This is a very niche post, for a very specific audience. However, there’s very little information gathered into one place about how best to do this. Basically, my old Scenic had every single option on it, my new one doesn’t. The only thing I’ve missed is the Sliding Armrest / Storage Box. It adds an additional 12 volt socket, as well as an enclosed storage space – ideal for sunglasses, tissues, keys, chargers etc.
Instead I had a sort of exposed tray with a cupholder. This was okay, but I wanted an armrest again.
It’s not very difficult to replace the tray with the armrest – especially on the first generation of Scenic 2s. These generally have a connector hidden under the carpet, and you can just plug it in – and bolt it down. I’ve got a later variant which doesn’t seem to have the connector floating about, so it needs wiring in.
This isn’t as scary as it sounds – it’s pretty simple – even if you haven’t done any car electrics. If you’re not sure though – don’t do it! I don’t take any responsibility for any damage you do to you / your car by following this guide. I’m merely showing how I’ve done it, and it works for me.
1 – Get hold of a Sliding Armrest.
These are generally ALWAYS on eBay. Prices vary, from £30-150. You need to make sure you’re getting everything you need to fit it. If you’re replacing a ‘tray’ like mine you MUST have the black mounting plate. It’s hard to get on its own. Plus, it’s ideal to have the 4 x 13mm nuts that hold the mounting plate to the chassis and the 4 x T30 screws to fix the armrest onto the mounting plate. You could probably source these from Renault, but that’s a PITA.
It’s a good idea to test it too – these Armrests can be prone to failure. I used a battery holder like this with 8 x 1.5v AA batteries to create 12v. You can put the black negative wire from the battery holder to the black wire on the armrest connector. Then move the red positive terminal across the other wires on the armrest connector. Mine had three.
Yellow – Sliding Mechanism (press the switch under the armrests to test – you should hear the whirr of the release motor)
White – 12v Socket (check you’re getting 12v to the socket with a multimeter)
Red – Light (it should light up with the lid open, or with the switch – if it doesn’t work – you might have a duff bulb)
NB. If your wires are different, test with a multimeter before chucking current down them, however, the black is usually negative/ground.
Once you’re happy your armrest is functioning proceed to step two.
2 – Remove the Tray.
The tray is pretty simple to remove, the rubber mat just lifts out to reveal 4 x 13mm bolts to undo. The two at the back will probably need a deep socket to remove. I used this one. With a bit of a wiggle, the plastic will just lift out. Have a rummage around the carpet / sound deadening near the OBD port for a connector for the armrest. If there is one – great. If not.. Proceed to step 3!
3 – Get some wiring ready.
On my armrest there are two ground feeds, and three ‘live’ feeds. Slider Release, 12v Socket and Light. You could probably skip the feed to the light – it’s not essential. I used two ‘add a circuit‘ connectors to piggy back onto existing wiring. I added a circuit to the fusebox under the passenger seats. It’s found by pulling out the storage tray (applying pressure to the sides).
There are 3 x 10A fuses – these are meant for accessory sockets around the car. So I tapped from the top and bottom one. These are also all ‘ignition live’ too – which is fine for this application. Leave the 25A one alone – that’s the Electronic Parking Brake. I used some 16 Gauge wire and these crimp connectors and this crimping tool to create a longer ‘loom’ from the fused taps.
You’ve probably noticed I’ve got two feeds from the fusebox, and need three for the armrest. I doubled up for the feeds to the light and the slide as these are unlikely to be used at the same time for any period of time. The 12v socket has its own feed as that will be used constantly.
For the ground, I crimped two wires onto a yellow ‘Ring’ crimp and put it onto the thread that the mounting plate is bolted on to – this is grounded to the chassis.
I also added male bullet connectors onto each wire from the armrest. You could solder / heatshrink wrap the wires from your ‘loom’ but I wanted something that could be removed easily in case of faults in future. So using male / female bullets seemed to work best.
Thread your wires through the little hole to the passenger fuse compartment (it’s the OBD connector end).
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