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HOW TO: Hardwire your GPS

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Old 01-04-2009, 09:10 PM   #1
Nuggety
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HOW TO: Hardwire your GPS

NOTE: I have since redone the wiring, you can see an alternative option here

OVERVIEW


This guide will show you how to hardwire a GPS unit's power cord to the cigarette lighter and route the wiring inside the dash.
This guide assumes you are installing a Garmin 205W or similar GPS unit in a 2008 Automatic Doublecab. Installation may vary dependent on the plug that feeds to the back end of the GPS (the smaller the better).

MAKE SURE YOU HAVE PLENTY OF TIME IN THE DAY TO DO THIS! I started at 2pm and wound up finishing at 8pm. It shouldn't take you as long; I spent a lot of time planning and re-planning. However, It's quite involved and is more difficult the darker it is outside. Note that you also take enough stuff apart that you won't be able to drive very well until you are done.

DIFFICULTY

EDIT: I found a much easier way of adding the extra cigarette lighter, which takes out 2/3 of the work involved. Please skip to the bottom

Difficult and involved (unless you do the updated method... which is less difficult). Continue only if you are comfortable with these sorts of jobs.

Are you ready to spend all day on this? Are you losing your sanity? Do you like struggling with things? Yeah, this involves all that. I don't know if I'd try to repeat this job. It's a super pain, but hopefully I can take out the extra guesswork so you can get right down to busting your fingers and perching upside down in the footwells with tools and parts all over.

The more portions of the dash you take apart, the easier the install is. However, there's a LOT of dash to take apart, so how easy it is and your comfort level might be at odds.

REVERSABILITY

Other than how you may be splicing the cables, everything should be reversible. It may be harder than the installation (in regard to fishing things back out).
If you have a GPS that has a traffic receiver cord, you will need to bust some of the vent tabs to make the cord fit through. This isn't too big of a deal, you can't really tell anything has been cut.

TOOLS AND PARTS REQUIRED

Dash removal instructions (in case my pictures aren't enough, thanks to whoever originally posted this)
GPS power cord
Inline Splice connectors (2)
Multimeter
Wire (preferably two colors, about 16-20AWG will suffice)
thin, long, flat-blade screwdriver
Large, long, flat-blade screwdriver (2)
Philips screwdriver
flashlight (optional)
10mm socket screwdriver
Auxillary Power Socket ($9 or less, see pic). Try getting the most compact one you can find.




PROCEDURE
  1. Open the packaging for your Auxillary Plug. If it's like mine, you can pretty much throw away the wiring. It's about an inch long and is useless. Try to remove any metal brackets or plug caps, anything that might be extraneous. We have a limited amount of room.
  2. Follow the steps in this video up to about 1:20 (thanks to roborock for finding this)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cV8Z5pCZGjU

    It should now look like this:


    Easy method: After removing the stereo and its trim, you can stop. We will be wiring inline with the head unit. Skip to the end of post #2
  3. Remove the shift knob
  4. Remove the silver piece of the center console that goes around the gearshift. It's called the "Console Upper Rear Panel Sub Assembly". it just pops straight up.
  5. Pull out the front cupholder tray. It all just pulls straight out.
  6. Remove the rear console box (the cubby between the front seats). Remove the carpet, the two bolts, and the two screws. There's still teeth that hook it to the rest of the console, you need to lift up and then towards the rear of the truck (I busted mine off, so good luck)
  7. Remove the two bolts near the gearshift that holds the center console, then pull the center console straight back as you see in the picture (use both hands, one on either side)

  8. Remove the driver's side door sill trim. It pulls straight up.
  9. Remove the fake pedal in the driver's footwell (pull straight up)
  10. Undo the bolt you find underneath
  11. Remove the kick panel

  12. Remove the coin trays on both sides of the steering wheel. The one on the right pulls straight out.
Continued in next post
Attached Thumbnails
HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_dashview.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_auxplug.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-22.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-19.jpg  
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File Type: pdf TacomaDashRemoval.pdf (1.51 MB, 445 views)
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Old 01-04-2009, 09:10 PM   #2
Nuggety
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  1. Remove the controls for the side mirrors. I did this by sticking my fingers up through the hole where the coin holder used to be and poking it forward.
  2. Disconnect the wires.

  3. Remove the plastic under the steering column. One bolt is hidden behind a flap


  4. Remove the metal panel beneath
  5. Open the glovebox
  6. Squeeze the sides of the glovebox in to lower it further
  7. Unhook the piston from the glovebox (I don't know a good way to do this, the piece holding it on is very flimsy. It doesn't like to reattach for me very well)
  8. Remove the glovebox

    From here, the manual talks about removing the instrument cluster, which I felt was outside my comfort zone. I'm a bit obsessive-compulsive, and would completely spazz if the spedo was off, etc., when I put it back together. Unfortunately, the upper portion of the driver's side dash holds in a lot of the center portions of the dash, such as the middle vents and the cigarette lighter area (why this portion is built like Fort Knox and the deck comes out ready to steal in 1 minute is beyond me).
    If you are like me and have reached the limits, read on - we can still do this.
  9. Pry on the right corner of the plastic holding the cigarette lighters. You can disassemble it just enough to get a hand up to the back end of the right cigarette lighter


  10. Disconnect the plug from the back end of the right cigarette adapter
  11. Take the red and black wires you bought and cut them to a good long length. I thought I was doing good at 2 feet or so, but ended up shorter than I wanted. Cut yours to something ridiculous, like 4 to 6 feet. We can trim them down later. Wire's cheap, headaches suck.
  12. Turn the truck on without turning on the engine
  13. Using your multimeter, test the polarity on the plug you removed in step 10 of this post. For me, green was +12V and black/white was ground
  14. Turn the truck back off
  15. Using the inline splice, connect +12V and the red wire (see the red arrow in the picture below)
  16. Make a chassis ground for the black wire. I used a bolt (see the yellow arrow in the picture below)


  17. Feed the black and red wires up through the innards of the dash to get them up near the area where the stereo sits.

Easy method:
  1. The easiest 12V source you can use is the power wire to your stereo headunit. I believe it is the blue/yellow wire, but I don't have things in front of me right now. Using the inline splice, connect your red wire to this one. If you have an aftermarket radio, I suggest making your attachments to the corresponding wire on the head unit wiring harness - you can always get another one of those if things screw up!
  2. You still need a good spot for a grounding wire. I always recommend a dedicated ground instead of tapping an existing source. Since I did things the hard way to start with, I kept my ground wired as described above. If you find a better spot that doesn't involve taking apart more of the truck, go for it. Taking apart the middle console is pretty easy, I think there might be something down there to ground to.

Continued in next post
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HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-17.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-15.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-7.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-6.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gps_-5.jpg  

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Old 01-04-2009, 09:10 PM   #3
Nuggety
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At this point, you have some design options as to where you want the power connector you bought to sit inside the dash. After several changes, the best method is to tuck the stuff into the area between the driver's side vent and the radio. It's a very good idea to try wrapping the new auxillary power connector and plug assembly with something like foam tape to prevent rattles.

You will will notice that there's this wonderfully HUGE hole that sits between the top of the dash and the venting. It's a V-shaped area, and is deceptively large enought to tuck a ton of stuff up there. I wasn't able to get the plug and adapter to fit up there, but it was a good place to tuck the excess GPS wire. The arrow in the picture below points to the general area.


  1. Connect the auxillary power connector to your red and black wires

    Now it's time to actually route the GPS power wire. We are going to have it poke through the defrost vents. This might take a friend to help with some extra hands.
  2. Using the thin, long, flathead screwdriver, come in through the stereo area and poke up where the V area is.
  3. Poke the head of the screwdriver between the underside of the upper dash and the defrost vent holes, then twist the screwdriver 90 degrees to make a gap
  4. Using the larger flathead screwdriver, do the same thing to make the gap bigger. Remove the small screwdriver (you may want a second large screwdriver to widen things)
  5. poke the head of the GPS plug through one of the vent holes. For those of you like me that have a right angle miniUSB plug, you have to turn it sideways and angle it in there in a few steps. If you have a GPS that uses the traffic antenna cord, you will need to bust off a few tabs... but you won't notice them later on, and it makes this MUCH easier.
  6. Pull the wire through enough that the end could hypothetically "kiss" the top edge of your stereo This gives enough length to connect the GPS easily. When not in use, you can tuck the wire along the defrost vents.
Connect the GPS power to the auxillary power plug you wired in, turn on the truck to test for power, then shut everything back up!

HOLY GOD YOU'RE DONE AND YOU DIDN'T SHOOT YOURSELF IN THE HEAD!
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Old 01-04-2009, 09:33 PM   #4
Nuggety
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Sorry it's dark, but here's some action shots for you all. Didn't get all fancy with cleaning them up either



A bit better view of the cord:





This is what i do with the cord when not in use. It's very hard to see from the outside of the truck.

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HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gpsaction_-1.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gpsaction_-2.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gpsaction_-3.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gpsaction_-5.jpg   HOW TO:  Hardwire your GPS-gpsaction_-6.jpg  

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Old 01-04-2009, 09:43 PM   #5
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Can't wait to see it all done! Subd
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Old 01-04-2009, 11:28 PM   #6
Nuggety
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All done unless I made an editing mistake!
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Old 01-06-2009, 11:05 PM   #7
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Thanks for writing it up! Good Job!

It looks a lot more work than I was expecting. Do you know if you can fish the wire to the left of the steering wheel?
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Old 01-07-2009, 07:29 AM   #8
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Thanik you for the right up. But I'am 74 years old and will not try this. I mounted my GPS in the lower left hand corner of the windshield as low as possiable. Took the wire and stuffed it in between the rubber down the door piller , took the wire under the bottom of the dash with clips to hold behind bottom of dash . Ran over to the lighter and pluggd The GPS in. Works for me. You are very talented. Thanks again for your response.----Wayne
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Old 01-07-2009, 01:56 PM   #9
Nuggety
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DsleePy1 View Post
It looks a lot more work than I was expecting.
Same for me!

Quote:
Do you know if you can fish the wire to the left of the steering wheel?
I think this is what people are normally doing; going down the side and underneath the steering wheel column. The trouble is still getting to the cigarette lighters. There may be an easier spot to obtain power, but I wasn't planning to take everything apart when I started out.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jward2331 View Post
I mounted mine like Wayne but want to hard wire it to the fuse panel under the dash. I ordered a mini fuse tap and will try it that way.
Sounds like a good idea. Let us know how it goes!
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:18 PM   #12
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that seems like a hell of a lot of work but good job for sticking with it!! looks good!
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Old 02-22-2009, 05:03 AM   #13
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(Thumbs Up) +1 for the chilli peppers being played when you took the Pic! Chilli peppers are the shit!
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Old 06-23-2009, 06:32 AM   #14
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I also put mine on the left side of the windshield, right in front of me. I installed a switch and mounted it in one of the blanks in front of the fuse panel and hardwired a dual jack cigarette lighter adaptor to it. I mounted it under the cupholder because I also run my Sirius off of it. Neat and clean and easy, about 20 minutes worth of work.
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Old 07-19-2013, 12:18 PM   #15
Nuggety
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UPDATE: I have redone the wiring, check out this link
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:05 PM   #16
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Can you guys post some pics of your set ups?
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Old 03-27-2014, 07:34 AM   #17
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tony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shedtony2018 is one of the sharper tools in the shed
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Any instructions on removing the center console? How does the shifter come off?
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:10 PM   #18
Nuggety
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony2018 View Post
Any instructions on removing the center console? How does the shifter come off?
The shifter is basically a large nut. Twist counterclockwise and it will spin off.

Further instructions are linked in the first post. There is both the service manual instructions, plus a video.
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