A harness is a good collection of wires and cables bundled together and then routed depending on their functions. A harness is also a device used to aid the connectivity of wires more effectively and efficiently using a plastic connector. Harnessing is done to control the exposure of the wires to humidity, vibrations, dampness, or wearing off.
Some vehicles come with at least a wiring harness behind the stereo opening or a factory stereo.
Other vehicles come with neither the factory stereo, not the wiring harness. In this case, the car stereo has to be wired without it.
There are many ways of connecting the speakers in your car without the harness.
What if your speakers or radio have no harness? Speakers, especially the aftermarket ones, do not come with the harness. You should be able to tell if the wire runs to an external amplifier or the radio. among the things you should consider is;
1. Car speaker wires
Since you’ll be acquiring a speaker wire either by purchasing, consider its length and gauge. A few feet is the correct length as it will be running to the amplifier, which might be a distance. The gauge plays a great role due to the power of the amplifier.
You should know the higher the gauge, the thinner the wire. Depending on different factors, the system needs wires of gauge between 12 and 18. 12 is the thickest while 18 is the thinnest.
The thickest is more suitable for the subwoofer where the speakers have low impedance, and the thinnest is suitable for speakers with high impedance. Therefore, I would recommend InstallGear 14 Gauge AWG
Before you install the car stereo, understand different cables, their colors, and their functions. A harness adapter has a variety of colors that have different purposes and functions. The colors include:
- Yellow – has constant power and keeps the battery stable.
- Black – it is the ground cable in your vehicle.
- Red – turns the radio on and off.
These are called power wires and are used to power up the car stereo.
- Blue – this wire controls the sign and the power antenna in your radio. It is also used in the AM or FM frequencies.
It is also referred to as “amp turn on wire” or “power antenna wire car stereo. ”
- Blue with white stripes – collect both AM and FM frequencies, CDs, Bluetooth, and media.
- Orange – they are two. One is to increase brightness and the other to lower it in your radio.
It would be great if you were careful when buying these cables as some old cars don’t have them.
- White – they go to front left speakers.
- Grey – they go to the front right speakers.
- Green – they go to rear left speakers.
- Purple – they go to rear right speakers.
The last four types of colors for wires are called speaker wires. They come in pairs. Some are striped, which means they are positive wires, and others are not striped, which means they are negative wires.
With the knowledge of the functions of the wires you can confidently wire a car without harness.
How to wire a car without a harness
Cut off the power
Turn off your ignition with your key if the car is on. If the battery is connected, disconnect it. This is to avoid shock or being electrocuted.
Tear out the insulated wires
Carefully remove all insulated wires of your vehicle and the radio. This helps to correct any wrongly insulated wires as they can break at any given moment.
Ensure correct wiring
Each wire is structured differently, so the wiring has to be different too. There are two types of wiring.
With parallel wires
In this type, the car will not come with a harness. This is the easiest as you connect the wires according to their colors. The outcome is the best.
With one wire containing two heads
One of those two heads is positive, while the other is negative. Connect them according to pairs and not by colors. Match red with yellow, black with blue, and the other has a pair already.
After that, connect the positive and the negative. Continue the process till you have connected all the wires.
After understanding all about wires and understanding where each goes, you can now comfortably install your stereo using these two simple methods:
Methods of installing stereos
Use the soldering method
Connect your speakers to the radio by soldering the radio wire to the speakers and seal them using heat shrink tubing. This helps to keep them together.
This method is preferred as there are few errors after the soldering, connections are strong, so then they won’t break easily. It is also difficult to get any loose wire.
Take the speaker and radio wires, remove their ends, join them together, wrap a heat shrink tube around the wires and solder them. Heat the soldered area using a hairdryer or any other suitable object.
2. Use a crimp clamp
You might need terminal connectors to hold wires together and a crimp clamp to crimp the wires in this method.
This method is a little similar to soldering; only that devices are used to squeeze the ends.
Strip the ends of the speaker and radio wires, put the wires between the crimp clamp, and squeeze them securely into place using the device’s handles.
After that, place your stereo back carefully to avoid damage.
With these simple methods, it is easy to do the wiring like a professional without any assistant. After connecting, test the speakers to see if the wiring worked. Make sure you do the proper research beforehand to avoid damage.
Harnesses are very cheap and are of different sizes and shapes, and thus easy to find one that can comfortably fit in your car. This is when you are planning a new radio in the future. The good news is the process used to wire a stereo system with a harness is almost similar to the one above.