iPod Integration Kit Installation

For Jeep Compass 2007-2008

Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for any damage done by those who follow this guide. I am not affiliated with Chrysler and am doing this just to help out fellow owners.

The right tools

On Jeep Forum I read that it was recommended to pick up a tool kit meant for disassembling interiors. Since my Compass is only months old, I didn't want to scratch anything, or risk snapping parts. I went to the local Princess Auto and picked this up for about $15.00. I think I could have done without it, especially since I only used the tool on the far right. However, it did help considerably.

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Naturally, you'll need the kit itself. Mine is the integration kit, not the other one. This one allows you use the headunit, and/or steering wheel controls to change the songs, playlists, etc. It comes with very good instructions. You can download this online as a PDF.

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Let's tear it apart

By following the PDF, the first thing to do is to disconnect the battery. Under the hood, you'll see a plastic part above the battery. I believe this here to dampen the sound of the engine. I was tempted to not put this back, but since it's under warranty, I decided against it.

There's two clips (highlighted in the photo) that you twist 90 degrees. You then simply lift up and pull towards you. It comes off very easily.

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You'll then see the battery, and it's the negative terminal that you need to disconnect. Be sure to do this since you don't want to create a short in your car and wreck something. I don't know for sure, but you may void your warranty.

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Use a 10mm socket or wrench to remove.

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Be sure to move it far away so it's not touching. I had to tuck it down a bit because it wanted to move towards the terminal.

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Get inside

Now the fun part. Tearing apart your nice interior! It really wasn't that bad to do. I did it under 2 hours, and I took my time.

Important: The instructions say to remove pieces on top of the dash, including the A-arm covers. I skipped this step as I heard from others on the Jeep Forum it was not necessary. I found this to be true, but you do risk snapping a clip off the top dash piece. It is up to you.

I started off with using the tool and pushing it in towards the centre, starting at the back, and working my way forward. The clips just popped off for me. There's a tab that tucks under the other part of the dash (that the instructions say to remove) by the window. I just used from force and bent it out of there. It came out just fine for me.

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When lifting the back up, I got my hand under there, and pushed up to remove the front two clips. This is hard, but you'll get it done. My hand was a little red after this.

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Once the cover is off, flip is over carefully and check that all the clips are still there. If not, you'll have to find them, or get more at your dealership. I was lucky and had every one of them. I think the tool helped with that.

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Now on top, you can see two screws that you need to remove. Easy as pie.

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This part was tricky. The instructions say to remove this, but I thought it was for the silver piece. This is not correct. You have to remove the inner area. I have a 5-speed, so it's the black rubber piece. Using this tool again, I lifted the silver part carefully, and found the tab on the boot area. This is how you take it off. The silver part comes off after you remove some screws.

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Now remove those screws I mentioned. They hold on the silver parts.

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Using the tool again, I found more clips that are right beside the radio. Simply sliding the tool further inwards ends up releasing the clips. You'll quickly notice that the vents, and the temperature controls are attached to the cover, so watch out for that.

The bottom of the cover if where you have to be very careful. There's two clips behind where the screws were. It's a flimsy piece, so work with it to release those. Just do one side at a time.

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Once all clips are off, it's still held on tight by the cables to the controls. I personally didn't want to mess with them, so I just twisted the cover sideways to get out of the way of the radio. Put a cloth between areas that might scratch too. Things will move around as you go.

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Now it's easier from here on. Somewhat.

There's four screws holding in the head unit (CD player, deck, etc.) Remove those.

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Then pull out the head unit slowly. Behind there will be a connector, and the antenna cord plugged in. Remove those. The connector(s) has a tab you press down first. Pull by the grey piece, not by the wires!

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Now you have to drop down your glove box. Once it's open, you'll notice where it catches to prevent it from falling out. Pinch these towards each other. It takes a bit of strength.

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The instructions say to drill a hole about 1 1/8". This is so you can use the provided rubber plug. I didn't have that size and went with 1 1/2". I used a zip tie on the cords to prevent them from falling back behind the glove box.

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Now the instructions provided (PDF) become pretty straight forward. You can't really mess up this part, since certain connectors only fit certain others.

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The provided metal box is the adapter. This is the brain of it all. Find an appropriate area to zip-tie it too. There's a black sticker pad to wrap around it also to prevent damage.

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The unit I have is the simplest one out there from what I know. It only has the one connection on the back. The second one that could plug into there just hangs freely.

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Before I cleaned up all the wires, and put all the parts back, I reconnected the battery and ran a test.

It worked! First try!

Some things did seem odd. Changing the song with the head unit, and then with the steering wheel control seemed to confuse it. It also showed the Chrysler logo.

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I removed the key, and put everything away, and reassembled the interior. It's pretty straight forward for this as well, since it's just the reverse order.

After I turned on the car again, I plugged my iPod back in. I still don't know why - but now it says Jeep on it, and works perfectly well!

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Finished!

Now you can enjoy listening to your iPod with great quality (as long as your MP3s are good) without ever having to look at it. Not to mention, not worrying about the battery dying.


Update: January 2011

I've recently obtained a new iPod Touch 4th Generation. I gave it a try, and it works perfectly well well with the iPod kit. The Jeep logo does not appear on the Touch's screen, but it does show a connection is made and displays the song being played. All controls work as well as they did with my old iPod Nano.


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Readers are reminded that this is a self created tutorial and the writer is not responsible for any damages done from following these steps.
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