Materials to make that bluetooth bridge to the stereo are in the mail. I’m eager to set that up. I hope it’s not too much of a pain for multiple users to use.

Yesterday, I tried my hand at a project that would make the homelink system in my 2004 active only when the key is in the ignition and on. Right now, the homelink is continuously powered, so any idiot could break into the truck and then get into my garage. Pics and a description of my failure after the jump.

I followed the description for this project, and it went pretty well. Taking the consol panel off: easy. Identifying the harnesses: easy.

Then I deployed my multimeter to find the wires that carried the power. I’m not an electronics guy, or an electricity guy, so I was very careful about this process. I used a lead to test the wires with my voltmeter, and I felt like I successfully identified the always-on power source that powers the homelink unit. And I think I successfully identifies the on-with-the-key power on the secondary harness that had been tapes up and away. Here are pics.

Always on power source, view 1

Always on power source, view 1

Always on power source, view 2

Always on power source, view 2

New power source, view 1

New power source, view 1

New power source, view 2

New power source, view 2

I then used small splice locks to splice in a single strand wire to connect the new power source to the homelink circuit. Here’s what that looks like.

The splice

The splice

Testing the homelink unit shows my project doesn’t work. The homelink doesn’t get any power. (When I press a homelink button, the small red LED does not light up.)

Until I’m struck by inspiration, or until some colleague on ih8mus dope-slaps me and shows me what I did wrong, I’m going to let this be and not worry about the homelink system. Better safe this way than expose with always-on power.

UPDATE: @jerryb replied to my report about being stymied by the wiring. He shared this annotated version of my last pic and let me know that power is the second (grey) wire.

I spliced into that wire and everything works great!

Annotated for wire functions

The tasks on my list (not in any particular order):

  1. get the timing belt and transfer case looked at (and, someday, have from at RPM Garage in Monrovia take a look at the rig)

  2. address some upholstery problems (holes and small rips) to stop them from becoming a bigger problem,

  3. looking for salvage yards that might have compatible rigs with some plastic parts I need to replace (e.g., lid to fusebox under the hood, cover for compartment on passenger side of the 3rd row seating, tie-down ‘wingnut’ piece that covers a screw in the cargo area)

  4. working up the courage (and saving the money) for stereo upgrade - CarPlay compatibility, AUX in, BT for music; not sure if I want GPS, but it would save battery life on phone

    Update: delayed to see if @SerialHobbyist’s approach to ‘upgrading’ the stereo works.

  5. adding a simple aux battery to the rig; running some outlets for USB chargers

  6. DONE: converting some interior lights to LEDs (Update: kit ordered from [pfran](

  7. find some folks in my local area (Ventura County) who are interested in some day trips to trails in the Los Padres Wilderness or surrounding areas. I want to meet some people and strengthen some trail driving skills so I can overland camp with confidence with my rig

  8. tires are getting worn, so need to consider replacing them with something that balances smooth road ride, fuel efficiency, and effectiveness for overland camping (which isn’t the same as rock crawling)

  9. remove the airfoil and consider removing the roof rack

  10. remove the running boards and, perhaps, replace with sliders; without running boards and sliders, it sounds like people recommend mud flaps (here’s a link to the part numbers on ih8mud: OEM Front Mudflaps)

  11. fix antenna mast, perhaps replacing it with a manual mast (?)

  12. add bolts to engine cover (two are missing, two are present)

  13. have headlights aimed, perhaps replacing the bulbs (instructions for aiming are here)

  14. replace shocks (current shocks look original to truck) … what should I replace them with?

  15. mount mobile 2m/70cm radio in dash or up front; large antenna mounted on rear bumper (?)

  16. IN PROCESS: customize wiring to the homelink system in the top console, using ih8mud thread here