Hiding wires & airbag safety

Lostinav

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Initially thought I could just tuck the wires between and behind trim to hide them based on videos and some posts— then saw posts about being careful about the airbags in the pillars between the windshield and the doors.

If the wires are tucked just between/behind the seams, will they really have a risk of interfering with airbag deploying if it’s above the panel that’s supposed to open? Wouldn’t the direction of the airbag force be away from the wire in the seam? Perhaps I am overestimating how difficult/annoying it will be to remove the pillar trim and route the wires behind the airbags, as installing the hardwire kit was much more annoying than I anticipated because of the location of the fuse box. It’s a late model Lexus RX450 if that matters. There’s no plastic cap for a screw that I can see, so maybe I can just snap it off, but I am worried about breaking something.
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SawMaster

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Welcome to DCT @Lostinav :)

Every car is a bit different, but generally what you're trying to avoid is having wires cross in front of the airbags. The safest route is following factory wiring, and the only way to do that is to remove the trim pieces and look.

The trim generally snaps on in newer cars and careful levering with a trim-removal tool gets it off. Usually snaps right back on, but with a few cars I've heard the trim clips should be replaced each time. Most of the better cams have a trim-removal lever in the box, or one can be bought at any car parts store. With some care and common sense it's not a tough job to DIY.

If you're concerned that you might not be up to the job, any car audio shop can do it for you- prices will vary.

Phil
 
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Outbacknomad

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The A, B and C column trim panels on my car each have a M6 bolt (behind airbag logo) holding the trim panel in place, also a few clips. Basically when the curtain airbag explodes you don't get your block knocked off from an otherwise flying trim panel which a clip would not actually hold the panel in place.

The trim panels are not difficult to remove. If not sure look at a forum on your particular car. Trim panel clip removal tools are very handy when needed, some of the time.

IMG_105647637.jpg
 
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Kremmen

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What I've always done is remove some of the door frame surround rubber and tuck the wire in there then press the door rubber back. So far I've been lucky in that all my cars have had a channel where the wire can sit from about knee high, by the fusebox, to right up by the sun visors.

No way would I tuck the wire under the A pillar trim.
 

Ukraine Visitor

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IMO, you should take your dashcam to a dealer for installation and keep the receipts as long as you own your car. So, if something were to happen where the wires were installed in such a way that prevented the airbags from deploying properly, then at least you can sue for damages, medical, burial, etc. Your car maker's dealer will probably not do installs of equipment that's not the manufacturer's, so be prepared to take your it to an authorized dashcam dealer.
 

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What I've always done is remove some of the door frame surround rubber and tuck the wire in there then press the door rubber back. So far I've been lucky in that all my cars have had a channel where the wire can sit from about knee high, by the fusebox, to right up by the sun visors.

No way would I tuck the wire under the A pillar trim.
I don't see how you can route the wire from the door seal to the windshield without routing the wire directly over the side airbag. The side airbag usually runs from the dash board to the B pillar. My rule is never have the wire between me and the airbag, and behind the trim on the A pillar between the dashboard and the roof on the windshield side of the airbag, following the cars wiring is the only safe way to do it.
 

Kremmen

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I gather you misread what I posted.

The wire goes behind the doorframe rubber strip that peels off and pushes back on. The A pillar airbag is well out of the way. The airbag problem will only surface if you poke the wire behind the A pillar trim.

This is one image from the official Honda PDF regarding wiring in a dashcam :

ixfQTOf.jpg
 
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SawMaster

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The side airbag usually runs from the dash board to the B pillar.
This is not always the case as every car varies. I do strongly agree that you never cross wires or anything between airbag and cabin interior.

That is why I recommend trim removal and following factory wire routing exactly going behind airbags; can't go wrong doing as the factory does ;)

Phil
 

kamkar

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Anywhere near a airbag is fine, as long as it is not in the direction it will deploy, curtain airbags do mostly deploy strait down, but as in the pic above some cam be on the A pillar and deploy in a backwards & down direction.
My own airbag are in the roof above the headliner i assume, bit there is a nylon string for it that do run down my A pillar, so even here i have to be careful, but in general i have bundled my dashcams wires up with other wires already there, and even if in my case as a addict this mean the bundle of wires are 2 X lager it is just fine.

My own car have a 2 piece assembly, to get to the actual trim on the A pillar i first have to remove a small triangular plastic ( this peal right off with not much effort, some guide prongs and the door rubber weather seal is all that hold it in place ) when that is gone you will see 1 bolt that hold the A pillar trim in place, i think that is there so when the airbag deploy the trim will not go flying and maybe poke out a eye.
So i have to loosen that bolt, and then pry the trim piece off, there are 3 "hooks" that also hold the trim in place, but they are made to let go when you start prying on the plastic, similar when you put it back on these 3 hooks have to be lined up with their holes, and then you just hit the trim and it snap back into place.

you can probably find videos on youtube about trim removal / interior work on cars like headliner or something like that, the way are in general the same for all cars as there is no reason to reinvent the wheel for this.
you could also go to a salvage yard and find a wreck of a car like yours and take a look / disassemble on it just to get a feel what you are in for.

I need to go to a salvage yard too to get new A pillar trim plastics as mine have been on off so many times in the last little decade that the retaining hooks are not working as good as they use to, + i also want to paint a new set flat black as the reflection of the beige plastics are in the footage, and no need for that when it is as simple as a coat of paint from a rattle can.
 

markus

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Originally I had the cable from my rear camera running along the left hand side of the headliner, somewhat near the side curtain airbags, and the down the a-pillar, but out of the way of the airbag in there. I wasn't 100% happy with the setup, so decided to re-route the cable along the floor and then up near the rear seats and then into the hatch area. It was a bit of a pain in the arse as I had to remove the rear lower seat cushion to unscrew one of the panels. The cable was zip tied to the existing cable run used by the car.
 

SawMaster

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With some of today's cars that have lots of closely fitted airbags with the factory wiring behind them, the door sill route is less nerve-wracking and can be easier too. Just varies.

Phil
 
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