Category Archives for "Tips & Tricks"

How To Test Car Speakers

Who Else Wants To Know How To Test Car Speakers?

By Brian Casey

In a car audio system, the most delicate component is the speaker. They are the most important parts of the audio system and the most annoying when they get blown. Knowing how to test car speakers is one important thing for any person willing to take matters on her hand without spending a dime on a car mechanic.

Sometimes the problem might really appear to be with the speakers, but it might be the speaker connections or the even the amplifier. Before doing any test on your speakers, you will need to be sure of how to go about it.

That is why knowing how to run tests on the speaker wires, the amplifier fuse and capacitors is important.

Testing The Speaker Wires

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Before you can test the speakers, it is always advisable to test the wires for continuity so that you can clear the air and proceed to testing the speakers. Sometimes speaker wires get cut or become frayed when they have moved around.

Under such conditions, the speaker wires become hard to spot where they are cut with a naked eye.  So how can you accurately test the speaker wires? Here is a quick way;

1- Find the tools

Tools used when testing speaker wires are mainly a digital multimeter or an analog voltmeter.

2- Switch off all the components

This is always the first step in any diagnosis process. Turn off all the components of your stereo system. This will ensure that you do not by any chance create a short which may in return damage the whole system.

3- Disconnect the speaker wires

The third step will be to disconnect the speaker wires from the speaker box. There are two ways to that you can do this depending on the speaker or car model. One is pressing the positive and negative clips to disconnect the wires and secondly twisting two connectors counterclockwise to release the wires.

4- Disconnect from the stereo

The fourth step will be to disconnect the wires from the stereo receiver or the amplifier. This step will mainly involve removing the wires from the rear of the receiver or the amplifier. You will need to be careful when disengaging the wires from the mechanical locking mechanism. Disconnecting the wires here may involve pressing down a clip or twisting two wire caps.

5- Create a closed circuit using the wires

After successfully removing the wires from the speakers and the receiver or the amplifier, you will need to make a closed circuit so that you can perform a continuity test. To create this circuit, secure the end of the wires by carefully and tightly twisting them together. Be careful not to twist them too much as they might pose some difficulty when separating them later.

6- Set the voltmeter

With the circuit ready, you will need to prepare the voltmeter too. Switch it on and then select the ohms setting for measuring the wire resistance by setting the selector to the ohms position. If you are using a digital multimeter, this stage won’t be necessary.

7- Calibrate the Voltmeter

Before you can proceed to test the wires, you will need to determine whether the voltmeter is faulty or accurate. To find out, bring the red and black leads together. If the voltmeter displays a reading of 0 ohms, it means that the voltmeter is accurately calibrated.

If the voltmeter displays any other readings, it means that it not accurate and you will need to find a replacement. Ensuring that the voltmeter is accurate plays a great role in eliminating misguiding results. The same applies to a digital multimeter.

8- Test the speaker wires

Now with your accurate voltmeter, touch the red and black probes on the open end of the circuit. That is the end of the two wires that are not twisted together. For uncut or undamaged speaker wires, the voltmeter should display some resistance while for damaged speaker wires the voltmeter should display infinite resistance.

For a digital multimeter, if the wires are uncut or unbroken, the meter will produce a continuous tone, and on the LCD, it will NOT display “OL” (Open).

Analysis of these results would be; infinite resistance means that there is a space along the length of the wire. And from Physics, air has infinite resistance while for a continuous wire, the voltmeter will be able to measure the resistance of the wire and hence a small reading.

The amplifier

Add_an_Amplifier_And_Subwoofer

It will be important to note that amplifiers affect the sound that is heard from the speakers. Usually, if the amplifier has a problem, distortion will be heard through the speakers. If care is not taken, this problem might be misunderstood to mean the speakers are blown.

So, how do you know that the amplifier is blown? Amplifier problems result from the amplifier’s fuse or capacitor. Here is how to test an amplifier fuse and capacitor for fault;

1- Testing the Fuse

To access the fuse location, open the fuse box. Check the location on your car’s manual to find the location of the fuse box of your car.  This location varies in various car models. After locating the fuse box, set the multimeter to the conductivity test. Touch the multimeter red lead to one of the fuse poles and the black lead to the other.

If you hear a beeping sound, the fuse is functioning. If not then the problem might be with the capacitor.

2- Testing the Capacitor

To test the capacitors, you will need a digital multimeter with an option of testing capacitance. With the meter ready, here is a quick way to test the capacitors.

Attach the negative and positive leads of the meter to the corresponding negative and positive terminals of the capacitor. If the capacitor is working correctly, then the meter will display readings that are almost the same as the ratings of the capacitor.

Testing the speakers

Now that you are certain of the speaker wire connections, fuse and the capacitor, it will be the time to test the speakers. Testing for faults in speakers or if whether the speakers are blown or not will involve some few options. You can also watch this video for more on how test car speakers.

1- Option 1: Listen

This is more of a diagnostic process. Faultiness in speakers can be found by carefully listening at appropriate volumes. This will, however, require a keen ear like that of a person who loves listening to music so much.  Adjust the bass and treble levels to twelve o’clock position.

Carefully listen, if you spot that there is lack of range; it might mean that the speakers are not well properly equalized. The second thing to do is listening for distortion. To recognize distortion, play a track using your headphones or your home stereo, ensure that the track is free of scratches.

Play the same track on your car’s speakers; listen for rattling or crackling noises. If the speakers muffle, then it means that one of the speakers is blown. You can always try to isolate the speakers to the find which one is blown. To isolate the speakers, use the panning or fading function. By doing so, you are becoming specific to which speaker the problem might be.

2- Option 2: Inspecting the speakers

Another way to test if the speakers are working is to inspect. Inspecting means you will use your naked eye to try to find out if they are working. Here, however, you will be helped by a 9-volt battery. After removing the speaker from the speaker box, connect the speaker wires to the 9-volt battery and see if the speaker cone moves. If it moves then the speaker is working, if not it will be time to inspect for damage.

3- Option 3: Use a multimeter

Another way of finding if the speakers are working is using a multimeter. Connect the multimeter leads to the speaker terminals. Positive or the red lead to the positive terminal and the negative or the black to the negative terminal. If the multimeter displays a reading of 1.0 ohms, it means the speakers are working. If it displays infinite resistance, it means that the speakers are blown.

Wrapping up

After testing your speakers and finding out what the problem is, you can always try to find out if the problem can be solved or if it will be time to replace the speakers. Inspecting the speaker for damages will be wise. Distortion always results from holes, splits or tears on the speaker. Run your hand along the soft cone to look for scraps.

If you spot any minor damage that can be repaired, then you can use a special seal for sealing speaker cones. If the damage is big, it will be worth taking it to a technician and finding out if the speaker is still repairable. That marks our final words on this article. We hope you now have some rough idea on how to test car speakers and your car system as a whole.

How_To_Turn_Car_Speakers_Into_Home_Speakers

Who Else Wants To Know How To Turn Car Speakers Into Home Speakers?

By Brian Casey

As a car owner, sometimes you may find yourself in some tricky situations. Try picturing out this particular situation. You have ditched your car, and it had very good car speakers. You are not planning to dispose these speakers, and you would wish to convert them into home speakers.

How do you handle such a scenario? How do you turn these car speakers in home speakers? It is not an easy task, but is it possible to successfully turn car speakers into home speakers? To succeed in doing this, there are several things that you might need to consider first. For instance, you will need to consider the amplifier ratings and your speaker ratings.

To stop scaring you before you even give it a try, just consider yourself very lucky. Explained below are three ways on how to turn your car speakers into home speakers. You can also watch this video for more information on how to turn car speakers into home speakers

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How-to-Improve-AM-Radio-Reception-in-My-Car

【Improving Your Car’s AM Radio Reception】How to Improve AM Radio Reception in My Car

By Brian Casey

Learning how to improve AM radio reception in your car is one of the best ways to ensure a smooth ride in the vehicle. While many of us have foregone our radios in favor of phones these days, it never hurts to make sure that you’ve got everything you need in a single package.

Getting the reception you need to enjoy clear audio from the airwaves isn’t as hard as you’d think, it just requires a little bit of technical know-how and some simple tools.

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How_to _Fix_a_Blown_Amp

Surprisingly Simple Tips on How to Fix a Blown Amp- Car Amplifier Repair

By Brian Casey

In this article, we deal with a topic that is a common concern among users of car stereos. The amp turns on, but no sound is heard, even on increasing the volume. You may think that how to fix a blown amp is a highly technical solution which you won’t be able to do unless you are an electronics expert. Let us begin with this disclaimer. You cannot fix a blown amp unless you have some training in electronics. However, is your amp blown? Let me share a little anecdote with you.

My father was a highly-skilled electrical design engineer. He always used to fix broken appliances at home. Growing up with him, I also became a handyman of sorts. One day, we were looking at a faulty electric iron. On opening it, we could not detect a fault. After a lot of investigation, we discovered that there was just a loose connection in the mains plug. We needn’t have opened the iron in the first place – just reconnecting the cable in the plug using a screwdriver would have sufficed!

Keeping in mind the above incident, we can say that the same principle applies to several other electric and electronic appliances including amplifiers. You just need to follow some simple steps which we have outlined in this article.

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how_to_play_music_through_usb_in_car

How To Play Music Through USB In A Car Using Very Simple Steps

By Brian Casey

We are in a digital world; people no longer use vinyl and CDs to store music. Most of the music is nowadays stored digitally.  Most of the storage devices are nowadays hard drives like flash drives, phone drives, SD cards, Tablet drives and so on.

So how are these digital files going to be played using a car stereo without affecting the quality? Keep reading as we are going to address in details how to play music through USB in a car. You can as well watch this video on how to play music with USB in a car for more information.

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Know How to Get Rid of Engine Noise

Know How to Get Rid of Engine Noise in Your Car Stereo Easily

By Brian Casey

The Difficulty Defined

We all love to have a great stereo in our car. You don’t have to be an audiophile to appreciate good music and high-quality sound from a decent car stereo. However, a typical technical problem occurs which can be quite annoying, and that is that you sometimes get engine noise in speakers. Here, we will first discuss the reason why this happens, and then we will see how to get rid of engine noise in your car stereo.

Although you may think that you have to be an electronic or sound engineer to deal with engine noise through speakers, you will be surprised that you don’t need to use complicated technology and you can solve this problem yourself. Let’s try to understand why engine noise in speakers occurs in the first place.

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How_To_Increase_Bass_In_Car

Do You Need More Bass In Your Car? Here Is How To Increase Bass In A Car

By Brian Casey

Bass is the key element of any music system. When a music audiophile boards your car, the way he is going to rate your audio system will be based on the way the bass kicks. A flat system will lack bass but will be rich with midrange sounds.

There are very many ways that you can use to make your stereo sound top notch and let others respect you while you are driving. Here are some ways on how to increase bass in a car.

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Why_Do_Speakers_Blow

Why Do Speakers Blow? The Answers Might Shock You

By Brian Casey

It is heartbreaking to drive while listening to your favorite music and after some time you realize that your speakers are dead or no longer sound properly. There are so many causes that can be related to speaker failures. All these causes can generally be classified into mechanical and thermal or electrical failures.

In a nutshell, mechanical failures occur when the cone is made to move further than its original designed position. This is normally due to a high power supply which results in high vibrations. On the other end, thermal failures are caused by a high power supply which overworks the speaker. It gets overheated, and eventually, the voice coil components burn or melt down.

Concurrently, there are other causes that might get speakers blown for instance the age of the speakers. Why do speakers blow? There are several answers to this question. Speakers that were made using inferior materials are likely to blow out as they age.

For you to deeply understand why speakers blow or how to avoid blowing speakers, we will need to dig a little deeper by finding more about speaker blow out.

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How to install a car stereo

How to Install a Car Stereo in the Simplest Way Possible

By Brian Casey

Installing a car stereo system requires care and perfection. You will need to learn to wire and mix the components well and perhaps use the right tools. Installing a car stereo will depend on how you would want to customize your audio system. You may choose to install a new car system and change the components over time to your taste.

Getting to know how to install a car stereo system will also depend on how you will choose your car stereo components. You may need to carefully select them based on your car brand, mounting positions, and complexity. You are lucky though because with this guide on how to install a car stereo, we have provided easy and understandable steps to about the whole process.

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How_To_Upgrade_Car_Speakers

How To Upgrade Car Speakers | Upgrading Car Sound System

By Brian Casey

Upgrading your car audio speakers needs a lot of research and careful study of the current sound system that is installed in the car. You will also need to consider if you are going to replace the stereo or the radio and the head unit.

Most preferably, it is always good to replace them step by step. It is advisable to start with the speakers, the head units, the car stereo system and then maybe add more power by adding an amplifier.

Getting back to the topic of the day which is how to upgrade car speakers, here is a simple way to achieve a successful upgrade of your car speakers. You can also find more information by watching this video on how to upgrade your rear speakers.

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