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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, been awhile. I need your help!

I just recently installed a new sound system in my 98 ZJ Limited and it rocks! Everything I bought has integrated flawlessly and is working perfectly, with one exception. I bought a PAC Audio SWI-JACK Steering Wheel Interface (SWI) to control my new Kenwood KDC-BT838U with my factory steering wheel controls. So far, I have been unsuccessful.

The directions don't even list a ZJ GC as a seperate application. They do, however, list ***92-98 Jeep All Models*** as an application. The problem is, they tell me the wire I need to cut and run to the SWI is BLACK/ORANGE and is located in the steering column. I urge you not to cut this wire. It killed my AC/Heat, VIC, Turn Signals, etc. After splicing it back together and returning my Jeep to normal operation, I'm scratching my head.

Now when I looked at a competitor's interface (SoundGate), they identified the proper wire as one in the 2-cavity plug at the back of the factory radio. Intuitively, this makes more sense to me and I remember pulling this connector off the back when I replaced the factory deck. However, they also do not list a ZJ GC as a specific application so I am pulling this info off of a 1999-2004 WJ.

So, does anyone have any experience with steering wheel interfaces in their ZJ's? If so, which wire did you connect to? I'm gonna have some time to tinker with it tonight but I was hoping someone could direct me beforehand so I'm not flying blind with a pair of wire cutters in my hand (which has already proved to be a bad idea).
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well I played with it a little last night and the results were entirely unsuccessful. I pulled the steering column shroud off and, sure enough, there is a MUCH SMALLER (18 ga) black/orange wire going into a connector for the steering wheel controls (cruise/radio). So I soldiered on thinking I was going to get it to work and had no avail. I cut the wire as directed and connected the interface to the steering wheel side of the wire. Went to program the system and.... NOTHING. It's not registering that any signal is being sent to the module.

So now I'm really stumped. I am going to call PAC Audio and see if their tech support has any ideas. I'll keep u guys posted.
 

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You've inspired me to let the stereo place install my adapter.

After having this little success...I suggest you do the same
 

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id didnt come with a remote??

i guess steering wheel controls are tight but the damn deck is right there!! lol good luck, im thinkn the factory deck has wires to the steering wheel that kenwood doesnt include in the wire harness
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Holy crap guys, the shit has hit the fan. After about two hours of tech support with the guys over at PAC audio, still haven't had any success. I've learned more about the system and wiring and Body Control Module than anyone should ever care to know about the damn system.

Latest intelligience outta PAC Audio is that they believe the module is now fried. The reason for this is when wired as prescribed, the voltage for all buttons is the same at +5V. This is supposed to vary some where between +1.5 and +4.0V for the different buttons. So we tested a wire that is supposed to be showing 5V on the module and... nothing.

So I've got another one on the way and I am getting close. I'll make sure I fill u guys in on it when I get it completed (and I WILL complete it). I'm too pissed about this to let it slide now.

BTW, the deck is so bad ass!!! When I get in the car, it gives me a little message that my phone is synced up and whenever someone calls, it mutes the music. If I accept the call I am on speaker phone (mic mounted on A Pillar) and if I reject it, the music comes back. Highly reccomend.
 

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My goodness. Keep us in the loop with pics of your install. This is turning into a major ordeal :lol: I've pretty much given up hope I can do mine, unless you pull something out and make it happen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
DankNesS said:
id didnt come with a remote??

i guess steering wheel controls are tight but the darn deck is right there!! lol good luck, im thinkn the factory deck has wires to the steering wheel that kenwood doesnt include in the wire harness
Yes it did come with a remote but I happen to think those are even more useless than steering wheel controls, although my remote does find some use dialing phone numbers and entering sat radio channels in direct. However, I've become very used to my steering wheel controls because I used them with the factory deck. They're handier than u might think, paricularly on the highway.

The steering wheel has five wires going to it for controls: Red (or maybe pink?), black/blue, black/red, black orange, and gray/orange. From the wiring diagrams, it looks as though the black/red and black/orange are for steering controls. The others I'm guessing are for the horn and the cruise control. The airbag wires are sheathed in a seperate bundle.

My problem is I don't know exactly how the circuit works so I don't know how to wire it. I bought my second interface from Autotoys because I found a page on their site where they did this on a '97. Problem is, you can't access the write-up unless you buy from them (forum access comes with your purchase). Unfortunately, you don't get the forum password until the order arrives so I won't be able to read what they have to say until it comes in the mail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
DankNesS said:
sweet! do you have to have a certain phone??? that sounds bad behind!
Only requirement is a bluetooth phone that supports the hands-free profile. It will even download the last 10 dialed, received, and missed calls ON TOP OF downloading your phone book into your memory. So you can just leave your phone in your pocket and let the head unit do the work. Heck, it even has a screen where it will tell you your signal strength and battery level.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
fuzzy59 said:
My goodness. Keep us in the loop with pics of your install. This is turning into a major ordeal :lol: I've pretty much given up hope I can do mine, unless you pull something out and make it happen.
Yes it is quite an ordeal. I installed this top of the line deck along with all the accessories to interface with my cell phone, iPod, and satellite radio and here I am struggling with what I was thinking was going to be the easiest part of it all. TBH, I am hopeful that my unit was just defective and the next one will go much smoother.

Don't be scared, though, I don't plan on giving up. The reason I remain hopeful is because, as I mentioned, I've seen it done by the boys over at Autotoys.com. I'll get it figured out soon and make sure I let you guys know how it turned out. Heck, if I take some good enough pictures, maybe I'll even get it stickied!

P.S. If you do plan on doing this, make sure when you are getting it all hooked up and programmed, make your connections with quick connects (male/female spades) and when programming, have the box sitting on your lap. Once you get it all working right, then hide your box to wherever and reconnect it. I have mine stashed ABOVE my radio and you can't really get at it to push the program button or probe wires to troubleshoot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I FINALLY GOT IT!!!

Don't fret, it can be done! It was indeed just a bad module. Other than that, just follow the directions exactly as they recommend. They identified the correct wire and everything.

As a side note, one thing I recommend is that when you program the module to your buttons, have the Jeep running. I need to reprogram mine because sometimes when I push the "Track Up" button, I get a "Volume Up" response. Best I can figure, it's because the difference in voltage between when the engine is off and running is enough to confuse the module. Other than that, it's great!

I LOVE HAVING MY STEERING WHEEL CONTROLS BACK!!!!
 

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Thanks for the post, I need to change my stereo head unit and want to keep the steering controls!!
As for the track up to volume up deal, my stock set up does that when it is cold out. I am pretty sure it is the clockspring assembly for the air bag is going bad. This is a common Chrysler product problem. All your steering wheel inputs go through the clock spring, along with the air bag wiring. When the clock spring goes bad, it usually effects the cruise and radio controls first and then eventually throws the air bag light on.

So any pics of the install yet?? And do you need a specific head unit to use the SWI or will it work with any head unit??
 

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Thanks for posting this info

Brother man,

Thanks for the info....I have a 5.9 that's currently getting an entire new audio system. Its all in and working great except for the SWI Jack. I can't find this mythical Bk/Og wire in the steering column? Where exactly is it?
 

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Found it, it's directly under the column close to the wheel. (I was looking on the side). You can't see it from the top. Remove the three Torx screws that hold the bottom cover on the column and it's there plain as day. It's the smaller 18 ga wire, there's a larger one coming from the key cylinder, don't use that one.
My PAC SWI JACK works perfect except for one button which produces voltage similar to the volume up button. I called the company and their customer service was very good. The problem with the button most likely comes from wear on the clock spring in the steering wheel.
 

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share diagram or photos

Don't fret, it can be done! It was indeed just a bad module. Other than that, just follow the directions exactly as they recommend. They identified the correct wire and everything.

As a side note, one thing I recommend is that when you program the module to your buttons, have the Jeep running. I need to reprogram mine because sometimes when I push the "Track Up" button, I get a "Volume Up" response. Best I can figure, it's because the difference in voltage between when the engine is off and running is enough to confuse the module. Other than that, it's great!

I LOVE HAVING MY STEERING WHEEL CONTROLS BACK!!!!
Hi, could you share photos?
Thanks
 
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