How To Troubleshoot Your Car Stereo

You rely on your car stereo to provide you with music, news and traffic updates when you are on the road, whether it is the system that came with the car or a new one you had installed. Unfortunately, there may be times when it doesn't work properly. The following tips will help you troubleshoot common problems associated with car stereos.

There is Vehicle Noise Through The Speakers

This is a very common problem that occurs when there are filter issues. When you turn on your car stereo, you should not hear anything from your speakers except what is on the radio. If you hear other noises, it is probably the ignition or alternator that is being picked up through the speakers. If you hear a weird noise, start by turning off the radio. If the noise disappears, you know you are hearing it through the stereo speakers and it isn't just an additional car noise. To get rid of the noise, you can have a noise filter installed between the power input and power tap on your car stereo.

You Get Low Quality Sound at High Volumes

Have you noticed that when the volume is turned low, it sounds great, but starts to distort when it is turned up? If this is happening, it is most likely due to the radio wattage. If your radio wattage is too low, it won't allow your speakers to pick up quality sound when the volume is turned up high. There are a couple things you can do. The first is to get a car amplifier and have it installed, as this will increase your radio's maximum power. You can also have your speakers replaced with ones that provide a higher output.

The Radio Doesn't Work, but CDs Do

If you can't seem to get your radio part of your stereo to work, but a CD plays just fine, it could either be due to a problem with the antenna or the radio tuner. If you have an older vehicle, it is probably due to the antenna. Car antennas don't last forever, and if it has corrosion or is loose, you may need to get it replaced for better reception. If it is the tuner for the stereo, you will probably need a new head unit.

No Sound Comes From the Speakers

If you turn on the stereo and no sound comes from the speakers, but it looks like the radio is on or a CD is playing, then it could be due to a few different problems. If you have an external amp, that might be the problem. It might also be a wiring issue. If it is due to the wiring, bring your car to a professional. You should not mess around with your car's electrical system or stereo wiring without experience.


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