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Hopkins Smart Hitch Backup Camera Installation - 2003 Ford F-250

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How to Install the Hopkins Smart Hitch Backup Camera on a 2003 Ford F-250


Today on our 2003 Ford F250 Super Duty, we're going to be installing part number HM50002, Hopkins Smart hitch backup camera and hitch aligner. All right, this is what the smart hitch camera looks like when it's installed on our truck. You can see how it acts as a replacement bracket for your license plate, and it fits inside, and has our camera right here, and two backup sensors here and here. There's a cable that gets ran from here up along the frame and up into the cab of the truck. Now we'll go ahead and show you the monitor that's installed in the cab.Speaker 2: Okay, and now here's our monitor right here. Okay.

It comes with the necessary hardware to install as well. All right, let's go ahead and take it for a test drive. Let's go ahead and show it work in actual practice. First off, put our truck in reverse, then turn on our monitor. To go through your options right here, you press on this button right here, this wheel, you press in sideways and you see the menu comes on.

Right now we have a hitch line on, which is these bars right here. Hitch line on, go up, and that turns it off, and that shows a regular backup camera who-sense 01:09. So, we'll use this setting to backup to our wall here. See how it works, and see how close we get before our audio warnings go to a solid beep. Here our first sets of beeps and our gauge tells us we're in the green area right here. Now we crossed the green and it starts flashing.

We get closer and you hear the audio beeps go faster, and then as we get really close the yellow bars kick in and the beeps get more progressive. Then when we get as close as we can, we get a solid beep. We're probably within about a foot, or a little under, and we have a solid beep and our red bars are now flashing. So that's as close as we want to get. All right. Now let's go ahead and try our hitch liner backing up to a trailer.

Go in reverse, once again. We'll go to the menu. Hitch line, we want on. Let's see how this display changes. I'm not really in a straight line with our trailer, so we're just going to use this monitor to back up to our trailer. You can see our hitch ball at the bottom and we'll line up our coupler up here. All right. Now, I know my trailer has to be jacked up a little bit to clear the hitch ball, so let's see how close it is right here. All right, now we've backed up to our trailer and we can see with our camera we got within a inch of our coupler on our trailer and we're actually reasonably straight at the very end here. So now we only need to make a minor adjustment on our trailer, so we just nudge it left or right to fit it over the ball, or a way to couple up. All right. Now seeing how it works, how you can use it, let's go ahead and show how it installs. All right. We'll go ahead and show you the components first. This is our monitor, it gets installed in to the cab of the truck. This is the actual backup camera itself, it gets mounted where the license plate is. Then we have a wire harness. This is actually all one piece. This argent here actually taps in to the tow package, by the bumper, at the back of the truck, and just keys in to place. There's actually no splicing with our truck today. We got two other ins. One in will eventually go to our camera and one will go in to our monitor. Then we have some optional hardware right here. We have two quick-splice connectors, if we we're to hard-wire this in to a vehicle where we didn't have access to a tow package, we could actually splice the red and black wires in to ground and reverse light circuit. All right. Now you want to start off by removing your license plate. Then we'll go ahead and install the backup camera. Two sensors unfold. We'll go ahead and put it in to place. Then you might want to take a moment to consider how you want to run this cable, either over the top, or maybe disconnect it from the little snap right here, the little holders, and run it downward. So, just because we have plenty of clearance, we'll just go over the top. Then, we'll add our license plate to our bracket. We'll just line it up with the holes here and we can put the whole assembly in to the factory fasteners. All right. Now these are the ends of the wire harness we're going to use. This end will go eventually behind our sem-pole connector. That's where we'll get a signal for reverse light lead. We only want to use this end of the cable, that has it's own little junction right here, this will go in to our camera. You really want to put those together right now. All you got to do is line up the arrows and carefully push together until they seep. That's a tight fit, so you have to kind of press kind of hard to make it stick together. It would be a good idea to run some electrical tape around it as well. All right. Next we're going to work with this T connection right here. That will go behind our seven pole connector. Now, it's a little bit hard to see, but on the inside here there's a connection that's just like this and there's actually one of these little gray locks. This little lock doesn't come with a kit, but I'm just using an extra one to show you how it works. So you just need a small screwdriver to push down the center tab here and the whole assembly comes apart. That's how it comes apart. So let's go ahead and take the one back here apart just like that. Also, it makes things a little easier if you can remove these four screws and loosen up the seven pole connector. We're using a 5.5 millimeter socket. And then this tab right here We have to push down and we can pull it apart. Now, our new pieces will simply fit right back together. Okay. Now, what I like to do is add some dielectric grease to the contacts before I put it together for good. I'm using part number 11755 from Lubrimatic, electrical contact grease. All right. Let's have it click together. We'll go ahead and put our lock in to place. Now, our other side doesn't come with a lock or anything like that, but it still holds just fine. Let's go ahead and take this assembly and put it back into place. We'll make sure you got all our wires shoved in the back. Then we'll put our seven pole connector back on to this side. Go ahead and put this guy back together. Now, we got these two connections made. Now, we'll go ahead and run this into the cable up to the cab of the truck. I'm just going to simply start by running it over the hitch and then running it along the frame. Now when we do this we want to stay away from anything moving, like suspension components, or anything hot, like exhaust. Once we get towards the front we want to stay away from the steering components as well. All right. Now everybody's going to run their wires a little bit differently. We'll go ahead and show you how we do ours. Now we ran our wires over the top of the hitch and zip-tied in places along the factory wire harness going along the frame rail on the inside. Then we ran on the outside of the gas tank here, and using some existing holes, we zip-tied it in place. It's basically followed the same theme going up towards the front of our truck. Ours is actually laying on the inside edge of a rail, here. Then we ran it over these components here, and do stock right here. Now we need to run our wire through a firewall. Now we're going to use this grommet right here and pull our wires through. It's all ready had some accessory wires pulled through it all ready, but all we got to do is just pull it loose a little bit and just make a slice into it, like has all ready been done to this grommet here. So I'm going to take some needle nose pliers and just pull it open and pull it out. Then I'm going to use a pull wire to run there and then use it to pull cable back through and up. Now a pull wire can be anything, like a piece of wire that can hold its shape and you can manipulate it as you run it through. I'm going to use a piece of airline tubing. I'm just going to route it to the outside, to the grommet. Then we'll go underneath and then we'll go ahead and attach it to our cable and pull it back through. All right. Go ahead and pull down our pull wire and we'll attach our cable to it. I'm just going to use some electrical tape just to hold it together. Work it through our grommet. We'll go back inside and pull it through. Peel the grommet back a little bit, just to make it easier to pull through. Then we'll go ahead and pull up our cable and take up all our slack. We'll go ahead and work the cable in to the cut on to the grommet. Now we're going to use the same trick again to pull our wire up from the bottom to the top. We took our pull wire and just put it through the small opening right here. It was actually run it straight down and out the bottom. We'll carefully pull it back up and through. We'll go ahead and double check our cable underneath, then pull up the rest of our slack. All right. Now let's go ahead and plug our monitor in to the cable. Once again, arrows are lined up. Push them together. Run this over to the top, following some other extra components, and we'll go ahead and find a location on top of our dashboard for this. Now this is about how much cable we have ended up leftover, so at this point it's personal preference, once again, where you want to install the monitor. Also, this can move up and down, and the bottom's on a ball-socket, too, so you can put and mount this in almost any location that you want. To tighten that up you just need a small Phillip's screwdriver and just tighten down the screw. You can see how you can move the bottom here as well. Then there's simply an adhesive right here that attaches to the surface. Now you want to clean off the surface first, before you attach your adhesive. Let's go ahead and put it in reverse and try it out. Okay. Looks like we have a picture, so we have a good connection. Now we can go ahead and move on to attaching our monitor to the vehicle. Now it's a good idea to make a few test fits before we tighten the screw down for good to make sure it sits the way you want it. In this case, we're actually going to mount it straight to the glass. All right. At this point, we got it mounted, we'll go ahead and take a few moments to tuck our wires out of the way. All right. We're just going to just tuck our excess back inside. Then we'll go in here deep and zip-tie our excess. Next we need to adjust our sensors here and here. We're going to take a tape measure and measure from the screws down to the ground. Okay. We'll get our measurement, mark that down, and then we'll take a look at the license plate to see how it sits. Some license plates are flat like this one, some tilt forward, some tilt backwards. Okay. Now there's a chart in the instructions that tell you what the combination of your measurement and the tilt of your license plate, where to set your sensors at. There are some very tiny markings on the edge right here to line your sensor with for the correct measurements. So to adjust it we're going to use a small, stubby, Phillips screwdriver. We'll just loosen up these screws on the side and you can see how this will move up and down. There's a little mark right here, you just line it up with the number that's needed. In this case, our truck's gone tall so it's going to be pretty much back all the way down. Then we'll tighten up the screws, and we'll do that on both sides. Okay, and then our camera right here, we can adjust as well. Again, there's two screws, and this is just moved to personal preference. So typically you want the hitch ball to be at the lower edge of your view screen. Okay, with the screws tightened down, it's just a couple other adjustments to the monitor and our install will be finished. That will do it for part number HM50002, the Hopkins Smart hitch backup camera and hitch aligner system on our 2003 Ford F250 Super Duty. .


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