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Install Garage & Help Desk You've got the radio, now which cable goes where? Got questions about factory installed radios in your car? Ask any installation or help questions here and someone will get to you soon.

 
 
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Old 12-30-2006, 09:51 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikingjunior
The Radio Shack adapter is the way to go I hooked mine up yesterday and very happy with it. I only have one cig. lighter plug in my truck so I like to leave that free.

First thing to remember is that some of the fuses in the fuse box is live even with the car off, you want a fuse that goes dead with the car OFF. Get yourself one of those test lights, http://www.autotoys.com/x/cust/produ...ctid=686&cat=8 clip the alligator clip on to some metal in the car then pull out a fuse and take the test light probe and stick it in where the fuse was, if the tester lights up the circuit is hot. Ideally you want to tap into a circuit that goes dead when you turn the car off. So turn the car key to the ignition position without starting the car. Now repeat the above steps with your test light to determine which circuits are live with the car off and which are ONLY live with the car ON.

When you find a circuit that is only live with key in the ON position NOT the start position you can take the red wire from your RS adapter and wrap it around the metal part of the fuse then slide the fuse with the wire attached to the fuse back into it's slot. Now take your black wire and GROUND it to the vehicle, look for a screw or nut under the dash. To see if it's a good ground go back to your tester again clip it to the screw or nut you think is a good ground then stick the probe into one of the fuse sockets that you know is live if the tester lights up you have found your good ground. Wrap the black wire around this nut or screw TIGHT!

WARNING the RS adapter has metal that is exposed you want to put some electric tape on this, look at where the red wire goes into the back of the socket, it's all exposed metal, if you shove this socket under the dash it may come in contact with some other metal and short out. Also the sides of the socket adapter is open put tape around that also.

Now plug your Sirius power plug into the RS socket, then plug it into your Sirius radio. Turn the car on and power up your Sirius radio.
I agree this is probably the easiest way to be sure you are getting the correct voltage to your sirius radio. I plan on wiring mine up today.

A word of warning though. Those test lights are not the best idea when working in cars. You should be fine using it in your fuse box, but if you ever go testing random wires in your car it is not the best option. The test light draws a decent amount of current and if you come across a wire for your airbag, it could possibly set it off, destroying your dash.

A better idea is to use a digital volt meter. You can pick one up for less than $20.

Like I said you should be fine working inside the fuse box with a test light, but just don't go poking around at random wires under your dash with it.
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Old 12-30-2006, 03:31 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xYike
OK, sounds like something that should be pretty self explanatory once I buy the part and start looking at things, never wired anything to the fuse box so maybe it is obvious. Thanks for all the info gang.
Wow, it is soooo NOT obvious. I tried "stuffing the wires in the fuse box" and for some reason that did not work. Weird.

Thanks for the extra explanation folks, I'm still a bit confused but hopefully there is enoug here to get it done. I understand the concept behind testing for cold connections while the auto is off, but how do I know if there is an "available 12v source behind the dash." If I just pick a fuse that is already in use, I could start overloading that fuse circuit and have ongoing problems? I have a few fuses to play with, so maybe I'll just give it a whirl and if I blow too many, I'll take a different approach.
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Old 12-30-2006, 04:29 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikingjunior
The Radio Shack adapter is the way to go I hooked mine up yesterday and very happy with it. I only have one cig. lighter plug in my truck so I like to leave that free.

First thing to remember is that some of the fuses in the fuse box is live even with the car off, you want a fuse that goes dead with the car OFF. Get yourself one of those test lights, http://www.autotoys.com/x/cust/produ...ctid=686&cat=8 clip the alligator clip on to some metal in the car then pull out a fuse and take the test light probe and stick it in where the fuse was, if the tester lights up the circuit is hot. Ideally you want to tap into a circuit that goes dead when you turn the car off. So turn the car key to the ignition position without starting the car. Now repeat the above steps with your test light to determine which circuits are live with the car off and which are ONLY live with the car ON.

When you find a circuit that is only live with key in the ON position NOT the start position you can take the red wire from your RS adapter and wrap it around the metal part of the fuse then slide the fuse with the wire attached to the fuse back into it's slot. Now take your black wire and GROUND it to the vehicle, look for a screw or nut under the dash. To see if it's a good ground go back to your tester again clip it to the screw or nut you think is a good ground then stick the probe into one of the fuse sockets that you know is live if the tester lights up you have found your good ground. Wrap the black wire around this nut or screw TIGHT!

WARNING the RS adapter has metal that is exposed you want to put some electric tape on this, look at where the red wire goes into the back of the socket, it's all exposed metal, if you shove this socket under the dash it may come in contact with some other metal and short out. Also the sides of the socket adapter is open put tape around that also.

Now plug your Sirius power plug into the RS socket, then plug it into your Sirius radio. Turn the car on and power up your Sirius radio.
I'm not having a ton of luck here - cannot get power at all. I suspect I'm not finding a good ground!? I have stripped a bit of the red wire and wrapped it around the fuse metal posts. (do I wrap around one or both?? Makes sense only one post otherwise you keep an electrical current going through the circuit and hence bypassing the purpose of the fuse??) Then I have tried 4 or 5 different ground locations, nuts that screw into the dash and what seems to be a metal backing. Still no dice on power at all. Using the right turn signal fuse for the towing package (which we do not use at all).

Unfortunately both of the lighters that are installed are always hot otherwise I would steal one of them. I can't imaging I got a bad kit from RS, do you think? Maybe just not finding a good ground??? Any ideas anyone?
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Old 12-30-2006, 06:24 PM   #19
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My apologizes......The red wire which your wrapping around the metal terminal of the fuse ONLY goes on ONE side....The HOT side! You have to determine with your tester which side of the fuse is the hot side or if your fuses sit sideways it would be the top or bottom. Use the tester to find a good ground, there is so much plastic in these newer cars that sometimes it's hard to find a good ground.

Also check that there is an actual in line fuse on the RS adapter, that is your defense from frying your radio.

Also I agree about the cheap light testers if you can use a good volt meter that has a DC function use that instead.
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Old 12-30-2006, 07:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikingjunior
My apologizes......The red wire which your wrapping around the metal terminal of the fuse ONLY goes on ONE side....The HOT side! You have to determine with your tester which side of the fuse is the hot side or if your fuses sit sideways it would be the top or bottom. Use the tester to find a good ground, there is so much plastic in these newer cars that sometimes it's hard to find a good ground.

Also check that there is an actual in line fuse on the RS adapter, that is your defense from frying your radio.

Also I agree about the cheap light testers if you can use a good volt meter that has a DC function use that instead.
Mucho thanks for the quick reply!

So I will have to go buy a digital volt meter, hopefully radio shack has something that will not gouge me.

Maybe this? http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=2103534

So I use that to test each side of the fuse socket? Remove a fuse, use the digital volt meter to touch one side and I should get a reading or I should not, yea? The side I get the reading on is where I will be wrapping the red wire.

So ... how do I test for a good ground? If I understand correctly, I will just have to try different ground locations until it works. Instead of trying it and trying to power up the sirius, is there a quicker or more efficient way?

Hope my questions aren't too basic or stupid!

"There are no stupid questions, just stupid people who ask questions!"

Last edited by xYike; 12-30-2006 at 07:47 PM..
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Old 12-30-2006, 08:56 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xYike
Mucho thanks for the quick reply!

So I will have to go buy a digital volt meter, hopefully radio shack has something that will not gouge me.

Maybe this? http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=2103534

So I use that to test each side of the fuse socket? Remove a fuse, use the digital volt meter to touch one side and I should get a reading or I should not, yea? The side I get the reading on is where I will be wrapping the red wire.

So ... how do I test for a good ground? If I understand correctly, I will just have to try different ground locations until it works. Instead of trying it and trying to power up the sirius, is there a quicker or more efficient way?

Hope my questions aren't too basic or stupid!

"There are no stupid questions, just stupid people who ask questions!"
Spend an extra $5 and get a digital multimeter, so it has a digital readout. Radioshack should have one, so would any hardware store, or even walmart.

A decent multimeter will have something known as a diode test, which can has all kinds of uses. It can test for short circuits as well as help you test for a good ground signal. Basically when in this mode if you touch the two leads together the multimeter should beep, indicating that whatever you've tested is connected aka shorted. This will help you test for a good ground...

You simply put the multimeter in the diode test setting, then take one of the leads and hold it to a known ground spot, and take the other lead and put it on a bare metal spot somewhere. It should beep, meaning that the two locations of each lead are internally connected. So then try it with a screw or bolt that you want to use as your ground, if it beeps then it's fine. You could also test the resistance between the two points, but the diode test is easier.

After you do all that, you're going to find that basically any non painted metal surface should be a good ground. It's good to test though because every once in a while you'll get some point that won't work well.

Read up on a diode test on google if that was too confusing.

Edit:
One last thing, make sure you set your multimeter to test for DC voltage, not AC. Make sure you are familiar with the settings before testing anything in your car.

Last edited by sc173; 12-30-2006 at 09:00 PM..
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Old 12-30-2006, 10:08 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xYike
Mucho thanks for the quick reply!

So I will have to go buy a digital volt meter, hopefully radio shack has something that will not gouge me.



Maybe this? http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=2103534

So I use that to test each side of the fuse socket? Remove a fuse, use the digital volt meter to touch one side and I should get a reading or I should not, yea? The side I get the reading on is where I will be wrapping the red wire.

So ... how do I test for a good ground? If I understand correctly, I will just have to try different ground locations until it works. Instead of trying it and trying to power up the sirius, is there a quicker or more efficient way?

Hope my questions aren't too basic or stupid!


"There are no stupid questions, just stupid people who ask questions!"
I would go with this one http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=family and don't forget to buy the 12v battery which is another $5. I've never had a problem with the simple alligator light tester but just in case. It's a nice investment anyhow.

Make sure you set the meter to DC voltage which might just be a symbol like DC- now put the black lead on the metal that you think might be a good ground, then take the red lead and stick it inside where the fuse would go.. Try each side as there's two contact points for each fuse. One side will be hot. Remember the fuse socket your testing may only be live with the key ignition ON.

The meter if it's on good ground will show about 12-14 volts. If both sides of the fuse socket shows nothing you don't have a good ground. Now remember what side of the fuse socket was hot.

Now you know you have a good ground and what side of the fuse socket is hot, that's the side you want to wrap the red RS adapter wire around and slip back inside it's socket.


We all started at the beginning and asked the same basic questions. If you are really struggling with it PM me and I will walk you through it over the phone.

Last edited by vikingjunior; 12-30-2006 at 10:11 PM..
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Old 12-31-2006, 06:15 PM   #23
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Wow, this is insane. I cannot successfuly find any power to test in my fuse box, I know it is there I just can't successfully test for it.

Take the left turn signal for example. ACC key turned on so the left turn signal will work when it is turned on. I pull the fuse and it no longer works, so I know I have the right fuse circuit.

I turn on my tester with known working battery and I test each side of the fuse outlet, no dice. No reading on my tester. I put red to one side of the fuse outlet and touch every bit of metal I can find within range of the tester and nothing. Try again with the second side - nothing. Rinse, repeat, nothing. Tried multiple fuse outlets that I know to work, tried multiple batteries that I know work ... I'm surprise I have not chucked the tester 5 homes down into their pool. Either the tester is not working (brand new from RS) or there is no ground in range of the fuse box that I can get too.

Is there some other method I can use for (1) verifying that my tester works and/or (2) using a known working ground? I have all sorts of large metal "things" I can roll out to the vehicle just to test .... pressure washers, lawnmowers, air compressors, neighbor kids ... will any of these work as a ground just to make some progress??

My tester measures between 15/150/1000V ... can I set it to 1000V AC and try an outlet in my garage to test if it reads voltage OK? If so, do I stick red into one side and find a ground with black in the same way I am trying in my vehicle?

At this point, I've about lsot my mind! (if I ever had it)
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Old 12-31-2006, 06:51 PM   #24
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Sorry your having so many problems. You could just put the tester on the car battery, Red on red metal terminal, Black on black metal terminal, ensure the tester is set to test DC voltage. If you don't get a reading there then the tester is not working properly. I doubt it's the tester you probably just haven't found a good ground yet. What year and model car are we talking about here?
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Old 12-31-2006, 10:15 PM   #25
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Don't be sorry at all .... I appreciate all the help yuo are offering, as well as others. I suspect you are correct about the ground - I will try what you suggest tomorrow between the bowl games.



2004 GMC Yukon
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Old 01-01-2007, 08:47 PM   #26
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This is how I hooked mine up using the Radio Shack accessory outlet. Maybe this will help. Good luck.


P.S. I hope you are not a Wolverines fan
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Old 01-02-2007, 05:07 AM   #27
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Yellow's way makes the most sense to me, and is the way I envisioned doing it before reading about all of the fusebox crap.

But wait, the lighter you splice into is always on, right? Other posts in this thread indicate that's a problem, but if the Sirius receiver is not left in the dock and on, then it shouldn't be a problem.. There's nothing drawing if there's nothing connected right?
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Old 01-02-2007, 07:58 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by undermind
But wait, the lighter you splice into is always on, right?
In my case I have two lighter plugs one hot all the time and one hot when on only. I hooked mine up to the hot when on only because since I need to have the radio/key on for my receiver to play through anyway, connecting it to the hot all the time plug would not offer any benefit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by undermind
Other posts in this thread indicate that's a problem, but if the Sirius receiver is not left in the dock and on, then it shouldn't be a problem.. There's nothing drawing if there's nothing connected right?
Someone can correct me if I'm wrong but that should be correct unless there is some other car specific thing that I'm not aware of. It is just an extension of your factory lighter plug. If the receiver is not in the dock nothing is closing the circuit and there should be no draw.

Here is a link with details on my install. Its for a Jeep but it may help with some ideas - http://www.a407.com/jeep/sirius/sirius_install.htm
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Old 01-02-2007, 08:28 AM   #29
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DON'T DO THIS IF YOU HAVE A MARGINAL BATTERY but wiring a replay radio to constant on power always the buffer to be maintained when you turn off your car. Remember to turn off the radio at night.

Is your dash apart? Splicing into your radio power and ground minimizes the chance of ground loop issues.




Quote:
Originally Posted by xYike
I'm not having a ton of luck here - cannot get power at all. I suspect I'm not finding a good ground!? I have stripped a bit of the red wire and wrapped it around the fuse metal posts. (do I wrap around one or both?? Makes sense only one post otherwise you keep an electrical current going through the circuit and hence bypassing the purpose of the fuse??) Then I have tried 4 or 5 different ground locations, nuts that screw into the dash and what seems to be a metal backing. Still no dice on power at all. Using the right turn signal fuse for the towing package (which we do not use at all).

Unfortunately both of the lighters that are installed are always hot otherwise I would steal one of them. I can't imaging I got a bad kit from RS, do you think? Maybe just not finding a good ground??? Any ideas anyone?
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Old 01-02-2007, 11:15 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by undermind
Yellow's way makes the most sense to me, and is the way I envisioned doing it before reading about all of the fusebox crap.
Where do you think the factory cigarette lighter gets it's power from? THE FUSEBOX crap as you call it. The poster in question has that right idea and that being wire it to a circuit that is not really used. If you wire it to the factory cigarette lighter you run the risk if your lucky of blowing the fuse when plugging anything into the factory cigarette lighter.

Also it's safer to run it to power that is NOT constant. Wiring to constant power is how people's car miraculously catch fire all by themselves.
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