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Old 12-03-2016, 07:58 AM   #1
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Backup camera wiring run - 1997 E-250 EB Penthouse

Hi,

I'm looking to buy a hard wired backup camera (unless I can be talked into wireless although I hear wired is better) and looking for some advise on mounting/running cable from the camera to the Monitor/power supply.

FYI: Here is the camera system I had my eye on
5 inch Monitor and a 120 Degree RV Backup Camera with night vision

Has anyone here put a PH mounted camera on their rig? And if so where did you power the camera from. Im hoping the 3rd brake light power will work. How did you run the cable from the Camera to the monitor? Did you have to drill through the PH top and go into the conduit in the rear passanger side of the PH?

Please enlighten me before I buy this thing
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Old 12-03-2016, 06:27 PM   #2
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Old 12-03-2016, 06:37 PM   #3
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I played with a few wireless ones and didn't like the way they worked so I would suggest wired for sure.
I have these for my build and they cost a bit more but the combo adds some additional features with Android Auto or the Apple Icar system.

Pioneer AVH-4200NEX Double Din

PIONEER ND-BC8 Universal Rearview Camera

I have used the camera on another vehicle and really liked the picture it puts out. If it fits your budget this might be a good way to go. If not be sure and post up what you go with and how it works.
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Old 12-03-2016, 08:38 PM   #4
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Backup camera wiring run - 1997 E-250 EB Penthouse

I've run two cameras on my 98 E250 EB with penthouse (the first one broke and I had to replace it). Both were Kenwood units running to a Kenwood head unit. The camera is mounted next to the PH brake light and I ran the wire back through the brake light hole, then over to the corner through the PH canvas and conduit and then along the upper rail and under the carpet there to the dash via the b-pillar on the driver's side. If I recall correctly, I believe the Kenwood unit has a power wire in the harness that I hooked up to a power supply in the dash to power.

You could tap into the third brake light for power, but that only works for when you put it in reverse. If you want to be able to turn on the camera while driving (to check on a trailer, bikes, etc.) then you need a power source independent of the backup lights. You have to run the wiring bundle anyway, so you might as well run the hot wire along with it.
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Old 12-03-2016, 09:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianW View Post
I've run two cameras on my 98 E250 EB with penthouse (the first one broke and I had to replace it). Both were Kenwood units running to a Kenwood head unit. The camera is mounted next to the PH brake light and I ran the wire back through the brake light hole, then over to the corner through the PH canvas and conduit and then along the upper rail and under the carpet there to the dash via the b-pillar on the driver's side. If I recall correctly, I believe the Kenwood unit has a power wire in the harness that I hooked up to a power supply in the dash to power.

You could tap into the third brake light for power, but that only works for when you put it in reverse. If you want to be able to turn on the camera while driving (to check on a trailer, bikes, etc.) then you need a power source independent of the backup lights. You have to run the wiring bundle anyway, so you might as well run the hot wire along with it.
The one I linked gets its power from the head unit. You bring up a good point though, there is a wire in the harness to run to a reverse light to turn on the camera. I am going to run mine through a switch as well so I can turn it on without being in reverse, that would come in handy for sure. Thanks for the idea!!
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Old 12-03-2016, 10:16 PM   #6
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I did what Brian did and also ran my power wire with the coax to the camera up front, keeping it all clean on one circuit. Super easy to run it under the PH upholstery to the front.


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Old 12-04-2016, 01:40 AM   #7
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I ran mine similar to both Brian W and 86 Scotty - isn't too difficult but I will say the "view" from up there isn't ideal for backing up very close to objects- I can't see my trailer hitch or anything else within say a foot of my bumper. Probably due to the curvature of the van but could be my camera (Pioneer)? Either way it's worth having for just generally seeing behind you. My pioneer head unit allows me to turn it on while driving to check the load. Definitely a nice feature.
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Old 12-04-2016, 05:53 AM   #8
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I originally had mine mounted near the license plate, which gives a much better. Angle for parking. But bikes on the back pretty much blocked the view, so I had to move it up higher.

For activating the reverse function, usually there is a "reverse wire" under the dash to tap into, so you don't need to wire into the brake light itself. Many head units and monitors offer a built-in switch that allows you to activate the camera even when not in reverse, so check that out before you start wiring up your own.
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Old 12-04-2016, 08:16 AM   #9
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What I mentioned above is what I did the first time around with my backup camera. I really didn't like running all the wires inside the penthouse corner and thought for a long time about a better solution. Another problem I had was that the sun kept killing my little cameras. They are only about $20 but I bought two and wasn't going to ruin a third so I fabbed up a rain gutter style mount that blocked the direct sun. It was easy to mount this and run the wires through the original (defunct) third brake light hole in the roof. It is curved in the gutter so the PH fits snug on top of it.



Pardon the unfinished pic here. I was waiting on a new top brake light from SMB and the PH was sitting crooked.



Just FYI you can save a lot of money just buying a camera and a monitor rather than one of these expensive kits. The cameras come with 20' or more of cable usually so there is nothing additionally you need. Other than the sun cooking 2 cameras I had great luck with these:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

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Old 10-05-2017, 06:52 AM   #10
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The interior rear view mirror in my GMC 2500 is useless. Has anyone installed a rear backup cam with the monitor in the rear view mirror?
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