How-to: Upfitting an equipment trailer with back-up lights (PHOTOS)

Updated Jul 7, 2015
The finished install. See the rest of the photos in the gallery at the bottom of this page. Photos: Bruce W. Smith.The finished install. See the rest of the photos in the gallery at the bottom of this page. Photos: Bruce W. Smith.

If your mowing and maintenance crews are pulling into the yard each day after dark, you may be looking for an upgrade with respect to your equipment trailer’s backup lights.

We decided to install back-up lights on a Landoll LT1020 trailer, using a lighting kit from Rigid Industries. Although the kit, the SR-M LED Backup Light kit, is designed for vehicles, we thought it would be an easy upfit for an equipment trailer, with rugged and powerful compact LED lights.

The kit comes complete with a pre-wired harness that includes a switch so they can be turned on or off if wired to the battery instead of the vehicle’s back-up lights. The wiring harness in the kit is just the right length for a 20-foot equipment trailer and is sheathed in split-loom.

The only difference between installing the kit on a truck or piece of equipment and installing these lights on a trailer is the power source: Instead of tapping into the pickup’s backup light wire in the taillight, we screwed it directly to the 7-way trailer plug’s center (backup light) post. We did the same with the ground wire for the SR-M LEDs, attaching the black wire to the white (ground) wire’s post on the back of the Bargman plug.

The on/off switch that’s part of the Rigid harness was also plugged in as per the instructions, tucking the switch, in the “on” position, in the Landoll’s storage tray under the trailer’s tilt-deck. This switch can be easily bypassed if needed. But we kept everything intact just in case someday we wanted to move them to another vehicle or trailer.

The difference between having these lights on the trailer and not is striking. The LEDs produce a brilliant white light with a 60-degree wide beam pattern, which is just what you want when trying to back up an equipment trailer in the evening.

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