Howto: upgrade your parking sensors from basic PDC to optical parking

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First things first: how to identify whether you have an early Eos. From 2009 you should be safe; if your Eos is from 2006-8 you should check if your parking assistance is at module 76 or module 10. If it’s module 10 and has part number 1K0919475 with a revision before F then you can just buy the new module and plug it in. If it’s sitting on module 76 and has part number 1Q0919283, as mine was, you will have a much harder life, and you will lose the «obstacle in rear area» protection when opening the roof.

As well as the newer parking module, the parking sensors were updated, and are a different shape and have different connectors.

Caveat: These instructions do not cover how to attach the newer parking sensors to your bumper or how to modify the wiring loom, because I just got a newer bumper. If you choose to mount new sensors on your existing bumper, you will need to figure out how to attach the retainers, and if you choose to re-wire the bumper wiring loom, you will need to adhere to the wiring diagram in the workshop manual, because the sensors have different pinouts.

Allow at least half a day for this, assuming you have a replacement bumper.

Some of you will be wondering why I didn’t make a video of this. Answer: you can’t get a camera into all the fiddly places, and would have doubled the time required.

0. You will need
In your car already
RNS310/315/510 or RCD310/510
Gateway that knows about parking assistance on module 10 (a 7N0 version will be fine)
Parts
One parking control module, 1K0919475 revision F or later
One bumper with newer PDC sensors, or parts 1 and 5-8 on here, observing quantities and one bumper wiring loom, or the will to modify the existing one
About 6m of 1mm2 wire, preferably red or red and white if you like correct wiring colours
About 6m (maybe more for RHD) of CAN-bus twisted wire — orange/brown and orange/black
One 2-pin MQS plug
One 2-pin MQS socket
Five female MQS connectors
Two male MQS connectors
One female 2.8mm JPT connector
One mini fuse (5A should do)
Tools
Torx screwdrivers and sockets — T20, T25 and T30
Fine flathead screwdriver
Blanket
Crimp tool
VAG diagnostic tool capable of recoding the gateway (VCDS or OBDeleven)

1. Opening things up, part one
Ensure the ignition is off and nobody is going to sneak in and press your brake pedal when you’re doing steps 2 and 3.
Remove the luggage compartment cover — with the cover up, pull the tab out from the mount on the left-hand side, then move the left side forward and out, then move the cover to the left.
Undo the screw on the mount on the right-hand side and remove the plastic mount.
Remove the warning triangle and remove the two annoying plastic screws. Don’t try to turn them by hand because you’ll slice your finger open. If they look like they’re 3mm hex bits, force a T20 screwdriver in for more torque. You may need to hold the back part in place firmly with a flathead screwdriver to stop it from turning.
Lift up the tailgate seal and remove the plastic trim that runs along the rear of the tailgate.
Now we’re going to get some access by loosening the trim on the right. Undo the two annoying plastic screws at the bottom, one by the rear light and one at the top roughly half way back — it’s almost hidden by the hinge mechanism. Remove the big rubber stop on the base of the right-hand side. You should now be able to lift up the right-hand side luggage compartment carpet. Take a peek under it and you’ll see the parking control unit on the right.

2. Removing the bumper
First, remove the tail lights. Prise the black cover off, starting at the bottom and working your way up. Undo the T25 screw it hides.
Open up the luggage compartment trim on the left-hand side, as you did in step 1 for the right-hand side.
Undo the two 16mm bolts (you will need a long socket for this — they are not on tightly so a 17mm one won’t wreck them).
Unplug the light by pushing the spring clip up hard. Eventually it will give way. Ignore the workshop manual’s advice for how to detach the connector, it’s pointless.
Slide the light out towards you.
Undo the three T25 screws that are exposed on each side.
Now, get under the bumper and remove the two T30 screws closer the middle, and the two T25 screws toward the sides.
Next, go around the back of the wheel arch liner, removing the T25 screws.
Finally, lever out the retaining pin at the top of the bumper, inside the wheel arch.
Lay a blanket down on the floor, and pull the bumper towards you. The hardest part will be on the lip of the tailgate, where there are four retaining clips that may have to be teased open with a fine screwdriver. After removing the bumper, disconnect the plug.

3. Installing the new bumper
As Haynes say: installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Newer bumpers don’t require any modification. Don’t put the luggage compartment trim back yet.

4. Running additional wires
NOTE: these instructions are for LHD, and I did it this way because I was running the wires for the reversing camera at the same time. RHD cars have the CAN gateway in a different location. Sorry, can’t help you there
Remove:

  • the back seat (yank up and then forwards),
  • rear left side trim (T20 screw by the seat belt, T25 screws at the bottom, lift forward, up and out, remember to disconnect the tweeter),
  • rear kick trim (yank upwards),
  • bonnet release (prise retaining thing out with a flathead screwdriver, remove bonnet release handle, undo flathead retaining screw, pull out),
  • panel under steering wheel (remove two T20 screws, lower and pull towards you),
  • small glove box (open, push sides inwards, yank out),
  • dash end trim (prise open with flathead screwdriver).

Push the 1mm2 power wire and the CAN wires through the hole on the left-hand side where there’s what looks like a white plastic bag (apparently noise insulation).
Pull the wires through to the front of the car.
In the luggage compartment, route the wires around the lock, taping them to existing wiring, and across to the parking module. Crimp MQS female connectors on to the ends.

4a. Installing the power wire
Remove the two screws holding the cabin fuse box in place. On the back, prise open the retaining clip at the upper left, and press down on the tab at the bottom. The purple lock should slide open.
Find a spare ignition-switched fuse location (equipment varies but the top row is usually switched).
Crimp the JPT connector on to the cable, insert the cable into the empty slot, close the lock and reattach the fuse holder. Insert the fuse into the slot.

4b. Teeing off powertrain CAN wiring for the parking sensor
Cut 10cm off the end of the CAN wire and strip the three pairs of ends.
Twist one end of the 10cm length together with the cable that’s going to the boot, matching colours, and crimp male MQS connectors on to it. Insert these into the MQS socket.
Crimp female MQS connectors on to the two loose ends of wire. Unplug the gateway, remove pins 6 and 16, and insert the wires you just crimped their place, observing colours.
Insert the two wires you just unplugged into the MQS plug, and connect the MQS plug and socket together, ensuring the colours match.

5. Installing the new parking module and re-pinning
Prise open the clips at the top and bottom of the parking module and pull it out. Unplug the two connectors and release the connector housings.
Undo about 5cm of the wire wrap for both connectors.
Remove pin 10 from the brown connector and insert it into pin 9 on the black connector.
Remove pin 2 from the brown connector and insert it into pin 10 on the black connector.
On the brown connector:
Remove and insulate pin 3 (permanent power). If you don’t do this, your dashboard will light up like a Christmas tree when the ignition is off.
Remove and insulate pins 7 and 14 (infotainment CAN).
Add the power wire to pin 1.
Add the orange and brown CAN wire to pin 9.
Add the orange and black CAN wire to pin 10. NOTE: these are the opposite of what’s in the VW wiring diagram, because somewhere in the wiring loom, VW swap the colours around! No, really. If you get this the wrong way around, your dashboard will light up like a Christmas tree (steering and brakes) when the ignition is on.

6. Re-coding
Using VCDS or OBDeleven, on the gateway, remove module 76 from the installation list and add module 10.
Go through all modules and clear fault codes.

7. Testing
Turn the ignition on (no need to start the engine) and put the car in reverse. The OPS display should show up — walk around the back of the car and you should see it working and hear it beeping.

8. Reassembly
Put the sides of the luggage compartment back down where they should be, press the trim studs in and screw them tight.
Reattach the tailgate lock trim, noting that it slides in vertically. You’ll tell when you’ve done it right by looking at the holes where the trim screws go — if there’s no gap between plastic and metal you’ve got it right. Insert the trim screws.
Reattach the rubber seal.
Reinsert the luggage compartment cover, put it in the «up» position, and press the retaining clip in.
Inside the car, reattach the dash end trim, panel under steering wheel, kick trim, rear side trim (remembering to reconnect the tweeter) and back seat.

Diagnostics 101 — if you haven’t already read this and invested in a VW-specific diagnostic tool, go and do so now — preferably before something goes wrong on your car!

For stuff I’ve done (mainly ICE and other electronics): check my About Me page for a set of links.

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