SaturnFans.com
what's new (beta) - classifieds - forums - photos


Go Back   SaturnFans.com Forums > Models > Saturn Astra > Astra General
Register FAQ Members List Groups Calendar Chat Room Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-08-2009, 06:12 PM   #1
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Wrench Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

aka: "parking sensors", "back-up sensors", "reverse sensors", "parking sonar"

I've deliberated about writing a how-to article for installing Parking Dynamics' electro-magnetic parking sensor kit in our cars for a couple of months now. The installation was relatively easy and the performance is close to what the company promises, but their technical support absolutely sucks. It was their non-existent responses to my questions that for the longest time biased my opinion of their product far into the negative, but I've decided to write the article and let the reader decide whether or not they want to do business with the company. If you want to jump straight to the install, scroll down to my next post.

BACKGROUND

First, a little background into what an electro-magnetic parking sensor kit is. Nearly all of the auto manufacturers, as well as all of the aftermarket kit suppliers (except the manufacturers of this kit), use ultra-sonic sensors in their kits. These work by sending out high frequency sound waves that radiate out from the sensor, bounce off of obstacles, and return to the sensor. Since sound travels at around 760 mph (1200 km/h), the circuitry measures the signal time between transmitting and receiving, and calculates the distance that way. Upon shifting into reverse, the sensors begin constantly broadcasting and receiving, and the closest object within its range is what the circuitry reports.

The electro-magnetic kit, on the other hand, is purely passive (ie: it doesn't transmit anything) and works like an antenna. Upon shifting into reverse, the "antenna" takes a snap-shot of what's behind the vehicle in the electro-magnetic spectrum. As the area behind the vehicle "changes" (ie: the EM image "distorts"), the circuitry measures the changes and reports back to the driver in much the same way as the ultra-sonic variety. Both kits come in either audio, visual, or combo audio/visual types. The installation post below this one is obviously for the electro-magnetic type, but the pics on bumper removal should still be useful to someone contemplating installing an ultra-sonic kit.

There are unique advantages and disadvantages to both types:

Ultra-Sonic

Ultra-sonic kits operate actively, like a flashlight in dimly lit areas. The beam of the flashlight sends out light to the object, off of which it bounces back and registers in our eyes. Much like a submarine's active sonar, the range of the ultra-sonic type is superior to the electro-magnetic version, but it also has a blind spot where the sensors cannot tell the difference between an object 1 foot away and one almost in contact with the bumper. And, if you partially obscure the beam with a solid object, the object not only casts a shadow creating a blind spot all the way out to the sensor's maximum range, but that object also bounces light back to your eyes. Since the object is already within the range of the active sensors, it will signal to the driver that something is about to make contact with the bumper (even though the street is completely clear behind you). In such a situation, the system ends up being useless (many OEM versions feature a "disable" button on the dash for such situations).

PROs: approximate 10 foot (1.5m) maximum range ; surface-mount kits are available for quick & simple installation ; available in a variety of 2- and 4-sensor kits, for both front and rear bumpers ; hard (but not impossible) to install in vehicles with metal bumpers

CONs: approximate 1 foot (30cm) minimum range ; OEM-style kits require drilling large holes in bumper (surface-mount kits don't look OEM and are only available in 2-sensor kits) ; performance affected by falling snow or heavy rain ; sensors are accessible and therefore susceptible to impact damage ; minimum mounting depth required to take into account depth of sensors ; paint matching often suggested/required to make sensors blend in better with bumper ; detects pretty much anything within the field of the sensors, moving or not, including fitted bike racks, long loads hanging our of pick-up beds, etc. ; 10 foot maximum range pretty stupid for front bumper installations

Electro-Magnetic

Electro-magnetic kits operate passively, like our eyes at dusk - minus the flashlight. They have a lower maximum range than the ultra-sonic variety, but they are also more sensitive up close. I like to think of the electro-magnetic type as being more of a true "park assist" system, while the ultra-sonic type is more of "an excuse not to look behind you when doing general reversing". One way to describe how the system works is that it takes a "picture" of what is directly behind the vehicle when the circuitry is initially activated. It assesses the situation and stores it in memory, saying "ok, this is what the norm is". Bike rack or no bike rack, the "picture" remains the norm until the next time you back up and activate the circuitry (during which time it reassesses the situation). Anything that changes while moving the car in reverse (or which enters the field when the car is stationary) is detected, and the range to the object is calculated using some magical procedure that I won't pretend to fully understand. Anything that is hanging off of the back of the vehicle like a bicycle that moves along with the vehicle (as long as it is at least 3cm away from the antenna strip) is ignored.

PROs: approximate 4" (10cm) minimum range ; completely invisible once installed (mounts to the inside of the bumper skin) ; no drilling of bumper required ; sensor antenna is protected by the bumper itself ; less susceptible to falling snow or heavy rain (range is reduced to only about 10-15cm, but at least it won't beep continuously all the time) ; CAN-bus compatible (note: ultra-sonic kit manufacturers do not state this, and if asked might respond with blank stares, but they may work in our cars) ; only detects objects moving with respect to the antenna field (meaning that bike racks can be left mounted or dismounted without causing false warnings) ; available in front (audio only) and rear (visual and audio) bumper versions

CONs: approximate 2.5 foot (75cm) maximum range ; antenna field "distorted" by any metal within 1.5" (3-4cm) of antenna strip ; can't be installed in vehicles with metal bumpers (or in those with metal crash bars under the bumper skin that is too close to the skin) ; used by few OEM auto manufacturers (draw your own conclusions about that)

The main differences between the two that are of interest here is that:

a) the electro-magnetic kit doesn't require drilling of the bumper, where ultra-sonic kits -- with the exception of the rather ugly surface-mount kits -- do, and

b) different minimum/maximum ranges of operation

The first point is important if you just don't feel comfortable drilling holes in your bumper. You may slip with the drill, or screw up and not get the sensors installed perfectly center, or in a line that isn't straight. Or you may want to remove them at some time -- leaving large holes that will require at least two large bumper stickers to cover up. The electro-magnetic kit requires no drilling of the bumper, so there's no fear of not doing a pristine installation. The kit is also easily transferable to another vehicle because the kit comes with a spare antenna (ie: you just leave the old one attached to the bumper and the next owner will be none the wiser).

The second point is the main one: range. You have to ask yourself this question: do I want a parking assist device that won't notify me until I'm within about 2.5 feet of an obstacle, yet is sensitive enough to tell the difference between 4" and 6"? Or do you want one that will scan outwards all the way to about 10 feet and warn you of children's toys or pedestrians behind you, but can't tell you the difference between 4" and 12" when you're trying to fit into that tiny parking space down in Little Italy when you've already looked everywhere for a spot and you're running late and your parents are gonna be pissed. Of course, there's nothing to stop you from installing a kit of each type -- maybe an audible ultra-sonic kit for long range and an visual electro-magnetic kit for pin-point accuracy.

CAVEAT

Once installed on my Astra, I was somewhat disappointed with the final maximum range. Instead of the advertised 75cm maximum range, I ended up with something between 40-50cm. As you will see I tried increasing the range by running a second parallel antenna strip, but it ended up causing way too many false signals due to the closer proximity to the metal crash bar underneath. I still consider this to be superior to the ultra-sonic kit's min/max operating range, because I still have a 10cm minimum range which is 20cm better than the ultra-sonic variety, and which has come in quite handily when parallel parking.

PICS

#1 shows the kit as it arrived, with my fob shown for scale. It's a pretty small package, and should be cheap to ship almost anywhere (as well as being able to slip through pretty much any mail slot).

#2 shows the contents of the box. Clockwise from top, you have the control box, a length of adhesive goo, two rolls of antenna material (one on top of the other), and a plastic bag containing everything else.

#3 shows everything outside of the box. Left to right (top): speaker, 4-conductor harness - middle row: sensor extender wire, control box, adhesive goo - bottom row: male spade connector (needs to be crimped to end of sensor extender wire), antenna material (note that second roll does not have female spade connector attached)

#4 shows the control box compared to a fob (again, for scale).
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Backup Sensors 001.jpg (90.7 KB, 67 views)
File Type: jpg Backup Sensors 002.jpg (81.3 KB, 59 views)
File Type: jpg Backup Sensors 003.jpg (80.6 KB, 69 views)
File Type: jpg Backup Sensors 004.jpg (78.6 KB, 72 views)

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
SaturnFans.com Sponsored Links
Old 10-08-2009, 06:17 PM   #2
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

INSTALLATION

A big part of this install is removing the rear bumper. Since I had to remove the front bumper for my HID install, it wasn't that big of an issue. While it is possible to do the HID install without removing the front bumper (by working through the fender liners inside the front wheel wells and shifting the airbox and fusebox out of the way to get better access), I believe that it is much easier when removed. The same cannot be said for installing this kit. While it might be possible to install an ultra-sonic kit without removing the bumper by carefully measuring the height of the crash bar underneath, you must remove the bumper in order to install the antenna strip in the electro-magnetic kit. The good news is that it comes off even easier than the front bumper.

At the rear of each wheel well opening you will find two T20 Torx screws that secure the bumper skin to the rear fender liners. Remove these. There isn't a lot of room between the screw heads and the tires so unless you are using a ratchet and Torx bits, you will probably have to remove the rear wheels to get better access. Next, remove the rear license plate. Underneath it you will find the last two Torx screws. At this point you will probably want to enlist the help of a second pair of hands, because the next step is probably the most difficult. Up high on the center/left side of the bumper area is a wiring connector that connects the car to the harness on the back side of the bumper skin (supplying power to the license plate light bulbs and the rear side marker lights). You can see it in one of the pics about one foot above the exhaust tip. I managed to do it by myself but still had a ***** of a time trying to disconnect that connector. It is difficult to get to with the bumper skin still installed because it is so high, and I ended up getting access to it once the bumper was partially pulled away from the car. I still ended up breaking the locking tab during my second bumper re & re, so be careful. If you can get the car up on a hoist you might have better luck getting at this connector before removing the bumper, but it was just too awkward while working on the ground.

Once the six Torx screws have been removed, the last thing you need to do is begin pulling the bumper skin away from the body at the diagonal ends at the wheel well openings. The bumper skin has four elongated slots that snap into black plastic clips along each diagonal edge, as well as plastic tabs that clip into slots in the black plastic pieces below each tail light assembly and along the center beneath the hatch opening. Try to work your fingers in behind the bumper skin along that diagonal edge and push from behind. Slow and steady is the key here, but damaging one of these slots isn't the end of the world. The tabs below each tail light assembly and below the hatch opening aren't as firm but will still require some patience. This is where a second pair of hands (not to mention a second brain with a second opinion) will make the task much easier. Once popped free, get at that wiring connector if you haven't already and disconnect it. You will also have to cut a small plastic tie directly to the right of the connector to free the harness from the car. If for some reason you can't seem to get the bumper to disengage below either tail light, stop and remove the tail light assemblies. They are secured by a locating tab up near the front and two white plastic nuts that are pretty tight. If you happen to have strong enough hands to remove them, you might not have thin enough wrists to work through those holes to get at them. Thankfully, Opel designed the nuts with 13 or 15mm hex heads so you should be able to get a wrench or socket in there to break them loose. Awkward? Yes, but doable. Why remove the tail light housings? Because your car might be different than mine and have two extra pushpins installed. When I removed my bumper I found one hole on either end that could have accepted pushpins, but they were missing. Before I picked up my car I had an issue with the rear bumper skin not being seated properly so there is the possibility that the dealership's bodyshop had my bumper completely off and just forgot to reinstall the pushpins. I removed my tail light housings because I thought they needed to be removed to get the bumper off, but found out I was wrong. I've had the bumper skin off twice now and the second time I did not need to remove the housings.

With the bumper off, set it aside on the grass or some blankets to prevent it from getting scratched. The first thing you'll likely notice is the wiring harness for the lighting, followed by the black styrofoam cushioning material locked in place on the underside of the skin. The wiring harness is connected to the bumper skin in some places and to the styrofoam in others, so it is impossible to completely remove the styrofoam without disconnecting the wiring at some point. But complete removal isn't required, although you still need to unsnap it to shift it out of the way in order to work. The last pic shows the antenna installed in a paired parallel arrangement. I kinda jumped the gun here and immediately installed the second strip below the first because I felt that I wanted more range than just 75cm. I couldn't run the second strip the entire length of the bumper because the license plate is made of metal and would interfere if I ran the second strip across the center of the bumper. I saw pics on the Parking Dynamics website showing just such a parallel installation, but in the end it just created too many false signals. It is my guess that the second strip just comes too close to the metal crash bar that spans the width of the car. When used by itself the first (upper) strip apparently is located high enough and far enough away from the crash bar to eliminate 99% of the false signals I was getting, and my maximum range is about the same. The only thing I may have sacrificed is that the antenna strip isn't sensative enough to detect some curbs or parking barriers. That may change when I eventually get around to lowering my car.

Specifically, I installed the upper strip in accordance with the recommended heights set out by the manufacturer (40-60cm off of the ground, with 50cm being optimum). Instead of giving you measurements, however, I think it best that people considering this install simply study the pic of the inner surface of the bumper skin and install the antenna strip according to how I've attached mine. You can't make it a perfectly straight install from end to end because of the rise in the center for the license plate location, but the horizontal crease that our bumpers have should be a good guide. Basically, the strip needs to be installed just below the crease at the outer thirds of the bumper, and just above the crease at the middle third. Even on a car that's been lowered, the strip should still be above the minimum recommended "40cm above the ground"). The ends of the strip line up with the outer edges of the side marker lights (which is about 10cm from the end of the bumper, or 15cm away from the tire). Double-check which end of the bumper is which when installing the strip, so that the connector on the end of the strip is on the side of the car you plan on mounting the control box (I used the right side). I then sprayed the strip with a thin coating of rubberized undercoating to protect it, as recommended by the manufacturer. Please ignore the second parallel strips below the first, as well as the vertical connecting strips. I took this pic during my initial install but after living with the false signals for a few weeks, decided to remove the bumper skin and remove the vertical and lower horizontal strips. Unfortunately, I didn't take a pic during that "adjustment". I used the entire roll of one antenna strip in my first attempt so it turns out that you really only need about half of one roll to do the job correctly. And I still have a complete second antenna roll if for whatever reason I need to do this again.

to be continued...

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2009, 06:24 PM   #3
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

Well, that was the hard part. The easy part is wiring the control box into the back-up wiring of the R/R tail light (you can use the left one near the fuse box, but I felt that that area was already cluttered enough with all the factory wiring). Open up the small access door in the rear hatch area on the right side, disconnect the wiring connector from the back of the R/R tail light housing, and tap into the brown and white wires. Brown is earth/ground in our European cars and the white is the main power to the back-up light bulb on this side of the car (could be the same on the left side, I don't remember off hand). Black goes to ground and red goes to white. The rest is plug & play. The black and red wires are part of a 4-pin connector that also connects the audio speaker to the control box. A second 2-pin connector on the box is for the short antenna extender wire that attaches to the actual antenna strip that you've attached to the bumper skin. A small hole approximately 1/4" in diameter needs to be drilled about 4-6" below the peak in the diagonal portion of the end of the bumper where it meets the tail light assembly to connect to the antenna. Sorry, but I forgot to take a pic of exactly where I drilled my hole (just make sure you can gain access to it from inside the car). The antenna strip features a regular female spade-type connector on one end, even though the extender wire is 2-conductor. The instructions state to either use an existing wiring hole in the car or drill your own and use a small rubber grommet to protect the wire from the surrounding sheet metal. They also state that the extender wire should not be extended any further than 8"/20cm (probably because doing so would increase the likelihood of false signals) so the location of the box must be close to the end of the antenna with the spade-terminal connector end. I thought about using the large grommet that the bumper lighting uses (the one with the hard-to-remove connector) but it is too far away from the end of the bumper skin for the extender wire to reach. Under no circumstances should you feed the wire through any of the "air doors" along the center area of the car below the hatch opening, because the wire will be allowed to move about (and will be perceived as movement to the antenna when activated). The kit doesn't come with said grommet so if you don't have any, pick up some from your local autoparts store before you begin. Then I used some of the provided adhesive material to mount the control box to the car. To finish up, I then routed the speaker wire underneath the right rear inner trim panel, underneath the rear seat bottom, to the base of the B-pillar. I installed an older surface-mount ultra-sonic kit in my parents car a while back and found that the speaker provided with the Parking Dynamics kit isn't as loud. Therefore, I'd recommend testing the system with the radio on to see how close to the driver you want to install the speaker. In my personal opinion, it isn't as loud as OEM systems, but it is still loud enough to be heard over the radio (which is a pretty subjective scenario). Unlike the antenna extender wire, the speaker wiring can be extended to allow you to locate the speaker pretty much anywhere if you really choose.

PICS

#1 shows the right side tail light assembly removed. Note the two mounting holes near the center of the picture, and single locator hole (w/ grommet) in the upper right. In the bottom left you can see the vacant hole that I mentioned that might possibly be for a pushpin to further secure the bumper skin.

#2 shows three of the four plastic nuts that secure the two tail light assemblies.

#3 shows the vacant hole mentioned above.

#4 shows the connector for the lighting incorporated into the bumper skin. The connector is located in the upper left of picture, with the wiring harness on the bumper skin snaking down through the middle. The white plastic tie dead center must be cut in order to completely remove the bumper skin from the car. I have no idea why they secured the wiring harness from the bumper to the car this way.

#5 shows the back of the car with the bumper skin removed. You can see the other end of that harness connector in the middle-left of the pic, snaking its way through a rather large grommet into the inside of the car, as well as two air door assemblies in the middle (which you shouldn't use to pass the antenna extender wire through). The two blue thingies in the center of the pic are where the two Torx screws hidden under the license plate secure the bumper to the crash bar.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Taillight Removed.jpg (81.6 KB, 67 views)
File Type: jpg Taillight Nuts.jpg (93.0 KB, 58 views)
File Type: jpg Hidden Tab.jpg (70.5 KB, 57 views)
File Type: jpg Bumper Wiring.jpg (76.3 KB, 59 views)
File Type: jpg Nekkid Astra.jpg (79.5 KB, 94 views)

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2009, 06:31 PM   #4
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

RE-INSTALLATION

Re-installation is pretty much in the reverse order. Installing the bumper skin again works best with the help of an additional pair of hands to steady it while reconnecting that electrical connector, as well as the antenna strip to the antenna extender wire (and to the control box). The bumper will stay put if you push it in place near the center and carefully pull the ends taut to get them around the edges of the wheel well openings. Before going any further, however, test the system according to the manufacturer's instructions (no need to go through the procedure here, but it is simple and straight forward). The female spade connector crimped onto the end of the antenna strip is the most delicate part of the whole set-up, so keep this in mind when you're re & re'ing the bumper. Just disconnect the antenna extender wire from the control box to give you as much slack as possible, and then pull it nearly taut and secure in place with some electrical tape to prevent it from moving around. When removing the bumper, remember to remove the tape and disconnect the extender wire again to give you the additional slack.

The bumper has multiple tabs along its length that must fit into the correct slots in the black plastic pieces mounted to the car. Patience is all you need here, but the bumper must be nearly fully engaged along these tabs before you'll be able to pull the ends of the bumper skin around the edges of the wheel well openings. Once done, however, a gentle push is all that will be required to get the slots in the bumper to engage in the tabs along both diagonal edges. And don't forget the two Torx underneath the license plate.

OPERATION

Operation is pretty simple. When you shift the car into reverse (and provide power to the back-up light bulbs), the control box activates, performs a quick scan/test of the system, and sounds three quick chirps. As you back up, obstacles enter the first zone and the speaker begins to beep. The closer you get, the faster the beeps, until you enter the second zone of the antenna. At this point, the speaker gives off a continuous high-pitched beep. As you continue to back up, obstacles enter the third and final zone, where the speakers gives off a continuous low-pitched beep. At this point, you should be about 10-15cm (4-6") away. Although the electro-magnetic version is supposed to be less susceptible to falling snow or heavy rain, it isn't immune. Water running over the surface of the bumper can mess with the EM field of the antenna and the control box will sense this under heavy rain conditions, reducing the sensitivity of the antenna, and disabling the first detection two zones. So, under such conditions, you will only have 10-15cm of space between you and what ever object you are trying to avoid hitting. Now I've driven ultra-sonic equipped vehicles in similar conditions and they will often detect the snow/rain as being in direct contact with the sensors, which causes the warning sytem to sound even when there's no actual obstacle in the vehicle's path. So in falling snow and/or heavy rain, the electro-magnetic version will be partially crippled while the ultra-sonic version completely crippled.

MORE PICS


#1 shows the bumper off of the car. Keep in mind where the exhaust cut-out is so you can remember which side is which when attaching the antenna strip. It can be easy to become disoriented when working on the bumper skin from the inside and confuse left for right. You can see the four slots along the outermost top edge of each end of the bumper.

#2 shows another shot of the bumper, along with the wiring harness and black styrofoam cushioning material.

#3 shows one of the locking tabs that you need to disconnect in order separate the styrofoam from the bumper skin.

#4 shows the bumper with the antenna installed in a parallel pattern with joining vertical strips. As mentioned, this pattern didn't do anything for increasing the system's range, but did increase the number of false signals I was getting (probably because the lower strip ended up being too close to the metal crash bar once reinstalled on the car). The sensor strips were spray painted afterwards with a thin layer of rubberized undercoating for protection. During my second bumper re & re I ended up stripping off the lower antenna strip, as well as the four vertical strips.

#5 shows the black and red wires from the kit tapped into the brown and white wires in the factory back-up light wiring on the right side of the car. I don't like using those plastic Tee splices because I find them way too cumbersome. Instead, I stripped away about 1/8" of the factory insulation and stripped about 1/4" off of the end of the black and red wires. I then wrapped the wires around the factory wires, soldered, and applied some liquid electrical tape and let it dry. Maybe not as pretty, but far less cumbersome. The opening on the right actually leads from the void inside the rear quarter panel below the tail light into the rear hatch area. Although I didn't take a picture of it, the final mounting location for the control box is inside this area, and would actually be visible in this pic through that hole if I had bothered to take a picture afterwards.


PS: If you look very closely at the inner surface of your bumper skin, you might notice four round marks that are barely visible (they were too hard to photograph when I had my bumper off). These might be for the factory ultra-sonic sensors that Opel/Vauxhall offers in Europe, and could be used as location points if you decided to go with ultra-sonics instead. But don't take my word for it.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Bumper Off 1.jpg (88.4 KB, 66 views)
File Type: jpg Bumper Off 2.jpg (82.9 KB, 58 views)
File Type: jpg Locking Tab.jpg (78.2 KB, 43 views)
File Type: jpg Antenna Installed v1.0.jpg (82.8 KB, 66 views)
File Type: jpg Wiring Splicing.jpg (72.6 KB, 57 views)

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2009, 01:34 AM   #5
marcfortier
Junior Member
marcfortier is on a distinguished road
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Montréal, Québec
Posts: 36

2009 Astra XE
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

Did you say how much it was? (you don't really expect us to read twenty pages, do you? THanks for the details, and for taking the time )

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to marcfortier's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help marcfortier reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
marcfortier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2009, 12:37 AM   #6
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

Quote:
Originally Posted by marcfortier View Post
Did you say how much it was? (you don't really expect us to read twenty pages, do you? THanks for the details, and for taking the time )
Sorry... I thought the link to their website was enough.

£69.97 for the audible version and £79.97 for the audible/visual version. The shipping charges from the UK were very reasonable because of the compact packaging. Looking back at my records, it appears that everything was about $128 US, including shipping to Canada, plus the UK VAT.

In comparison, I found this ultra-sonic kit around the same time. The kit is $99.75 US but shipping was more than double (but that's how some companies choose to make a profit).

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 12:02 PM   #7
leadpathfinder
New Member
leadpathfinder is on a distinguished road
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit PD1 Review

I wasted 200 Pounds on buying these sensors just now and realized that they dont work on my car inspite of the website claiming that it works on Chevrolet 2010 Cars.

It has been 10 days since I wrote to the customer care and technical support but there is no holding message even. Parking Dynamics customer care sucks and technical support is non existent. I think it is one man show.

On doing some research I found that these sensors are available from many china vendors and proxel for much cheaper cost and much better support.

Parking Dynamics sensors do not fit on Chevrolet 2010 cars and above as all the Chevrolet bumpers have a foam fitted behind the bumpers and Parking Dynamics could not tell whether it will work or where to fit the sensors below the foam or above the foam.

Bottom line , the customer care is very poor and I wish there was BBB like in North America where I could report my experiences. If you try and leave a negative review it never gets posted as the reviewer moderates it and this is the reason there are no negative reviews on their site. You have to really search to find negative reviews.

Extremely disappointed with No Holes Parking Sensors and I think it should be named No Tech Support Parking Sensors Electromagnetic Sensors.

My suggestion is to go for conventional sensors as they are time tested, If one company uses these sensors (Fiat) that is no clue to their quality. Rest of the companies are using conventional sensors and hence it makes sense to use what has always been working. do not get carried away.

Their is no patent number for No Holes or No Tech Support Parking Sensors. I am trying to find what is the patent number.

Do not buy at all. Its a waste of money.



The funny thing is that when you type " Electromagnetic Parking Sensors" in Google , you get at least 6-7 vendors selling this kit which looks alike and the price varies from 15 USD in bulk to 250 USD which PD is selling. How can then this be patented by PD. If it is a patent by PD then it should be suing the others who are selling the same kit.

Secondly I read all reviews on the Parking Dynamics sight and there is no negative review not even one except on Amazon.com which of course they have no control over. So are they filtering the reviews and only placing the ones which have positive reviews. They claim to have sold 500000 pieces however there are only 30 odd reviews all 4/5 stars.

BMW and all luxury car makes use the Ultrasonic Sensors and wonder why their researchers have kept away from this.

I think it is a gimmick selling and I feel angry to loose my money over such a product. When you search Google for the product review you will again see careful crafted and keyword centric ezine articles or other reviews. Just see how many times Parking Dynamics is written in these articles and if you have any idea of Search Engine Optimization they seem to be carefully used in these articles.

Please let me know if there is any body like BBB in UK where I can make a complaint.

Atleast one of the installers is honest to admit that there are a lot of factors which comes in the way of correct sensor fitment which are thickness of the bumper , exact height etc. Atleast the installers are more honest.

I would recommend people from buying this sensor except those are driving Fiat cars as they are the only ones who are ordering these products and installing in their cars, so maybe it works in Fiat Cars.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to leadpathfinder's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help leadpathfinder reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
leadpathfinder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2010, 04:18 PM   #8
Astra La Vista!
Senior Member
Astra La Vista! has a spectacular aura aboutAstra La Vista! has a spectacular aura about
 
Astra La Vista!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,490
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

I can't comment on the current level of tech support, but I had several questions answered back before & after I installed my system a year ago.

That being said, I installed mine between the bumper skin and the foam (which is removable), and haven't had any problems. The maximum range is less than the ultra-sonic variety, but so is the minimum range -- which to me is more beneficial (if you need to detect objects that are 6+ feet away from your bumper, you should be doing a shoulder check instead). The absolute minimum range of an OEM ultra-sonic system seems to be about a foot, and that's a waste of about 8" of wiggle room (the minimum range of the PD system is about 4") when you are trying to parallel park in a tight spot. Some of the aftermarket ultra-sonic ones I've experienced have been aimed so poorly that the mere act of backing up in a narrow alley caused the system to continuously sound the entire time. And with the ultra-sonic variety, you only get one shot at placing the sensors -- unless you don't mind having spare 3/4" holes in your bumper.

Just food for thought. YMMV.

...
"That's a Hruck Bugbear, manufactured in Eastern Europe in the eighties and imported to the States. People mock it as a poor man's Yugo. I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering."

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Astra La Vista!'s Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Astra La Vista! reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Astra La Vista! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2013, 12:53 AM   #9
smwalker
Member
smwalker has a spectacular aura aboutsmwalker has a spectacular aura aboutsmwalker has a spectacular aura about
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Azusa, CA
Posts: 388
 

2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit

Hey ALV, thanks so much for posting this, and for turning me on to this product. To add to your write up. I took the wire out of the interior thru an existing gromment/weep hole at the base of the body. A cut towards the top of the gromment did the trick. Then just a matter of feeding it up the body cavity up to a hole inside the tail lamp area.



Also the small access flap is a great place to mount the module fits right on there and makes adjustment easy.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to smwalker's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help smwalker reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
smwalker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2015, 04:35 AM   #10
MultiDan
New Member
MultiDan is on a distinguished road
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 1
Default Re: Installing the "Parking Dynamics" Park Sensor Kit PD1 Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by leadpathfinder View Post

Their is no patent number for No Holes or No Tech Support Parking Sensors. I am trying to find what is the patent number.
Quote:
Originally Posted by leadpathfinder View Post

The funny thing is that when you type " Electromagnetic Parking Sensors" in Google , you get at least 6-7 vendors selling this kit which looks alike and the price varies from 15 USD in bulk to 250 USD which PD is selling. How can then this be patented by PD. If it is a patent by PD then it should be suing the others who are selling the same kit.

To all those trying to find the

(Patent)

worldwide.espacenet(.com)/publicationDetails/biblio?DB=EPODOC&II=13&ND=3&adjacent=true&locale=e n_EP&FT=D&date=19971028&CC=US&NR=5682136A&KC=A

//please remove () around .com as haven't made 15 posts yet.

I believe I have found it, it is not linked to the company but an individual (DEL SIGNORE MAURO).

As for why many places sell this patented equipment, that's down to the inventor, he can sell rights or the company can have distributors, they can charge what they like to each so price will vary and possibly by a lot,

Hope this helps

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to MultiDan's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help MultiDan reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
MultiDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
98' SC2 "stuck" in PARK when it's cold outside nvshrs06 S-Series Tech 16 09-20-2013 06:13 PM
99 SL2 "park" 10 amp fuse problems saturnbandit S-Series Tech 0 11-17-2009 10:27 AM
high "park" idle and suspension issues caspervue Vue Tech 0 10-27-2008 08:55 AM
Outlook "Bumpers" and Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist, BrightOutlook Outlook General 9 06-27-2007 04:55 PM
"Park" (instrument panel) fuse keeps blowing OhioSaturnGuy S-Series Tech 3 07-15-2006 02:42 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:02 PM.

Advanced Forum Search | Advanced Photo Search


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SaturnFans.com. The Saturn Enthusiasts Site.