How to Install a HANSSHOW Dashboard Display and Camera for a Tesla Model 3 / Model Y
Welcome to AustinEVonly.com. Today we're working on a Tesla Model Y to install a Hansshow Heads-up Display (HUD). The process is identical for a Model 3. If you’re an avid follower of my site or videos, you’ll recognize that we've done something similar before with a Carda display so you will find the process to be super similar.
Let's get to it!
I’ll start with a quick unboxing to give you an idea of what to expect as advertised. Like many of the purchases we make, every product comes with an instruction guide. Here, we have some instructions on how to Install the camera and how to install the head unit.
With that out of the way. We see the head unit itself,
An air vent deflector, I did NOT install this deflector as I didn’t see the point.
And a whole lot of wires. Those wires include:
(1) A colorful wire bundle which connects all the wires that go from the onboard computer to the head unit itself,
(2) A camera and blue-colored extension cable for the front camera video feed, and
(3) The GPS antenna which surprised me as I thought this unit would tap into the Teslas on-board GPS.
On this day in June 2022, under the hot Texas sun, I'm actually going to leave the A/C running until the last possible second. While most installers recommend disconnecting the battery first, I take on that step much later in the process to spare myself from possible heat stroke in what will later be known as the hottest June in the history of Austin, TX.
So first thing’s first, carefully pop off the end covers to the dashboard and once done, repeat the process on the other side.
Once the side covers are removed, start to pry up the dashboard cover, The whole thing should pop off in one go. To allow for a broad opening, move the dashboard cover up and out of the way.
Next, let’s turn our attention to the passenger kick panel. Before removing the kick panel, one first has to pull out a push-pin rivet at the top of the kick panel, being cautious not to drop it.
After that, we can remove the flat panel beneath the glove box, removing 4 push-pin rivets to release the panel. Don’t forget to disconnect the speaker wire and light wire.
With both the kick panel, and the under glove-box panel removed, you can roll back the carpet on the floorboards and finally see the treasure of electronic goodies the Model Y had hiding behind the dash. The firewall grommet is what we are seeking. This will come into play later when running the camera and GPS wire.
At this point, we are ready to experiment with lining up our Heads up Display (HUD) on the dash panel so as to center it behind the steering wheel. Too far left or too far right, and the dash display just won’t look right and I’ll have one unhappy customer. There is nothing that wastes more time than a do-over for bad craftsmanship so I recommend spending extra time ensuring that you get this step right. As seen in the picture below, the dashboard has a cut-out for the steering column so let’s try to determine its center by placing the Hansshow HUD directly over it.
Starting from the left side of the display, count the number of spaces (including covered, non-through-hole spaces) to the left-most edge of the vent holes. I counted 29 spaces, YMMV. Then count your way back to the starting position and mark your starting position on the dash. Well, not on the dash itself per se but on a piece of tape. I laid down painter's tape on the dash when I did it. Now that you know your starting position, you can further mark on the tape with indicators for where each wire will push through a vent hole relative to that 29th space. Pro tip: Put a label or symbol on the tape, not just a positional mark to ensure the correct wire goes through the correct hole. In the picture below, you can see that I labeled mine. (R)ed for the 12V+ wire, (B)lack for the negative/ground wire, (CB) for the yellow CanBus wire, (C)amera for the blue camera wire, and finally (GPS) for the brown GPS wire.
Now that I’ve marked each wire hole, we can start sticking each wire through its respective hole in an orderly fashion.
To see if it was properly positioned, I held my camera in the center of the steering wheel. Et voilà! What do you think? Satisfied that one could do no better, I proceeded to lock the display in place for all time. The final step to securing the display is to slip the wires through a plastic sleeve that sandwiches the display to the dash. Four provided screws secure this wire sleeve to the display utilizing the four pre-drilled holes on the display’s underside.
Now that we’ve permanently attached the Hansshow HUD, place the cover on the upper dash to keep it out of the way while we start running wires. Not only do we need to plan for the CanBus wire that will snake under the dash cover from the driver's side to the passenger’s side, but also, we need to consider running the blue camera wire that will carry the new video feed from the front-facing camera (included in Hansshow kit). Most of this cable routing will take place under the tub in the frunk.
Back under the hot Texas sun, I considered my plan of attack while staring at a now open frunk. All we have to do is remove the frunk tub by unscrewing the four 10-millimeter bolts (2 attached to the front lip and 2 located in the bucket). When I did it, I was so excited to get that tub out, that I forgot to remove the upper trim panel. This became apparent as soon as I tried to lift the tub out.
Before removing the tub, remember to remove the frunk light cover and disconnect the light. Because there is a thin wire that powers the frunk light you’ll want to be careful not to accidentally over-extend the wire. Anyone who's done this before knows it's not easy to disconnect the wire connector from the light. I recommend a miniature screwdriver to release the friction clip.
Time to lift out the frunk tub! But wait. The washer fluid reservoir uses the frunk tub as support. Let me just ask, who designed it this way? Seriously? It’s so inconvenient. Removing the push-pin rivet that holds the reservoir in place releases the tub and we can finally remove the bucket to expose the internals of the Tesla Model Y.
At this point, we are ready to mount the camera and start running the wire. I chose to run the wire from the camera to the display instead of the other way around. Begin by using double-sided tape to position the camera on the underside of the bumper in front of the grilles. Placing the camera as far forward on the bumper as possible avoids the license plate from obstructing the camera’s view. Slip the wire between the grill and immediately work the wire skyward through a rubber gasket just inside the grill. It took me a minute to find where the blue wire had poked through the gasket, but thankfully, I found it. Connect the camera wire extension and start running your wire. I’m not sure if there is a firewall grommet on the driver's side, but I can say for certain that there is a large bundle of wires that passes through the firewall on the passenger side. So with that in mind, it’s time to route the camera cable through the firewall.
There is an existing cable tubing that runs from the front of the car to the firewall. One should probably use zip ties to affix the camera wire to this conduit. Since I am in a hurry, I just wrap the camera wire around the tubing like a vine spiral around a pole as it grows.
Once satisfied with our camera wire routing, let’s turn our attention to piercing the firewall. Utilizing the existing firewall grommet, I struggled for several minutes to open a space where I can run the wire through. Using a flat-head screwdriver can make quick work of wedging open some space to shove the blue cable through the narrow space between the grommet and the sheet metal of the wall. You can also puncture the robber grommet, but I didn’t like the idea of a permanent hole in my water-tight firewall.
Moving to the inside of the Model Y, we should now look under the dash on the passenger side and see a blue cable poking through into the cab. Pinch that blue wire and pull for all you are worth. Installing the front-facing camera was probably the most time-consuming part of this ordeal.
At this point we should have the camera cable where we want it, snaking the blue camera wire from the front grill to the firewall. Leave a lot of the excess wire bunched up in the frunk so that on the inside of the Model Y, the camera wire is straight from the head unit to the firewall. This will ensure that the wire does not obstruct the dash mount clips when we go to reattach the dash cover.
Returning to the forward-facing camera on the underside of the bumper, in front of the grill, Position the camera with the supplied double-sided tape. If you thought that the difficult portions were over—and I sincerely wish they were—then prepare to be disappointed. To secure the camera permanently, we will have to tap in some screws. You can pre-drilled holes into the plastic bumper but I found the angle unyielding to use a drill. I recommend just tapping in the screws. While the screws will wobble and slip, using patience and a steady hand will result in success.
GPS Antenna Installation
There were no instructions on where to mount the GPS antenna, so I used the provided double-sided tape to attach it to the underside of the windshield cowl. Others have mounted the antenna inside the car under the dash cover. I can’t say which is better. If mounting the antenna outside the car, utilize the same firewall grommet that we utilized for the camera wire. Mounting the GPS antenna and wire outside of the car is optimal for signal strength, but it will ruin that sweet Tesla drag coefficient. Your mileage may vary.
Moving to the inside of the car, we can reach through the mass of wires that bundle together at the firewall grommet and yanked out the GPS wire the rest of the way through as we previously did for the camera wire.
Connecting the wiring to the Hansshow Head Unit
Since it is now time to connect the wires, it is critical to power down the Tesla. But Tesla’s are finicky. Even when you have turned them off, they are never really off. For example, when you shut down a Tesla, and walk away, the Tesla is still actively waiting to detect the presence of your cellphone or key card. The doors still unlock and if you step on the brake, everything powers back up. Therefore it was never fully powered down. To do a full power-down, follow these steps. NOTE: It is important that you follow the order exactly as I describe. First, fully turn off Climate controls from the center display. Second, power off your Tesla by going to “Car Controls” (the car-shaped icon), selecting the “Safety” category on the left, and then the “Power Off” button. Before moving to the next step, lower at least one window, and leave both passenger side doors open. Finally, move to the back seat and firmly yank up on the rear bench seat. If the seat cushion does not come up easily, look for a pair of sliding tabs where the bench and the carpet meet. Slide each tab towards the center of the car. Now that you have a full view under the rear seat cushion on the passenger side, you will find the high voltage contactor connector. Squeeze the locking tab and flip down the arm. With that, you are good to go to the next step.
After all this, the Model Y is still not powered down yet. The 12 Volt battery still needs to be disconnected to de-energize the self-driving computer so we can insert our Wire “T” . Since the frunk is already open, it’s easy to disconnect the battery. Undo the negative terminal only because God forbid if you knock a metal wrench from the positive terminal against the chassis (aka ground). You are going to have a really bad day… After successfully removing the negative terminal. everything is finally shut off.
Splicing in the T connector
Returning to the cab of the car, move the remaining portion of the carpeting that is covering the self-driving computer by pulling the carpeting further to the left. The only thing we could see initially, is the bottom plug (white plug behind my finger).
Repositioning my camera we can now just barely make out a gray plug second from the bottom. There are several ways to get at this gray plug. (1) Remove the white plug first to make room to access the gray plug, (2) Use a long flat-head screwdriver to release the locking tab, or (3) Contort your body into the most unnatural position imaginable and jam your hand into the narrow space behind the dash.
It took some time to pull out the gray plug but, thanks to some very skinny hands, I got it out after about 5 minutes. One thing that is not in the video, is a scene where I cut my finger pretty badly on a nearby plastic cover. Hopefully, that particular Model Y is never involved in a crime, because I left a large quantity of my DNA under the passenger carpet before I could stop the bleeding. Lesson to others: wear some thin gloves, even some latex gloves would have been better than nothing at all. Once we get the gray connector out of the self-driving computer, plug it into the female end of the “T” adapter. The male end of the “T” adapter goes back into the self-driving computer. Again, it is the second plug from the bottom and it is almost as hard to get the connector back in, as it was to take the old one out.
Powering up the head unit
After putting everything back together, begin by reattaching the negative terminal to the 12-Volt battery, then reconnecting the high voltage contactor connector under the rear seat. To make sure the connector is fastened, use a lot of pressure and push down until you hear it click.
Returning to the Hansshow Display, it is time to begin connecting all the wires. Begin by connecting the GPS wire, then the Canbus wire (yellow), then the Camera wire (blue), then the Positive Power wire (red), and finally the Negative Power wire (Black), also known as the Ground wire. It’s critical that you are 100% certain to line up the arrow indicators on the push connectors before pushing them together. Bending a pin is no fun and if you break a pin, you are hosed. Once the connectors are lined up, push hard! Much harder than you think is necessary. With that, step on the brake and the HUD should power on. Congratulations, you did it!
Steps to putting car back together
Run wires under the dash cover by taping the wires to the underside of the dash cover (picture)
Replace the dash
Put the frunk tub back together
Back seat back in place.
And that’s a wrap!
For a complete Video of the installation process, click here:
For those looking to purchase the display, or tools used in this video, I have linked them here:
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