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Echomaster Reversing camera

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Author Post
Sat Jan 18 2020, 09:55am
Member No: #16301
Joined: Nov 09 2010
Location: Bedford
Below I have posted my experiences of fitting the popular Echomaster reversing camera (purchased at Halfords) in the hope that it may be helpful to others wishing to attempt it. I should say it took me considerably longer than anticipated, however much of this was time spent deciding how best to do things.

Having completed the installation I am very pleased with the result. It allows you to see that blind area behind the car and works well in all conditions. I was a bit confused about the description of the product which claims it is an automatically dimming mirror. In reality it is only the monitor area which automatically dims. Having said that the mirror seems to perform well in all conditions and surprisingly I haven't noticed the lose of the Picasso's photochromatic mirror features. Also the whole kit seems to be of a high quality.

My car is a 2013 Platinum 5 seater so installation will vary slightly depending on the model.

Below I have added a diagram to explain the cable connections

My initial thoughts were concerned with routing the wiring from the tail gate in to the roof area since this I felt would probably be the most difficult stage of the task. On examination, it was apparent that the plug on the camera lead (Cable D) was not going to reach the rubber gator. As a result the rear connection to the main cable (Cable C) would have to reside in the tail gate. I decided to position this connection next to the LHS reversing light for convenience. My plan was then to thread the phono plug on the other end of the main cable (Cable C) through the gator in to the car roof area leaving around 0.9m of cable in the tail gate to connect to the camera cable at a later stage. To do this I was able to unclip the outer edge of the plastic around the LHS of the back window sufficiently to allow the cable to be routed alongside the main wiring harness to the gator leaving the end just behind the access hatch to the reversing light for the time being.

In order to thread cable C through the gator, it was first necessary to detach the ends of the gator. This was done by releasing the plastic collars at either end after depressing the 4 barbs which secure the collars in the metalwork. The next challenge was to thread the main cable through the gator. Although the diameter of the gator was generous, the opening at the end was restricted to around 8mm. This meant that there was no way the phono plug was going to pass through the gator. In the end, not wishing to damage the gator or existing wiring, I decided to cut off the phono plug and replace it at a later stage.

Once inside the roof area, I unclipped the plastic trim leading down from the roof lining to the back shelf and at the same time, I released the card lining at the side of the boot area. Having done this I was able to route the cable under the trim and card through to the back door with the cable emerging around the area of the door catch. I experimented with several routes. The main problem I encountered was finding a route which allowed enough cable to reach the front mirror. The solution which I finally settled on was to route the cable around the edge of the roof lining At this point I coiled up the remaining cable of Cable C and left it hanging just behind the plastic panel denoting the air bag so that I could concentrate on fitting the mirror.

The mirror comes with a flying lead (Cable A). The mirror installation was straight forward, it clipped comfortably over the existing mirror and was retained by two elastic bands. Again the wiring presented several challenges, I wanted a really neat installation with the minimum amount of wiring visible. Eventually I routed it through the existing conduit to the inside of the interior light assembly. Having successfully routed it behind the interior light, I was able to connect it to the shorter intermediate cable (Cable B) which connects cable C to the mirror cable (cable A) in the unused area just above the microphone.

It was then time to join cables B and C. The first task here was to replace the phono plug which was cut off cable C earlier. A new plug was needed since the original was a sealed type. They are readily available on the internet (ten off for around £3). Stripping back the sleeving on the end of cable C revealed 3 wires. The red wire was redundant (alternative connection to reversing light circuit) and was insulated then taped back. The yellow wire was soldered to the centre pin of the plug. The black wire was soldered to the outer connection of the plug.

The cables connectors and fuse holder present on Cable B were concealed in the hollow area behind the passenger sun blind. A branch wire from Cable B was to be routed to a switched 12V supply via the fuse. As this was too short to reach the dashboard, I extended it using two wires (12V and 0V) connected via crimp inline connectors.

The extended wires were then routed round to the edge of the roof lining and down under the edge trim of the A pillar to the end of the dash board. Here I was able to connect the 0V wire to the chassis using the large retaining bolt. In practice I used a steel “L” bracket to form an anchor point for a M4 termination tag. The 12V wire was routed above the glove box to the rear of the radio where I joined it to the brown wire on pin 15 using a 3M connector in order to provide a switched 12V supply.

Returning to the rear of the car, I removed the interior panel from the inside of the tail gate being careful not to break any of the trim. . The number plate was also removed. The camera kit includes a baking plate for the number plate with the camera mounted at the bottom. The number plate area on the Picasso has two conveniently preformed dimples which correspond to the central holes on the backing plate to make life easier. It was however necessary to cut about 5mm of redundant plastic off the tab area where the camera is mounted to allow the backing plate to be lowered sufficiently. After the backing plate had been secured using self-tapping screws, a 10mm hole was drilled trough the plastic trim and metalwork behind using a predrilled location on the backing plate as a guide. This was to provide routing for the camera cable into the tail gate.

Before inserting the cable, the metalwork was painted with primer and the grommet supplied was installed in the hole. A new number plate was fitted using adhesive strips. Moving to the inside of the tail gate, two branch wires from cable C (reversing light trigger and 0V)were joined into the wiring of the reversing light using crimp connectors. Red wire to lamp green and black wire to lamp green/yellow
Finally the plug on the camera lead cable D was mated to the socket on cable C to complete the installation.

Finally a shot of the camera in operation


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