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Submitted By: TOJAZ
Date: February 10, 2009, 10:18:39 AM
Views: 3066

Alarm Install - Mike (tojaz)

This is a general how-to on installing a basic alarm/keyless entry setup on any Dodge truck. Doing this yourself can save you a lot of money, and prevents the sloppy installs that I see coming out of most shops today. If I miss anything or you have questions, please feel
free to e-mail me or IM me on the board. Please remember that this is a general install, every system and vehicle is different and will not match this exactly. If there is any doubt refer to the manual that came with the alarm. . . . ok here we go!

When you open the box, here's what you'll have. Upper left is the brain box with the antenna attached. The clear box below it is the shock/glass sensor. Below that is the LED indicator and the valet switch. The rats' nest on the right is the wire harness and plug. Not shown would also be the ignition cutout relay, instruction manuals and warning stickers for the windows. This is pretty much what any alarm setup you may happen to choose is going to look like. The unit shown here is a DEI Viper2 system.

Since Dodge trucks have reverse polarity locks you will need two additional relays if the alarm box can't accommodate this type of setup (most don't). These are available at any electronics store. You'll also want to pick up some butt connectors, some extra wire, wire loom, zip ties, and a good set of stripper/crimpers.

The first thing you want to do is to decide where you want to hide your box. Boxes are getting smaller everyday so the possibilities are endless. Most installation shops just wire tie it up under the dash. This is a quick way to do it, but it is also the first place a car thief would look, once the box is found it only takes a fraction of a second to disable it. You have to make it hard for the would be thief and conceal your installation, this also cleans up the underdash area and frees up space for other accessories.

NOTE: The alarm system in the vehicle photos is an AVITAL Diablo2. This system is very handy if you have many vehicles because you can operate as many as six different Avital alarm systems with only one remote on your keychain. The Avital also comes with a lifetime warranty, and a guarantee that if your car is stolen, they will reimburse you for your insurance deductible up to $1500.

The photo above is of the installation in my truck. I attached the box and lock relays to the back panel of the glove box. This gives easy accessibility should I need to make repairs or additions. It also keeps all the connections away from a would-be thief, the majority of my customers can't find the box. That's what you want. As you can see in the other photo, with the manual in place you can't tell that any thing has been done to the glove compartment. I've hid boxes in Center consoles, door panels, even overhead consoles. The only limitation you have to work with is the length of the wires.

The second step is to decide the placement of your valet switch and LED indicator. I see far too many "pro" installations where the valet switch is out in the open and the LED is just stuck in a hole randomly drilled in the dash or taped in a vent.

The valet switch doesn't necessarily have to be concealed, but you don't want it somewhere where it could be tripped accidentally, Plus it's just ugly to have it out in the open. In the photo below you can see that I hid my switch in the glove box as well. Once you find a place to put it, double check that the harness will reach the control box. Then all you have to do is drill a 1/4" hole and install with the provided nut and washers.

The LED is the same way. I try to place mine where it is clearly visible from outside the vehicle, looking through both side doors is a good test. My personal preference is to find a place that is not to intrusive when the light isn't on though. I hid mine in the separation of my heater controls and my stereo. It is readily visible when on yet almost undetectable when off(see photos). Once again when a location is found, double check your wires, then drill a 1/4" hole and the light will either press into place or secure from behind with a nut depending on brand.

Once both the LED and Switch are installed, you can route the wires back to the box and plug them into there respective sockets. Any excess wire should be tied up out of the way to avoid knots and snags.

Now it's time to connect the main harness. Plug the large connector into the box and separate the wires that will be run to the engine compartment. These wires are the battery positive lead, the battery negative lead, siren output, parking light polarity select wire (more on that later), and the hood trigger input if so equipped. Wrap these wires in a length of 3/8" flexible tubing and route them to the engine compartment. Most vehicles already have a suitable grommet that they can run these wires through. It is easiest to find the grommet on the engine compartment side and run a small diameter piece of tubing through it. Then run the wires through the tubing and remove it from the engine compartment side. This method prevents damage to the existing wires and grommet. On my truck there was a large plug on the fire wall (I believe the hole is for a clutch equipped truck--see pic). Since I plan to pass a lot of wires through the firewall, I drilled a hole in that plug and ran my wires through there. That way if I ever decide to remove the alarm, I only have to replace the plug as opposed to filling a new hole. If you have to drill a hole, make sure it is away from wires or mechanical components and away from anywhere water might seep into the passenger compartment. Do not connect these wires at this time.

Continuing with the main harness, I mentioned earlier that Dodge trucks require two additional relays on account that they are reverse polarity. To hook these up you first need to find the factory lock and unlock harness. In older trucks ('80s to '93) like mine there is a wire harness behind the glove compartment that you can tap into (see photo). If you have a newer Ram truck the wires are behind the drivers side kick panel. Once you find the wires (which are orange+violet for lock, pink+violet for unlock for most models '80s to present) you have to cut them and attach them to the lock relays as in the diagram above. There is a constant 12v in the same harness as the lock wires. You can use male/female clips like I did here to make the system removable without much hassle. When the relays are removed the cut wires just plug into each other. This is also a good time to connect your door trigger wire to the same harness. Use a test light to find the wire triggered by the door switch and splice.

Next is the starter disable relay. The relay socket should be prewired to the main harness. Plug the supplied relay in and run the two larger gauge wires (typically yellow and 14GA) to the steering column. Find the harness coming from the steering column. This harness will usually
be wrapped so the wrapping will have to be replaced when complete. The Starter wire on most Chrysler products and all Dodge trucks (except the Ram 50) is 14 gauge yellow. Cut this wire (check to see if the vehicle cranks, if it does it's the wrong wire) and connect the two 14GA wires from the relay to each half of the cut wire. The remaining wire from the relay is spliced into the ignition circuit. The color of this wire varies so probe the wires with a voltmeter to find the one that shows 12v when the key is ON, RUN,and Crank and 0v when the key is off. Splice into this wire.

The last two things to do in the interior is to connect the parking light outputs and install the shock sensor.

You can connect the parking light output by just splicing into the parking light wire at the light switch. (You'll have to check a service manual for how to remove the light switch, there are many different types).

The shock sensor needs to be mounted to a solid metal part of the truck within reach of the control box. Usually a dashboard support will do the trick nicely as I used here. Then just plug the sensor into the box. The sensor's sensitivity is adjustable by the little screw on top. If the alarm goes off needlessly just dial it back in quarter turn increments until the desired setting is found. (this step can tick off your neighbors so do it during the day unless they already don't like you) I usually set it to go off when a door handle is pressed.

Now you're in the home stretch. First you need to find a place to put the siren. Any place within reach of the wires is just fine. My personal favorite is riveted to the bottom of the battery tray. It keeps it out of the way and doesn't clutter up the engine compartment. Plus it puts the wires right where they need to be. Once the siren is in place connect the power wire to the positive lead from the alarm and connect the second wire to the alarm signal wire you routed through earlier.

Next is the parking light polarity select wire. Temporarily connect the positive and negative wires to the battery. then press the polarity select wire to the positive terminal and click the remote. If the lights flash connect to the positive wire if not try the negative. If they don't flash on either terminal. Check your connection at the light switch and try again.

That's it. Connect the wires to the battery for good, install any necessary fuses and enjoy.
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