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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

Just got myself a 2018 Escape SEL and i am absolutely loving it. Coming from a 2008 Nissan Rogue that groans and moans a lot, it was interesting to drive a car that is almost silent, eerie is the word i would use.
The Sync 3 with android auto is great, bluetooth works straight outta the box (though only SBC Codec but still great), and call quality is really amazing. i can have conversations without screaming my head off.

Only thing lacking for me is the audio. The Nissan rogue had the Bose system with a sub in the spare tire well, however my escape is the non Sony type so just the 9 speakers with the 8 inch display. I wish to move my old Bazooka tube (10inch 100 watts, won't rock the neighborhood but will definitely improve the low end response) into the trunk of the escape. i have dug through the different threads here using search and google but somehow i still am not getting enough info to proceed.

What do i need for the install? 5 points actually.
1. 12V power source. i know i can run a line through the firewall to tap the battery for this, but the sub does not require that much power so i am seriously considering just tapping unfused 12v from the trunk fusebox, add a fuse and hook it up to the bazooka. I know the biggest worry with this is introducing noise into the electronics in the car, but i figured a simple LC circuit should filter the power without issues.
2. Ground wire: I should be able to find a grounding point in the trunk, so this should be easy
3. Switched 12V trigger: Reading around and from my basic observations of the ford, this is a big one. It appears a lot of systems are always on, or turn on automatically after you put in the keys. Does anyone have a recommendation for an accessory wire one can tap for a 12v trigger? the only other option would be a manual switch which i would absolutely hate.
4 and 5. High level speaker inputs (low level inputs are absolutely out of the question i know): This is where most of my research has focused on in the last week since i got the car, Where can i tap speaker wires with minimal fuss. I really would like to get this done without taking apart a lot of trim. From my basic research, there might be 3 possible places to get speaker level outputs from.
a. Center console area, either from the center speakers (which everyone seems to say is rubbish), or from the C240A cable, whichever one is easier to reach.
b. A pillar: there might be a tweeter there or so.
c. B pillar: there might be wires heading into the door speakers.

Has anyone installed a power sub who can guide me on how to find these 5 points needed for the connection?
 

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Hi All,

Just got myself a 2018 Escape SEL and i am absolutely loving it. Coming from a 2008 Nissan Rogue that groans and moans a lot, it was interesting to drive a car that is almost silent, eerie is the word i would use.
The Sync 3 with android auto is great, bluetooth works straight outta the box (though only SBC Codec but still great), and call quality is really amazing. i can have conversations without screaming my head off.

Only thing lacking for me is the audio. The Nissan rogue had the Bose system with a sub in the spare tire well, however my escape is the non Sony type so just the 9 speakers with the 8 inch display. I wish to move my old Bazooka tube (10inch 100 watts, won't rock the neighborhood but will definitely improve the low end response) into the trunk of the escape. i have dug through the different threads here using search and google but somehow i still am not getting enough info to proceed.

What do i need for the install? 5 points actually.
1. 12V power source. i know i can run a line through the firewall to tap the battery for this, but the sub does not require that much power so i am seriously considering just tapping unfused 12v from the trunk fusebox, add a fuse and hook it up to the bazooka. I know the biggest worry with this is introducing noise into the electronics in the car, but i figured a simple LC circuit should filter the power without issues.
2. Ground wire: I should be able to find a grounding point in the trunk, so this should be easy
3. Switched 12V trigger: Reading around and from my basic observations of the ford, this is a big one. It appears a lot of systems are always on, or turn on automatically after you put in the keys. Does anyone have a recommendation for an accessory wire one can tap for a 12v trigger? the only other option would be a manual switch which i would absolutely hate.
4 and 5. High level speaker inputs (low level inputs are absolutely out of the question i know): This is where most of my research has focused on in the last week since i got the car, Where can i tap speaker wires with minimal fuss. I really would like to get this done without taking apart a lot of trim. From my basic research, there might be 3 possible places to get speaker level outputs from.
a. Center console area, either from the center speakers (which everyone seems to say is rubbish), or from the C240A cable, whichever one is easier to reach.
b. A pillar: there might be a tweeter there or so.
c. B pillar: there might be wires heading into the door speakers.

Has anyone installed a power sub who can guide me on how to find these 5 points needed for the connection?
Welcome to the forum. First consider adding your vehicle specifics to your signature line. It helps all of us help you. Second, do some searches, chances are your question has been asked and answered before. Having said that try this link https://www.fordescape.org/threads/escape-audio-upgrades-overview.109786/ as a starting point.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Welcome to the forum. First consider adding your vehicle specifics to your signature line. It helps all of us help you. Second, do some searches, chances are your question has been asked and answered before. Having said that try this link https://www.fordescape.org/threads/escape-audio-upgrades-overview.109786/ as a starting point.
Thanks for the response , i have updated the signature with the details as suggested.

The link you posted is actually an excellent one, i have gone through it a couple of times in the past week and will again . It provided the basis for the questions.

What I had in mind was for someone with a similar experience who solved some of the issues to share.
The info is definitely there, just kinda dispersed or hidden. I was hoping this will consolidate it.
 

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2014 Ford Escape Titanium, 2.0L, Sync 2 MFT
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What I had in mind was for someone with a similar experience who solved some of the issues to share.
The info is definitely there, just kinda dispersed or hidden. I was hoping this will consolidate it.
Let’s leave this thread strictly to your powered sub question. Any other audio upgrade questions should be made in the thread quoted above. No use having multiple threads with the same information in it.
 

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2019 Honda Ridgeline RTL-E AWD
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Has anyone installed a power sub who can guide me on how to find these 5 points needed for the connection?
This thread, which is linked in my sticky audio upgrades post that you say you've read, includes a powered subwoofer install.

To some of your questions, in my order ….

3. I would select a powered sub that uses signal sensing of the speaker level input at the sub to turn itself on and off. Many if not most offer than feature - it totally obviates the need for a separate remote turn-on trigger and guarantees that the sub will be activated when needed by the system. BTDT, it works.

If you insist on a sub that does not offer built-in signal sensing turn-on, use the PAC TR4 Trigger Module to provide that function; all the connections you need will already be at your powered sub. The PAC module works and is robust, BTDT, use 'em myself. Google for best price.

1. I would run a dedicated power feed from the battery with an appropriate fuse at the battery (and at the sub if it does not have a built-in fuse). Use the power wire sizing tools on this webpage to determine the proper gauge for the sub demand and length of run. Do the job right, do the job once, avoid hassles with noise and overload to the OE circuits, the relatively small gauge of the wire for the sub will keep it easy to route.

4/5. I'd grab the L&R speaker taps you need (most powered subs accept separate high-level L&R inputs and mix to mono in the sub unit) at the back of the ACM where all can be found in one place. Yes, you'll need to pull some trim but IME that's the least troublesome of all the options. Trust me, you do NOT want to try to tap in the console, I've looked, the audio wires are comingled with others in the harness there, it is deeply buried with zero slack or room for making taps. See post 2 in this thread.

In considering which speakers to tap, remember that altering fade / balance on those speakers will then affect the sub. Most folks find it best to tap rear speakers for a powered sub.

For making the taps, use Positaps, do not use 'scotch-taps' even if provided with the sub or a wiring kit. Google is your friend for finding Positaps.

All IMO, All just for your consideration, All based on trying to help you get the job done once and right even if requiring a bit more effort up front in return for long-term satisfaction.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
First off, thanks Centex for taking the time to respond to my post. Your linked thread provided most of the knowledge i now have about the FE audio system (non Sony), and going over it again i see i did miss out a lot of the info i was looking for..
With respect to the input trigger, I must have missed this during my first read thought, the module from PAC seems to fit the bill, and effectively reduces the number of wires i need to run. i just ordered it on amazon.ca and it should arrive soon. i already have a powered sub (Bazooka BTA10100FHC which i was going to use for this. I might switch it out in the future to an underseat sub but for now this should serve)
I also already planned on using posi-taps for the installation. ordered those from crutchfield.ca and they arrived this morning.
Power supply through the firewall: I had to swap out my battery when I got the car, and the fact that the area is so tight kind of put me off going through the firewall, but i will definitely explore this further, it shouldn't be a huge deal.
This leaves just the speaker outputs, looks like i will be grabbing them from lead 11/12 and 23/24 from your posted photos.

I will take the next couple of days to plan the installation and research further and i should be ready for this by Saturday.

thanks Once again.
 

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…. the fact that the area is so tight kind of put me off going through the firewall, but i will definitely explore this further, it shouldn't be a huge deal.
See this, may be valid for your '18 but I'm not sure:
If you
  • Disconnect the negative cable at the ground post
  • Fish your wire from inside the cabin to out as described in the post linked above
Then you should be able to make the connection to the positive terminal without moving the battery at all, just remove the cover. Be sure you have a fuse on your power lead within a very few inches of the battery, regardless of fuses at the sub.

i already have a powered sub (Bazooka BTA10100FHC which i was going to use for this. I might switch it out in the future to an underseat sub but for now this should serve)
That Bazooka will make more sound than any under seat sub, IMO.

Have Fun!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I wanted to close this thread out as the installation was finished.

1. Power wire: Even though the "add a fuse" option was really tempting, i ended up running an 8 gauge wire through the firewall. It was amazingly easier than I expected it to be. Thanks to all of the instructions posted in this thread i was able to do this in freezing weather in under 15 minutes (the hardest part was the easier part, finding the cut out, LOL).

2. Ground wire was run through along the driver's side sill to the audio ground point Centex referenced in this thread. Not much else to say here.

3. Switched 12V trigger: I ended up going with the PAC TR4. No where could i find another switched 12V source and in the end I believe this approach is much better, you get audio from the powered Subwoofer when you need it. yes it stays on for a bit longer than necessary as the Sync 3 system keeps the audio source powered for a bit, but this is not a huge deal considering the convenience.

4/5: Thanks so much Centex for your detailed post here it was unbelievably helpful. I had to take the dashboard apart because i had to route the shielded audio cables through the front passenger area (driver's area is much easier and i would have only needed to take off the center console, but i had the power and ground wires running along the drivers side sill so i had to route the audio cables through the passenger side). Next i used Posi-taps to tap the positive and negative rear R and L speaker cables. The left wire was used to trigger the PAC module while the right is used for the sub input.

I did not have the straps supplied by Bazooka so i used ratchet straps and strapped it to the right side of the trunk where it is nicely secured and out of the way. I have enough space to store our kid's double stroller which is all that i need to carry most of the time.
This installation was finished at least 19 days ago, but i didn't post anything here because there is a persistent issue that i just cannot get to the bottom of. There is crackling noise (more like rumbling since it is a subwoofer), which has been bothering this installation since the beginning. it is not constant and is not there every time i drive the car, but it occurs enough times to be a huge strain on my nerves.
It occurs most commonly on start up, when the auto start/stop feature of the car kicks in during traffic, or when i engage the reverse gear, and in these circumstances it is most pronounced when the sound volume is higher.
It sounds so much like a ground loop, so the first thing i did was look for another grounding point close to tire well in the trunk, sound it and ground the ring terminal there with a 6mm bolt, made the wire short and all of that stuff, but it did not change, so i returned the ground wire to the common audio ground.
Next i switched up the audio terminals, that is i switched the positive and negative leads just in case i had made a mistake when using the posi taps, NOPE. It didn't fix it, i daresay it even aggravated it.
So next i turned my attention to the PAC module, i bypassed it and connected a constant 12V source to the Sub, but the noise still persisted. so that rules out the PAC module.
Next i got the "add a fuse" and drew 12V from the trunk fuse box and sent to the sub, just in case for some reason there is a fault along the power supply line, NOPE. no change so i got rid of that and went back to the 12V source through the firewall.
My working theory right now is that there might be a bad ground within the sub itself. No way i can think of to investigate this without swapping out the subwoofer for another, not something i am in a hurry to do. So this left me feeling dejected about the sub. My friend did suggest that because i tapped the speaker wires at the dashboard area, there might be noise from the area causing this. I doubt that very much as i am using shielded cables and also the noise occurs sometimes with the car at rest and the engine not running.

Last night I was driving home from work and was listening to music and realized, Gosh, this system sounds amazing. i was actually enjoying the music with the volume level less than 19, the rattling sound didn't pop up, the FE tweeters weren't the greatest but they were just right, and the bass coming from the Bazooka was just nothing short of beautiful. My point is the installation was a success. While i will continue probing the source of the noise (i have a couple more things i plan to test), I intend to keep enjoying this wonderful sound system for the time being.

Thanks everyone who chipped in and helped me with the installation.
 

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Going to attempt a hard-wired 4-channel with a signal from an installed aftermarket stereo. I can't wait to find all the noise issues I run into; hopefully, before I drop $600+ on a component set and 6.5s in the rear doors. :LOL: Definitely going to have to wait for the next vehicle to tackle electrical upgrades to run a class d powered driver.

As a last generation Pontiac owner, there is a slight increase in difficulty dealing with this engine compartment...
 

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Definitely going to have to wait for the next vehicle to tackle electrical upgrades to run a class d powered driver.
What is a "class d powered driver" and what "electrical upgrades" does it require that you don't want to do on the Escape?
 

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What is a "class d powered driver" and what "electrical upgrades" does it require that you don't want to do on the Escape?
Class D is a distinction of amplifiers. Usually a mono to power a subwoofer. Driver = subwoofer. I would be looking at installing a high output alternator. (can't wait to find out charging issues, warnings after modifying factory wiring to turn on the alt) After seeing battery and alternator location; ford engineering deserves a swift kick in the nuts. Looking into engine bay battery replacement right now but for a 96R sized AGM for 200$, I'd rather try and stuff a larger Northstar or XS power AGM battery. Looks like it will fit in the box with some modifications. I'll try to take some pictures of my build log but after battery replacement, I will be installing aftermarket receiver deleting sync and moving forward with a 6.5" component set and rear door 6.5"s. After a successful amplified speaker upgrade, we'll see if I want to proceed with all the extracurriculars to run a subwoofer driver.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I finally took out the bazooka from my car and replaced it with an underseat subwoofer from Rockville (USS10).
The bazooka was making all sorts of noise and I just couldn't figure it out. Plus it has a fairly high current draw when not powered on (0.05amps I believe), which was depleting my car batteries capacity and causing the auto start/stop feature not to function sometimes, since I only ever take short trips.

Connection was pretty easy as it only required high level inputs and power cables. It has an auto-turn on feature that powers on when it senses a signal so that really simplified my installation. Got it to fit under the passenger seat in front.
I was initially skeptical about the sound, but after securing it tightly underneath the seat and tuning it, I must say I am quite impressed.
I know the brand gets knocked a lot as a low quality brand, but the sound this subwoofer provides is really good.
 

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I finally took out the bazooka from my car and replaced it with an underseat subwoofer from Rockville (USS10).
The bazooka was making all sorts of noise and I just couldn't figure it out. Plus it has a fairly high current draw when not powered on (0.05amps I believe), which was depleting my car batteries capacity and causing the auto start/stop feature not to function sometimes, since I only ever take short trips.

Connection was pretty easy as it only required high level inputs and power cables. It has an auto-turn on feature that powers on when it senses a signal so that really simplified my installation. Got it to fit under the passenger seat in front.
I was initially skeptical about the sound, but after securing it tightly underneath the seat and tuning it, I must say I am quite impressed.
I know the brand gets knocked a lot as a low quality brand, but the sound this subwoofer provides is really good.
Nice! Why not splice a switch into the remote?
 
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