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Adding a trunk popper

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My Loyale sedan model didn't come with an automatic trunk release. Oh sure I have the lever on the driver side. But that is still a cable manually releasing the trunk lock. After having added the LED trunk lights to my Loyale sedan, I decided I wanted to do something more.

Then I came across an offer on Amazon for a trunk pop solenoid kit for less than $15 and figured why not? It will make a nice addition to the car and if at a later date I decide I want to add keyless entry, they usually have a function for popping the trunk. If I decide to go that route, this trunk pop project will already be done.

Adding a trunk pop solenoid is a fairly easy job. Basically you have a solenoid with a  cable that is connected to the latch that opens the trunk. When a button is pressed, a current passes through the solenoid and it pulls on a plunger, much like a doorbell mechanism however instead of pushing something forward, the trunk pop solenoid pulls a cable that trips the trunk release mechanism.

I chose the Directed Electronic 522T trunk release solenoid kit. It comes with the solenoid, wires, fuse and a yellow button with a trunk symbol molded into it. The image below shows all you get:



If you think at some point you might want to add a keyless entry system and wire in a trunk pop function, you will also need a relay so that you can have a control signal rather than a drive signal. Most keyless entry systems will offer an output of 250ma (milliamps) maximum. This is not enough current to drive the solenoid that pops the trunk. Therefore, a relay is needed to control the solenoid circuit. This is the option I chose.

Mounting the solenoid

Although there are brackets that come with the 522T kit, you don't really need them. Why drill
holes in your car if you can avoid it? The solenoid itself is the right size to tuck in between the lip of the trunk and the right brake light housing. The advantage here is that while it is snug, it is also easily removable for servicing. The picture below shows the solenoid in position:






Connecting The Cable

The next thing needed is to connect the cable coming out of the solenoid to the trunk lock release latch. I found it easiest to follow the trunk key rod to where it attaches to the trunk lock mechanism and connect the cable there. This means drilling a hole in the release lever and threading the cable through and securing the loop with the cable lock screw that came with the kit. The steps are shown below:

Start at the trunk lock rod just behind the keyhole.


Rotate the retainter clip down so the rod can be released.


Remove the rod from the key hole lever.



Now undo the two bolts (A) holding the latch inside the trunk as shown below. Also, you will need to remove the bolt ( B) holding the trunk release cable:




You can now remove the latch mechanism from the mount. Disconnect the release cable and slide the key lock connecting rod out through the mount along with the complete latch assembly. While it is out of the car, clean and lubricate the mechanism for optimum performance. You will need to drill a hole in the release lever that the key rod is connected to so the solenoid can move the lever in the same manner as the key. Then thread the solenoid cable through the latch mount and through the hole and secure with the cable clamp as shown below:






Secure the latch back into the mount by threading the key connector rod through the mount and to the key turn mechanism as it was originally. Connect the release cable to the latch and secure the latch using the two bolts removed earlier.

Be sure to position the latch in the same vertical spot as it was when you took it out. If the latch is sitting too low, it won't catch the striker bar when the trunk is slammed shut. Connect the key rod and test the trunk by closing the lid and opening with the key. If the trunk won't close, the latch is too low. Loosen the two bolts and slide the latch up a bit and retest the closing. Now tighten the cable release holder. Go to the front and test that it works as before. Adjust if necessary. Make ssure these work properly before proceeding.


Initial test of the Solenoid

Testing often and early is the best way to ensure each step of the installation has been successful. Attach the spade connector of the green wire from the kit to one of the solenoid terminals. Attach the black wire spade connector to ther other terminal of the solenoid.  Tuck the solenoid between the brake light housing and the trunk lip as discussed earlier. If the cable to the latch is taught (e.g. no slack), you need to unmount the latch and adjust the cable clamp to allow some slack. If you can, add slack merely by sliding the solenoid forward a bit without making is so loose it will fall out, then do that instead. It is important that there be some slack for the solenoid to be able to gain enough momentum to trip the lock.

Using a battery charger, connect the green wire to the positive. Now touch the black wire to the negative clamp of the charger with it set to 12V. You should here a clunk from the solenoid. If you do not, recheck the wires to the solenoid and that the charger is on and set to 12v. Once you verify the solenoid works and pulls the cable, the next test is to see if the cable is adjusted correctly to trip the trunk lock and open the trunk.

To do this test you will need to be outside the trunk with the wires accessible and the trunk lid closed. You can do this by removing one of the rubber grommets in the trunk floor and feeding the wires through the trunk floor to the outside of the trunk.  Close the trunk lid and connect the wires as before. The solenoid should clunk and the lid should pop open. If it clunks but doesn't pop, there may be too much slack in the cable. Take up some slack by adjustung the cable connector or sliding the solenoid back. Restest.  If there is no clunk but you see a drain on the charger, you probably need to add slack to the cable. Adjust the cable and retest. Once you have successfully popped the trunk this way 5 times in a row, you are ready to wire the relay and switch.




Adding the Relay And Switch

The diagram below shows how the relay and switch are wired to the circuit. A signal control wire goes from relay pin 85 to the switch at the front of the car. Also a +12v red wire will need to be run from the trunk area to the relay to power the relay control coil as well as the solenoid itself. Be sure to use the fuse that came with the kit.




Find a spot to mount the relay. I put my relay behind a trunk support as shown in the attached image below:






You can mount the switch using the included bracket and screws.I preferred a more factory look. I took an access cover for an option that never came with my loyale and mounted the switch there as shown in the attached image:


Edited by MR_Loyale

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