Curb Your Car
Front End Protection

After recently installing a cool looking carbon fiber splitter on a C6 ZO6 we realized that something needed to be done to protect this expensive bit of front end bling. We contacted our friends at RPI Designs (They can be reached Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm at: 888 257 8515) and they sent us the latest piece of front end splitter protection technology. That technology came in the form of an infra red proximity sensor system known as Curb Alert. The carbon fiber front end splitter that was also supplied by RPI Designs is an exquisite reproduction of the original ZR1 unit. Very honestly the RPI unit looks and fits much better than most of the OEM GM splitters we have handled. We thought it would be a shame to let an evil concrete parking lot appliance destroy this piece of automotive art.

curb alert corvette           

The curb alert mini we were sent was specifically engineered for the Corvette C6. The generic units hook up to the battery terminals, the Corvette units employ a specially engineered fuse box hook up. The Curb Alert has three main components; a sensor, a control box and an audible warning device. They also included an assortment of mounting brackets, zip ties, an allen wrench and wire hold downs.

The ZO6 we we intended to use as a test mule presented a problem in the mounting area as it was equipped with a billet front grill. The preferred mounting location is under the upper front fascia.  The billet grill on the "Z" does not allow the sensor unit to be fully recessed thus making it very visible. We decided to mount the sensor unit directly above the splitter's air duct recess on the passenger side. This location may not be ideal but it serves the purpose and renders the unit almost invisible.

curb alert corvette  

After mounting the sensor the next task is to run the sensor wire into the engine compartment. The easiest way to do this is to use a wire fish or a straightened out wire coat hanger. Start by looking down into the passenger side of the engine compartment.  There is an opening on the bottom right side that exits to the floor. Insert the wire fish into the opening and push it to the garage floor. Go to the sensor location and tape the sensor wire to the end of the wire fish or coat hanger. Now all you have to do is pull the wire into the engine compartment. The instructions call for fishing the wire into the engine compartment through the grill. We found that fishing the wire from the engine compartment to the floor was much easier.

curb alert corvette     curb alert corvette

Next route the sensor wire around the passenger side of the engine compartment. The wire can be tucked under the cowl by loosening one of the screws. Continue routing the wire into the passenger compartment. There is a plastic panel that the wire can be tucked behind to completely conceal it. There is no need to pull the panel off just pry it up a bit and tuck the wire behind it.

curb alert corvette

As we mentioned the kit we used was specifically designed for the C6 Corvette and employs a fuse box hook up. If you don't want to mess with the fuse box you can cut off the fuse link and crimp on a 10a fusable link thus allowing a direct hook up to the battery.
We decided to use the fuse box as we had concerns that the units control box would not stand up very well to the extreme heat generated by the big LS engine in the "Z".

The direction call for pulling the seat heater fuse and replacing it with the double fuse power connector. Another snag, the seat heater fuse was already occupied by a previously installed Mild to Wild connector. No problem used the 10a interior lighting fuse instead.

curb alert corvette  

The control box's ground wire was then attached to the 6mm screw at the bottom right of the fuse box panel. We plugged the sensor wires USB connector and the buzzers wire into the control unit.  The top of the buzzer has double sided tape and it is easily mounted under the glove box area. 

The moment of truth was upon us, time to test out the unit. We started the car and were greeted by three beeps from the buzzer. The instructions call for calibrating the sensor.  The manufacturers instructions for this procedure are not all that easy to follow. They call for adjusting the sensor distance to 20" inches and the sensor height to around 4"inches.
We placed the 4" inch high packing box 20" away from the sensor and guess what the alarm went off, the factory calibration was right on.

The only other concern we had was adding another source of parasitic drain to the already stressed out battery. Parasitic battery drain on these cars have left many a Vette owner stranded after only a few days of storage. A side note, we tracked down a nasty drain that was attributed to the cars OnStar system. It seems that big brother likes to turn your cars systems on every time the satellite passes over head. We solved this by pulling the OnStar fuse and installing a switchable bypass fuse that allows us to turn off the unit when we don't need it.

The Curb Alert people took care of the sensors 35ma power draw by adding a shut off timer to the control box.  The unit will completely shut down in twenty minutes after the car is shut off. To sum up the unit works great and will give us some peace of mind when we take the splitter equipped "Z" out for a stroll.

curb alert corvette

The Vette Nuts