Dongar Technologies Adapter for 5th Gen 4Runner with Garmin Dash Cam

Dongar Technologies Dashcam Adapter

The Dongar Technologies Dashcam Adapter for 2020+ Toyota 4Runner Models

Traditionally, there were two methods of running power to your dashcam:

  1. Run a long USB cord down the side of your windshield (not aesthetically pleasing).
  2. Take apart your headliner and side trim to run a hidden power cord (too labor-intensive for most). You can see an installation overview from Frank on this Grdian Krios dash cam kit – a great install, you just don’t need to do this anymore.

What Dongar Technologies came up with is essentially a plug-and-play wire-spliced adapter that draws power from your powered rear-view mirror. This allows you to run the shortest USB cord possible to your dashcam, keeping everything hidden behind your mirror.

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What’s Included

What's included in the box

In the box, you’ll find the adapter, pry tool, zip tie, instructions, and a couple of short USB cords with different options depending on what your dashcam of choice uses.

Dashcam Options

The Dongar kit includes a micro-USB and mini-USB cable, which should cover the power connection for most cameras. If you choose a camera that uses USB-C, just know that you’ll need to pick one of those up.

Garmin Dashcam Mini 2

I chose to go with the Dongar recommended Garmin Dashcam Mini 2. This is a fairly no-frills option but is also one of the most compact cameras on the market, keeping in theme with trying to have as discrete a dashcam install as possible. Some of the main features of this camera include 1080p resolution, wifi-connectivity, local and optional online footage storage.

Before doing anything, make sure that your vehicle is off.

Step 1. Unclip Rearview Mirror Wire Cover

Unclip mirror wire cover

Take your pry tool and wedge it under the left side of the rearview mirror wire cover. Once inserted, give a slight twist to the pry tool which will depress the cover’s retaining clips. Be careful not to pull down on the cover just yet, as you’ll risk breaking two plastic retaining clips at the top. Repeat these steps on the right side of the cover.

Step 2. Removing the Rearview Mirror Wire Cover

Remove mirror wire cover

Once both sides are undone, slide the whole cover down, following the surface of the windshield. There will be a slight clicking noise, which is normal. Slide the cover down as much as possible and then pull it off starting from the bottom.

Step 3. Disconnect Mirror Wire Harness

Disconnect mirror wire harness

With the wire harness exposed, you’ll want to depress the center clip on the plug to disconnect it.

Step 4. Remove Overhead Control Housing

Remove front control overhead unit

This step depends on which 4runner trim you have. If you do not have these controls and instead have a sunglass holder, skip to step 6.

For models with the MTS and CRAWL system controls, I found it easiest this module by running a pry tool along the side until it comes out of the headliner. Keep one hand underneath because once the retaining clips disengage, the control module will fall down.

Step 5. Disconnect Wire Harness

Disconnect wire harness

With the module out of the headliner, remove the single wire harness by depressing the clip in the center of it.

Step 6. Remove Screws

Remove screws to overhead unit

There will be two Philips head screws holding the rest of the overheard controls housing in place.

Step 7. Pull Down Overhead Unit

Pull down overhead unit

Once the two screws are removed, gently start to pull down on the housing by the map lights. You may need to gradually increase your pulling force so that you can disengage two plastic studs that are attached to the roof – these are the only two attachment points.

Step 8. Disconnect Wire Harness

Disconnect wire harness

With the control housing off, there will be one main wire harnesses to disconnect, in a similar fashion to the others up to this point.

Step 9. Feed Mirror Wire Harness Through Headliner

Feed factory wire harness up through headliner

You will need to slightly pull the front of the headliner down to squeeze the harness through.

Step 10. Feed Single Plug End of Dongar Harness Through Headliner

Feed harness plug through headliner

You will need to slightly pull the front of the headliner down to squeeze the plug through.

Step 11. Connect Factory Wire Harness

Connect factory wire harness

Next, connect the factory harness to the Dongar adapter.

Step 12. Connect Opposite End of Dongar Harness Into the Factory Mirror Plug

Connect wire harness

You may need to pull some of the wire slack back down from when you fished the Dongar adapter and factory wire harness up through the headliner.

Step 13. Tidy Everything Up

Tidy up wires

Find a space towards the front of the headliner where you can tuck the Dongar + factory harness to make everything flush again.

Step 14. Place Zip Tie

Position zip tie

Fish the supplied zip tie behind the factory mirror wire plate.

Step 15. Replace Rearview Wire Harness Cover

Reattatch wire cover

Replace the factory wire harness cover in reverse order of Step 2, keeping the USB plug portion outside of the cover.

Step 16. Zip Tie Dognar Usb Plug to Wire Harness Cover

Zip-tie adapter

I chose to connect the USB cable to the adapter first, before zip-tying the USB plug to the side of the wire cover, since it was easier to see the plug.

Step 17. Reattach Overhead Modules

Reattatch overhead modules

Loosley reattach the overhead control modules and their wire harnesses in reverse order of steps 5 thru 7. I would advise not fully re-attach everything until after testing that your dashcam properly functions.

Step 18. Wrapping Up

Wrapping up

Once you’ve tested that your camera is operational, fully reattach everything and position your dashcam as desired.

Final Thoughts

Final thoughts

I’m very pleased with how this setup turned out, super clean and barely noticeable while driving. I was never a fan of the very obvious-looking dashcam setups where everything just sits right in your field of view. While this involved a little more work than the Dongar kits sold for other or older vehicles, it was still way less than the full wire routing option as mentioned at the beginning of this post.

One important note is that functions like parking monitoring where a dashcam will start recording if motion or sound is detected, will not work using this adapter. This is because power is only supplied to the dashcam when your vehicle is either running or the auxiliary mode is on. I actually liked this feature, because it means there isn’t the possibility of something draining my battery while parked for extended periods of time.

What types of dashcam setups do you all have? Do you care about running dashcams at all? Feel free to drop a comment and let me know!

Thanks for reading, and see you all on the next one.

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Gin
Gin
2 months ago

Would it work for 2014 4runner ?

Rizaad
Rizaad
2 months ago

Hey great thread! I was curious on the details on that small led light you have pictured.

Last edited 2 months ago by Rizaad
mike
mike
3 months ago

Hi I’m wondering could I use the cable for other dash cam?

BrickSprickly
BrickSprickly
3 months ago

Hey, thank you for this write-up. I’ve been running a USB 2 cable from the cam through the right pillar down through the glovebox, plugging into a 2x USB charger I installed in lieu of the cig lighter. Always been annoyed by this setup, but no longer 🙂

BrickSprickly
BrickSprickly
3 months ago
Reply to  Ryan L

This depends on the cam itself. The model I purchased is a bit bulkier than yours but includes an internal battery so it can activate and record when the key isn’t in. It also includes a rear-facing mini cam with enough wiring to mount above the back glass. Nice little model, had it issue-free for three years now!

https://www.amazon.com/CHORTAU-Dashboard-G-Sensor-Recording-Detection/dp/B07Q5R22DV/ref=dp_prsubs_1?pd_rd_i=B07Q5R22DV&psc=1

BrickSprickly
BrickSprickly
3 months ago
Reply to  BrickSprickly

I should add that this one will record for preset intervals once activated by motion or movement. It won’t record 24/7 due to the battery life but it works when it needs to 🙂

Sergio P
Sergio P
3 months ago

I went with the tandem because I wanted to be able to record inside the vehicle and out and have the ability to record when I’m gone. I have seen reviews about the smaller versions how they get really hot, is that true? Regardless, I think this is a much cheaper and good option if you don’t care about recording inside the vehicle or when you’re gone.

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