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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I wanted to hardwire my GPS unit to my Malibu but I also wanted a less permanent solution in case I wanted to use my GPS in another vehicle. Well I decided to add another power source to plug into and keep the power cord out of site and out of the way. Here is a write up for anyone interested in doing this pretty simple mod, and you could do it in about an hour and for around $20.

Please be careful while doing this mod. I also add that I am in no way responsible or liable if you damage anything in your vehicle or for any accident/incident. Just use some common sense and take your time.

Here I have pictured what you will need. I found most of it at WalMart for cheap too!
1. 12 volt auxiliary power source (WalMart $6)
2. Add-a-circuit (AutoZone $8)
3. red 16 gauge power wire (Walmart $3)
4. black 16 gauge power wire (Walmart $3)

Tools you need consist of a wire stripper/crimper, Philips head screwdriver, and flashlight.


Start by locating the fuse area behind the labeled panel on the passenger side, and remove it. There will also another similar panel on the drivers side, remove that one as well.

I installed the add-a-circuit on the power window fuse slot pictured below. With two 10A mini fuses, one to replace the original "power window" fuse and the other is for the new power source. Do not install the fuses until all your connections are made. Crimp about a 5 foot piece of red wire to the add-a-circuit and run it to the drivers side through the opening.


Ground a 2 foot piece of black wire in the spot pictured below and then run both wires under the carpeting and then up just as pictured.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Re: Hardwire GPS "How-To"

Mount the new power supply just behind the lever that opens the hood. You will need two small Philips screws to mount the plate. Once mounted make your connections on the rear of the new power supply as described on the packaging.


Using your wire stripper/crimper make your connections to each wire. Once your connections are made install the two fuses on the add-a-circuit and plug into the new power source to make sure you have power. Now that you have made sure every connection is secure and taped off, make sure the wires are tucked away nicely and are not in the way of any moving parts.

To ensure that the wires don't ever get tangled in your feet, drop down the black plastic trim and run them over it. It is held by two 7mm screws and two clips. Drill a 1/2 inch hole behind the new power source, disconnect the two wires and run them over the plastic trim and through the hole and reconnect the wires. This way you have a clean look and it is safe to say you can't get all tangled in them.


Now to run that cord behind and up the dash to the GPS. Pull the panel off located on the right side of the dash. Start from the very bottom and work your way up from there. It is held in with clips so don't be afraid if you have to use some force. Once removed carefully run your wire through, watching out for some sharp edges of some medal.


Replace all the panels you removed and your done. I know you have the whole dash area to mount your GPS unit. I felt the unit was best placed in this area because it is not mounted on the windshield for one (tends to fall off in colder weather). Also close enough to the driver to quickly see the unit and still keep your eyes on the road. And I can hear it clearly. Here is a shot of the finished product from my view. (Oh yea, don't pay attention to the pinkish Chevy emblem on the wheel, I swear it is not that color. The lighting of the pic just makes it look that way.)
 

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Re: Hardwire GPS "How-To"

Very good write-up, thanks for taking the time to post it, I'll be doing this as soon as I get a new GPS, my daughter took control of the one I had :rolleyes: but hey... she needs it more than I do :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Re: Hardwire GPS "How-To"

Very good write-up, thanks for taking the time to post it, I'll be doing this as soon as I get a new GPS, my daughter took control of the one I had :rolleyes: but hey... she needs it more than I do :p
Your welcome. Good luck on your other project and I really hope you get it done on the Bu.

I know it isn't quite like hardwiring the unit but I'm very happy with the mod. Especially since it isn't permanent and it frees up the other power source for the cell phone charger or whatever else someone might need to plug in there.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

question.. was your power window fuse the one with the fuse tap in the picture? because when i looked at mine my power window fuse was the square 30.. maybe a difference from the 08 to 09.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

question.. was your power window fuse the one with the fuse tap in the picture? because when i looked at mine my power window fuse was the square 30.. maybe a difference from the 08 to 09.
Really, I'd have to check the sticker on the back of that cover. I don't think it really matters which one you use. I wanted to use the add-a-circuit in a slot with a 10A fuse so I wouldn't risk a short because IIRC its rated for a max of 10A.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

yeah my fuse box looks just like yours. i used that ten below the 15 and above the 30, it was the heated seats and sunroof and its worked so far for me (only 2 days lol)
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Thanks, I'll use this to hardwire my radar detector. Why didn't you buy an actual hardwire kit for the gps? They make ones so that you don't have to use a cigerette lighter adapter, you just tap in to any fused wire that's on with the key only.

First car I've ever owned that has the fuse box on the passenger side, wierd!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Thanks, I'll use this to hardwire my radar detector. Why didn't you buy an actual hardwire kit for the gps? They make ones so that you don't have to use a cigerette lighter adapter, you just tap in to any fused wire that's on with the key only.

First car I've ever owned that has the fuse box on the passenger side, wierd!
I use it in my Silverado as well and if it was hardwired I wouldn't be able to move it from one vehicle to another if I wanted or needed to.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

I use it in my Silverado as well and if it was hardwired I wouldn't be able to move it from one vehicle to another if I wanted or needed to.
Well, I guess he was saying you could hardwire a kit in your Malibu and then save the normal cord for any other car. That's what I'm planning on. I had similar in my Honda Accord.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Well, I guess he was saying you could hardwire a kit in your Malibu and then save the normal cord for any other car. That's what I'm planning on. I had similar in my Honda Accord.
I see.............I'll look into that kit, I,ve already done most of the work so it really wouldn't be that hard either.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Yeah that's exactly what I was saying, and what I do. I but a few dollar hardwire kit off of ebay, wire it in to my most driven car...and use the original cord with any other vehicle I drive. Comes in handy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Yeah that's exactly what I was saying, and what I do. I but a few dollar hardwire kit off of ebay, wire it in to my most driven car...and use the original cord with any other vehicle I drive. Comes in handy!
I did a quick search and came up empty for a kit specifically for my Magellan. I've got to do alot more digging to find one that works.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

Thanks for the write-up! I may re-do mine this way as I'm currently just tapping a fuse in the passenger footwell and have it run through the console to the arm-rest.

My current issue is, if I'm on a trip and i run down the batteries, I have to put it back in the arm-rest :). I don't use it too much, so it's at least one extra thing out of sight for now but it's bit me in the rear a couple times.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

I just completed hardwiring my Garmin Nuvi 350. I tapped into the heated seats / sunroof fuse. However, I did not run a cigarette lighter to the fuse. I instead used this product:

Thus far it is working great. The wiring was long enough to run it from the fuse box through the center, along under the steering wheel and into the side panel as others have done. The block portion of the wire is affixed to the inside of the side panel with velcro so as to not rattle. Overall, a very easy modification that's easy to remove - and the original power cable from Garmin remains useable should I wish to take the GPS unit with me into another vehicle. Sorry, no pics for now as my Fiance has the camera with her at work for the day.

One other thing - I know it doesn't say it on the Amazon page, but if you go to the manufacture's website you'll find the Nuvi 350 is supported.
 

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Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

I'm just now getting ready to do this (after 7 months). Two ?? Why ATM fuse and not ATC? I'll be using a hardwire kit for my Garmin, it has an inline fuse already, should I still use another on the tap?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Re: How-To Hardwire a GPS unit, detailed w/pics

What did you hook the ground or negative wire too?
Used a self-tapping screw on the metal frame behind the dash.
I'm just now getting ready to do this (after 7 months). Two ?? Why ATM fuse and not ATC? I'll be using a hardwire kit for my Garmin, it has an inline fuse already, should I still use another on the tap?
If there is one on the hardwire kit I don't see why you would, will you be using the add-a-fuse for power?
 
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