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Installed a Homelink transmitter

44541 Views 24 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  JuneBug
Inspired by wing_woo's excellent post on installing a Homelink unit in his 2009, I decided to try the same project with my 2008. Searching on Ebay found hundreds of these units pulled from many different makes. There are many different styles and colors, but internally they are pretty much the same. I was looking for a gray unit and found one that looked a little different than the rest as it had numbered buttons which turned out to be lighted!



Got this one for $15.50! It was originally installed in a Volvo. I pretty much just followed wing_woo's instructions which worked out well. Since I don't have a sunroof, I tapped into the wiring going to my autodimming mirror, since the wires were right there. The scariest part is taking the X-acto knife to the headliner to cut the hole, but it was easier than I thought. To keep the headliner from flexing when pushing a button, I backed up the transmitter with a piece of styrofoam wedged nicely between the unit and the roof. Took me about an hour this morning and here is how it turned out:









BTW, the LED's in the unit were green, but I replaced them with amber for obvious reasons!
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Looks nice!
I just ordered one off of Ebay after seeing this. If it goes well I'll probably get another for my wife's Tribute.
 

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Just wondering, could I use the power off of the visor mirror light wiring? I am amazed Toyota has lighted visor mirrors, but no home link in my Rav4. Of course, if I was a lady I would expect lighted visor mirrors. My daughter can't ride with me and not look at herself at least once in the mirror!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just wondering, could I use the power off of the visor mirror light wiring? I am amazed Toyota has lighted visor mirrors, but no home link in my Rav4. Of course, if I was a lady I would expect lighted visor mirrors. My daughter can't ride with me and not look at herself at least once in the mirror!
Yes, I was thinking of doing that. But you would have to flip the visor down, then slide open the mirror cover to turn on the light and power the Homelink. Unless you wired it up ahead of the switch so it would be powered at all times.
 

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Yep, I will just tap into the power wire ahead of the switch for the vanity lights. :thumbs_up:

Yes, I was thinking of doing that. But you would have to flip the visor down, then slide open the mirror cover to turn on the light and power the Homelink. Unless you wired it up ahead of the switch so it would be powered at all times.
 

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Thanks for the post JuneBug. I plan on using the same homelink module in the same year/trim RAV4. Can you post the details of where & how you tapped into power, what you used to make the connections, and any other details on the finish of the install (i.e. any glue necessary, etc.)? I'd like to make a list of parts necessary before I start the job. Any info on how you switched the LED colors from green to amber would be great, too. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the post JuneBug. I plan on using the same homelink module in the same year/trim RAV4. Can you post the details of where & how you tapped into power, what you used to make the connections, and any other details on the finish of the install (i.e. any glue necessary, etc.)? I'd like to make a list of parts necessary before I start the job. Any info on how you switched the LED colors from green to amber would be great, too. Thanks.
Since my RAV already had the autodimming mirror with compass, the power cable was right there. If you have a sunroof, you can use the power from that. I used 3M taps to splice into the power wires. No glue was necessary. I pretty much followed the European installation manual here:

http://www.rav4world.com/forums/104-r4w-members-only/88190-homelink-installation.html

To change the LED's from green to amber requires very good soldering skills as the green LED's were surface mounted on the board. It's probably more trouble than it's worth.
 

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Thanks for the post JuneBug. I plan on using the same homelink module in the same year/trim RAV4. Can you post the details of where & how you tapped into power, what you used to make the connections, and any other details on the finish of the install (i.e. any glue necessary, etc.)? I'd like to make a list of parts necessary before I start the job. Any info on how you switched the LED colors from green to amber would be great, too. Thanks.
Check my Homelink install thread that Junebug linked in his original post. Somewhere in all that text, I believe I put down what wire to tap. If you do it backwards, don't worry, it just won't work. Just switch it around and try again. However, do that before the actual install to make sure you know which wires to hook it to and to ensure the unit is working before you go through all the work of cutting up your headliner.
 

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Having done the Gentex Homelink Auto-dimming Mirror install, the one thing I like about this way is the LED lit buttons. The mirror doesn't have them - you just have to slide your finger across to reach the button when you can't see it in the dark.

I thought about putting something on it to make it easier to see.
 

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I don't have a sunroof or autodim mirror, so I will need to find another wire to tap. Instead of going through pillar A to get an (IG) tap under the console, I was thinking about tapping the (ACC) wire from the rear seat entertainment display (DVD). Does anyone see a potential problem with this?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I don't have a sunroof or autodim mirror, so I will need to find another wire to tap. Instead of going through pillar A to get an (IG) tap under the console, I was thinking about tapping the (ACC) wire from the rear seat entertainment display (DVD). Does anyone see a potential problem with this?
That should work just fine. Do you actually have the Toyota rear seat entertainment system? It's a very rare option on the RAV4.
 

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I installed a homelink as well inspired by these various posts, what a fun little project! I went stealth mode though and followed some Corvette thread guy's instructions to make tiny remote switches on a circuit board. I didn't care for the stock homelink faceplate/buttons and didn't really find a spot I liked on the headliner. Ergo, I mounted the circuit board inside the back of the square cup/mp3 holder with the Aux plug/mirror control buttons that is front of the armrest. I chose that spot because I can simply slide my finger along the back of cupholder to find/press button vs reaching overhead yep, I'm that lazy :), it's uber easy to tap power off the cig lighter in the armrest, I was VERY hesitant about putting holes in my headliner. I figured that plastic cupholder deal was a heck of a lot cheaper to replace then the headliner if something went bad. It's been working like a charm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Wow, that's a great idea, supernova! I wish I'd thought of that. Yeah, I was a bit apprehensive about cutting into the headliner, but I was careful, made a template, and took my time. I think it turned out great and looks factory.

Back in the day I did something similar to you. I installed a digital clock in the dash of my Ford and hid the hour and minute setting buttons. I wonder if the new owner ever figured out you had to open the ashtray to set the clock?
 

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I installed a homelink as well inspired by these various posts, what a fun little project! I went stealth mode though and followed some Corvette thread guy's instructions to make tiny remote switches on a circuit board. I didn't care for the stock homelink faceplate/buttons and didn't really find a spot I liked on the headliner. Ergo, I mounted the circuit board inside the back of the square cup/mp3 holder with the Aux plug/mirror control buttons that is front of the armrest. I chose that spot because I can simply slide my finger along the back of cupholder to find/press button vs reaching overhead yep, I'm that lazy :), it's uber easy to tap power off the cig lighter in the armrest, I was VERY hesitant about putting holes in my headliner. I figured that plastic cupholder deal was a heck of a lot cheaper to replace then the headliner if something went bad. It's been working like a charm.
Any pictures or guides as to where to cut, what to use to hold the home links buttons? Or the link to the corvette guide if you still have it. It'd be a nice addon actually.
 

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Just wondering... could one of these buttons/board be installed in that overhead little eyeglass holder door, or what ever it is? Or is it too large?
 

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Just wondering... could one of these buttons/board be installed in that overhead little eyeglass holder door, or what ever it is? Or is it too large?
That would depend on the unit--if you look at the picture in my first post, you will see how far back the housing goes from the keypad. There's no way mine would fit there.
 
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