You’ve just invested in a new car audio system and most likely want to keep it banging for years! Follow these three tips to maintain your custom audio system and make it sound like new for the long haul.
1. Don’t overdrive it. Nothing kills a speaker or fries an amp faster than distortion. Your installer has set your amplifier gains to match your head unit’s output level. You should have no need to touch the gain knobs after the system is complete. If your sound starts to crackle or distort at high volume, turn it down! If you want it louder, you’re going to need more power and cranking your amp’s gain knob won’t make that happen.
2. Check your power connections. There’s a lot of current flowing through those power cables, and probably a lot of vibration in your car if you have a big system. Grounds should be checked occasionally to make sure they are still tight and not starting to corrode. The same goes for your battery terminals and any power distribution blocks in the system. You’ve got to keep that current flowing if you want to keep the music going.
3. Protect your speakers. Seriously, don’t let stuff hit your subs. I know they take up half of your trunk, but letting your groceries and laundry bounce off of moving subwoofers is terrible for them. That bowling ball rolling around back there can do some serious damage. Put some grilles on those speakers or keep the trunk clean. That’s all there is to it! Most car audio equipment today is built to withstand the environment inside a vehicle and the temperature extremes that go with it. Speakers are usually well protected behind door panels or under rear decks. You should never need to think about them until they wear out naturally after many years of service, unless you blow them by not following step one. The biggest factor that determines how long a system will last is the person listening to it. Know the limits of your system, make sure your power connections are clean and tight, and take care of any exposed speakers. Follow these simple steps and your audio will impress for years to come.