Practical Automotive Wiring Tips & Tricks

Real-World Tricks Gleaned From Hands-On Experience

Trenton McGeeWriterTrenton McGeePhotographer

Just like any other major system on a vehicle, wiring can make or break your build. Do it right and the entire electrical system is something that disappears in a vehicle, never to be thought about again. Do it wrong and you’ll be chasing gremlins, nonfunctioning gear, popped fuses, and even fires.

Some of the things wiring does is not easily understood, which may be why there are a lot of people out there who would rather get stabbed in the eye than mess with wiring. But the truth is that wiring really isn’t all that scary once you understand a few basic principles. And even if you don’t take the time to learn them, you can still be a competent wiring person by following a few basic rules.

We are by no means professionally trained electricians, but we’ve spent a fair amount of time with wire strippers and crimpers. We learn something new just about every time we do anything, from small projects to a full bumper-to-bumper rewire job. We have had the good fortune to spend a little time around some pros and have learned a lot from them, but a lot of what we’ve learned has come from trial and error along with good old-fashioned experience.

We covered a lot of the basics and principles of wiring in other articles, so this story is really more about making your wiring projects easier, cleaner, and more reliable. Some of this stuff may be familiar to you, but we’re willing to bet most of you will be able to pick up a trick or two to help make your own wiring projects better.