Confidence to Explore

How To - 3rd Brake Light Relocation

Everyone with stock tire carrier should do this

If you plan on running larger tires, or just want better rear visibility, here is a cheap effective way to move the 3rd brake light down. Still completely usable, but it'll look better, won't interfere with larger tires, and increase rear visibility.

Materials & Supplies

  • A dremel tool with cutoff bits
  • Socket wrench and sockets
  • Screwdriver with torx bits
  • Drill and drill bits
  • Vice or clamp
  • Black spray paint for touchups
  • Cardboard
  • Painters tape


Step 1: mark it

With the spare still on the carrier, put some painters tape at the level you want the light to sit. Should be visible between slots in wheel. Here is where I put mine (spare tire removed so you can more easily see it).

Step 2: remove your spare tire

Step 3: remove the brake light and mark it

Unmount the brake light by removing the 4 torx screws on the back. Mark it off a few inches from the top so that it will sit at the right height:

Step 4: cut it

Use dremel tool to cut it off at desired height. Here is mine, post cut.

Step 5: mark the base

Use painters tape to mark out the shape of the cuts. I have a right angle in mine, but you could do a nicer sloped cut to match the contour of the top piece.

Step 6: cut the base

More action with the dremel tool

Step 7: remove light from housing

Remove the actual light/red plastic portion so you just have the metal housing

Step 8: cut slots to fit

You'll need to cut some slots in that metal housing so it can slide over the base. Line them up, mark them off, and cut them. Here is how it should fit once the cuts are made

Step 9: drill holes for screws

Use the same size drill bit as existing holes and drill two new ones where the housing lines up now (the lower two holes in this pic)

Step 10: trim it

Cut off all that excess up top

Step 11: prep for paint

Place cardboard over the mount, pushing the metal thru. Tape off anything you need to.

Step 12: paint it

Give it a few shots of black spray paint (I used the usual Rustoleum bed liner)

Step 13: mount it

Use the original hardware and mount it back up

Step 14: put spare tire back on

Be sure to check for any clearance issues as you mount it

Final product

Scott's Review Down the Road

This was simple, effective, and never gave me any concerns. The light is still clearly visible from behind and there's a noticeable improvement in rear visibility. Best part is that I didn't have to buy a single thing for this mod.

Pics of it out In The Wild

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