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Roadmaster 4-Diode Universal Wiring Kit Installation - 2020 Ford Escape

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How to Install the Roadmaster 4-Diode Universal Wiring Kit on a 2020 Ford Escape


Hey everybody, how's it going Today, we're gonna be going over and showing you how to install the Roadmaster diode Wiring Kit, here on your 2020 Ford Escape. So what does the diode wiring kit actually do Well, it may be pretty straight forward to others, but some of you may not know. Essentially it's gonna be transferring the signals, from our motor home to that of our towed vehicle. So the reason that's important is, while out driving on the road, you may not be able to see the motor home lights when you're driving behind, or they may not be that visible. So by transferring the signals, to our actual towed vehicle here, we're gonna be much safer. Let others around us know what's going on.

It's also a requirement in pretty much all States. So as you can see, now we have our hazards displaying, meaning we have the left and right turn signals flashing or rather the brake lights. However, we are gonna get the other features needed for basic lighting operation, such as the brake lights, as well as the tail light signals. So this is what our wiring kit is gonna look like installed. Now, what I mean by that is that we're using the actual factory bulbs, in the factory taillight housing.

Therefore everything is gonna be integrated into one. We don't have to worry about having any separate lights on the vehicle. I'm sure you guys are familiar with the magnetic lights that actually sit on top of the roof there. We don't have to worry about that bulky cluttery design here because everything is integrated into one. Which is why I actually prefer this diode wiring kit, over some of the other options on the market.

Being that everything is just seamless, one integrated package. So as we are utilizing the factory taillight bulbs here, you do have to make a couple splices into the wires, but not to worry. We don't have to worry about damaging or risking damage to the vehicle. We're gonna have these nice little built-in diodes on each circuit there, which is gonna prevent any back feed of electricity. Therefore, we don't have to worry about any issues with the lighting on the motor home, carrying over and affecting our lights on the vehicle.

Everything is gonna be separated out, so we can retain the factory functionality of our Escape here, no matter what the circumstances are. So in order to bridge the connection from our motor home, to our towed vehicle here, you will need an umbilical cord. Now the kit thankfully comes with this. However, you do have a couple options in regards to which one you wanna go with. You have the completely straight umbilical cord, which is what we have installed here. You have a coiled umbilical cord, which you see over here. And then we actually have a hybrid between the two, which is a coiled in a straight umbilical cord, and that's what we have here. So I'm sure you're asking now, what are the differences between those different umbilical cords, and how do you find the right one for you and your setup Well, it's pretty easy. It's gonna come down to what tow bar we have. So our particular tow bar here has these little metal channels built into the actual tow bar arms, that we can slide our umbilical cord through, because the name of the game here is preventing damage to the electrical cable, preventing it from dragging on the road. So since we have these built-in channels with our tow bar, we're gonna wanna utilize these, with a straight umbilical cord. So say we have a tow bar that doesn't have these integrated channels or clips for the electrical connector, that's when we'd wanna go ahead and go with the coiled one. So we'll go ahead and show you the coiled one, but essentially what the cool design does is, it prevents the extra Slack we have, therefore we don't have to worry about our cable dragging the ground. We can easily show you what that looks like now. So we'll plug that in and we'll just simply route this over to where the six way is mounted on the vehicle. So there you can see, we had the coil design here, which is keeping it nice and flush to the bottom of the tow bar there. That way we don't have to worry about it, drooping down dragging on the ground and becoming damaged. So, and then the last option that we have, for an umbilical cord is the hybrid one, that has a straight portion, which again is gonna require that we have a channel on our tow bar for the cable to slide through. And then the coiled portion after it leaves the tow bar arms and attaches to the RV. So some situations you may want this say the arms on our tow bar are a little bit longer than normal, or which you can see here, we're using a high-low adapter that's gonna extend the connection point. We could have more of a chance for slag here, once it leaves the tow bar arms and attaches to RV. Therefore the coiled portion here is just gonna give us more security, keeping it nice and tight to the bottom of the tow bar, and reducing the chance for it to drag on the ground. So in addition to the umbilical cord, you're also gonna get a six pole connector here which you can see included in your kit. So what I like about this, it's obviously gonna carry all the basic signals we have, such as those for the stop turn signal circuits as well as their running light. We also have a few extra pins, which we can use for things such as a battery charge line, or we can actually use it to run the monitor light for the braking system, depending on what braking system we're using. So it's that much more versatile. And it gives us more options that we don't have to worry about running extra cables with our tow bar setup. So in regards to installation this one isn't too bad. We're gonna have to pit our trailer connector here at the front of the vehicle. We're gonna have to run a wire from the front to the rear, and then we're gonna have to splice into the circuits directly behind our taillights. Now honestly, the hardest part of this is just fitting the taillights back on, once we spliced our diodes in line, because there isn't a ton of room there. But thankfully there is enough space that we can re-install our tail lights into the factory position. So the first step of our installation, we're gonna take our bonded four-pole here. We need to tie this off to a point on our base plate kit, preferably where we're gonna be mounting our electrical connector. Our particular base plate kit here has these two tabs which are designed for this exact purpose. So we're gonna give ourselves a little bit extra wire to work with, and we're gonna tie it off here. Now we're gonna take the other end, and wrap that all the way back to the rear of the vehicle, to where our taillights are, we'll show you the path we took. But essentially we use the included wire that comes in our kit here for this first couple of feet or so. We're gonna have some points here we wanna make sure we tie it to, to keep it away from any of the components such as the active air shutters. If your particular vehicle comes with clipped at that, you wanna make sure that you have the wires as far away from that as possible. So we've got a couple of zip ties in here, securing it to the base plates. And then I haven't ran in between this little opening here. Now, if we come on the inside, pretty much what you're gonna see for the rest of the way, is just that tie securing it to existing points. We use a hole in the frame here. We have it, ran here. This one's actually is all gonna be covered. We have a panel that installs over this, so you don't have to worry about this showing, or being exposed to the road. So again, another point here, we have a zip tie, and then we've come over this cross member. You can kind of see our wire here. So from here on back, we have it hidden behind this panel here. In order to remove that we're gonna have one Torx screw here, and then we're gonna have several of these little nuts, these metal nuts here, they're real thin. We will just take a 10 millimeter socket. You don't need to remove them all. There's gonna be a couple on the outside edges in the center here. We're just gonna peel this panel down, so we can run our wire up and over this. And they zip tied it to a couple of the existing lines up above this panel. And then we just have it ran from all the way here back. And then we look straight up here. So directly back here by the rear suspension, we can kind of see our bonded four pole. We ran that up and over the rear cross member, I have a couple of zip ties securing it. And then we have it ran pretty much to the back, of the vehicle over the cross member. so you can see here, here is the rest of our wiring. We just came out a little panel right here ran it up and over there, and just use it more zip ties to secure in place. But now we're gonna go ahead and remove our taillights so we can make our connections with the diodes. So now we're gonna open up the hatch here on our vehicle. We're gonna be removing the taillights, because we're gonna be splicing into the wires behind them. So it's super easy to do this. Inside here in this little pocket, we're gonna have this flat cover here. And then we're gonna have this little insert that pops out. We just take a flat rate screwdriver, should be able to it out like so. And now we're gonna take a T25 Torx bit, and We're gonna remove that one bolt there. And now we can actually pry the taillight assembly off the vehicle. So in order to remove the taillight housing, we're actually gonna be pulling out away from the vehicle, just like so. And now we're gonna have a few wires here we need to disconnect. So we'll just simply turn these counterclockwise to release them. Some of them are pretty tight. So if you have ones you can't get by hand, just take a pair of pliers, make sure we grab that center section there, and turn it to release. Now we'll say this one actually doesn't become, we're not gonna unplug this one because there isn't an actual ball to take out. So we're just gonna actually have to hang it down like this. We're gonna do this on both sides. So the next thing we need to do is we need to go ahead and test these wires here, so we can determine which carries which circuit here. So we've already, fortunately went ahead and did this for you guys. So we can go ahead and point these out now. We will show you how to make the connections as well. With this red wire here, gonna this amber bolt, this is gonna be the power wire for our turn signal. Now this vehicle has separate stop and turn signal circuits. So there's gonna be another wire for the stop, and that's gonna beat the purple wire here. And then the yellow wire is gonna be for our running light circuit. So that's the connection we're gonna make here behind the taillights. We're gonna begin installing our diodes now. Just a heads up the wire colors are gonna be the same on both sides. So we identified the purple wire is the stoplight wire. So what we're gonna do now is we're just gonna find about the midway point here, maybe a little bit closer to the grommet. We're just gonna go ahead and cut this in half here. We're gonna take a pair of strippers. We're gonna strip back about a quarter inch, of the conduit off each side here, just like that. And now we're gonna take one of our diodes here. We're gonna to take off one of the blue spade terminals. We're gonna crimp that on to both sides of our wire. So these wires are pretty small, so you wanna make sure you get a good crimp here. Just go ahead and give that a nice little tug to make sure it's secure. Now that we have that on, what we're gonna do next is, we're gonna pull our wires up underneath into our taillight pocket here, because that's where we're gonna begin splicing into them. So we got our wires pulled up into the taillight pocket here. What I'm gonna do is since we're working on the driver's side, I'm gonna separate the yellow wire, from our bonded four-pole here. I'm gonna be attaching that to the diode, that goes in between the two purple wires. Okay. The next connection we're gonna make, is to the running light circuit. So we're gonna go ahead and cut the yellow wire. So we've got a spade terminal on both of our yellow wires here. So we're gonna take the brown wire for the running light circuit, and after we cut that what we're gonna be doing is, we need to run a jumper wire from this side to the other side. So I'm gonna take the extra of the wire that I just cut off, and I'm gonna tie that into this here before I attach it to the butt connector. Because then along with the green wire, we'll run that over to the other side of the vehicle. I'll show you what I mean by that in just a second. So you wanna make sure that you use the yellow spade terminal here when we join those two wires. And now we can install our diode. So next, we're gonna address the white wire over here. That's gonna be a ground. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna find this spot inside the taillight housing here, probably around this area, then we can install a ring terminal, then use a self tapping screw to ground that to the vehicles body. So now, as we said we're gonna take our brown wire and our green wire. We're gonna route that over to the other side of the vehicle. I just used a simple pull wire technique, took a piece of airline tubing, shoved it down through the bumper there, came out underneath, and now I can pull the pole line through when I tape our wires to this. So we got our green and brown wires routed over here to the passenger side of the vehicle. Now, in regards to the path we took to get here, there's gonna be a large heat shield running across the center of the vehicle. We're simply gonna run it over that to secure it. We zip tied it to a few of the existing wires as well to keep it from drooping down. But now once we have it in the taillight pocket here, we can go ahead and make our connections. You may or may not need to extend the wires a little bit. It just depends on how much slack you gave yourselves, when you're running the wires. But as far as the connection goes, it's pretty easy. We have our brown wire here, which is gonna splice into the yellow wire. So the same process we did on the other side, same color as well. And then the green wire that's for the stop slash turn signal. That'll splice into the purple wire. Now we're gonna reinstall our taillights. So now that we have our fascia on, we went ahead and pulled our wires that we left a little extra for ourselves. We pulled them through an opening in the fascia here. So depending on what base plate kit you're using, a lot of them have these two little prongs here, that'll be used to actually secure the connector, so we can thankfully utilize them. What I'm gonna do now is, we gave ourselves extra wire which is good, but now I can actually go ahead and cut that extra wire off cause we don't need it all. Then what I'm gonna do is, I'm gonna take the boot here on the back of the connector, I'm gonna simply slide that on over our wires. Now I'm gonna begin stripping each of these wires about a quarter inch of the jacket off. So keep in mind that black wire that you see there, we're gonna be installing that as well. You're probably not gonna have that, because we're using it. It's part of our braking system for the monitor light. So you can just disregard that one. Now that we have all of our wire stripped, I'm gonna go ahead and just twist all the strands there, so you don't get any loose ones that are jumping circuits on us. But then we're gonna need a small Phillips head screwdriver, like the one you see here, and then we can begin making our connections to the back of the connector. So let's start with the yellow wire here. That'll go into the terminal labeled LT. So we wanna go ahead and loosen this screw a little bit. We don't wanna remove it completely, because they are kind of hard. They're kind of small, easy to lose. We'll insert the wires in there, and we'll just simply tighten it down. And then we're gonna repeat that process for the rest of our wires. So now that we have all of our connections made, it's good practice to take some silicone here, and just seal up all the terminals. This is on the front of the vehicle. So it's likely water can get in here. You wanna make sure that water doesn't cause any issues. Then we can take our boot here, slide it over. Now we're gonna attach our connector, to the two prongs and our base plate kit here, or whatever means you have to attach it. And now we're gonna finish up the inside with some dielectric grease, but then we can go ahead and just test everything out to make sure it's all working. So first we're gonna start with our taillights. our left turn, our brake lights, and then our right turn. So there you go. Now we know everything is functioning correctly, therefore the installation was correct. And that's gonna do it today for our look and installation of the Roadmaster diode wiring kit here on your 2020 Ford Escape..


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