F150/Expedition: How to Install the PIAA Airdam

By Matt Adams

99-01 Ford F-150′s and Expeditions
This is an awesome looking, extremely rugged, smooth airdam made by PIAA for use on the 1999-2001.  The price is reasonable (cheaper then many competitors airdams actually!) and it includes brackets and holes that are perfectly sized to fit one set of PIAA 510′s surrounding the license plate, and one set of either PIAA 520′s, 80′s, or 40′s where the existing stock fog lights are.  The installation is fairly straight forward and the instructions that come with the airdam are quite detailed.  There’s no guesswork on what bolts go where, everything you receive is labeled with a number and the instruction tell you which part number goes on which side, etc.
I apologize for the quality of some of these pictures, they were taking in a hurry, and I promise some better ones very shortly!

BEFORE – my F-150 with stock fog lights and stock airdam

Step 1 – Remove the factory fog lights (if equipped).  This is just a matter of removing the bulb (for safety’s sake), and removing three bolts from each bracket (8mm wrench or socket required)

Step 2 – Time to unsnap a few things… unsnap the center rubber spashguard from the factory airdam (has three plastic fasteners, this is what forces air that comes in by the license plate up to the radiator and tranny cooler).  Also unsnap the license plate frame bracket fromt hefactory airdam (the two plastic fasteners).

Step 3 – Remove the factory airdam.  This is done by removing the 12 bolts throughout the bumper (4 on each side, 4 in the center) holding it in place.

Step 4 – Remove the license plate frame if one of two things applies, either you don’t want it and won’t use it or you will be installing the secondary brackets for the 510′s in the center, as these use the license plate frame holes.  This typically has two metal rivets that will need to be drilled out (factory license plate bracket CAN be added back at a later step after the airdam has been installed)

Step 5 – Fasten the main brackets (these are the ones that will be supporting the big round fog lights, either 40′s, 80 XT’s, or 520′s.  This is done using the supplied 8mm hardware.  The bracket marked 30531 goes on the driver side and the bracket marked 30532 goeso n the passenger side with the step in the brackets coming down.  NOTE: These brackets use two bolts, the factory fog light brackets used three.  This bracket will fit either way, but be ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN to install the bracket in to the INNER set of holes.  If you install them in the outer set of holes, the airdam will not fit into place properly and the lights will not be at the right location to fit in the appropriate holes.

Step 6 – Fasten the PIAA airdam to the bottom of the bumper.  This is done with the supplied 6mm hardware in the factory fastener holes.  It is a good idea to start on the outside of both sides and work your way toward the center, so you meet at the center.  That way you are certain that everything is even.  It’s also a good idea to just finger tighten the bolts at this point, to leave them loose enough for adjustments if necessary.  Hopefully it will start looking something like this:

Step 7 - install the main lamps to the main brackets you installed in Step 5.  Center the lamp in the desired location.  If your lamps don’t fit perfectly, you may need to use a spacer washer or two to make it fit right.  When the lamps are centered int he openings tigthen the bracket fasteners.  Leave the lamp fasteners slightly loose for final aiming.
Step 8 (if installing PIAA 510′s to secondary brackets)  – Install the secondary brackets for the 510′s now.  You use the supplied 6mm hardware to bolt the brackets to the license plate bracket mounting location and to the airdam mounting location second hole from center.  If you are planning on using your license plate frame still, run the 6mm bolt through the previous hole now to ensure a snug fit.  This bracket should be arranged so the long portion goes towards the bumper, and the drop faces down.

Step 9 (if installing PIAA 510′s to secondary brackets) - Install the 510′s to the secondary brackets using 11/16" wrench or socket.

Step 10 – Tighten all bolts securely, except for those used in aiming the lights. Once airdam and bracket are securely tightened into place, you can wire up the lights and aim them!  That’s it

AFTER - my F-150 with the PIAA Airdam installed, PIAA 520 fog lights installed in the main location, PIAA 510 superwhite driving lights mounted in the secondary location (surrounding the license plate frame).  My 520′s are wired with the PIAA relay, with the switch wire coming from the stock fog lights, using the stock fog light switch. The 510′s are wired seperately with a switch so they can come on when I want them to come on. Better pictures coming soon.

If you have any questions on this procedure or have any other PIAA related lighting questions, contact me at mattadams@pcisys.com

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