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hardwire install of radar detector 335i

Discussion in 'E46 (1999-2006)' started by Scooper, Jan 23, 2011.

    Scooper guest

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    I've got a 2011 335i coupe and want to hard wire a radar detector (escort 9500) but am not comfortable splicing wires after reading some of the problems with using the sunroof power supply. Is there an easier way to wire it directly to a fuse panel or some other method that doesnt require a substantial amount of dismantling the interior? Any other helpful hints would be appreciated.
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    bcweir

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    Don't hardwire ANYTHING into your wiring harness, unless you LIKE paying for repairs

    Unlike old style copper-wire harness style cars like mine, the harnesses on new cars are more like computer networks than basic positive and negative wires. One wire can carry multiple signals for several modules in your car. It's not just a copper wire anymore.

    Not only does a hack job ruin the harness, but it introduces the chances of electrical shorts and even a possible electrical fire. Worst of all, your warranty won't cover repairs due to negligience or unauthorized modifications. Considering that most dealer labor rates are between $100 to $150 an hour or even more, the out of pocket expense of repairing or replacing an electrical harness can be prohibitive.

    Best bet is either to plug it in to a supported vehicle power socket and use it according to the manufacturer directions, or find a radar detector product that offers a more discreet installation. Or have it professionally installed by an installer that will warranty their work (including repair costs if a noob ruins your harness or fubars the install).

    Hint: I know you said you bought an Escort, but the Valentine One offers a Concealed Display Module Option for $39. According to their advertisement, this option "remotes all visual warnings to a location of your choosing." Something to think about. Or you can ask the Escort people if they have a discreet install option that doesn't involve splicing, taping, or making unauthorized modifications to your car's electrical harness.

    The reason I feel so strongly about this is that my car is the victim of a amateur "hardwiring" job. Not only is there no documentation for what got changed, but the poor quality electrical tape splicing will pretty much require replacing several sections of my car's harness with a junk yard replacement (some of the harnesses in my car list for over $1,000 - if available at all).

    Among the little "gems" of this train wreck of a wiring harness? An obsolete radar detector wrapped in electrical tape and hardwired to my car's underdash harness, with some wires having tape with no connections and just dangling, or other wires that seem to go absolutely nowhere. Yes, I am going to be very busy undoing this disaster.

    Just my $20.02
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    rspeser

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    I had the dealer hard wire my 9500ix on my previous Z4 ( half an hours labor ) and transfer the set up to my 135i. The transfer of the wiring was written into the deal. They wired it directly to the fuse box using a fuse tap. No cutting anything, no wires hanging and the remote is under the wheel for muting, etc. It was well worth the 50.00 I paid for the first car.
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    Pyewacket1

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    I completely agree with beweir in his suggestions.

    The cost of a professional install (with guarantee) is small compared to what you will pay if something gets screwed up if you make a mistake doing it yourself.
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    granthr

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    If you don't believe this, my friend tried to hot wire his seat belt chime so he wouldn't always have to wear his seat belt (I don't agree with that!). He ended up with so many fault codes he had to take it back to the dealer for them to install a new wiring harness!!! Not for the whole car, but still not good. He has a 2010 328xi.
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    bcweir

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    Wow, that's bad!

    That's nearly as tragic as the stories I read about people being found dead behind the wheel after a crash -- while SITTING ON their buckled seatbelt!
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    scottmac

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    That's not tragic, that's Darwin; he always wins in the end.

    Stupid people die in stupid ways, and that's not necessarily a bad thing.
    (quoting a Chicago Talk radio host).
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    scottmac

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    Escort also has a concealed remote, either hardwired or cigarette lighter, in red or blue LEDs. They works (IIRC) from the Solo models and above. I have a 9500ix hard-wired, and it beats the V1 (that I also own) across the board and is much quieter, IMO.

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