Jump to content

Reverse Camera Help

Recommended Posts

New to the forum and also new to installation. I have a 2004 F350 and I'm trying to install a backup camera. My head unit has a purple video wire for "cam in" and a purple wire for cam power. The video cable that came with the camera has  a red power wire on one end and a power and ground wire on the other end. I connected the power and ground to the back of the truck tapping in to the reverse light. In the dash I hooked the red power wire to the purple "cam power" on the head unit and nothing happened. So I ran a separate wire from the purple "cam in" to the reverse light wire behind my fuse box. The reverse camera works now. 


The problem I'm having is that when the truck is in parked or neutral the head unit shows my normal home screen and plays the radio or whatever. When it is in reverse it switches to back up camera. When it is in drive the screen is black and it shows the back up guidelines that are usually there when the back up camera is on and in the middle of them there is like this triangular caution sign with a ! in the middle of it. Basically everything works unless I'm an drive. Any suggestions? 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Your wiring must be wrong. Do you have the headunit's installation manual? If not, see if you can find a copy online.


You didn't say what headunit you have. Pioneer units I am aware of don't have a "cam power" wire. So I can only guess about the purple wires. On mine, the violet/white wire is for the backup detection and typically is connected to a backup light.  It tells the headunit you are in reverse. Among other things, it triggers the display to show camera input (only in reverse). It sounds like your's is connected wrong. It has nothing to do with powering the camera. You have a blank screen while in forward gear because the camera has no power. But the headunit thinks you are in reverse. So that must be connected wrong. Pioneer units can also support a backup detection that is grounded rather than +12v. It is in the settings menu. Make sure your settings match how your backup detection is wired.


It sounds like the long video cable that came with your camera also has a red power wire inside the cable. Some cameras have this as a convenience so you don't have to pull another wire to power the camera. This is optional and allows you to power the camera from the headunit's switched +12v (also red) wire or some other switched source. Just splice the video cable's red lead to the switched +12v wire that powers the head unit. A side-benefit of this is the camera view can be accessed while driving since the camera is always powered when the hwadunit is ON. Another option is to power the camera directly from your backup light. Obviously, this only allows the camera to work when you are in reverse.   If you do this, don't connect anything at either end of the video cable's red wire.


The camera harness has an RCA video connector (usually yellow), red (+12v) and black (ground) wires. If you are powering the camera from the headunit - connect the red to +12v at the headunit end and the camera harness red at the camera end. Otherwise, connect the camera harness' red wire to the backup light (and ignore the video cable's (RCA) red wire at both ends). Connect the camera's black wire to a chassis ground point (any metal that is grounded to the frame).

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now