UTV TECH: TUSK TURN-SIGNAL KIT INSTALL
More trail safety
More trail safety By John Bumgarner
Having illuminated turn indicators on your UTV isn’t something that most owners give much thought to. When you take the time to think about the positives, they make perfect sense. In some states, operating your UTV on secondary or rural public roadways is legal if the state regulations have been met. The same is true of farm equipment. Neither UTVs or farm equipment meet highway safety standards, and they should only be used to connect trail sections on low-speed country roads and not for transportation or as a second “car.”
Although most states don’t require blinkers, they still make road use safer. Even off-road, they’re nice for letting other drivers know which direction you plan to go at a fork in the trail. Overall, we have to say we’re extremely happy with the Tusk UTV horn & signal kit. Not having to buy all the miscellaneous parts individually is worth the convenience. Probably the biggest plus with this kit is the wiring loom. For me, this project never would have come to fruition without the plug-and-play feature.
For all the naysayers, we got to experience the benefits of having a turn signal kit. On a recent outing in the mountains on a narrow two-track trail, our group came up on four other cars at a “T” intersection with no room to pass. We turned on our right-turn indicator as we approached the other drivers, and they safely turned right in front of us before we even got to the corner. There was no hand-waving or second-guessing as to what the other driver wanted to do.
The Tusk UTV horn and signal kit provides front and rear turn signals, a horn and license mount with light. This universal kit will work on most UTVs. The kit comes complete with a wiring harness, LED front/rear turn signals, flasher relay, horn, license mount with light, horn button and blinker switch.
We installed this kit on our Kawasaki KRX 1000. The following is a short tutorial showing the steps needed for the installation.
1. Removal of the passenger seat is necessary to access the rear firewall panel. This wiring is behind a removable cover.
2. We started with the wiring loom under the front cover. On the standard KRX it wasn’t too hard to remove this dash panel. We zip-tied the blinker relay under here as well.
3. We fed the blinker harness through a gap in the upper firewall. The wires for the front blinkers and horn got temporarily tied to a front brace to prevent them from accidentally being pulled through the firewall.
4. With the center console and tunnel cover removed it’s time to run the wiring for the rear blinkers to back of the car. Make sure the wires for the horn and blinker controls remain under the dash. Those will include the horn switch, turn indicator switch and the left/right LED turn indicators lights.
5. On our Kawasaki KRX 1000, running the wiring loom from the dash to the rear firewall proved to be the hardest part. There isn’t a clear path from the back of the dash down to the tunnel. We had to remove about (10,000) push-pins to get the plastic components to come apart. These are 3/4ths of those from the tunnel cover. We skipped removing the difficult ones in the forward footwell.
6. To make life easier we used an old clothes hanger as a fish tape to feed the wires through the rear firewall. We pushed the hanger wire through from under the rear fender, then taped the needed harness wires to the hanger.
7. Once the wires were pulled through the rear firewall, we simply followed the existing wiring harness to the rear of the car.
8. On the KRX there’s a perfect spot to mount the rear indicator lights between the split taillights. The first step is to mark the location you want to drill.
9. Before drilling, make sure the back side is clear of potential problems (i.e., wires or braces that’ll prevent the grommet and light from fitting).
10. Once the hole is cut, simply fit the grommet into the hole and press the light into it. A little silicone spray on the grommet makes installation a lot easier.
11. The turn-indicator lights have “top” printed on the edge of the light. This should be placed upwards, as the internal facets are designed for optimal visibility.
12. In our state it’s legal to operate a UTV on secondary public roads with proper registration and insurance. One of the conditions is displaying your registration sticker on the rear of the car. Although a license-plate light may not be required, it’s nice to have one when the local law enforcement officer decides to pull up behind you to make sure you’re legal.
13. Our car already had an air horn installed when we began this project. We chose not to use the included horn and switch. These photos are only intended to show the locations we chose for those parts. There’s a brace in front of the radiator that worked perfectly for the horn location.
14. As for the horn button, the options are wide open as to where you decide to install it. We chose to cover a factory-supplied switch knockout knowing there would be nothing behind it.
15. Before reattaching all the body panels, it was time to test the electrical connections. Success! When the switch flashed “right,” the right-side lights on the car also flashed.