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Discussion Starter #1
Hello All,

I spent some time last night working on installing the backup camera from eBay into my '13 FE SE. All you need is an APIM with camera capabilities.

Here's the camera I used. Excellent night vision, just a tad more downward pointing than I'd like, but it's great:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/261465670812?_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT

I had a few hiccups with a misleading generic "trigger" wire, but with all of the information gathered here on the forum, and from what I gleaned from other sites, I wanted to do an all in one guide on how to do the install! Pics to come:)
 

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Just what I have been looking for. Thanks for sharing your success! Perhaps you could tilt the camera upwards within the enclosure?

Please help me understand what an "APIM with camera capabilities" is. I googled it but didn't get anything I could make sense of. I have the same head unit as you do so I am hoping to do this install also.

Thanks,

Bob
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Sorry, I didn't get enough time at lunch to resize my pictures but I'll have it up over the weekend- BobM, the APIM is the Accessory Protocol Interface Module, and it plugs into the back of our MyFord Touch screens. It's an aluminum block with fin looking pieces... Check out the other APIM related post I had here for how to access the module and swap it out-

http://www.fordescape.org/forum/diy-garage/41362-successful-nav-upgrade-my-2013-fe-se.html

I know the bulb housing above the license plate is a permanent shape, but I think you're right- I believe I'll be able to shim the camera a bit to raise it's perspective to have the green/yellow/red lines accurate.

Also, if you can find an APIM unit, search the VIN for the vehicle that it was intended to- as long as the VIN/vehicle description has the backup camera capabilities, you're golden.
 

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Excellent... al fin! I will be able to get rid of the mirror monitor!! Thanks. Will start reading today.

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Are you willing to do a DIY ? We hope so :)

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BobM, the APIM is the Accessory Protocol Interface Module, and it plugs into the back of our MyFord Touch screens. It's an aluminum block with fin looking pieces... Check out the other APIM related post I had here for how to access the module and swap it out-

http://www.fordescape.org/forum/diy-garage/41362-successful-nav-upgrade-my-2013-fe-se.html

I know the bulb housing above the license plate is a permanent shape, but I think you're right- I believe I'll be able to shim the camera a bit to raise it's perspective to have the green/yellow/red lines accurate.

Also, if you can find an APIM unit, search the VIN for the vehicle that it was intended to- as long as the VIN/vehicle description has the backup camera capabilities, you're golden.


Thanks for all this great info. I am real excited to now know all you told me and will find a module to install with that camera.


Your other very detailed post is most excellent. So much great info and it got others to chime in with their discoveries as well. I would never have known I could look up the APIM module's vintage from a VIN to see if it was appropriate and had a back up camera option enabled. Thanks so much for sharing all you know so we can benefit from your work.
 
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Discussion Starter #8
Ok, so here is my guide for installing a generic eBay backup camera (described to match '13 and up Ford Escapes) to a 8'' MyFord Touch screen by purchasing an APIM (Accessory Protocol Interface Module) that is compatible- please bear with me as I'm trying to make this as clear as I can by filtering out all of my mishaps to get you all the core directions:) Please see the attached images for reference to each of these steps.

1) FIND YOUR APIM: I purchased an APIM module on the forum here from another user who was trying to use it his CMAX but it didn't match up for him- This APIM had NAV and the Backup Camera capabilities- you can check this by looking up the VIN of the APIM to see what vehicle it is intended for- The features need to line up, for instance, I don't have the SONY sound package, so if I bought an APIM with the SONY upgrade, it may not work. MY FE has the stock Ford sound package and MFT, but I didn't have anything else. In this post here, I showed how I used another APIM to upgrade my system to have Nav capabilities- http://www.fordescape.org/forum/diy-garage/41362-successful-nav-upgrade-my-2013-fe-se.html Doing the same procedure, I swapped out the APIM (see disassembly and interchanging of APIM in the mentioned link) but this one now had the Backup Camera capability built into it. An easy way to test this is once you have the APIM in, place the car in reverse and wait- after a few seconds it will say "Camera Not Available- Please contact your dealer...blah blah blah". That's just letting you know that it's LOOKING for the camera which obviously isn't installed yet, but this is good to prove if your APIM is configured to accept the component.

2) FIND YOUR CAMERA: Now, the camera I purchased on ebay, is linked here: CCD Car Reverse Camera for Ford Kuga Escape 2013 Auto Rear View Backup Reversing | eBay I did a bit of research and tried to find the best one that I could which wasn't the absolute cheapest, had decent night vision, was a CCD quality component, and then of course had a clean install look so that it could appear SOMEWHAT factory. This means no license plate mount, or anything else that will be dangling in wires when you have to replace your registration tags/plate number, etc... This camera replaces your left license plate light housing, but we'll get to that in a few steps.

3) REMOVE THE HATCH TRIM: Remove the trim on the back hatch. First, start with the handle on the inside. If you take a flat head screwdriver, you can pry off the top cap half of the handle- BE CAREFUL. One side pops free and the other side pivots. Just be gentle and pop it off. Once you have that off, there will be two philips head screws exposed way down in the cores of the handle- remove them and the other half of the handle will come off as well. This is the subassembly you must remove first in order to remove the main trim panel. Once you're ready and the handle pieces/screws are set aside, firmly and consistently apply pressure around all sides of the main hatch trim panel. One by one, the clips will pop free. Be patient and don't horse it as some of the pop-tabs can bend and deform. Once you have the main trim panel off, you'll have the three pieces that form the archways and center/top of the hatch. Remove the center first, and then do the corner/arch pieces. They should pop free fairly easily.

4) REMOVE THE EMBLEM TRIM: Now that the trim is removed from the inside of the back hatch, we're going to remove the trim above the license plate where the Ford emblem is- there are four holes main threaded posts and nuts that hold this piece of trim on there. By now since the main trim is all removed, there should be holes in the sheet metal of the hatch that you can look through in the general area of where the emblem trim is located. You should see each of the 4 posts in each of these holes. Use a deep socket to remove the nuts and then there is one snap tab that prevents the trim from falling out- if all four nuts are removed, gently and firmly pull outwards on the trim piece and it should pop free from that one center tab. The subassembly (emblem trim w/wiring for license plate lights) should now be hanging by the wires.

5) INSTALL CAMERA IN PLATE LIGHT HOUSING: Now that the emblem trim subassembly is free and the wires are accessible, swap out the left light housing for the camera housing. Just pull in on the tab and rock the stock housing out of place. The bulb is held in by a turn and lock fashion. Replace the stock housing with the camera / new housing by inserting the bulb and popping the new housing back into the emblem trim. It was my experience that the bulb is fairly loose in the camera/new housing piece, but don't worry, it won't go anywhere.

6) FEED CAMERA WIRES THROUGH RUBBER STOPPER: Since we have the camera installed, we now need to route the wires (red and yellow plugs) through to the inside of the hatch. You'll notice a rubber stopper that's molded around the plate light wires. This is the most snug/best place to have the camera wires go through as well for weather resistance and shock resistance. If you use your fingers or a small pry tool, you can pop that stopper from the sheet metal with the plate wires running right down the center of it. I took a flat razor and sliced right down to the centerline and inserted the wire strands before the yellow and red connectors and then pinched it back together again and pushed it back in place in the sheet metal. Now, your rubber stopper should have the plate light wires AND your camera Video (yellow) and Power (red) wires held in place. You can now re-install the emblem trim by popping it back into the center pop tab, and then put the nuts back on the four threaded posts through the access holes in the inside face of the hatch.

7) TAP YOUR REVERSE LIGHTS: I went to my local auto shop and bought a few boxes of T-Taps. They’re pretty great, but you need to make sure it pierces through the wire housing to actually make contact with the wires. Basically, if you’re not familiar with them, there are two pieces to these taps. First, there’s a piece that folds over the wire and when you squeeze it together with pliers, the metal fitting inside bites through the wire casing and makes contact with the inner strand. There’s then the other half of the T Tap that has a spade connector which crimps around your added/spliced wire and then the spade inserts into the just folded half to make contact with the host wire. BACK TO THE REVERSE LIGHTS. Look at the hatch and locate where the reverse light is located. I went for my back right reverse light bc it’s closer to where the rubber stopper and other wires are. There is another threaded post and nut holding down the assembly. Remove the nut, and then pop the light free. This one was pretty tricky for me because I was trying to pry the light housing off, but didn’t want to scratch the paint. There are a decent amount of snap tabs that hold it in place, but if you’re firm with it, the housing will pop out, exposing the wires for the white reverse lights. I THINK they were green and black. We need to splice into them with the “+” and “-“ Power wires of the camera. This is the included coax connector with dual strand wires which plugs into the RED connector of the camera we just installed. For splicing, I chose to go with the T-taps, so I crimped the primary pieces around the green and black wires with pliers. I then fed the “+” and “-“ wires through the holes in the hatch sheet metal to come through and then crimped the spade T-tap components onto each wire and connected the positive and negative wires respectively. BE SURE NOT TO ROUTE THESE WIRES THROUGH THE HOLE IN THE HATCH WHERE THE THREADED POST MOUNTS TO. I DID THIS AT FIRST AND HAD TO REROUTE IT AS THE POST AND NUT WOULDN’ LEAVE ENOUGH ROOM FOR THE WIRE TO FEED THROUGH. Connect the spade T-Tap with the initial female T-Tap piece that was crimped down with the pliers. Your camera now has a power source. Make sure the wires won’t be inhibited, and reinstall the reverse light housing. Tie down any slack with zip ties.

8) ROUTE THE YELLOW VIDEO CABLE TO THE MYFORD TOUCH DISPLAY: As shown in one of the attached images, I ran the yellow RCA video cable along the existing wiper cable assembly with zip ties and then fed it through the left boot/rubber weather tubing to route it into the cabin. I pulled the cable from between the ceiling material and the roof just to show you how I routed it (see pic). I then proceeded to route it along the left side of the car by popping up the trim as needed to tuck the wiring away from site. I then routed it down along the floor left of the back bench and the driver’s seat and back up behind the OBD port and had the connector hanging in the foot space near the pedals. By now, I realized two problems. A) I didn’t have enough length to make it to the MFT head unit, and B) The MFT wire harness needs two wires be put in place, and the RCA is a coaxial connector. I solved these problems by going to Radioshack and buying a RCA connector with two solder points, one for each positive and negative lead. (Please see pic of the connector with soldered and taped wires.)

9) FEED AND CONNECT VIDEO “+” and “-“ TO MFT UNIT: Using the RCA connector from Radioshack, I soldered in an extra 36’’ length of wire to each positive and negative post and then wrapped the solder points in electrical tape for insulation (see pic). I also stripped each other end of the wires so that each had 0.5’’ of copper exposed. I then proceeded to disassemble the head unit of the MFT display, starting with the disconnection of the battery and then the consecutive trim pieces (see battery connector pic and linked Nav post up top for full disassembly instructions). Lift out the APIM/MFT screen unit and the side vents so that you can see a gap down to the driver’s footwell to route your wires/ Radioshack RCA connector down to the existing yellow camera RCA connector. I had to use a rod and tape to guide the wires down, but it worked well. I connected the RCA connectors and zip tied it to a bracket that’s out of sight under the steering column near the footwell light. Now, my extension of the Video positive and negative wires with the 0.5’’ stripped ends are exposed and located in the general MFT area.

10) SWAP APIM UNITS: Since you’ve removed the APIM/MFT Screen from the dash, swap out the existing APIM with your new Backup Camera capable APIM in similar fashion to my linked post at the top. It’s just the 4 philips screws holing the screen and APIM together. This is an easy step 

11) INSTALL VIDEO “+” AND “-“ WIRES INTO MFT WIRE HARNESS: This part can be a bit tricky, but I’ll do my best to describe it concisely. IF you look at the main wire harness that goes into the APIM, there’s the gray cam latch and black connector housing. If you look at the side, there are two small and very thin tabs that hold in the three rows of wire ports. I used a small flat head driver and my finger nails to slowly pry these tabs up to slide the actual wire ports from the main housing (see pic of separated housing from ports). You should now be holding the three rows of wire ports with all the wires just inserted into the back. If you look CLOSELY, you can see a “1” and “18” at the top row. There was a gap in my harness where wires 14 and 15 plug in. Wire port 14 is “VIDEO +” and wire port 15 is “VIDEO –“. I took the 0.5’’ of stripped wire lengths and folded them each two times over so that there was a generous thickness of wire core to be inserted into each hole, with the video positive and negative wires going into holes 14 and 15 respectively. Once you make sure that the folded up wires are visible and will surely make contact with the pins of the APIM connector, slide the housing back over the three rows of wire ports until the two thin side tabs snap everything back into place. Your wire harness should APPEAR just as it did when you started, but you’ll now have your camera video “+” and “-“ wires extending from it as well, continuing down through the dash and into the footwell to where the camera video cable is routed in the previous step.

12) PARTIALLY REASSEMBLE THE DASH AND TEST BACKUP CAMERA: Reconnect all wiring of the MFT head unit. This includes the APIM and main wire harnesses, the CD player connector up top, and the sound system interface connector. Loosely place the trim in their correct locations, but don’t screw in the pieces yet- TEST YOUR WIRING. Reconnect the battery and start the car. Put the shifter in reverse, and check your dash to see if the camera shows up. If it still shows the error on the screen for no camera connected, go back and check your wiring. If it works, CONGRATS! Turn off the car and screw the MFT head unit back into place and reinstall the trim pieces properly. Don't forget to put your hatch trim back together as well and remember the order of the upper trim pieces and the handle assembly.

After a very long novel of an explanation, you’re done!!! I hope that wasn’t too painful, but wanted to share the details because it was very helpful to me.

***PLEASE NOTE*** This camera comes with an extra red wire sheathed in with the yellow video cable. This is a “trigger” wire used in other vehicles but DOES NOT APPLY TO OUR FE’s. Just disregard/ignore it. It was a major source of confusion for me, but we don’t need it.

Please let me know if you have any questions and good luck!
 

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Very nice write up. The only thing I would suggest is getting the proper socket terminals for your harness. It's pennies as far as cost and will give you a professional connection. Doing all of my mods, I still have some left over. Males and females of course. Mine are a larger size, but you get the picture. You simply crimp the wire to the connector and insert it. I crimped and soldered for extra strength and continuity since it was exterior wiring for my fogs and rear LED tail lights. Another great option is to cannibalize from an old connector like the one I have. Just remove a pin and solder you wire to the old pins wire. There is an insertion tool that they sell that also allows you to remove the terminal pins since they are usually barbed. Trust me, over time your connection will fail unless done correctly.





 

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Discussion Starter #10
Very nice write up. The only thing I would suggest is getting the proper socket terminals for your harness. It's pennies as far as cost and will give you a professional connection. Doing all of my mods, I still have some left over. Males and females of course. Mine are a larger size, but you get the picture. You simply crimp the wire to the connector and insert it. I crimped and soldered for extra strength and continuity since it was exterior wiring for my fogs and rear LED tail lights. Another great option is to cannibalize from an old connector like the one I have. Just remove a pin and solder you wire to the old pins wire. There is an insertion tool that they sell that also allows you to remove the terminal pins since they are usually barbed. Trust me, over time your connection will fail unless done correctly.





Oh you're absolutely right about that. I had a limited window of time but yes the sockets ate a much safer bet! Do you know of a size or part number to order?
 

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Just wanted to give a big shout out to rahrena8690 for turning us on to this upgrade. Sold my lockpick and went this route, which suited my needs just fine. I was especially lucky in the fact that my early build 2013 titanium APIM wiring harness had every single pin connector slot occupied even though my vehicle did not include nav or the parking technology package when purchased. For 2013's this meant no rear view camera. But lo and behold my 14 and 15 pin slots were occupied, with the correct color wire per the workshop manual. So soldering on an RCA video connector was super easy and even semi-professional. Of course wiring it up to the reverse lights was pretty easy as well. Many thanks.
 

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Just wanted to give a big shout out to rahrena8690 for turning us on to this upgrade. Sold my lockpick and went this route, which suited my needs just fine. I was especially lucky in the fact that my early build 2013 titanium APIM wiring harness had every single pin connector slot occupied even though my vehicle did not include nav or the parking technology package when purchased. For 2013's this meant no rear view camera. But lo and behold my 14 and 15 pin slots were occupied, with the correct color wire per the workshop manual. So soldering on an RCA video connector was super easy and even semi-professional. Of course wiring it up to the reverse lights was pretty easy as well. Many thanks.

Do you have any pictures of what you did? I would sure like to save the $349.99 for the Lock pick to $429.99 for the Lockpick air. Also where did you get the Rca adaptor to hook up the camera to?
 

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Do you have any pictures of what you did? I would sure like to save the $349.99 for the Lock pick to $429.99 for the Lockpick air. Also where did you get the Rca adaptor to hook up the camera to?
Read back through this thread, pretty good DIY instructions...
 
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^ What he said. But to answer your question, no I didn't take any pics.
 

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Do you have any pictures of what you did? I would sure like to save the $349.99 for the Lock pick to $429.99 for the Lockpick air. Also where did you get the Rca adaptor to hook up the camera to?
The camera package I ordered off ebay came with not only the camera, but everything else I needed. Similar to this :

Color HD NTSC Car Universal Reverse Rear View Backup Camera for Ford Waterproof | eBay

As far as the RCA soldering, I just took any old RCA cable like this:



And stripped the wire about 8" from the connector. Inside the wire you will find a shielded center wire. This is the positive. Wrapped around the shielded center wire is stranded copper wire. This is the negative.

But what really makes the job easy are 2 things. My APIM connector coming from my BCM had all the slots filled and I had a APIM from a donor vehicle that had a back-up camera.
 

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The camera package I ordered off ebay came with not only the camera, but everything else I needed. Similar to this :

Color HD NTSC Car Universal Reverse Rear View Backup Camera for Ford Waterproof | eBay

As far as the RCA soldering, I just took any old RCA cable like this:



And stripped the wire about 8" from the connector. Inside the wire you will find a shielded center wire. This is the positive. Wrapped around the shielded center wire is stranded copper wire. This is the negative.

But what really makes the job easy are 2 things. My APIM connector coming from my BCM had all the slots filled and I had a APIM from a donor vehicle that had a back-up camera.
How much did the APIM cost?

My vehicle already had navigation so the new APIM would also need navigation as well as backup camera. I was a bit confused about how you did it. I though you said that you just needed to add the RCA wire to you existing APIM which deven though it did not have a backup camera it was backup camera ready.
 

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How much did the APIM cost?

My vehicle already had navigation so the new APIM would also need navigation as well as backup camera. I was a bit confused about how you did it. I though you said that you just needed to add the RCA wire to you existing APIM which deven though it did not have a backup camera it was backup camera ready.
An APIM can cost around 200 to 300 bucks. So, in light of this and the fact that you have navigation I would go with the lockpick air. From the other thread you are on about this topic that seems the best route.
 

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An APIM can cost around 200 to 300 bucks. So, in light of this and the fact that you have navigation I would go with the lockpick air. From the other thread you are on about this topic that seems the best route.



Lockpick air it is. I like that it is plug and play. No splicing wires and removing APIM from the back of the Factory Ford My Touch which has navigation in it. I think the additional functionality of being able to mirrocast your smart pone will be worth the $75 difference in price over the base Lockpick. "Oh No" caught the upgrade bug. How much were those DVD head rests?


I really want the back up camera since most cars by 2017 will be required to have them it will definitely increase the functionality of my Ford Escape Titanium 4WD.



I am wanting to upgrade my Escape for new features! That saying of Es Cap Pay makes total sense.
 

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Backup camera install

Great post. I like the details. Instead of tearing out my interior trim, could I use a wireless camera setup?
 

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Backup camera install

Just finished my backup camera install. I used this camera: Electronics, Cars, Fashion, Collectibles, Coupons and More | eBay
CCD-Car-Reverse-Camera-for-Ford-Kuga-Escape-2013-Auto-Rear-View-Backup-Reversing. Cost of the camera and all hardware was $18.90. Direct from China in 11 days. Free shipping. I followed the instructions from earlier in this post and only had 2 small setbacks:
1: I found a compatible connector at the junk yard (free) and pulled 2 pins and connected them to the + & - for the video and inserted them into my APIM connector. Didn't get pin 15 inserted all the way and had to take the connector back apart.
2: When trying to tap into the backup lights, I had trouble getting power to the camera. Instead of removing the rt backup light and tapping the wires for power, I followed the wires back to the connector and tapped in before the connector and everything works perfect.
Just saved myself around $2500. Ford quoted me $1300 for the NAV install and another $1000 or so for the backup camera.
Life is good and my wife is happy.
 
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