 302 alcantara wheel didn’t have the correct buttons to retain this function on the new wheel. We decided to swap the buttons from the factory wheel on to the new Boss wheel, problem solved!

For this install you will need to remove wiring harnesses, remove the buttons from the steering wheels and swap them around. Doing this took about 30 minutes and a lot of patience. There are small parts and springs you must be careful not to lose track of.

Tools Needed:

Torx T27

Torx T20

Assuming you already have the airbag removed, (See this link for instructions on removing the airbag HERE) begin by removing the trim pieces surrounding the buttons on either side of the factory wheel. These trim parts are held on by plastic fasteners that seat in rubber behind the trim. Carefully pull them toward you with even pressure to ensure you don’t crack them. There are no clips or anything, just pull them with enough force and they will slowly come out. Once they are out, the buttons will come free.

Next, remove the tree T27 torx bolts that hold the horn bracket in place. This bracket has three springs on the backside of it, make sure you don’t lose these or your horn will not work. Once the three bolts are removed, pull the bracket and springs off. There is a red wire clipped to the top of the bracket, remove this and pull the bracket free from the wheel and set it aside with the springs and bolts.

Next, remove the single T20 torx bolt that grounds the wheel harness to the wheel itself as shown below. Once this is done, remove the harness and it’s two white clips.

Here is the factory Sync harness removed. Set this harness and it’s buttons aside and repeat the process above on the Boss 302 wheel, removing it’s harness and buttons.

Below are the buttons that come on the Boss 302 wheel, remove these and it’s harness and replace them with the harness and buttons from your factory wheel with Sync.

To install the new buttons, first reinstall the trim pieces that surround the buttons then snap them into place.

Once both side’s buttons are in, reinstall the harness, connect the black ground wire and it’s T20 torx bolt and plug the harness into the new buttons. Ensure everything is plugged in and solid before moving on to the next step.

Next, reinstall the horn bracket, ensure that the three springs are seated and are properly installed before putting the three T27 bolts back. Again, if these springs are not installed properly your horn will not work right.

Tighten the three black torx bolts and replace the red wire that clips to the horn bracket.

Next, reinstall the airbag unit, plug the wires in to their corresponding colors (grey or black) and press the airbag into the wheel. Replace the two 8mm bolts on either side of the wheel as well as their cover caps and you’re done! Reconnect the battery and ensure all your buttons work properly. Enjoy your new wheel!

To view to the full wheel install guide, click HERE

To find this Boss 302 steering wheel in our online store, click here: Boss 302 Alcantara Steering Wheel for 2010-2013 Mustangs

Installing A 3rd Brake Light Pulser In Your 2010-2013 Ford Mustang

The first mod we did on our new 2013 GT project car was Webelectric’s plug-in 3rd brake light pulser for 10′-13′ Ford Mustangs. This is an extremely easy and fast install for those of you who aren’t really comfortable taking things apart. Simply remove the trunk lid liner and plug the small harness in. Simple as that! You can find the part on our store by following this link:  Webelectric Brake Light Pulser for 10′-13′ Mustangs

Tools Needed:

Flathead screwdriver

First step is to remove the trunk lid’s felt liner. This liner is held on by a bunch of plastic clips, use the flathead to remove the clips gently as these will be used to replace the liner when the install finished.

After removing all the plastic clips, this is what you should see. Be sure to pull the emergency trunk release through the liner’s opening.

Next, remove the plug that powers the 3rd brake light.

Clip the pulser harness into the car’s plugs. You’re done!

Before reinstalling the inner trunk liner it’s a good idea to have someone put their foot on the brake to ensure the pulser is working properly. After you’re sure it’s working as intended, reinstall the trunk liner and the clips holding it on. Simple as that!

Below is an animation of how the pulser works. Please note that the light will only flash if you’ve been off the brakes for over 15 seconds as to not distract drivers in stop and go traffic or at a light.

Xenon High Intensity Discharge (HID) Tech Guide

In the world of automobiles, there are three main types of lighting used today; Halogen, Xenon (HID), and LED. Halogen is the most common and also the oldest and most tried technology available. Halogen bulbs are used in every aspect of daily life, not just on your car. Most household bulbs are Halogen, they are cheap to make and have been in use since the early 1900’s. Halogen bulbs consist of a metal filament that glows when electrical current is sent through it, and Halogen gas inside the bulb is used to help promote long life and durability.

Xenon High Intensity Discharge, or HID, is a newer technology with many benefits over a standard Halogen type bulb. Instead of using a metal filament that is prone to failure over long term use due to high heat, Xenon bulbs use Xenon gas to create light instead. A steady electrical current is sent through the gas causing it to ignite which gives you the brilliant white light we have come to love from Xenon. There are a few advantages to using Xenon over Halogen, one being the significantly longer life, another being a brighter white color vs. Halogen’s yellowish light. Xenon technology also uses less wattage than a Halogen bulb and therefore Xenon runs significantly cooler than it’s Halogen counterpart. This lower temperature reduces risk of fire and premature failure. The white light emitted by Xenon bulbs also better represent daylight and make nighttime driving easier on the eyes.

LED technology, or Light Emitting Diode, is the newest technology available to the automotive lighting world. These tiny bulbs come in many colors, sizes, and shapes. They use the least amount of power out of the three technologies and run cool by comparison. They also have the longest life of all the bulb types because there is no heat to cause component failure. The downside to LEDs is their brightness, they are rather dim by comparison, and in order to create a similar amount of light to that of a Xenon bulb, you would need dozens of the smaller LEDs.

So now that we know how they work and what the benefits are, it’s pretty easy to see why HID technology has really dominated the automotive market when it comes to headlamps. You get the brightest whitest light available in a package that outlasts Halogen and runs cooler. Another advantage to Xenon technology is the ability to offer different “Color Temperatures” with different kits for different applications to fine tune the perfect look for each and every customer.

Typically HID color temps range from 4300k all the way to 12,000k. Although you may assume a higher number means the light is brighter, it’s actually the exact opposite. A 12,000k HID bulb emits a blue almost purple light, however this blue light isn’t as effective when it comes to illuminating a night road. Many people assume that the higher the number, the brighter the light…this is incorrect. The higher the color temperature the less usable light you have to use. A 4300k tempurature will create a pure white light that peirces through the night, and is by far the best at lighting up a night road. The kelvin rating is for color, the output is measured in lumens. A 35W HID bulb outputs 3x the lumens that a 55W Halogen bulb would output. The image below shows the differences in color temps from 4300k to 12,000k.

If you are looking for an HID package that will not stand out too much and will offer better visibility without the blue tint, 4300k is the perfect temperature for you. This is a pure white light that is the closest to a Halogen bulb’s color output. 6000k is our most popular temperature as is adds a bit of stylish blue tint without reducing visibility. There is almost no difference in visibility between a 4300k HID and a 6000k HID. Once you get to 8000k and above you start losing a small amount usable light, but you get the stylish blue tint that many enthusiasts demand from their HID kits. No matter what you choose in terms of color temperature, it will almost certainly be an improvement over your stock Halogens. Not just in terms of light output, but in longevity as well.

Now that we’ve covered the technology and color temps, what about the hardware? Included with every HID kit are ballasts. The job of the ballasts is to regulate electric current through the Xenon gas within the HID bulb. Without the ballast, the current would vary and the light would flicker. Ballasts come in many shapes and sizes, and depending on the quality of the kit their materials will vary. Cheap kits use plastic ballasts that are prone to overheating and pose a fire risk. Quality ballasts are constructed of metal materials and will last significantly longer in the harsh environment of your engine bay.

Below are some customer images showing different color temperatures:

4300K

6000k

8000k

10,000k

For more information on StangMods HID kits, visit our store and view our HID selection at: http://www.stangmods.com/Mustang-HID-Lighting-s/61.htm – Here you will find kits for late model Mustangs as well as kits for Non-Mustang applications.

Boss 302 TracKey System

Shortly after the new Boss 302 was released Ford Racing Development came out with the innovative “TracKey” system. You purchase the TracKey, take your new key and your Boss 302 to Ford and they will set up a custom tune that improves throttle response, cam timing, and allows you to use a launch control system and much more. This is all pretty awesome, but where exactly is the TracKey? It’s been almost a year now and the key still isn’t available to the public. Luckily that’s all about to change. The delay was primarily brought on by California’s strict emissions laws which would make the use of the key illegal. Finally the state of California is giving the TracKey a green light, and Ford is to announce the sale of the TracKey system for sale to the entire US at SEMA 2011.

The TracKey itself will be available from your favorite Ford Racing retailer, however you will be required to take the key to your local Ford dealer along with your new Boss 302 for proper tuning. The tune effects over 600 engine parameters within the PCM (Powertrain Control Module) which increase driving pleasure, not just things you can feel, but also things you can hear. Since the release of the new Coyote 5.0 engine, tuners have realized the true potential of the new engine and the tuning possibilities. We are looking forward to some more detailed information about how real world 302’s are affected by the upcoming TracKey system, we have already seen how the launch control system works and how the tune makes for an aggressive cammed exhaust note, but considering how comprehensive this tune is supposed to be, there have got to be other improvements felt while driving the car with the special red key. Keep posted for more information in the next few months about the final release of the TracKey system!

In the mean time, check out this video courtesy of Ford Racing which shows the difference in exhaust note with the standard key and the TracKey.

Facebook Fan Page Store

Over the weekend we will be launching our Facebook Fan Page Store! Here you will be able to find a few of our most popular items at discount compared to on our website. Over the years we have gotten great feedback and support from our customers on Facebook, so to give back we are excited to offer these discounts to anyone who visits our Fan Page. Better yet, all of these items are In Stock and Ready To Ship!

To find the store on our Fan Page, click the “Social Store” tab on the left side of the page under our profile photo. Click Here to check it out now!

Install Guide – 2010-2012 Mustang Front Side Markers

When it comes to changing the looks of your mustang, one of the first things that many people do is to start with the small things like lighting. One of the most popular looks with a mustang is to darken the lights around the car with tints or new lenses. Today I am going to install some new marker light lenses into the bumper of a 2011 Ford Mustang GT. The lenses I am changing are the ones on the lower font bumper of the car. Some people call these blinkers, but that is not what they are. The blinkers are built into the headlights on the 10-12 Mustangs and the lights on the bumper are simply running lights.

This installation will take you about an hour barring any issues and it makes things easier if you have someone to help you while you are under the car. You can do this install alone; the only part that helps to have a helper is so someone can hold the lens in the bumper while you put the little nuts back on the backside f the bumper. Let’s get to it!

1. The first thing you need to do is get the car up on ramps or jack stands. Never climb under the car with nothing other than a spare tire jack holding the car up. Once you get the car safely off the ground, move onto step 2.

2. You will need to remove the aero tray on the bottom of the car to expose the oil filter and the underside of the front bumper. If you have an 11-12, you only need to remove four screws on the rear of that tray to access the underside of the car. If you have a 2010, you will need to remove all the screws so you can remove the tray completely.

3. Once you remove that tray, you need to remove the bolt you see in this image between the front tire and the bottom edge of the fender well. You need to remove this bolt so you can pry the liner under the front bumper back enough to reach the turn signal lights.

4. Once you remove that bolt you can pry the fencer liner back enough to see the stock bumper light. It is the part surrounded by a red circle in the photo below. The light is held in with two nuts that were 9mm on the car I used, fasteners vary a bit sometimes so your mileage may vary. These screw off just like any other bolt even though they look like press-on fittings.

5. You need to remove the factory light socket from the light and you can take the bulb out at this point if you want.

6. Once you remove the factory lens, you are ready to slip the new Stangmods tinted or clear lens into the factory bumper hole. I have installed these lights on a 2010 and the factory hardware worked perfectly. On the 2011 GT you see here, the factory hardware was slightly too large to fit on with the wide part of the factory nut facing down as it was on the stock lenses. The fix is as simple as flipping that factory hardware over and tightening the bolts down. Don’t over tighten the bolts or you will break the tabs.

7. Once you have the factory hardware tightened up, you can insert your new amber bulbs, which allows you to stay street legal, and then reattach the factory wire. You will repeat the same process on the other side of the car and you are finished!

Install guide and photos by Shane G.

MAC’s New 2011 5.0 Stainless Axle-Back Exhaust System

We shot some photos of our new MAC axle-back exhaust for the 2011+ GT 5.0 in the studio today.  This is a brand-new system from MAC featuring polished angle cut 4″ tips and lighter-than-stock stainless steel construction. MAC’s chambered muffler design is not only attractive, but makes for an incredibly deep and aggressive exhaust tone that really lets your 5.0 Stang breathe. For ease of installation, this system simply bolts up using OEM hardware for a quick and easy job.  This is a truly beautiful system, the fully polished chambers with etched MAC logos let your opponents know you mean business as you leave them in your dust. Now on to the photos: