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Not your typical Homelink Install

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Old 03-09-2008, 06:45 PM   #1
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Not your typical Homelink Install

Like most of my projects, I tend to have a field test before I post my comments or suggestions with all the Pro's and Con's (Thats why no install pic's, sorry). I don't want to be all embarrassed if I need to buy a new headliner! I did this install two weeks ago and can provide some advise to all who want to take this on.
I wasn't so sure at first how it was going to turn out, but in the end it was all worth it. I have played with the home-link in the mirror and for various reasons, I didn't like it there and wanted an alternative. I had high hopes to install aftermarket switches and an LED in the overhead console between the map lights. There is sufficient room, would have worked, but the thought of drilling holes into an $800 overhead console kept me from doing it. Not withstanding that cutting into a $400 headliner is any better or easier nerve-wise!
It wasn't as simple as cutting 3 holes. The headliner is just a bit too thick to allow the trim ring to seat properly and the buttons won't activate. So I needed to modify the case. I split the case in half an took the side with the switches and cut as illustrated in the red lines. The thick solid line I cut all the way through. The this angled cuts, I cut ˝ way deep into the cover(the thickness of the headliner is what I used as a measure)This allowed the only the part holding the bezel and buttons to become flush with the outer layer of the headliner and allow proper clearance. I finished the install with some strong adhesive tape (I guess duct tape would work well, too) holding it to the headliner from above. I then glued and trimmed a piece of foam rubber, the softer kind, to the top of the unit between the case and the roof brace, to give it some backbone when depressing the buttons. I tapped the wiring into the map light continuous power. If not there is a green wire thats switched in the compass connector that you can use.

The best suggestion I have is, I'm glad I took the time to make sure the trimming below the buttons on the transmitter case (Heavy red line) and the line I cut in the headliner were square and straight. This determines where the unit will rest in the headliner. I used a total of 3 sharp utility blades to score and eventually cut through to transmitter case. And then used both sides of a 4th blade to cut the headliner. An extra blade is cheap, a torn headliner is expensive!)

The last suggestion I have is the if your a looking to grab one off EBay and will only bid on the Gray ones, the only Gray colored bezel that Mito Corp(Manufacturer of the home-link) manufacturers is two shades lighter than our Gray. It really isn't noticeable in real life, but the flash of the camera really, really brings it out. I ordered a black one from Mito to see how that looks. It would be a simple repaint if I wanted to do that also.
I hope this helps.
Here are some pictures. I think it turned out very well. Ain't nothing like hacking a 2008 headliner!

Edit: And get a rolling code home-link, almost every garage door opener built after 1997 needs one. eBay scammers will try and pull it past you. Look for the little house around the LED. Thats how you tell.
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Not your typical Homelink Install-homelink1.jpg   Not your typical Homelink Install-dscn1133-small-.jpg  
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Old 03-09-2008, 07:00 PM   #2
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Good job, thats looks really professional. I dont blame you for not wanting to cut into the overhead comp. I would not have risked that either......After reading this i almost want to put one in my truck...to bad i dont have a garage so i really dont need one lol.....
Brett TX
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