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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I didn't see an instance where someone has done this with this specific outlet, so hopefully someone might be inspired by my little Saturday afternoon project. I wanted to add a phone charger in the passenger side dash power outlet of my 2015 Pilot, so I tried a "flush fit" USB charger adapter very similar to this one but as tiny as it is, it still stuck out too far for the door to close fully over it. So I decided to take on replacing the outlet with a Quick Charge 3.0 USB-C charger socket.

I knew there would be some modification required just based on the dimensions, and I didn't want to trash part of the dash in my vehicle, so I found a used outlet assembly on eBay for $12. No idea what the individual part number might be, but it's part of Ctr Panel R, 77250-SZA-A010.

The panel cover comes off easily as it's just held in by a few clips. The outlet assembly is held in by three screws, so it was a simple swap.

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The outlet itself is held in the "barrel" by two plastic clips, easily removable by just snapping them out with a small screwdriver. Then the entire barrel had to be cut out on the backside to allow for the plastic retaining nut on the new charger to thread all the way in.

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Obviously, the hole for the charger had to be opened up quite a bit to allow it to fit, so I set about with the Dremel tool grinding it out slowly. In fact, the whole flange around the original outlet had to be ground flat to allow the charger to fit in place and let the spring-loaded cover close. Inside the cover, there is a circular "nub" that sits against the rectangular tab at the bottom of the outlet. This had to be taken down just a bit as well to allow the cover to close flush with the dash.

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Slow and low is the tempo in order to not screw up the face... There were a couple of times that I was worried I had jacked it up too much, but once the charger fit all the way in, it covered up my mistakes pretty well. I was also worried that the bottom edge of the charger front flange might overlap the angled edge of the outlet assembly, but it ended up fitting well, just to the edge.

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The end result looks pretty good, and the built-in voltmeter is a nice addition as well. I’m thinking ahead to replacing the center console chargers with the same unit if they are easily accessible, so if anyone has input on those, please share.
 

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Great job on the Pilot! I replaced the lighter in my Bimmer with a similar USB device but I had to get one without the nice voltmeter as the BMW has a constant power source and the display probably would be a parasitic drain.
 

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Nice write up! Really enjoyed your post.

What about the wire connections. Were there two pull off connectors on the old compatible with the new unit? If not what mods were made?

Does this allow faster charging that the old outlet?
 

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Thanks for the write-up. The panel removal is the part that's kept me from adding some permanent power connections to that circuit. I want to power the QI charger I have right side of the video display, plus a discrete 12V wire dedicated to the radar detector that look forward under the wipers. You cleared up a lot of that detail.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
the BMW has a constant power source and the display probably would be a parasitic drain.
Note that the charger I put in has a little power button on the right side of the display. If you’re cognizant of it being off—the blue LEDs would be an easy giveaway—you’d be able to use it in the BMW.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the write-up. The panel removal is the part that's kept me from adding some permanent power connections to that circuit.
The panel removal is super easy, just use your fingers to pry it out from the top. Don’t use anything hard to pry it out or you could easily scratch up the surface really bad.
 

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Note that the charger I put in has a little power button on the right side of the display. If you’re cognizant of it being off—the blue LEDs would be an easy giveaway—you’d be able to use it in the BMW.
That’s a neat feature to be able to turn the display off. My application was for the rear passengers in need of charging their iPhones.
 

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The panel removal is super easy, just use your fingers to pry it out from the top. Don’t use anything hard to pry it out or you could easily scratch up the surface really bad.
I have all the trim removal tools but still use layers of blue tape to avoid scratches. Thanks so much for the tips!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What about the wire connections. Were there two pull off connectors on the old compatible with the new unit? If not what mods were made?
Does this allow faster charging that the old outlet?
The original outlet has male lugs exactly like the new charger, but the female lugs are held inside a harness connector. I didn’t want to cut into the factory wiring, so I just cut the two ring terminals off the power wires that came with the charger and crimped on a couple of male lugs, then simply plugged those into the harness connector. This will allow for easy swap out if I want to change the charger out or go back to the original power outlet.

In regard to faster charging, that’s what I’m going for. We all have iPhones in our house, so to take advantage of QC 3.0, we’ll have to use USB-C to Lightning cables in the PD port. My assumption is that using the standard USB port on this charger with an iPhone would likely be the same as using any regular auto USB charger adapter. We’ll see.
 

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My 'current' setup has a multi-port adapter in the storage box. Plugs into the outlet there and offers three outlets plus a pair of standard USB ports. Double-stick tape secures it to the right side if the compartment right next to the original outlet. Lightning cable on one USB passes out of the lid forward, charge cable for datalogging tablet is coiled inside for when I use that. Easy higher-power option is the QC 3.0 adapter for one of the outlets in the adapter, but so far there's been no special need for high-speed charging while driving. If a trip is long enough to demand charging, it's long enough to charge at standard rate.

Meanwhile, I grabbed a couple holders on sale with wireless charging, plus they put the phone up where it's safely visible while driving. As IOS software has progressed beyond the Honda interface, many of the original features like the phone book and music access via Handsfreelink have gone away. Putting the phone in a safe access spot means I can use Siri voice commands. It also allows for viewing with maps running. Getting the power cable to it from the existing outlet means cords and such draped around the dash, which doesn't meet my clean-cabin expectations. I'll buy a replacement dash trim panel, and add a tiny notch at the top left corner for the wire to pass out to the cradle for charging. At the same time, a power wire for the radar detector will go forward to the front at the base of the windscreen. All will connect to those wires at the dash accessory outlet, each with appropriate fusing. Like the OP's desire, the cover for the original dash outlet will stay closed unless someone/something else needs it.

Pics in a separate thread when I do it.
 

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Pics in a separate thread when I do it.
And please link to it from here, for those of us interested in seeing it.
 

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I'm shopping casually for a female lighter on a pigtail, where I can plug in the captive plug for the phone cradle. I'm off on a little consulting gig on the east coast soon too, so this will be delayed until summer. I've got cables draped down the face of the dash now -- not good.
 
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I did this (the front dash one) to my 2011 over the weekend thanks to this helpful thread, and the 12v socket assembly is different in the earlier models than in the 2015. I assume the 2009-2011s are all the same and the 2012-2015s are as shown in the original post, but who knows.

The overall process is basically the same but I did manage to take a few pics.

The 12v assembly doesn't screw into the dash panel on mine like it does on Sluggo's. The earlier gen 2 Pilots have the 12v port and trim piece held in place with plastic tabs that are not easy to press in. I fiddled with it for 15 min or so, trying to push the tabs in so I could get the socket and trim piece out but didn't have much luck. The same tabs also hold the 12v socket itself in the trim. I knew I'd have to dremel all this away at some point, so I just got to cutting. The piece I am holding on the left is the barrel the 12v socket went into, after I'd buzzed the tabs off, and ground the back flat:
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As in the original post, the hole in this assembly needs to be enlarged to fit the USB port through (I happened to have the same one as Sluggo used, others may not be as girthy). I did a pretty rough job, but it's passable as a circle. The lip on the USB port will cover most mistakes. You have to grind away the entire raised portion on this piece, which ends up being exactly how big the hole needs to be so at least you have that as a guide. Just go slow and do a lot of test fits, and clean up with a small file as needed:
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This is the back side of the dash trim piece that the assembly fits into, and this surface also needs to be ground flat and the hole enlarged. Less enlargement is needed here because the collar above slid through this hole and locked in place with the tabs, so it was already bigger:
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Now that everything is big enough to accept the USB port piece, fit the assembly trim back through the dash piece, and then slide the USB port through and use the collar nut to sandwich everything together. Note that unless you use a spacer on the barrel of the USB port, or grind away more plastic on the trim, there will be interference between the plastic nut and the trim. I could get it tight enough by twisting the USB port and holding the nut in place with my finger. Through trial and error, you can align it:
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Lastly, you'll need to notch the spring-loaded cover piece and grind down a circular extrusion on the backside of the cover if you want a flush fit on this, as I did. First pic shows the notch I cut, and in the second you can see the lip of the USB port protruding a little bit. But you'll never notice this unless you're laying down on the passenger seat or something:
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This probably took me an hour and a half, start to finish. I also needed to disassemble the connector on the end of the harness to get the tabs out of it, so I could attach them to the male lugs on the back of the USB port. The factory 12v socket also had two male lugs, but they are perpendicular to each other and the connector was configured for that as well. The lugs are parallel on this, so it wouldn't have worked.

I also had to put the white wire on the positive terminal of the USB socket in order for it to power up. I would guess that the USB was assembled incorrectly, or automotive positive wires are just white and negative are black I didn't know that.
 

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I'm seeing in Sluggo's original post it is possible to bore out the holes in the trim that you don't need to notch the cover piece. Wish I had re-read all this before doing mine. The notch doesn't bother me but it's one more thing you have to do, and it can be avoided completely by opening up more space on the top of the trim.
 
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