DIY: Installing a GPS system on my car without cutting a single wire
Installed Onelap Micro+ which offers features like engine on-off alerts, GPS+LBS positioning, alerts in case of theft & towing and more.
BHPian KarDIY recently shared this with other enthusiasts.
A GPS is a must in any car nowadays. It doesn’t just help you locate your car in case of theft, but, if you have children who also drive your car having a GPS is helpful in keeping an eye on them. I am someone who is caring for both cases. I am very wary about my car being stolen and my I have people other than me driving my car. That is why I decided to buy a GPS for my car.
Before buying a GPS I listed the features I wanted. The most important feature I wanted was remote engine locking. I researched and looked at different GPS systems and finally decided to buy Onelap Micro+. It included extra features like engine on-off alerts, GPS+LBS positioning, waterproof, alerts in case of theft and towing, driving history, driving analysis, alerts for over-speeding, etc.
Now, the important thing with remote engine locking is that you need to cut a wire and insert the relay given to do that. But as you know cutting a wire is like putting a warranty on fire. So, after some looking around I found a way to do that without cutting any wire. And the best part is that it is pretty simple and anyone can do it by following simple steps.
If you are someone who understands better by watching the video then watch this.
Though the diagram shows cutting wire, we will not cut it.
1. Under the steering column there are two Phillips heads and one 10 number nut. Unscrew the screws and nuts and keep them aside safely. (Note: To remove the nut you would need to open the lever so that you can gain access to it.)
2. Remove the steering column cover using pry tools. Insert a pry tool where the upper and lower panel meet. We need to open this so that we can get access to the socket from where we will draw power. (Note: Avoid using a screwdriver to open panels. Using a screwdriver will leave marks on the panel.)
3. Remove the lower panel completely firmly and patiently. The upper panel is connected to a fabric for better finishing so you can’t remove it. Just turn it over and put it in the space given in the instrument cluster.
4. Remove the socket in the steering column. Press at the bottom here and pull it back.
5. There are 4 wires here. Test for the positive wire. To test that, you can use a multimeter or a test bulb. To use a test bulb, connect one wire of the bulb to the wire in the socket and another to the body of the car for negative. Once you find which one is the positive wire, test the rest of the wires to find the ignition wire. To do that, put the sockets back in the column and put the bulb’s wire in the socket and connect it to a wire. Connect bulb’s other wire to negative. Now, put the key in. Turn the key to ACC and check if the bulb glows or not. My bulb lit up. Turn the key On and check if the bulb glows or not. My bulb lit up again. Now, turn the key back to ACC and check if the bulb glows or not. My bulb didn’t glow. This means the current wire is an ignition wire. (Note: If you don’t find the ignition wire then try other wires.)
6. Once we find the ignition wire, we will remove the ignition wire from the socket. To remove the wire from the socket, use a flathead screwdriver and remove the lock on the top of the socket. Now, insert a sharp and pointed object like a safety pin and push the white coloured lock on the top of the cavity and pull out the thimble in it.
7. After taking out the ignition wire from the socket, connect it to the green wire of the relay. The ideal way of connecting it is to get a similar male thimble but since I was unable to find it, I just inserted the relay wire in the thimble, wrapped it around the thimble and firmly pressed the thimble to connect the relay. Cover it using a shrink tube for safety.
8. To connect the other relay to the socket, you will need a similar thimble. You can go to workshops to buy one. But I was unable to find it nearby so I went to a repair shop and brought the whole socket from the waste wiring there.
9. After connecting the thimble to the socket, engage the lock from the top and put the socket back in.
10. The white wire from the relay will be connected to the positive terminal of the battery and the red wire from the GPS will also be connected to the positive terminal of the battery. So, to make it easy, we will merge these two wires. Slit the red a little before the fuse, connect the white wire to it and secure using tape.
11. Now, we will connect the red wire to the fuse box to draw power. Remove the panel on the right side to gain access to the fuse box.
12. Now use the labelling on the back of the panel to find the fuse which will give power even if the ignition is off. Connect one wire of the test belt to the body and connect the other wire to the BCM fuse (This fuse worked for me), if the bulb glows then it is the correct fuse. (Note: Make sure the key is not in the slot while testing this.)
13. Now to connect the wire to the fuse, we will use a fuse tap. Insert the red wire in the thimble of the fuse tap and with the help of a crimping tool, crimp the thimble properly.
14. Remove the fuse from the fuse box, put the fuse on the fuse tap and put back the fuse tap in the fuse box. (On a lighter note, please don’t get the conFUSEd.)
15. Orange wire is going to be connected to the fuse which powers up when the ignition is turned on. There is a dedicated fuse for it, Use another fuse tap and connect the wire to the fuse tap. (Note: Test the fuse the way we tested the last fuse.)
16. Connect the yellow wire from the GPS to the yellow wire of the relay and seal it using insulation tape.
17. Connect the black wire to the car’s body. Unscrew a screw or a bolt a little, wrap the wire around and screw it back firmly.
18. Now connect the wire to the GPS and both the light should be blinking. This means that all the connections are secure.
19. Before putting everything back, you will need to scan the bar code given on the GPS to set up your GPS and use it. Fill in the vehicle details. Follow the steps in the app.
20. Tie zip-ties to keep the cable organised. Tie the relay to the wire using a zip tie. Tie GPS using a zip-tie too.
21. Put the fusebox panel back.
22. Put the steering column panels back, this would require a lot of patience.
23. Screw back both the Phillips screws and the nut.
With this, all of your work is done. And your GPS is ready to go.
Here’s what BHPian Reinhard had to say on the matter:
Excellent stuff! Thanks for sharing mate. Nicely detailed and indeed a pretty useful addition to any car. Its always tricky to find good reference points for such mods – because the write-up basically tells about where the tracker is located & how to take it out (if one is a thief i.e.)
I have had a GPS tracker on my to-do list since over a year now. Let’s see if this thread with a good product reference that you have given, provides the final nudge that I needed. Cheers.
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