Hard wiring a Nuvi 3597 to eliminate power adapter and cig. lighter plug.

 

I have been wanting hard wire my nuvi 3597 in my Ford Ranger for two reasons. First reason is that the power plug (cig. lighter) on the Ford is always hot, so the nuvi doesn't shut off when I turn off the ignition. The second less important reason is to eliminate the awkward power plug and bulky cable that seems to constantly get tangled up with other stuff I carry and plug in. I use Smartphone Link so I don't need the GTM-60 power cable for traffic.

The problem that many of us have experienced is that many of these newer Garmin devices are very picky about the power adapter and USB cable you use. When using a non-Garmin charger and/or cable, they will often give an "Incompatible Charger" error when you boot them up. I have a bunch of different USB chargers (both wall plugs and 12V power adapters) and there seems to be no rhyme or reason to which ones work and which ones don't.

Knowing this, I have hesitated to order a direct wired USB port, but since they are relatively inexpensive, I decided to take a chance and just pick one out on eBay. If it doesn't work, I haven't lost that much. This is the one I ordered: 12V To 5V DC-DC Converter Module 3A 15W USB Step Down Power Output Adapter car.

I received it today. I haven't wired it in yet, but I did test it out by connecting it directly to the battery and using just a standard mini USB cable. It worked perfectly with both my nuvi 3597 and my new DriveLuxe 51 without posting the "Incompatible Charger" error on either device.

So now all I need to do is figure out which circuit in the Ford fuse panel to wire it up to. It will be nice to get this all mounted up under the dash and keep the cables tied up out of the way. I already have the 3597 magnetic mount permanently mounted with a vent mount.

I

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

cables

I had one cable and my GPS would start thinking it was attached to a PC... in 20-30 seconds, it would switch to GPS mode...

let us know how your new cable works in the next few weeks

The cable issue is pretty

The cable issue is pretty simple.
There are 5 pins in a USB cable:
+5v
Data+
data-
NC
ground

That NC pin is the key, literally. In a Garmin cable it is connected thru a 17.3K resistor to ground (std values around this will work). Other manufacturers use this also.
So, if the Garmin does not see +5V there is knows it is a std cable and connects as a USB device.

If you wire your Garmin permanently, you will need to breakout the cable at some point and you can add a resistor between those wires. Just make sure the cable isn't a charge only cable.

Note that some cables may not have a wire connected to that pin (pin 4). You may have to figure another way to add the resistor.

Well ...

The USB data connection issue (where the device thinks it is plugged into a computer and shows the data connection icon on the screen instead of the navigation menu) is a separate problem from the "Incompatible Charger" error posted on some of the newer devices. Of course when you want to eliminate the Garmin provided power cord and wire directly or use a generic charger and USB cable you need to avoid both of these problems. So far it seems like the item I got on Ebay will work. When I get this thing permanently installed, I will post back and let you know the results. But so far my testing is looking good.

Incidentally, I decided to use an add-on fuse tap (12V 10Amp Car Add-a-circuit Fuse TAP Adapter Kit ) instead of splicing into the wiring on my Ford fuse panel. So I will need to wait until I get that fuse tap before I can install the step down power supply. I will report back in a few days.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

What I did

I bought a separate (female) cigarette lighter that I spliced into the wires that fed the built in cigarette lighter. (mine turns off with the key). I then tucked that under the dash and plugged the male (supplied by Garmin) into that. Running the lead under moldings and exiting next to the driver side window pillar leaving only ~8" exposed. Works for me and don't have to worry about incompatibilities with adapters.

I also cut a hockey puck in half.. shaped it to fit my dash and permanently glued it to the dash.. and glued my suction mount to the flat side of the hockey puck. Leaving my GPS on the edge of my dash.. where I can easily see (and reach) it and it does not impede my view.

--
Lives in Edmonton AB A volunteer driver for Drive Happiness.ca and uses a 2689 to find my way.

As long as the Charger

As long as the Charger doesn't contain Traffic Receiver (My 660 and 2689LMT have that!) it should still operate fine to Power GPS IF device has pinout of mini USB matching link below. Obviously if charger contains Receiver, and you remove it.... You won't have receiver!

When the rear connector on my 660 went dead, I lost ability to charge battery, operate GPS, and also lost Traffic Receiver....

To keep the 660 operational at all--- I had to power it via mini USB port on side of 660, but cable I had just let it go into Computer mode only, not operate the 660.

Via this post I posted how to accomplish this: http://www.poi-factory.com/node/47610

I spliced two USB Cables together, as I found 5 wires on Mini USB end, only 4 on USB end.... I only connected +5V & Ground. as I wasn't transferring data...

If the cable on you post (even if it passes data pins) has pin 4&5 connected together, it should work fine... To Power up and run your GPS, and charge the battery!

My 660 has been running this way for years, and it works fine, albeit without traffic receiver. I posted a clearer revised FAQ in 2017

Jan

--
A 2689LMT in both our cars that we love... and a Nuvi 660 with Lifetime Maps that we have had literally forever.... And a 2011 Ford Escape with Nav System that is totally ignored!

Finished project.

I finished this project today. Preliminary testing shows everything working good. I did not need a special USB power cable. I used a standard 6' mini data cable … same cable used when connecting to computer. The 3597 boots into navigation mode (not computer/data mode), possibly because it goes through the powered mount. I haven't tried to see what happens if I plug the USB cable directly into the device. I was more concerned about the "Incompatible charger" error that I have seen with the 3597 on many different chargers. But so far it is booting up clean.

Using the fuse tap was a big help in that no wire splicing was required to hook into the 12V ignition source, and it puts the nuvi on its own separate fuse.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

They are nice

alandb wrote:

Using the fuse tap was a big help in that no wire splicing was required to hook into the 12V ignition source, and it puts the nuvi on its own separate fuse.

I used one once too. I'm sure I paid more at a local NAPA auto parts store for one than you did for your multi-pack. wink

Yup!

CraigW wrote:

I used one once too. I'm sure I paid more at a local NAPA auto parts store for one than you did for your multi-pack. wink

Even at WallyWorld, one tap cost more than the 5 pack on eBay. In spite of all its problems, sometimes eBay is hard to beat.

--
Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

What I did for this with my

What I did for this with my DriveSmart 70LMT was to run the USB data cable through the glove box for map and softare updates via my laptop. Then I ran the power supply (mine had separate power & data ports which was great) with the 12V cigarette lighter end over to the fuse box under the steering wheel. I used an add a fuse jumper from Pep Boys combined with a 12V female end so that I could just "plug and play" my GPS without any splicing, voiding of the warranty, etc. Worked like a charm.