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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > DIY Guides > DIY: Passport X50 A-Pillar Hardwire-Step 1 of 5 -Introduction and wire harness



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      02-02-2008, 07:27 PM   #1
E92Vancouver
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DIY: Passport X50 A-Pillar Hardwire-Step 1 of 5 -Introduction and wire harness

I hard wired my Passport X50 because I don't like cigarette adapters. I ran the wire down the A-pillar behind the air bag.

Step 1 is to buy the direct wire cord for $10. I removed the fuse link as I was using a fuse tap. I soldered the fuse tap and a ground ring terminal to the harness. I used heat shrink to cover the solder joint.
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Last edited by E92Vancouver; 02-02-2008 at 10:49 PM.
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      02-02-2008, 07:30 PM   #2
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Step 2 of 5 -The A Pillar

The next step is to remove the A-pillar moulding that covers the air bag. Use a small screw driver to remove the screw cover. Use a torx screwdriver to remove the screw and then slide the cover up and out.
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Last edited by E92Vancouver; 02-02-2008 at 10:49 PM.
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      02-02-2008, 07:38 PM   #3
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Step 3 of 5 -Wiring

1. I secured the harness to my rear view mirror with a zip tie.

2. Run the wire along the head liner. Tuck the wire in behind.

3. Run the wire down the A-pillar behind the air bag. Secure it with zip ties to the existing wire harness.

4. Run the wire down between the space between the plastic moulfing and door moulding, so it is out of the way when you re-assemble the A-pillar trim.

5. I ran the wire underneath the door sill moulding after it exits the A-pillar.

6. About midway down the door, there is a slot where you can run the wire to the fuse box.

7. There is an existing screw where you can secure the ground ring terminal.

8. Plug the fuse blade into an empty slot. The one I used is keyed to the ignition so that the radar detector turns off with the car.
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      02-02-2008, 07:45 PM   #4
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Step 4 of 5 -Assembly

1. The bottom of the A-pillar moulding has slots that slide into the dash.

2. The A-pillar has pressure fit plugs that push into the metal frame.

3. Photo 3 is the slots which the A-pillar moulding slides into.

4. The air bag goes behind this foam. Do not pinch or disturb it when installing the moulding.

5. Slide the bottom of the moulding into the dash slots. Push the edge of the A-pillar trim into the black door trim, starting from the bottom.

6. View of trim going in.

7. I installed the trim while standing from outside the car and looking through the windshield so that I could guide the trim plugs into the frame holes. The trim plugs can slide along their guide way so that you can make necessary adjustments.
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      02-02-2008, 07:48 PM   #5
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Step 5 of 5 -Turn it on

1. I mount the radar detector mid way down the window.

2. When I am not using the radar detector, I tuck the wiring up behind the passenger sun visor.
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Last edited by E92Vancouver; 02-02-2008 at 10:50 PM.
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      02-02-2008, 08:01 PM   #6
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nice writeup...looks good
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      02-03-2008, 11:12 AM   #7
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Madd Complicated... And Why not have it sitting over the rear view mirron on the passenger side?
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      02-03-2008, 11:41 AM   #8
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+1, having it sit on the rear view looks cleaner and please change that spiral phone cord to straight cord
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      02-03-2008, 02:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJayE92 View Post
Madd Complicated... And Why not have it sitting over the rear view mirron on the passenger side?
Having the radar detector too high reduces its effectiveness and range because of the dark window tinting at that level.
For maximum range, the radar detector must be below the window tint.
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      02-03-2008, 03:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ontopofm View Post
+1, having it sit on the rear view looks cleaner and please change that spiral phone cord to straight cord
The cord I have used is straight as you can see from when I modified the harness. The spiral you see is actually a plastic protective cover.
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      02-03-2008, 09:37 PM   #11
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oh, well my window doesnt have tint there. so i have it over the mirror... is there any other issues with having it there high?
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      02-03-2008, 11:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJayE92 View Post
oh, well my window doesnt have tint there. so i have it over the mirror... is there any other issues with having it there high?
If the radar detector is too high, it will not pick up laser as well.
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      02-03-2008, 11:36 PM   #13
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Laser is hard to pick up as is, the size is only 18 inches wide from 500 feet out, and it is usually aiming either at headlights or license plate... soooo either way your S.O.L
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      02-03-2008, 11:36 PM   #14
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Plus 335i's are low to begin with
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      03-03-2008, 12:55 AM   #15
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FYI...If you are doing this on an E92 (2008) the correct fuse would be #8. That controls the cigarette lighter accessories. The fusebox layout is totally different.
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      03-06-2008, 05:28 PM   #16
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It's much easier to remove the overhead console and tap into a switched wire. I can't remember the color combination, but I used a test light to find a switched wire, and used a tap I got from AutoZone. The tap has a female spade connecter, and I plugged the X50 hardwire spade connecter into the tap. Roll up the excess wire, push gently against the headliner from the top side, and slip a small length of wire out to where you want to mount the X50. It's easy to do, and the instructions for removing the overhead console are in the manual. The entire project took less than 30 minutes.
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      04-11-2008, 05:51 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PAT View Post
It's much easier to remove the overhead console and tap into a switched wire. I can't remember the color combination, but I used a test light to find a switched wire, and used a tap I got from AutoZone. The tap has a female spade connecter, and I plugged the X50 hardwire spade connecter into the tap. Roll up the excess wire, push gently against the headliner from the top side, and slip a small length of wire out to where you want to mount the X50. It's easy to do, and the instructions for removing the overhead console are in the manual. The entire project took less than 30 minutes.
The dealer told me to tap into the fuse box direct. Tapping into a wire, overloading a circuit and frying a computer could be grounds to void your warranty. The fuse box has lots of vacant slots, so why not use them. I originally had it tapped into a wire in the overhead light area but opted for the safer install to avoid warranty dispute situations.
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      04-11-2008, 11:48 AM   #18
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I have a 2006 E90. On the bottom of the center console there are 3 buttons for the heated seats and downhill assist. There are also a number of blanks there. I'd like to wire my X50 using the SmartCord and create a custom button in that area. Does anyone know where I can get a button that would fit in there? I think it would be great to have a completely hidden/integrated system without buying an SR7! I'd even be okay with some sort of flush mount housing for the smartcord controller to recess it in the dash or the center console somewhere.
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      05-20-2008, 04:04 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E92Vancouver View Post
Having the radar detector too high reduces its effectiveness and range because of the dark window tinting at that level.
For maximum range, the radar detector must be below the window tint.
Yes, you want it as high as possible, but still below the tint bar at the top of the windshield.

Valentine 1 recommendation: Detector performance is enhanced by a high mounting position. Two reasons. For radar, a longer sight line to the horizon always helps. For laser, moving away from the hood and its sun reflections helps a lot.

Link to page in V1 manual

And Laser detector mounting
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      10-03-2008, 09:16 PM   #20
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I know this thread is a little old, but what is the rating on the fuse tapped? Is that a 5 Amp?
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      10-03-2008, 09:20 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adamc514 View Post
I know this thread is a little old, but what is the rating on the fuse tapped? Is that a 5 Amp?
Yes. Use a 3 or 5 amp fuse.
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      10-04-2008, 07:48 PM   #22
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Does there need to be a fuse in the fuse tap for it to work ? I am leaving the inline fuse on the power cord. And I am guessing that is a mini fuse tap.

Last edited by rayc325; 10-04-2008 at 07:49 PM. Reason: correct ratings
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