If you own a Tesla Model X and you want to install a radar detector, it can be tricky because the Model X has a curved glass windshield that offers tons of visibility. Today, I’ll show you step-by-step how I was able to do a radar detector installation for Tesla Model X Refresh 2023. I also created a Youtube video for this, which can be viewed here.

Disclaimer, I’m not a car mechanic, so do this at your own risk! 

Materials Used

  • Uniden R8 Radar Detector
    • You’ll want to get a radar detector that has an auto-power off feature and a power on/off button. The reason is that in the Model X, the camera will stay on until the car goes to sleep. The auto-off feature preserves your battery as it will automatically turn off the radar detector, if there’s no movement for a period of time. 

      If you keep sentry mode on, then you’ll want to manually turn off your radar detector to prevent battery drain.

  • Mirror Tap 20″
    • This is used to tap into the power source, in order to power the radar detector.
  • Trim Tool
    • The trim tool is used to help remove plastic pieces on the Tesla, in order to access the inside housing to perform the installation. 
  • Cable Clips
    • These are optional, but the cable clips help keep the cables organized and kept together.

I purchased all of these products on Amazon, and disclaimer, these links are affiliate links, which mean if you purchase using these links, I earn a small commission, at no additional cost to you.

Radar Detector Power Source

For the Tesla Model X Refresh, we will be using the camera as the radar detector power source.  You want to tap into a power source that turns off, when the Tesla is off. Otherwise if it stays on, then you can drain your Tesla’s battery. However, note that Tesla sometimes changes their power output, so you’ll need to be careful when tapping into power sources in the car.

For instance, there used to be a way to plug in power under the dash, but now the power there always stays on, which means your radar detector will remain on, and can lead to battery drain. 

Step 1: Remove Plastic Vent

Use your trim tool to remove the plastic vent piece by pushing downwards. The plastic vent piece is held in by clips.

radar detector tesla model x install
Use Trim Tool to Remove Plastic Vent
radar detector tesla model x install
Plastic Vent Piece Removed

Step 2: Remove Rear View Mirror

The mirror is held in by a hexagonal shape and plastic piece. Use your hands to rotate the mirror in a clockwise fashion. You will see a black and yellow wire that is for the mirror, however based on the Tesla motor forums, there is no power source, so don’t tap into this. Instead, we will be tapping into the camera power. 

radar detector tesla model x install
Remove Rear View Mirror - Rotate Clockwise
radar detector tesla model x install
Rear View Mirror Hled in by a Hexagonal Piece

Step 3: Remove Plastic Housing

The next step is finding the green/black wiring, which is the camera power. If the green/black wiring is already exposed after Step 1 and 2, skip Step 3 and you won’t have to remove additional pieces. However, if it is not already exposed,  then you’ll need to do this step. 

The plastic housing is held in by white push clips. Use either your fingers or the trim tool to pull down gently to remove the plastic housing.

radar detector tesla model x install
If Green/Black wire is already Exposed, skip step 3
radar detector tesla model x install
Remove Plastic Housing
radar detector tesla model x install
Plastic Piece is Held in by White Clips

Step 4: Hardwire Radar Detector

The power we will be tapping into is the green/black wire. Green is Positive and Black is Ground. Find the thinnest metal connector that came with Mirror Tap because the hole with the green/black plug is very tight. Then, insert the red tap (positive), into green, and then black tap into black. 

 

Now, plug the cord into the radar detector. If it is connected correctly, the radar detector will turn on, if your car is awake. You can awaken your car by opening your car door.

radar detector tesla model x install
Locate Green/Black Wiring
radar detector tesla model x install
Mirror Tap
radar detector tesla model x install
Attach Green to Red ; Black to Black

Step 5: Re-Installation

Next, put everything back together. First, remove the inline fuse from the power cable. Then, put back all the pieces in reverse order. It may take a few tries to align everything and snap it back in.

Step 6: Radar Detector Location

Once everything is back into place, it’s time to figure out where to place the radar detector. If it is placed directly left of the mirror, it will get in the way of the sun visor. I decided to place mine closer to the roof, where it will pick up signals easily and still enable me to use the sun visor.  Then, you can use the cable management clip to keep the wires organized.

radar detector tesla model x install

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, installing a radar detector in your Tesla Model X can be a bit challenging, but it’s certainly doable with the right knowledge and tools. Make sure to choose a radar detector with an auto power-off feature, and tap into the camera power. And, as always, be careful when removing any parts from your car to avoid damaging it.  

Don’t forget to check out my Youtube video on this installation, to see it all in action.

DISCLAIMER: The opinions and views expressed on this blog are solely personal, Everyday Chris.  Everyday Chris is not affiliated with or endorsed by Tesla. It is neither inferred nor implied that products recommended by Everyday Chris nor recommendations given by Everyday Chris are authorized by or in any way connected to Tesla. This post contains affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read full Terms & Conditions for more information. 

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