Installation Guide

General Installation Guide.

All bumpers are not created equal.

Our Dolphin Parking Sensors were designed primarily to be fitted into polycarbonate bumpers and draw their power from a 12v supply. For the most part, they will work when fitted to metal bumpers, although results cannot be guaranteed.

For best results the metal bumper will need to be flat and outward facing. You will also need to remove any metal swarf at the rear of the bumper, caused when drilling.

Dolphin Parking Sensors will not work when fitted to bull bars or other enclosed steel frames.

Sensor placement and testing prior to installation.

When fitting, the sensors will need to be installed between 40 – 70 cm from the ground. Ideal spacing is between 30 – 40 cm. Where possible the sensors should be horizontally level and spaced evenly across the bumper. This will provide optimum performance and provide a neat, symmetrical appearance. If these criteria cannot be met, please click here for further information.

If the vehicle has a tow bar or a rear mounted spare wheel, best practice is to power the sensors off the reverse light (or suitable battery feed) and hold them where you intend to fit them. Please note, a 9v square PP3 type will suffice to power individual sensors. Testing in this way will enable you to choose the best possible mounting area before you go ahead and drill the bumper. This is also advisable if the sensors need to be fitted lower than the ideal height of 40 cm or the bumper is angled downwards.

Bumpers. To remove or not to remove.

Another important preliminary check to make before drilling is the space behind the bumper. There will need to be approx 25mm clearance depth behind to house the sensors. Removal of the bumper is not always necessary, but our fitters tend to do this on most of their jobs to save time and make the fitting easier. If you are in any doubt regarding where to fit the sensors, please check your local dealership or look at the vehicles on their forecourt.


When you have decided on suitable locations for your sensors, it is advisable to apply masking tape or similar adhesive and mark the exact location for drilling. Once done, double check your measurements. Every Dolphin Parking Sensor kit comes with the correct size drill bit supplied. This is 21mm diameter for the regular size and 18.2mm for micro.


Once the holes have been drilled, feed the sensor cables through and firmly push the sensors into the place. They are held in place by way of foam padding at the side of each sensor.

For most cases, on the left hand side of the boot and beneath the interior carpet lining, a grommet can be found. This should have various cables passing through it and into the boot. This is the ideal route for the parking sensor cables to take.

Alternatively, you could drill a small hole into the side foot-well of the boot and secure it using a rubber grommet or silicon sealant. Any excess cabling must be laid out in flat parallel lines to avoid a build up of static. This would cause random beeps from the systems buzzer.

Picking up the power feed.

Rear kits pick up their power feed from the reverse light cluster. Therefore, you will need to access this and identify the cables required.

For reference, you can check the installation diagrams in the customer manual. All connections should be made as close to the rear light cluster as possible. Testing of the circuitry can be achieved with a voltmeter or slicing a little insulation off a cable to check it carries the correct voltage.

At this point you can twist a cable onto this bare wire or connect using a suitable scotch lock connector.

Fitting to vehicles with a canbus electrical system.

Most modern cars will have canbus, or Multiplexed, wiring systems. Dolphin Parking Sensors will go onto these vehicles without any problems as you are not interfacing directly with the canbus electrical system. The live is picked up from the rear light cluster and the earth is taken from the vehicle chassis.

Multiplexed wiring systems carry coded information signals and should not be touched in any case.

Our front parking sensor kits can be wired into a canbus interface which will switch them on automatically when your speed drops below 6mph. The kit is then switched off when you exceed that speed. To find out if you vehicle is canbus compatible, take a look at our Canbus Compatibility page

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