Tutorial: Simple HIDDEN power cable to vent mounted smart phone.

Discussion in 'Gen 1 Prius Plug-in 2012-2015' started by PixelRogue, Aug 9, 2016.

  1. PixelRogue

    Apr 5, 2010
    2002 Prius
    Have been a huge fan of PriusChat for many years. While the below tutorial will be considered 'easy' by anyone who mods, thought this would be a helpful solution for many. A little way to give back.
    Shout outs to prifahrer and Redpoint5.
    Car is a workhorse, so do not be turned off by the dirt the photos highlight.

    Power to the vent mounted smart phone, that hides the unsightly and sloppy power cable.


    Tools (fish and wire tape for Gen 3 only (not PIP)

    Run a USB cable to the armrest storage. No wiring required.
    • Skill Level: 2 on scale of 10
    • Time: Less than 30 minutes (5 minutes for anyone already comfortable removing panels)
    • Tools: Interior panel remover (technical name of course). Harbor Freight has a kit for about $7.00.
      • Wire fish and electrical tape helpful for Gen 3 wire run. Not needed for PIP.
    • Supplies: 6' USB cable for your smart phone; flat cable preferred. Cigarette-to-USB adapter for Gen 3.
    • Application: Most 2010-2015 Prius Gen 3 (V) vehicles; slight variation for PIP.

    Step 1: Remove Inside Shifter Panel.
    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), gently slide under left back edge of inside shifter cover.
    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), gently slide under left front edge of shifter cover.
    - Using fingers, left the reset of the panel away from shifter.
    <no image> ​

    - Unclip wire harnesses. Tip - two (2) wire harnesses. Small pressure clip holds harness together.

    Step 2: Remove Outside Shifter Panel
    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), gently slide under left top edge of outside shifter cover.
    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), gently slide under left bottom edge of outside shifter cover.
    <no image> ​

    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), work your way from left bottom edge to right bottom edge and upwards.
    - Open glove compartment and use fingers for the upper portion. Plastic will need to flex slightly and pop out.

    Step 3: Remove Radio Panel
    - Using fingers, pull plastic cover (starting on the right) way from radio.

    Step 4: Remove Ignition Panel (Optional)
    - Using fingers, gently pop off the ignition cover panel, unclip wire harness.

    Step A: Remove armrest back panel.
    - Using Panel Removal Tool (PRT), left top edge, then right. Remove panel w/fingers.
    Step B: Remove USB AUX port in arm rest.
    - Push up (from underneath) the USB AUX port. Disconnect.
    * Note - this port does NOT provide power, so we use a cigarette lighter adapter instead.
    Step C: Feed Wire
    Wire for the GEN 3 is run below the arm rest. I used a wire fish, starting from the back edge of the arm rest (step A) and fed the usb wire downwards from the shifter.

    Step D: Install Cigarette Lighter USB Adapter
    <no image>
    Step E: Plug USB cable into Cigarette Adapter
    After running wire, run usb cable up through the old spot for the USB port, plug into Cigarette Adapter.

    Option: USB port cover
    I created a small cover for the empty space using a piece of a paint stick colored black.

    USB port inside the arm rest 'does' provide power. Makes life easier. Simply run the wire from the port, under the cup hold and upwards.

    Step A: Using fingers, remove cup holder.
    Step B: Plug USB cable in, run cable under cup holder and replace cup holder.

    Step 3: Run Cable
    Run the cable behind the panels on left side.

    Step 4: Reassemble Panels
    Locate your desired spot for the wire exit. Flat cable will work better. Be mindful of the clip locations as to not pinch your wire.

    Slight bump in this photo which has since flattened. Flat cable would be preferred.
    Martyelzz3, Chazz8, prifahrer and 2 others like this.