Whether you do-it-yourself or hire a professional mobile electronics installer, one thing you should never skimp on is the parts and accessories needed to install your audio or infotainment system.
Those installation parts, wiring kits and adapters are not just the salesman trying to get an extra buck out of you. In fact, in many vehicles today it’s absolutely critical to use quality installation accessories to ensure a good fit and safe integration with the vehicle’s electrical system.
What kind of parts may you need to complete an system install? Here are the main accessories needed in a typical system installation.
In-dash Installation Kits: Aftermarket head units almost always mount differently than the OEM stock radio. Thankfully, several companies make vehicle-specific kits with the brackets and trim needed to properly mount an aftermarket stereo.
Wiring Harness Adapters: Automakers use their own style plugs on wiring harness. Never butcher a car’s wiring to install aftermarket electronics. Use the proper harness adapters for your vehicle to make safe connections.
OEM Interfaces: Many cars today have advances features such as steering controls and navigation interfaces tied to the audio system. If you want an aftermarket radio, you will need a specialized OEM interface device to integrate your new stereo with those OEM features.
Amplifier Installation Kits: If you are adding an aftermarket amplifier for more audio power, you will need an “amp kit”. A typically kit includes heavy-gauge wiring and a fuse holder for running power from the car’s battery to the amp. Also included will be wiring for a ground connection and remote trigger to turn on the amp. Lastly, a set of RCA low-level signal cables will carry the un-amplified signal from the head unit to the amp.
There are many manufacturers of installation accessories that supply both the trade and consumers. A few of the larger ones are:
Pacific Audio Corporation