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Tuesday 17 January 2017

Defender earth connections

While I was removing the centre seat I found a convenient point for a negative, earth, feed for accessories.

The Defender has very few points to connect to earth. Just three on a standard Defender.

1. Under the bonnet on the bulkhead slightly to the right of centre.
2. On the gearbox.
3. At the rear by the lights.

Apparently there is a header behind the dash but my understanding is that it is hard to get to and already fully populated.

For my dash cam I fitted an auxiliary fuse box behind the instruments. I used the earth from under the bonnet for that.

For the heated seats I need something in the middle of the car. The heaters are likely to need a bit more power than I would trust to spurring off of the earth for the EGR management unit so I've been on the lookout for a better earth location.

With the centre cover removed from between the seats, to gain access to the bolts used to secure the centre seat, I could see the main earth from the battery connected to the gearbox but more convenient than that I could see a connection, mid cable, that earthed to the chassis.

The bolt size on that was much more suitable for my needs than the big stud on the back of the gearbox.

I used a large brass ring connector and two lengths of 2mm2 cable (rated about 25A each) with some spiral wrap for protection under the car. I pushed it through the same grommet as the cables for the EGR control unit.

The connection on the chassis is a bolt right through so you need to lie under the car with a 13mm spanner and a socket but it's in a very easy to reach location.

The ring connector is bolted on to the chassis, with a loop of cable up to a nearby point on the existing loom. From there I taped and cable tied it to the loom so it looks neat and stays in place.

This should give me more than enough current carrying capacity for anything I am likely to connect in the middle of the car.

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