How to Install New Entertainment Electronics in Your Car

By: Christopher Lampton

Difficult Car Electronics Installations

A difficult in-car electronics installation is any procedure where something can go (or has gone) seriously wrong. The radio installation described earlier in this article, for instance, offers all sorts of possibilities for catastrophe. What could go wrong, you ask? Well, here are just a few examples of how even a simple car electronics installation can be botched.

If you failed to detach the negative battery cable prior to tearing into the project, for instance, you could give yourself a nasty shock or in some instances you might even burn out the car's electrical system. More likely, you'll simply blow a fuse, so it's a good idea to have a few spare fuses on hand to replace the casualties. Look in your owner's manual for your car's fuse box location and then replace any fuse that you may have accidentally blown in the process.


What else could go awry? Even if you're experienced, accidents do happen. For example, a screwdriver could slip and cut into a wire, damage the dashboard or even cut into your hand or arm. Other problems could arise from hardware inconsistencies. In older cars, the radio bay might not be a standard size and might not even work with a dash kit. Or the wires inside the dashboard might not be properly color-coded for your new stereo, opening up any number of possible cross-wiring scenarios. Perhaps you'll end up with a system that works just fine -- that is, except for an annoying buzz in the audio. That may not sound like a big deal, but over time, it's sure to drive you crazy. You might also go a little nutty if you install a speaker too loose and it rattles as you drive. A simple fix, but annoying nevertheless.

By now you may be wondering if installing your own electronic equipment is a serious mistake. Is there any way to make the whole process easier? Well, as you'll find out on the next page, there just might be.