How To Orientate & Splice Wiring Harnesses

Created by Jay Walling / 1 min read
Date Created: 5/10/2019
Last Updated: 11/1/2022

If you have received a non-colored wiring harness and need help correctly orientating it, has a step-by-step guide!

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Getting a new connector in the mail to repair your car can be nerve-racking for some people. Electrical repair is not always the easiest task for some. This is not that bad, and I will go over the correct way to do this.

One common issue from time to time is that the new connector you receive is not properly color-coded for the vehicle you are working on. This happens all the time nowadays. The reasoning for this is the connector you have for, let’s say, your headlight switch could be the same for a door lock actuator on a different car altogether. To help avoid confusion and keep overall costs down, most manufacturers will not make the same connector in 10 different options with the correct color code for each application. If you come across a connector and do not have access to your vehicle's wiring diagram, installation can still be a very simple task.

How To Orientate & Splice Wiring Harnesses - How To Orientate & Splice Wiring Harnesses

First, after accessing the harness you intend to repair within your vehicle, take the old existing harness and the new one and hold them next to each other. Ensure all clips and alignment tabs are oriented in the same direction before going under the knife. Once you know what way everything should be, make a few notes of the existing color codes of the vehicle's harness just in case you must come back to this for any reason. Working in a clockwork pattern, I usually start in the upper left corner of the harness, cut each wire one at a time, and either solder or use a butt connector to make each connection. To help avoid a large cluster of multiwire connections, staggering each splice can make the installation much cleaner overall. If you have a new pigtail with six-inch leads, make each connection roughly one inch apart, this will ensure that if the harness you are working on is in a tight area, everything will go back as intended. Once you have completed all your connections, seal these off with heat shrink or quality electrical tape.

How To Orientate & Splice Wiring Harnesses - How To Orientate & Splice Wiring Harnesses

I hope this quick tech article has helped you with your installation; as always, make sure to check out for all things 1979-present Mustang and Lightning.

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About the Author

Jay has written content for Late Model Restoration for over 10 years, producing over 120 articles. Jay has an extensive 25-plus-year background in automotive and is a certified Ford Technician. Read more...