radio is on, but no sound through speakers - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-27-2007, 10:15 AM Thread Starter
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radio is on, but no sound through speakers

Hello, I have an 04 Baja with the factory six disc cd changer. Last spring I replaced the factory speakers with some Kenwoods. A few days ago, I crossed some rough railroad tracks, and the sound cut out from my radio. I was listening to a cd at the time, so I tried the radio tuner, but that produced no sound through the speakers either. The radio still had power, and it still tuned in stations according to the display. I pulled the door pannels off to check the speaker connections. They were all good, so I put some electrical tape over them to protect them from shorting out on each other. I put everything back toghether, and the stereo worked! I had sound again! I ran a couple of errands, and when I got back into the car, there was no sound again. I pulled the panels again, found no problems. I tried switching the radio out with a stock unit from an 03, but that did not help. Finally, I disconected the batterie cable under the hood. That solved it for a little bit, and then the speakes cut out again. Any help or suggestions are greatly appreciated! It's awful queit during my drives! Thanks, Kurt

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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-04-2009, 05:32 PM
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Possibly one of the speaker wires had been shorting to ground. This is what happened to my neighbor just this past week. He too had replacement speakers in the doors.

About a week ago my neighbor reported to me that his 99 OB radio would come on (display) but there was no sound out the speakers. He could tune to different stations, it would load and play CDs, the volume setting could be varied, but no sound.

I agreed to have a look at the radio when he had it out. During the week he replaced the set with spare he had from a 98 OB, and set the faulty one aside pending transferring it to me. Then, on Friday, he called from work to say the second radio, which had been working fine, quit with exactly the same symptoms. He had replaced both fuses that go to the radio but this didn't do anything.

That evening, he pulled the replacement radio and I measured the resistance across each of the speaker lines (4 pairs to each of the four doors) at the radio wiring connector. They all showed about 4 Ohms, which is what it should be. I then checked the resistance from each pair of wires to chassis ground. All were "open circuit" except the driver door speaker wiring. It measured about 50 Ohms to ground. I then had him open and close the driver door and bang on the door panel as I watched the resistance change from a virtual short to several megOhms and points in between. We removed the inner door panel and the speaker. At that point the short disappeared. A further examination showed that one of the two spade plugs connecting to the speaker had been pressing against the clear plastic waterproofing door liner when the speaker was installed in the opening, and had actually broken through. This was an intermittent contact to ground. I bent the spade tab up a bit so that the plug would be further away from the edge of the round metal opening in the door, and all has been well.

The short had not blown any fuses nor had it damaged the radio. Instead, the final amplifier circuit had cut out automatically when it sensed the low resistance between one of the speaker wires and chassis ground.

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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-07-2009, 09:09 AM
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I have nearly the same issue with my 2004 Subaru Outback wagon. Except, in my case the front speakers do not work but the back speakers work intermittently. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't - they sort of pop in and out unpredictably. Then, a couple weeks ago they quit, and had not worked since.

I thought it was the stereo, so I bought a new one. ( I want the iPod input anyways). Hooked up the new stereo ... power, but no audio. This left me scratching my head.

Last night, after reading your post, I banged on the back doors. Voila - I had rear audio. Still no front audio though.

I measured resistance, but I had the setting too sensitive to read 50 Ohms. I had an old meter on ohms times 1 ( X1 ), and was seeing open on both front speakers, but the rear speakers did measure a low value, and also made a little noise when the leads were applied.

If one of the front speakers were touching metal, would the back speakers work ?

I will measure the front resistance again,and look for a slightly higher resistance value. I guess I may have to take the doors apart also. What a PITA. I can't wait to figure this out and put my dash back together.

Any other suggestions or advice here ? thanks!!!!
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-07-2009, 04:41 PM
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Welcome to the forum.

Where are you making your measurements for each of the door speakers?

The best place to start is at the connector at the radio. (i26 in the attached diagram).

Measure between pins 2 and 8, 3 and 9, 4 and 12, and 5 and 13 (the layout is shown at the bottom right). In each case the resistance measured between those terminals should be around 4 Ohms. If any of these is not low, or put another way, is very high (more than 100 Ohms), then there's a bad connection somewhere in the wiring to those speakers, or the speakers themselves have gone open circuit. (This appears to be the case with your front speakers.)

Similarly, measure the resistance from any one of the speaker terminals on the i26 connector to chassis ground -- it should be "infinite" or as high as your multimeter can read.

My experience was with an early model Subaru radio, where if any one of the speaker leads is shorted to ground, the radio amplifier is shut down. In this case, none of the speakers would work. Whether it is the same in your car I can't say. And I certainly can't say that your replacement radio has this same protection feature. But the fact that the rear speaker would come on at all suggests that the radio is not going into protection mode, but that there connections to the speaker are bad.

Although it is possible for the wiring to the speakers to fail, it is not likely, especially to more than one door. You might have to remove the door panels and check the spade connections at the speakers themselves. They might be corroded. Also, with the speakers disconnected, you can measure the resistance across the speaker terminals. It should be 4-8 Ohms. If it is very high, the speaker is open and has to be replaced.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-07-2009, 09:01 PM
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thanks for your reply.

I took out both front speakers tonight. They are both bad (open)

And also the rear speakers were not working tonight. Last night they were - after I hit the doors.

I suspect that the rear are also shot.

The front have been bad for awhile. The back have been intermittent.

Why would all 4 speakers go bad ?

They do look like cheapo speakers.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-08-2009, 01:10 PM
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An occasional cause of an "open" speaker is a bad solder connection at the point where the flexible (braid-like) wires from the speaker cone are connected to the spade lug terminal where the wiring harness wire is attached.

It's rare that the voice coil itself will go open circuit, but the fine wires that connect the other end of the flexible braided wires to the voice coil itself sometimes break. This wire is glued to the surface of the paper cone, and if the cone cracks in that area it can cause the wire to break.

The bad solder connection at the lug terminal can be resoldered to see if this corrects the problem. Repairing the fine wires on the cone, or repairing an open voice coil, is not practical.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-09-2009, 07:46 AM
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I took out the rear speakers last night, just as I expected, they are all open.

Not sure why EVERY speaker would fail, especially as my wife never cranks the volume in her car. Right now, I have to assume the original Subaru OEM speakers that came with her car were crap.

Gonna have a quick look at the junkyard this afternoon, but, if I dont find anything, I will order some Kenwood 1662S from Ebay.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-10-2013, 03:52 PM
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thanks, i have a 2004 subaru baja that at first the drivers side front and back speakers did
not work. i replaced the radio and they all worked for that first time. then the next day it
was the same. the drivers side did not work again. also a few weeks later the passenger
rear speaker quit. now i only have one speaker the passenger front that works.
what do you think i have to do? thank you so much, bob
post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-10-2013, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
thanks, i have a 2004 subaru baja that at first the drivers side front and back speakers did
not work. i replaced the radio and they all worked for that first time. then the next day it
was the same. the drivers side did not work again. also a few weeks later the passenger
rear speaker quit. now i only have one speaker the passenger front that works.
what do you think i have to do? thank you so much, bob
I had to replace all 4 speakers on my 05 Baja 2 weeks ago ... it's a common problem with speakers in Baja, or older Subarus for that matter.... One by one gave up totally... I've ordered replacements (Kenwoods) on Crutchfield website and installed all 4 of them in one day. They come with step-by-step installation/replacement guide. And, I added 2 tweeters - now everything works fine!
I also originally thought it was a radio - but it wasn't....
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 03:45 PM
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I have a 2010 Subaru Outback with the Kamen Harden stereo with integrated blue tooth and navigation. I have a similar, but very strange problem. My audio works just fine (in all modes including radio, dvd, blue tooth, etc) for awhile. Then after about an hour driving time, the audio starts going intermittent and finally stops altogether. If I come to a stoplight and the car is not moving, the audio comes back full strength, but if I roll forward at all, it craps out again. If I stop and turn off the car for any length of time, it starts working again with no problems then it starts again after an hour of driving or so. Any suggestions?

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