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goldfilm

Backup sound

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Does the 2014 Connect Wagon XLT come with back up sound alert? I couldn't find it on the manual and when I park I see through the camera, but no sound proximity alert...

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If you mean the warning tone you hear in the vehicle, it only activates if there is an object close enough to the bumper as you are backing. I did some testing after I bought my 2015 TC Wagon and how close depends on the size of the object. A large flat object gets detected farther away, with the tone going continuous about a foot away as mentioned in the manual on pages 128-129. But even with just a single piece of 1/2" conduit sticking up out of the ground in an open flat yard, what I thought would be hardest to detect and thus most likely to hit, the tone went continuous at about 4 inches.

But if you mean a continuous beeping heard outside the vehicle the entire time the vehicle is backing as a warning for others, that seems to be what this add on accessory is for:

Backup Alarm by ECCO

Part No: VAC3Z-14N137-A
SRP: $105.00
http://accessories.ford.com/back-up-alarm.html

But it's just a guess because the description is rather sparse.

Edited by DonShockley

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Sorry for the lack of detail. I meant the interior sound, not the outside for commercial vehicles. So I have the radio on, volume up, and I don't hear a sound when I'm getting close to a vehicle while parking. And I found no settings about it. I wonder if I should pump the volume while backing up...

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I just found out in the 2014 the parking aid sensor was optional and not included in the vehicle we got... so the next question is... if I get the following, how to install it :)

https://www.rockauto.com/catalog/moreinfo.php?pk=5402634&cc=3298553&jnid=615&jpid=0

And is this the only thing to buy or also connectors, etc.?

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That just looks to be a replacement sensor for a failed OEM one if you already have the system installed in your vehicle. Unfortunately if the option wasn't included from the factory, then all the other wiring and parts aren't going to be present to support the sensor installation. Nor are you going to have the integration with the backup camera if you happen to have that option installed also.

You're likely going to need to go with a full aftermarket system like one of these that has parts and instructions.

http://www.autoanything.com/mobile-electronics/74A6346A0A0.aspx

That's just an example I pulled up via a Google search, not one I have any specific knowledge or recommendation for. Looking at the installation instructions for this example, it seems as though it would require both mechanical and wiring skills to do a good DIY installation job.

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So I guess I'd have to call the dealer and ask for a decent price if I want the parking aid. Ford charges $495 for front and rear or $295 for the rear only. I wonder if our dealer would do it cheaper... but to be honest not sure if I want to spend in just the sound. I already have the back up camera and helps a lot.

What would be cool is to improve the visibility in the back through the dual symmetrical doors — through the original rearview mirror (medium to small size) I only see two squares...

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Visibility is the main reason the liftgate was a must have option for me when I was looking for my new Transit Connect. At first I wasn't sure how big a difference it would make since I was only seeing vans with doors around town. But as soon as I saw a wagon with the liftgate a few cars ahead of me at a traffic light, that big clear expanse of glass had me sold. Most of my daily access to the rear is via the drivers side slider, so the bit of extra effort for the lift gate isn't much of a hassle.

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I had added the Forward and Reverse Sensing Systems option when I ordered my 2015 van. I also added the backup camera.

For the sensing system, the MSRP is $495 and the dealer invoice price is $425, which is what I paid.

Since I parallel park off a busy highway quite often, this was an important requirement for me to have.

I often have to shoe-horn the van into a tight spot and I couldn't do that confidently without the sensors.

I don't rely on the backup camera as much for doing this. The camera is good for backing up in general, but I also have side and rear windows to help with visibility.

The sensor alerts have a different tone for front versus rear.

The parking aid also has a great display on the LCD for the rear sensor showing the projected path, space zone and color codes the proximity and region (green, yellow, red). If I park just after the sensor goes from green to yellow then I know I will have enough room to open the rear barn doors to get my gear out.

When the sensors start chiming, the radio will semi-mute to a very low level, which is a great feature. Then return to normal volume afterwards.

There are times when the sensors are a bit of an alarming pain. When pulling in/out of the garage the side sensors detect the door post and alert.

Also, sometimes while waiting at a light if someone gets close to the bumpers they will alert, which can startle you a little. I haven't fully figured that part out since it happens rarely.

I would highly recommend adding this feature to anyone's van as one fender bender, or worse, could easily justify the cost of the system.

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Do you need a front camera to add the front sensor? Do all the vehicles have the capability to add the sensors? I'm discovering that my vehicle is basic, so for example it doesn't have the USB connection because it doesn't have Sync, so I can't find how to charge my phone... I wonder where would the sensors go...

Does it make sense to have somebody install the system if it's cheaper than the dealer, or I'd rather do it with them no matter the price?

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I don't think you're going to be able to get the factory options installed later by the dealer. When I inquired about adding a single extra circuit like the Upfitter Wiring Harness option in my TC Wagon it turned out it was not possible. Apparently the way they build them is contrary to common sense. You would think big things like the main wiring harnesses and fuse boxes would all be fairly standard and the appropriate options are just added as needed. But I was told, and my checks of the fuse box and such confirms, that it wasn't possible to add the option later because they don't install any of the supporting hardware if the option isn't included from the factory. They don't even wire both sides of the fuse location in the fuse box if that option isn't ordered.

For example, there is a factory installed tow option. But when I wanted to add it to my vehicle after purchase, it wasn't as simple as getting the factory tow control box and plugging it in. They had to install a different tow controller that required wires to be spliced into the tail light wiring and extra power wires had to be run all the way to the battery. Trying to add sensor warning system would likely be even harder since it interfaces with the sound system, the ABS system, and the image control system for the camera. Even if possible, it's likely to cost a whole lot more than the factory add on cost for that option. You're likely going to need an aftermarket solution.

Based on my experience, I wouldn't put too much stock in the dealer expertise. I had the same attitude when adding items during my recent purchase but now I would just go with DIY or a specialist shop for aftermarket items. Even though my dealer's "trailer wiring specialist" did the work, the wiring job was horrendous. Wires pulled tight across sharp metal edges and 12" of wire cut off the end of the power wire supplied by Ford. If the original length had been left intact and routed better there would have been no risk of wire damage. Other wires added were spliced together unnecessarily so that a wire was red at one end and black at the other end. Too much possibility of confusion. I replaced the dealer spliced wire where possible and added protective wire loom to as much of the rest as possible. I no longer think that the supposed expertise of the dealer service staff and familiarity with the specific vehicle ensures a better job.

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.... for example it doesn't have the USB connection because it doesn't have Sync, so I can't find how to charge my phone...

It's not really that hard to add a dedicated set of USB ports for charging wherever you need them. I already had the Sync/USB but wanted USB power elsewhere. Take a look at these two threads I did showing how I modified my 2015 TC Wagon to add extra circuits for accessories.

Getting power from cargo area fuse box: http://fordtransitconnectforum.com/topic/3912-added-my-own-accessory-fuse-box/

Adding USB to overhead shelf: http://fordtransitconnectforum.com/topic/3936-added-usb-power-to-overhead-shelf/

If your 2014 is similarly configured, which in theory it should since they are both Gen2, it should be fairly simple with only basic hand and wiring tools needed. If it looks like something you want to tackle and need some of the small wiring parts I used, let me know. As I mentioned in those posts, there were minimum order quantities on what I bought so I have extras. Or if you aren't good at DIY and you are confident that something like what I did would fit your vehicle, I can prebuild you a long wire set for simple plug in at the cargo fuse box. Then you just have to route the wires, install a USB port where you need it, and connect the wires at that end.

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DonShockley, very nice of you to offer all that expertise to goldfilm. Speaking of "gold", your posts on adding addtional wiring to the second generation of Transit Connects is the "gold standard".

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130west43rd: Thanks for the complimentary feedback. When I post stuff like that I never know if I'm actually helping others or just exercising my borderline OCD tendencies.

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DonShockley, I really appreciate your time to answer and the chance to give me a hand if necessary... that's "gold". Unfortunately, I have "0" electric knowledge. I wouldn't mind messing up an old radio —I studied software engineering, so some familiarity with machines I have— but my new car, no way :)

I love the Connect, but I'm disappointed on how basic is without options and, as you mentioned, how difficult is to add options if they were not installed originally. The USB is one example, if I wanted this in the original place (arm rest), I would have to change the whole arm rest because there's not even a whole for the USB.

Beyond the wiring, I don't even see an exterior plastic cover where the parking aid sensors would be installed... everything is "you got this, period". Can't complain, I got a great deal because this was a 2014 sleeping in the dealer for a year... so... WYSIWYG. I wouldn't probably get alloy wheels like this one have, instead I'd get the sensors and a lift gate, but we're happy and we saved a few thousands.

Thank you guys for helping out. I'll touch base for advice if I decide to get aftermarket sensors.

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