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Question Of The Week

Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra SiriusXM Satellite Radio Solutions

Truck Camper Magazine polled its readers for SiriusXM solutions for Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra trucks. The following responses are sorted by year starting with the most recent trucks.

Note: We did not get a SiriusXM solution from a 2017 or 2018 Chevy or GMC truck owner.  If you have a solution, please share here and we’ll add it.

2016 Chevy/GMC Trucks

Docking Station 2016 Chevy 3500

“My solution was to purchase a Sirius Docking Station unit that allows me to move the receiver to multiple locations.  I installed an antenna on the roof of our camper for better reception and used an antenna extension cable with male/female connections.  This allows me to remove the camper and antenna connection when the camper is off our truck.

Here are the steps I took:

1. I mounted an antenna on the roof of our camper.
2. Purchased a docking station unit and ran the audio input through the factor mini jack.
3. Transferred my SiriusXM account from the factor radio to the docking station receiver.
4. Installed a second docking station inside the camper.

Camper Docking Station

The biggest challenge was figuring out how to design a system that allows you to separate the antenna connections when the camper is off the truck.

SiriusXM Antenna Connection

This was achieved by purchasing an extension cable, the connection joint is now at the front of the truck bed on the passenger’s side (pictured above).   Be aware that the connections are fragile and to be certain to pull on the brass connectors not the wire!

Puck Mount Secured On Roof Of Camper

My original design included an antenna puck zip tied to the cross frame of my roof’s tubular rack.  The wire was run down the bathroom vent, underneath the dining seat and out the battery vent on the right front of our Bigfoot.  Unfortunately, a subsequent install of a wireless rear view camera interfered with the Sirius signal.  It needs to be three-feet away from the camera.

Docking Station Connections

I installed a second antenna and wire that went to a second docking station inside the camper.

Tram Antenna On Camper Roof

To rectify the camera interference, I mounted a TRAM antenna to the solar panel mount and ran the cable down the refrigerator vent.

SiriusXM Antenna Routing Refrigerator Vent

I ran the antenna cable from the truck bed down to the frame rail and entered the cab of the truck through a drain plug underneath the rear passenger floor to the center console.  We get three bars of signal strength with the TRAM antenna.” – Mark Motsko, 2016 Chevy Silverado 3500, 2016 Bigfoot 1500

2013 Chevy/GMC Trucks

FARKA Adaptor area in Chevy glove box

Above: The FAKRA Adapter area in a 2013 Chevy truck glove box

“We installed a FAKRA adapter and Sirius XM magnetic antenna.  This installation was covered in an article titled, Blocked Sirius XM Radio Antenna Quick Fix.” – Angela White, 2013 Chevy 3500

Installed XM Onyx In GMCjpg

“This issue drove me crazy after I bought our new truck and camper.  My wife and I love listening to SiriusXM radio while we are on the road.

The way I resolved this may not be the easiest solution, but it has worked out for us.  I moved my SiriusXM subscription to the home Onyx unit.  The Onyx unit is also portable so I have the same docking system in my boat and well as the home radio unit.

SiriusXM SXDV3 Satellite Radio Vehicle Mounting Kit

To install an XM Onyx radio in 2013 GMC Sierra 3500HD you need to purchase the following items:
1. SiriusXM Onyx Plus Satellite Radio Receiver with Home Kit – Black
2. SiriusXM SXDV3 Satellite Radio Vehicle Mounting Kit with Dock and Charging Cable

Then I installed the external SiriusXM antenna (pictured above) from the vehicle mounting kit.” – Mike Paulucci, 2013 GMC Sierra 3500HD, 2016 Lance 1052

2011 and Older Chevy/GMC Trucks

“I have a GMC and the remote magnetic antenna works fine.   This does concern me for my next truck, which more than likely will have this issue since auto manufacturers tend to share the same suppliers.

I have two suggestions gained from a similar issue with a third party radio which was used in a boat and a previous Ford truck.  I suggest you try another brand of remote antenna first.  I found that a Shakespeare branded antenna did not work, but an SiriusXM branded antenna did the job with one radio.  The opposite was true with a different radio.

If swapping antennas doesn’t fix the issue, then the next option is to purchase the factory RAM cab-mounted antenna assembly and install it either on the camper roof or somewhere on the truck that’s not blocked by the camper.  I did this with the a F450 Ford truck.  The only thing you need is a suitable mount and Fakra extension cable.  I could speculate more but, without getting my hands on the radio, I would be guessing.” – Scott Park, 2011 GMC 2500HD, 2015 Lance 865

“I got an XM auxiliary antenna bought from Crutchfield with a 20-foot antenna lead.  I bonded a small steel plate on the top of the camper’s roof with RTV.  Make sure to remove the antenna when unloading the camper from the truck.  I didn’t once.  I hope I don’t forget again because it’s kind of expensive.” – Ray Steinmeyer, 2007 GMC 3500, 2007 Host Yellowstone 115DS

“SiriusXM has a package that includes unlimited streaming online of all channels.  It’s only a little more expensive.  I have Verizon cell service with unlimited streaming.  When I have the camper loaded, I simply stream on my iPhone and feed audio to the aux input for my truck radio.

This works anywhere you have 2-3 bars or better cell service.  Of course, that’s not everywhere.  For example, I didn’t have sufficient cell coverage in Yellowstone National Park in the summer of 2017 when I went out to observe the eclipse.

I did have solid streaming all the way across the country from Massachusetts to Wyoming with no drops.  It even worked during a recent foray into Canada.  The deal in Canada is that you need to pay extra for fast streaming after a certain number of free hours.” – Reed Prior, 2007 GMC 2500 HD, 2016 Arctic Fox 865

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