We use our 2009 Chevrolet Silverado for backcountry work and play, primarily related to ski touring. The daytime running lights are obnoxious. They’re annoying in campsites, burn your eyes while doing things such as operating the winch, and wear out the headlight bulbs. You can switch off the DRLs manually by bumping the headlight control dial to the left. But you don’t know if you’ve _really_ turned the pesky things off, and once you restart or otherwise reset the truck, they’re back on again. What’s needed is that incredible Einsteinian concept of an on-off switch that disables the Silverado DRLs when desired, no fiddling around. On on-off switch? How 1970s!
But hey, sometimes a blast from the past is the future. Though I wonder, did they have DRL headlights in 1972?
The mod is somewhat easy. For me, routing the switch wires through the firewall was the most challenging part, with locating the switch running a close second. The easy part is bypassing a couple of fuses in the under-hood fuse box using a pair of CT6100 Fuse Socket Connectors. Build a wiring harness using the CT6100 and some in-line fuse holders (since you’re eliminating the OEM fuses). Hook up your harness to a double-pole single-throw toggle switch (wire things so the switch controls the two fused circuits independent of each other).
Yank out fuses number 31 and 33, and plug your bypass harness into the respective sockets. I bent the connector tabs on the CT6100 connectors so everything was low enough not to interfere with the fuse box cover (see photo above). I also slightly rotated-bent the legs of the connectors so they’d fit tighter in the fuse socket, and tied everything in solid using wire ties and some strategically located tape. I also had to clearance some plastic on the side of the fuse box so I could route my new wires under the box cover. The fuse connectors are not solid and place leverage on the fuse socket, so make sure they’re stable before you put the box cover back on.
Be CERTAIN that your double-pole switch controls the two fuse bypasses independently — otherwise who knows what you’ll fry in your $50,000 truck. Connect the byasses such that the switch “Load” side connects to the hot side of the OEM fuse sockets, which as near as I can tell is the side towards the front of the truck. (If you find your brain having trouble, do multiple test with a continuity checker so you can conceptualize what’s going on. ) Locate your double-pole switch wherever convenient. I found plenty of extra space for switches to the left of the panel holding the OEM headlight control. Use a switch with a cylindrical mount and drill a nice clean hole using a step bit.
If you find the switches to be ugly, they can be covered with those nice black rubber toggle-switch covers.
The switch labeled “auto locks” disables the automatic door locks that drive you crazy in a work truck. DIY for that is here.
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.