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Trailer Wiring Harness Installation - 2005 Ford Escape

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How to Install a Trailer Wiring Harness on a 2005 Ford Escape

Today on our 2005 Ford Escape, we'll be installing our Tow Ready T-One Vehicle Wiring Harness with 4-Pole Flat Connector, part number 118426. First we'll go ahead and open up the rear hatch and then we'll need to remove both taillight assemblies. To remove the taillight assemblies, we'll need to remove the two screw fasteners that secure each one. Next we'll need to remove the taillight assembly, now to remove the taillight assembly we'll pull back towards the rear of the vehicle popping it free. There's two alignment tabs underneath that are still securing it so to assist we're going to get behind the lens with a plastic pry tool, you can also use a flat blade screwdriver just be careful not to scratch the paint. Once we pop them free we can go ahead and pull the taillight assembly out and remove the wiring connectors so we can set the taillight assembly aside. Here we can see the alignment tabs underneath.

Now to remove the connector, we'll press in the locking tab, remove the connector from the back of the socket. We'll go ahead and set the taillight assembly aside. Now move over to the passenger's side and remove the taillight assembly. Over here on this side, I'm just going to let the taillight assembly sit out away from the body of the vehicle. Next we're ready to start installing the new wiring harness. Here off the converter box, the yellow wire connector, this will plug into our turn signal circuit here at the manufacturer's side. With matching connectors we can plug directly into the manufacturer's harness.

Then the other side of the T-Connector will plug into the taillight socket where we removed the turn signal socket. Also coming off the converter box will be a red and brown wire connector, this will connect to the running light circuit here on the manufacturer's side so we'll match up our connectors and go ahead and plug it in. Then again the other side we had plugged into the taillight socket. Next we're going to mount the converter box. To mount the converter box, we'll use the two-way adhesive provided with the install kit. We'll remove one side of the adhesive and attach it to the back of the converter box.

The other side will get attached to the vehicle. Note, when finding a suitable mounting location, we're looking for a clean flat surface, preferably sheet metal. Just below the taillight assembly is a good location. Once we have it cleaned off, I'll go ahead and remove the two-way adhesive, cover and attach the converter box by firmly pressing it in place. Next we'll take the green wire connector and feed it down between the body and rear bumper cover or fascia of the vehicle so that we can gain access to it underneath the vehicle. We'll follow that with our 4-Pole flat connector and harness. Next we'll take the white wire coming from our converter box with the pre-attached ring terminal.

This is going to be the ground wire for our new harness and converter box. We're going to secure it to the body of the vehicle using a self-tapping screw. When locating a suitable mounting location, I recommend to find an area where the sheet metal doubles up for a more secure ground. Just below the taillight assembly is a good location. We'll also need to run a power wire, the power wire is going to run from the converter box using the extra length of black wire provided with the install kit and ultimately up to the vehicle's battery. I'll go ahead and take the power wire and feed it from underneath the vehicle, up behind the taillight assembly. There where I have access to it, I can strip it back, add a butt connector to the black side of the power wire and then to the red power wire from the converter box. Now once I've gone ahead and made this connection, I'm going to wrap it up with some black electrical tape to help keep it free from dirt, dust, debris and moisture. Now that we have all of our connections made here on the driver's side, we'll go ahead and reinstall our taillight assembly. Now with the driver's side taillight assembly reinstall we'll go ahead and move underneath the vehicle and start routing our 4-Pole connector toward the center of the vehicle and ultimately to the hitch. Our green wire connector over to the passenger's side, we'll feed it up behind the passenger's side taillight assembly. We'll repeat the same connection as we did here with the yellow connector on the driver's side. Now with our connections made behind the passenger's side taillight assembly, I'll go ahead and use a zip tie provided with our install kit to secure the excess wiring. Next we'll go ahead and cut off the excess from the zip ties to clean up the install look and we can reinstall the taillight assembly. Now once we get our wiring in place, we'll go ahead and use the zip ties provided with our install kit to secure it as necessary. Once we go ahead and secure the wiring with the zip ties, we'll go ahead and cut off the excess to clean up our install look. Now with the connections made behind both taillight assemblies our remaining wire will be the black power wire that will get routed up, ultimately, to the battery. Again keep in mind as you route your power wire underneath the vehicle stay away from any moving components such as steering or suspension or excessive heat such as exhaust. Now once we've got our power wire run here to the top of the engine compartment, we'll go ahead and secure it and then start routing it towards the battery. As we get our power wire routed over here to the positive battery post terminal, we'll go ahead and bring in our inline fuse holder that we'll be connecting. The fuse holder will need to be prepped so we'll go ahead and cut it in half, strip back both sides. One side we'll add a ring terminal and the other side we'll add a butt connector. The second half of that butt connector will get attached to our black power wire. Now once we have our fuse holder prepped, we can use it to figure out the length we'll need to route our power wire and then cut off the excess. We'll take our power wire, remove our excess, strip it back and add it to the other half of our butt connector. Next I'll go ahead and wrap up this connection point with some black electrical tape. Now you'll notice the positive battery terminal for this particular application is a top post mount with a clamp style. These can be difficult to attach the ring terminals to so in looking for a secondary location, we'll go ahead and open up the fuse box. We'll remove the fuse box cover by pulling back on the locking tabs, setting aside. Here's a port that comes directly from the battery instead of connecting directly to the positive battery post, we'll connect here to the positive terminal at the fuse box. To do that, we'll remove the nut that secures the post, install our ring terminal and then resecure the nut. Now we'll go ahead and add the fuse to the fuse holder. We use the 10 amp fuse provided with our install kit. Replace the fuse cover. Let me go ahead and bend the ring terminal over so it'll fit inside the fuse box and I can secure my fuse holder here to the manufacturer's wiring. To do that, we'll just feed a zip tie through the pre-made hole in the fuse holder, tighten it down, go ahead and cut the excess off to get it out of the way. Then we'll put our fuse box cover back on. Now with my fuse box cover back in place, we'll go ahead and cut off the excess from the zip ties to clean up our install look. Next we'll go ahead and test the new 4-Pole connector. To test the new 4-Pole connector, we can simply remove the cap, put our ground clamp onto the white wire terminal, testing the next one over will be the brown wire terminal for our running light circuit. Then the yellow wire terminal will be the driver's side turn signal and brake. Our last terminal will be the green wire terminal for the passenger's side turn signal and brake. With that, we know our 4-Pole connector works and we're ready to hit the road. That will do it for the install of the Tow Ready T-One Vehicle Wiring Harness with 4-Pole Flat Connector, part number 118426, on our 2005 Ford Escape. .

Info for this part was:

Employee Zack K
Video Edited:
Zack K
Employee Sue W
Video Edited:
Sue W
Employee Andrew K
Video by:
Andrew K
Employee Nicholas E
Test Fit:
Nicholas E
Employee Cole B
Installed by:
Cole B

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