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Discussion Starter #1
Looking to finally install a light bar on my 2016 and I’m looking for some opinions on sizing and placement. I don’t have a roof rack so I’m opting for the lower grill. I can fit up to a 25” light there. Do you all think 25” is overkill? Or should I just do a 21” curved? Also would too much light be blocked if I mounted it behind the lower grill? I live in San Francisco and id feel it would much less likely to be stolen and ripped off my car if it was behind the grill. However if theres gonna be significantly less light I’m willing to cut a hole in the grill and mount it sticking farther out. Any suggestions are appreciated!
 

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2016 Outback 2.5
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I mounted a 20" in the grill on a 2014 but opted to use a front bar on my 2016.

I liked the security of the in-grill mount but it would have been a lot more trouble on the newer vehicle. I was also trying to
have less installation impact with modifications on the 2016.
 

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Brucey
'17 3.6 Limited
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The OEM grill has a larger block off plate on the top section.

I would try to remove those plates and install there if at all possible.

It would be nearly even with the headlights.
 

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2019 Outback 3.6 Limited, 2107 Outback 3.6, 2011 Outback Sport, 2009 Impreza 2.5 RS
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I’m monitoring this post as well. Very interested in light bar options myself.
Carry on.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I mounted a 20" in the grill on a 2014 but opted to use a front bar on my 2016.

I liked the security of the in-grill mount but it would have been a lot more trouble on the newer vehicle. I was also trying to
have less installation impact with modifications on the 2016.
Light bar looks great on the bar. I’m not really wanting to add a bar or anything else on mine yet, so I think I may just opt for the grill. I know you have to remove the whole bumper to mount it, which isn’t ideal, but I figure it will be worth the trouble. Do you find the 20” to be enough light? Can’t decide between a 20” or 25”.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The OEM grill has a larger block off plate on the top section.

I would try to remove those plates and install there if at all possible.

It would be nearly even with the headlights.
I see the spot you are talking about, it definitely would work nicely there. However I kind of want it to be as conspicuous as possible and a little more hidden (so hopefully it’ll be less likely to be stolen off my car). I also would rather cut the lower grill than the main upper grill. The higher placement in the upper grill would definitely be a little better though in terms of light dispersion. May consider that as an option though, thanks!
 

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Brucey
'17 3.6 Limited
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I see the spot you are talking about, it definitely would work nicely there. However I kind of want it to be as conspicuous as possible and a little more hidden (so hopefully it’ll be less likely to be stolen off my car). I also would rather cut the lower grill than the main upper grill. The higher placement in the upper grill would definitely be a little better though in terms of light dispersion. May consider that as an option though, thanks!
You want it conspicuous and hidden?

?? :wink2:

I would imagine a light bar behind the grill would be nearly invisible to the naked eye. Unless it was on of course and assuming the light bar is black (like they all are)

Sort of like how you can't actually see my Auxiliary CVT cooler. It's in a similar location.

Your car, your mods though.

If anyone else is curious here is what the back of the grill and bumper look like:



The removable panels on the top half of the grill should be visible here.
 

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Light bar looks great on the bar. I’m not really wanting to add a bar or anything else on mine yet, so I think I may just opt for the grill. I know you have to remove the whole bumper to mount it, which isn’t ideal, but I figure it will be worth the trouble. Do you find the 20” to be enough light? Can’t decide between a 20” or 25”.
I have a RIGID INDUSTRIES bar and it is super bright. (and expensive) I got the 20" size because I was planning on installing it in the grill and that's the biggest that would fit.

Since I am now bar mounting I might go for a 30".

I would get the biggest one you can most easily fit into your grill. There is no down side to more light.

I didn't have to remove the bumper for the 2014 installation, just the grill, but the 2016 is totally different and may require that, plus it may just make it easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I see the spot you are talking about, it definitely would work nicely there. However I kind of want it to be as conspicuous as possible and a little more hidden (so hopefully it’ll be less likely to be stolen off my car). I also would rather cut the lower grill than the main upper grill. The higher placement in the upper grill would definitely be a little better though in terms of light dispersion. May consider that as an option though, thanks!
You want it conspicuous and hidden?

?? <img src="http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/images/SubaruOutback_2014/smilies/tango_face_wink.png" border="0" alt="" title="Wink" class="inlineimg" />

I would imagine a light bar behind the grill would be nearly invisible to the naked eye. Unless it was on of course and assuming the light bar is black (like they all are)

Sort of like how you can't actually see my Auxiliary CVT cooler. It's in a similar location.

Your car, your mods though.

If anyone else is curious here is what the back of the grill and bumper look like:



The removable panels on the top half of the grill should be visible here.
Hahaha... inconspicuous**

Interesting to see the main grill from behind, ya that top part definitely seems like a good place though for a light bar. Seems like theres a perfect space behind the grill in that area also. Think I may opt for the more inconspicuous lower grill though. Hopefully the lower location will still project a decent amount of light.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Light bar looks great on the bar. I’m not really wanting to add a bar or anything else on mine yet, so I think I may just opt for the grill. I know you have to remove the whole bumper to mount it, which isn’t ideal, but I figure it will be worth the trouble. Do you find the 20” to be enough light? Can’t decide between a 20” or 25”.
I have a RIGID INDUSTRIES bar and it is super bright. (and expensive) I got the 20" size because I was planning on installing it in the grill and that's the biggest that would fit.

Since I am now bar mounting I might go for a 30".

I would get the biggest one you can most easily fit into your grill. There is no down side to more light.

I didn't have to remove the bumper for the 2014 installation, just the grill, but the 2016 is totally different and may require that, plus it may just make it easier.
Yeah I agree, I mine as well get a 25”. I measured the lower grill opening and it’s exactly 25” wide. The reason I was considering a 20” is because I found a decent looking curved 20” which follows the curvature of the bumper nicely, and I feel like it would help project light to the sides. The 25” one I’m looking at is straight. Probably not a huge difference though, and more light with the 25”. My last decision now is to decide whether to mount it behind the grill, or pushed more forward with the hole cut in the grill. I guess it’s a choice between a little more light projection or added security.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Finally installed the bar today. I ended up going with the 21” because it mounted from the sides as was less deep. The 25” one mounted from behind and I was worried about the active grill shutters not being able to open. I could’ve mounted it farther out but I would’ve had to almost completely cut out the lower grill. Overall I’m very happy with the 21”. Only mistake is that I forgot to plug the fog lights back in before putting the bumper back on 😞 Looks like the bumpers coming back off tomorrow. Will update with pictures soon.
 

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2016 2.5 Outback Premium
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Ordered an 18 inch one today. Has spot lights in the middle and floods on either side. Now, what size switch would fit in my empty slots in the hatch/memory/dimmer switch area?
 

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A lot of light bars don't reach very far, creating a broad, bright flood fairly close to the car. This causes your eyes to close down effectively killing your long range vision. I have a factory modified 20" bar fitted to my MY18 which has spot (9 degrees) and tight spot (6 degrees) LEDs. Along with wide/driving LED driving lights the wide and distance lighting is outstanding.
 

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A lot of light bars don't reach very far, creating a broad, bright flood fairly close to the car. This causes your eyes to close down effectively killing your long range vision. I have a factory modified 20" bar fitted to my MY18 which has spot (9 degrees) and tight spot (6 degrees) LEDs. Along with wide/driving LED driving lights the wide and distance lighting is outstanding. Image is a screenshot from a video so not the sharpest...
474630
 

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2019, Subaru Outback Limited 3.6R
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Diode Dynamics has some nice looking bars at decent prices vs. Rigid or Baja Designs.
Also, they are running a 20% Black Friday discount.

 

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A lot of light bars don't reach very far, creating a broad, bright flood fairly close to the car. This causes your eyes to close down effectively killing your long range vision. I have a factory modified 20" bar fitted to my MY18 which has spot (9 degrees) and tight spot (6 degrees) LEDs. Along with wide/driving LED driving lights the wide and distance lighting is outstanding.
Impressive picture GeoffMurray. What make and model of light bars is that and can you take a pic of your front end to see how you mounted them please and thanks?
 

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Looking to finally install a light bar on my 2016 and I’m looking for some opinions on sizing and placement. I don’t have a roof rack so I’m opting for the lower grill. I can fit up to a 25” light there. Do you all think 25” is overkill? Or should I just do a 21” curved? Also would too much light be blocked if I mounted it behind the lower grill? I live in San Francisco and id feel it would much less likely to be stolen and ripped off my car if it was behind the grill. However if theres gonna be significantly less light I’m willing to cut a hole in the grill and mount it sticking farther out. Any suggestions are appreciated!
i put a 12k lumen 21” in the flush mounted in lower grill...looks like a factory install. Works on a separate toggleswitch on the lower left dash. Also put 4K lumen bulbs in the fogs. Had to move the license plate to a tow hook mount to not block the light bar.
FBEDF5D6-A71E-4901-9047-B4D5C74ACF8F.jpeg
 

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Impressive picture GeoffMurray. What make and model of light bars is that and can you take a pic of your front end to see how you mounted them please and thanks?
Baja Designs XL80 driving/combo led lights in the bumper, a modified Baja Designs Onx6+ 20” spot and tight spot light bar in the Bullbar.
475146
 

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'15 Outback 2.5i Premium
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Diode Dynamics has some nice looking bars at decent prices vs. Rigid or Baja Designs.
Also, they are running a 20% Black Friday discount.

I'd looked at DD's products before and liked what I saw, but never pulled the trigger. I took advantage of the 20% discount and ordered a pair of 6" amber flood light bars and wiring harness on Black Friday (thanks for the tip, Miami). At the time I made the order they were shown on the website as in stock, but the order status stuck at "fulfilling" for several days but now has changed to backorder.

They may have had a bunch of orders come in before mine, and I'm not in that big a hurry, so no biggie. In case anyone else is waiting on theirs and wondering, I figured I'd mention it.
 
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