Hooking-Up On Screen

By Dan Armitage

Step-By-Step Guide To Wireless Back-Up Camera Installation

Most back-up camera systems intended for DIY installation, including the Magellan RoadMate 1700 combo unit we installed, come with all the wiring required for the rigging. Tools required for this installation include hand- or power-driver, wire-cutting or crimping-pliers, and in-line wire quick connectors (some kits come with Scotch Lock Splicers for connecting two wires).

Illustration of positioning the bracket
Illustration of removing the tail light assembly
Illustration of routing the cables to the light
Illustration of crimping black, red and green wires

Step 1

Remove the screws securing the tow vehicle's rear license plate, which are used to secure the camera and the plate in this installation. Position the camera bracket to allow the pre-drilled holes to line up with those securing the license plate, thread the power and video cables leading from the back of the camera through the bumper, and reinstall the screws to secure the bracket and the plate back onto the bumper. Point the adjustable camera lens toward the hitch ball.

Step 2

Remove one of the vehicle's taillight assemblies and you'll see the wires powering the lights.

Step 3

Route the camera power and video cables from behind the bumper up through the frame to the taillight assembly. Plug the cables leading from the camera to the transmitter using the color-coded connections.

Step 4

Identify the vehicle's reverse-light wires. The ground is either white or black while the power wire is colored (many are red but, in this example, the power wire is green). Use the in-line quick connectors to secure these wires with the transmitter's power (red) and ground (black) wires (Crimp black to black and green to red). Secure the transmitter and excess wiring into any available void in the taillight assembly, using pull-ties if needed to keep it in place.

Illustration of connecting the cable to monitor

Step 5

In the tow vehicle's cab, plug the monitor's power cord into the 12-volt receptacle and the USB fitting on the opposite end into the power port on the bottom of the monitor screen. Then, plug the camera receiver cable into the designated port on the bottom of the monitor screen.

Step 6

Illustration of connecting the camera to the transmitter.jpg

Test to verify that the screen automatically switches (if applicable) from GPS to live video mode when the vehicle is shifted into reverse and that the camera lens is aimed to allow a view of the hitch ball. Once the system is tested and found to work, reinstall the taillight assembly.

*If you do not feel competent to perform the installation of an after-market back-up camera system, talk to your vehicle mechanic about handling the job or contact an installation facility recommended by the manufacturer of the system you choose.End of story marker

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This article was published in the Winter 2013 issue of Trailering Magazine.
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