Alternate Radio Installation
When talking about automotive customization, the sound system is one of the first things that come up. A decent head unit should be your first purchase. Read on for technical advice from our seasoned installers if you intend to do the installation yourself.
Socket sets, wire cutters, wire splitters, butt connectors or heat shrinking sleeves, electrical tape, zip ties, solder, soldering iron, and patience are just a few items to get the job done.
Obtaining the correct stereo wire harness for your vehicle’s setup is the first step before installing the audio. This will simplify the installation process for you if you are a novice installer, and it will also make it simpler to change out the factory radio with a different aftermarket head unit if you decide to sell the car in the future.
To get started, take the negative cable out of the battery. This will prevent you from damaging a brand-new piece of equipment by shorting its wires. Disconnect the old head unit next. You can check installdr.com for your vehicle’s application to examine the specifics. This is the place to look if you want to view photographs of disconnecting the head unit. You can remove it entirely when it is accessible by unplugging the antenna and the electrical harness.
You can choose from two distinct varieties of wiring harnesses. The standard wiring harness plugs into your car’s harness and includes exposed wire ends to match the new stereo’s color scheme. A wiring harness that has connectors on both ends can be snapped into position with no effort. These are the simplest to set up, but it may be difficult to get a set compatible with your car’s head unit. We will concentrate on these universal wire harnesses because they are the most common. The rear of the stereo has wires that are color-coded according to their function, and you may check their location if you have the wiring harness. The wiring harness and stereo must have identically colored cables. For convenience, we will splice together some wires from the wiring harness and the head unit before shipping. The wires can be connected in several practical ways. Butt connections are one option, which crimps the wires within the connector. These are widely available and may be purchased at any store specializing in selling and installing car stereos. Using a soldering iron and heat shrink tubing is my preferred method. Connect the wires with a tight twist. Use a small amount of solder to join the wires permanently. Now you may fold them in along one of the wires. Warm the sleeve over the plug with a heat gun or a high-quality hair dryer. I have had to rewire or fix systems that initially employed butt connectors, albeit this could have been due to faulty installation rather than the connectors themselves. Solder joints have never failed me.
When everything is hooked together and the sleeves are shrunken into place using heat, I use a zip tie to keep everything in place. Cut off the extra zip tie for a polished look. Join the car’s electrical harness to the one coming from the head unit. Connect the antenna (you might need an adaptor for some uses). Move the head unit into position, but don’t secure it yet. To turn on the radio, reconnect the negative cable and put the key in the “on” position. At this point, it ought to be working as intended. Turn the device off and plug in the amplifier’s RCA cords if you intend to use an amplifier with this system. Connect them to the amp by routing them through the dashboard (more on this topic in subsequent sections).
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