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How To Fit A Car Stereo System In To Your Car ISO RCA'S Its All Here

Updated on October 30, 2011

One of the first thing you want to do when you get your car, especially when your new whip is a bit retro is to fit a Great CD Player and stereo system. Some places charge up to £40 just to fit a cd headunit in to your car. Something that can be a 5 minute job, serious. If you've managed to get past step one and pull your standard headunit out and see a bunch of wires and thinking its to complicated it really isn't. You can have a Cd Headunit installed in under 10 minutes. Once you've got you Cd Player installed your also want to uprate the speakers as the CD Player internal beefed built in amplifier will be pushing the standard compnents to their limit. Changing speakers is very straight forward also and so Is install an Amp and Sub in the boot!

So Let's get down to it. First up your going to have to remove your standard headunit/steroe player from the dashboard. If you've got a car from the 80's or 90's or early 00's you can get stereo pin extractors from any car spares shop. You will see 2 holes on each sid of the headunit this is where your stereo pin extractors go. Slide them down until you feel a slight click and either push the remainder of the pins that are still poking out from the front either inwards or outwards to the side and pull your stereo out.

You will now see a bunch of multi coloured wires, stop panicking. Also from your car spares shop you want to get a "ISO" Plug adaptor that fits your car and the ISO Harness of your new headunit. You will see that if you have a standard factory installed headunit in your car you will have wires going straight in to the back of the headunit all you have to unclip these and also the aerial which will be a big black wire with a jack like male terminal on the end. Your old headunit is now out. Stick it on ebay. Now on your new headunit you will see a single black connector block going in to the back of the stereo unit that branches out in to 2 connector block. One side will have about 4 wires Red,Yellow,Brown, Blue don't worry if they are not all there but these are your power supply wires. The other block will have around 8 wires with multi coloured wires, these are your speaker wires. Now if your luck these may plug straight on to the blocks that you pulled out of the back of your old stereo. If not don't worry this is where ISO plug comes in, they are the in-between wires that connect your new wiring to the original car wiring ( So no wire cutting! ). So when you buy your new stereo get the ISO plug at the same time from the shop that fits your stereo and your car. Click them together and put your aerial in to the same looking socket in the back of your new headunit. Slide the headunit back in to its place and wolaaa turn the key and your stereo will light up. Simple as! This is what shops charge £40 to do. If you have your ISO plug already before you start then everything is plug and play and can be done in under 10 minutes.


So Now you want to uprate your factory speakers. The older the car the easier this is as the only tools you'll need are various length screwdrivers. If you have a slightly new car something 10 years or younger then you should get yourself a Haynes Manual for your car. These are excellent manuals on how to do pretty much anything on your car. To change your front door speakers is a simple case of popping your door card off. Some cars have odd shaped mounted speakers which when buying regular 10cm speakers for the front won't fit. You can buy Door speaker pods These will mount to the original mounting points on your car and let you use your new uprated speaker. The rears are very simple and are usually to the sides of your parcel shelf. You will also need to buy Speaker pods to uprate these too but it is a simple unscrew and out job. You use the original wires that were attached to your old speakers to install your new ones.

Right so you want some BASS. Fitting a amplifier is very straight forward and can be accomplished by someone with basic wiring knowledge.

Now the best way to do this is to buy an Amp Wiring Kit these will give you all the wiring you need to fit an amp and sub into the boot of your car. They range from £20-£80 mark the more money you spend the better the quality of the cables resulting in a better installation and sound. A £20 kit will most certainaly do the job if your not planning on doing any sound offs,

In an Amp wiring kit you will find a Power Lead ( Large Red lead which should also have a fuse breaker at one end ) A thick short brown lead ( Earth ) a thin blue lead ( switch/remote ) and a pair of leads that are attached together and have a male jack type sockets and both ends ( RCA Cables ) RCA cables are what tell the amp Left and Right. These cables can be any colour but the tips will be red and white distinguishing left and right.

To get your Sub thupping your wiring is going to need to be run down the sides of your car underneath the plastic trim. Pretty easy to unscrew and unclip the trim.

Start with fitting your RCA cables. Your going to need to pull your new headunit back out. Now when you bought your headunit you needed to make sure it has at least on set of RCA outputs on the back. You'll notice these as the will be red and white. You need to either pull your RCA cables from behind the dash through the headunit slot or put the RCA'S down through the headunit slot and down the back through the dash. Plug the RCA's in to their appropriate sockets on the back of the headunit. Do not place the headunit back in properly just yet. You'll now have couple of metres of RCA cable in your footwell. Now to the power cable. This goes straight on to the Battery under the bonnet. Rember to make sure you have the fused end at the battery. Do not bolt on to the batter just yet. You need to find a grommet in your bulk head/firewall to put the other end of your lead through to get it into the car. If you have a look round you'll see existing wiring going into the car use one of these grommet if you can't find a factory plugged one. It may be that your power cables entry is on the other side of the battery in your engine bay that's not a problem just make sure you keep your power cable away from any moving parts in the bay and clip it up with cable ties. Make sure when you pull it through in to your car you leave enough so that the power lead can still be attached to the battery.

You now you have you'r RCA's & power lead in the footwell . If they are on the same side move your RCA's to the other footwell. If you run the RCA's and LIVE down the same side of the car you will get a buzzing out of your speakers.

Next up is your switch wire this is a live that only has power when you turn your stereo on. You need hard wire this on to your switch wire that goes in to your stereo or you can wire this up to the switch live on your ignition. Now once you have this wired you now want to start running your wiring under you cars carpet or trim. Run the LIVE & Switch down one side and the RCA's down the other.

Once you've got your leads to the boot you can now install your sub and amp. The RCAs plug straight in to the amp RCA inputs, the blue wire to the switch and your LIVE to the to live. You now need to get your earth wire and bolt this on to an existing earth point in the boot ( there are loads ) now screw that on to the earth port on the amp. Go back to the front of the car and now hook your power cable up to the battery. Run your speaker wires from the sub and on to the amp.

Turn the key and you will now have a thumping sub.


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