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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Here is my installation of a non-OEM wiring harness. It is a "universal" splice in (not the Patriot/Compass specific plug-n-play) style.

I chose to make all of my connections inside the trunk so I did not have to deal with the grommets.

Currently, I have the 4 pin connector run out from under the plastic trim into the spare tire compartment. When I need to use it, I will just run it out the back between the weather stripping and hatch.

Hopkins Towing Solutions "Hoppy" 46365
Short Proof Powered Taillight Converter



I used the trailer tow wiring for power instead of running a new line to the battery.
The trailer tow wiring can be found taped to the left taillight wires (behind the grommet if you are looking for it from the light side).
The fuse for this circuit is the yellow 20 AMP that is circled:


There is a lot of space behind the plastic trim in the rear of the vehicle and that is where I chose to install the "black box".
To get the trim off, you must first take out the plastic cargo floor (removing the spare tire and sound deadening material is optional).
Next take off the trim at the latch.

This is done by removing the (2) tie downs and pulling up on the trim.
To remove the single big piece of plastic first remove the tie down near the wheel well and then

start at the bottom near the weatherstripping. Lift the tab up and out of the notch in the frame. Begin to pull the plastic away from the weatherstripping. The plastic is held in by metal clips and some tabs along the top. This piece extends all the way to the passenger door. The bottom will catch on the plastic trim of the seat, but it will come out without a lot of force. It just needs to be worked until it is in the right position. Both driver and passegner sides come out the same way.
Here is what it looks like with the trim removed.

I installed the black box in the sheetmetal with screws. The location that I chose is where there is a void between the outer skin and the interior frame (so no screws went through the exterior).

Ground (white) is connected to the vehicle wiring ground.
Parking Lamp (brown) is connected to the WT/VT (white with violet stripe).
Left Turn (yellow) is connected to the DG/RD (dark green with red stripe).
*Note that mine is an '08 so I have the dual function Stop/Turn light instead of the '07 red stop and amber turn. So I don't use the small red wire that is for separate brake lights
Battery (thick red) is connected to the trailer tow wire RD/VT (red with violet stripe)
Right Turn (green) runs across the back of the spare tire compartment to its connection point with the WT/YL (white with yellow stripe)




On a side note, any of you looking for a place for storage. If you notice, there is a good deal of "chase" space under the driver side plastic trim piece (to get the cargo floor to be the same height as the folded seat). Cutting out the area behind the wheel well and putting in some sort of box could be useful. I would even prefer to replace the passenger side (since I have the cubby not the BA sound) with the export driver side to make both sides match.
 

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Great pics and instructions! Thanks for sharing. This will also be helpful when I go to line select parts of my interior with Dynamat.
 

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Perfect Joe.
I have one of those kits that I have yet to install. This will make it easier to do!
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #4
:smiley_thumbs_up:

One other note about the driver (left) side.
The location where I spliced in is "downstream" of where the taillight wiring and hatch wiring converge. There are (2) white with violet stripe wires in that "Mississippi River" bundle. It was hard to tell by examination which was the correct wire... so I went through the task of "debundling". Now the taillight and hatch wire bundles are separate back to the grounding location. Just another example of saving a few inches of electrical tape by bundling together instead of bundling separately for ease of identification.
 

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Is the 20 amp fuse already there? So the one included is useless? I'm wondering what to do with the yellow fuseholder and the fuse that comes with the kit. Do I just ignore those parts since we are using the trailer tow wire?

Also, for those who decided to use the connecor instead of splicing, how did you make your wires go through the grommet? It is obvious the connector won't go through but making the wires pass through on the side deform the grommet and "untight" the seal. I though cutting the grommet on one side to let the wire go through and still seal the hole. What did you do?

I'll finish tomorrow and thanx for the post, showing that removing the rear trims was not taht bad. At first, I wanted to wire it outside as prescribe but tought it would last more being hidden inside the Jeep.
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #7
Hey Joe can you verify the thing that I circled in your photo? It almost looks like a hidden 12 volt outlet.
That is the seat belt retractor.
 

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Thanks Joe, I had just never taken that panel off before and it looked very similar from that angle... a guy could hope right?
 

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Sorry guys but what about the fuse? Do I need one to install a 3rd party harness to the trailer tow wire?
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Sorry guys but what about the fuse? Do I need one to install a 3rd party harness to the trailer tow wire?
The 20 AMP fuse for the vehicle wiring is already in the Jeep (the picture I took of the fuse box). Just take it out before you attach the power wires, and then put it back when done.

You can either wire it with or without the additional converter fuse. I choose to put the fuse in. I did this on both my backup camera and my trailer wiring. It doesn't hurt to have it there. If you use the fuse holder, you could decide to put in a lower AMP fuse just for that branch.

For example, the accessory outlet has a 20 AMP fuse and my backup camera system should never draw more than 3 AMP so I put in a fuse holder with a 3 AMP fuse. Now the outlet can still draw 20 AMP but the camera system won't get more than 3 AMP. Obviously I don't want to try to run something that requires 18 AMP with my backup camera on (21 AMP = blown fuse in fuse box). :)
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Thanks Joe, I had just never taken that panel off before and it looked very similar from that angle... a guy could hope right?
It is OK to dream. :)

It would not be hard to put one in back there. Just use the same trailer tow wire. Some others have already done this. Not sure if they have pictures of their installs though.
 

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Thanx Joe! I think I'm good now!
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #13
Did you get it installed Plumonium?
 

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Hi Joe,

Thanks for this post...I just completed an installation on my '09 with much help from your photos. One thing puzzles me, however, which is the mismatch between the fuse for the "tow vehicle" (20 amp) and the gauge of the wire (16?) which terminates at the drivers side tail light and supplies battery power to the controller. The wire furnished with the kit (which I didn't use) is more like 12. I reduced the amperage of the fuse instead, as I'll only be towing a light utility trailer with two lights.

I would hate to think of 20 amps actually flowing through that light wire.

Any wisdom on this one, anybody?
 

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Hi Joe,

Thanks for this post...I just completed an installation on my '09 with much help from your photos. One thing puzzles me, however, which is the mismatch between the fuse for the "tow vehicle" (20 amp) and the gauge of the wire (16?) which terminates at the drivers side tail light and supplies battery power to the controller. The wire furnished with the kit (which I didn't use) is more like 12. I reduced the amperage of the fuse instead, as I'll only be towing a light utility trailer with two lights.

I would hate to think of 20 amps actually flowing through that light wire.

Any wisdom on this one, anybody?
I agree completely with you on this one. I personnaly find that almost every wire is under sized in automobiles. For example, 20 amps, in a 10 feet 16 gauge wire would give us a resistance of 0.04 ohm, giving a 0.8 volt drop, meaning a loss of 16 watts along the wire. 16 watts along 10 feet means 1.6watt/feet which is manageable by such a wire. But if you have a few others alongside it, it can bring a significant amount of heat. It all depends on the configuration of the wires and how often and how long such wires would carry 20 amps. Normally, it would be used at it's full potential maybe when breaking (full lamps on) so it would be rather brief, giving time to the wire to cool.

You ask me what I'd do? I'd put at least a 14ga wire. But that's me, having nothing to do with Chrysler budgets and weight and space problems of putting bigger wires in cars...
 

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Battery (thick red) is connected to the trailer tow wire RD/PK (red with pink stripe)
So behind the grommet I found the wire you speak of, did you cut the connection off of the red with pink stripe tow wire and use a butt connector to splice them? correct? Would be nice to not have to run a wire to the battery!

Just purchased my harness for my evening project.
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Didn't cut the connector off.
I just used scotch locks to splice into the wire near the other connections I needed to make.
You can see the 3 blue connectors near the "brain box" in one of the pictures.
 

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Didn't cut the connector off.
I just used scotch locks to splice into the wire near the other connections I needed to make.
You can see the 3 blue connectors near the "brain box" in one of the pictures.
So just use a scotch lock on the tow wire and that will connect to the thick red wire?

What are the 3 blue connectors? I blew the picture up big to examine and I can't tell what they are conencted to or why...

Seems to me that I only need to connect the red wire to the tow wire. This can be accomplished with the scotch lock correct? I only need 1... right?
 

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just an average Joe
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Discussion Starter #19
I forgot. I did have to wirenut the big thick red wire to the trailer tow wire. There is too big a difference in wire gauge between the power wire on the converter and the vehicle wiring.

The blue connectors are the scotch locks for the other wires. I bought a non-plug and play. I had to splice in each wire.
 
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