Anyone here know about car audio?

Discussion in 'Green Room' started by Son Goku, Jul 17, 2005.

  1. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    The tape player in my car has begin to go (the motor sounds loud when there's a tape in there, and it plays em rather slowly)... Anyhow, been looking at a replacement, been looking for dif people's views on this...

    I still have some tapes, so not ready to do away with that. So am looking at a radio/cassette deck... Thinking (when I have the money) I can add a CD change latter. There are some other things higher on my list of priorities however...

    So, looking at 2 seperate stores, and passing over the cheaper radios (which don't look as good), I see one from Alpine and one from Kenwood (2 seperate stores). Anyone have any opinions wrt these 2 companies? From the looks of it, the Kenwood definitely has controls to interface a CD changer directly into it, the Alpine might as well...

    Also the retractable antenna won't go down anymore (I think the motor for it is shot). Probably would be good if that was taken care of as well, though I'm not sure what a new motor for that thing would run/involve having it replaced... It's rather dusty down here in NM, but most car wash places recommend against a wash with the power antenna sticking up. Course, one lets it go too long (for a wash/wax), and the paint job can get ruined...
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2005
  2. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

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    Ask the parts departmnet at your dealer. They can usually tell you what is most likely to have died on the antenna. Mine was the plastic strip with teeth that runs it up and down. You end up having to replace the whole thing, it's a sealed unit.

    Not into audio much anymore, but make sure whatever replacement you buy fits properly and has a universal face plate. I've gone through hell with new units not fitting, having the wrong connectors/connectors in the wrong place, and the coverplate for the opening not sealing. It is really tight inside the dashboard on most cars and there is no room for "almost matches". I think there might be some kind of mechanical security system that makes removal a pain the BUTT too. (Weird fastener in an inaccessible location.)

    Why not get something that uses a thumb drive and put all your music on that? Probably the way I'll go if my Cassette craps out. Don't like CD in bouncing vehicles (especially teh way I drive).
     
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  3. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Eh, I'd rather the thing work :) Actually, I'm probablly just going to let the audio store install it... If I go to Bioes (sp?) they have a deal for a $1 install on all radios they sell... They're the one's with the Alpine...

    If I go to Ultimate Electronics, it's $40, but has a mail in rebate to make the instillation free...

    As to going to the dealer, I'd rather not. Lets just say I got shafted by them... Among the problems when I pulled the vehicle out:

    - 1 day after owning it, bring it back in. Both the fuel pump and the mass air flow censor needed replacing. It wasn't running right pulling it out of the lot first day...

    - Within a month, the wheel bearing on the left front was messed up. The thing started sounding like a jet engine when driving at any decent speed, and the problem was worsening (beginning to happen at slower, and slower speeds).

    - I'll leave the tires and of course battery out, along with other usual maitenance. Bought it at 57,000 miles... Except to say this, when I went to the tire place (expecting I would need new one's) the guy looked at my car then his jaw dropped...

    Lets just say they all needed replacing. But 3 matched with 1/32" tread, and 1 was bald on the inner edge completely. The 3 tires matched, the 1 we assume was an original tire...

    He suspects someone decided the 3 needed replacing and put some rather old tires on. The 1 he thinks it was figured no one would notice... The sales guy at the tire shop was shaking his head while looking at this :eek:

    - The computer was acting up, and I was told it would need replacing soon after I got it...

    - The A/C didn't work the first day I got it. I told them about it, and they dismissed it and refused to believe it didn't work. It was blowing hot air, and had no charge... Needless to say it's hot in New Mexico during the summer, and I had gone 2 summers without.

    I charged it in November 2003, it started losing it's ability to cool last May. Had it looked at, they didn't see anything, charged it again. Charge gone in 12 hours, basically got it fixed a few weeks ago. The high port was leaking...

    - The temp gauge said it was hot. Told the dealer, again a dismissal. When the A/C wasn't so effective (with a good charge) when it got really hot on Monday, I looked into it. The temp gauge showed it even hotter, but it got so warm I couldn't even turn the oil cap... Way too much pressure, and it felt like I'd be burnt just touching it...

    The thermostat was stuck in the closed position, no coolant flow... I suggested the thermostat might have issues, they poo pooed what I was telling them. That, apperently was the problem...

    Two other things:

    - A friend of mine knows someone who works at a local parts shop. They told him that they sell more parts to people who got their cars from (incidently the dealer I got it from) then anyone else...

    - When I brought it in for the 3 probs I mentioned, the sales guy tried to slip me a curtiousy car so I wouldn't have to waite... Apperently the boss has been rather annal about this. He told the boss he's gotta get these cars working before putting them on the lot... The boss pulled rank, and was quite upset at him.

    Sounds like it had come down to a big fight between sales and manageament; with management not wanting to hear they should work on these cars more before selling them, or provide a curtiousy car when the car someone bought leaves the lot with probs...

    Mind you, the curtiousy car also had issues, losing power altogether. I had to pull it over (with power stearing and power breaks) without any power. Then turn it off and back on, to get the loaner of theirs to function again :eek:

    All I can say (between my experience, and local parts dealers reporting more probs with cars from that dealer then any other); good ridance. I won't be buying from them next time :down:
     
  4. ejn74

    ejn74 Folding Master! Political User Folding Team

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    the parts store would be able to give you info on that. as for carwashes, aslong as they are touchless it would not matter
     
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  5. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    You're car is going to be toast. You have overheated the engine, probably deformed rings and seals (if not more). You need to fight the dealer, even threaten legal action.
     
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  6. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Only thing there, I've had the car for over 2 years... I could argue that I told them about this (but I don't have a tape recording, or the statements between us) in writting... They could deny this and claim "oh no, we wouldn't have done that, it happened afterwards". I could well see a case of one person's word against another (actually large business)...

    Same could go with the mention of the AC and other such problems (that either didn't work right out the lot, or ceased to work shortly after I purchased it). It was financed through a credit union, so that might offer another alternative...

    In any case screwing me over like this wasn't wise on there part for one big reason. I bought a used car as someone still in college. Depending on the sorta money I could make afterwards, I could very well end up buying a new sports car or something of the sort... Good bye to any chance of me going back... Screw me over when I'm in college and financial dire straights, don't expect my repeat business once I'm finally out...

    Then again, if they don't care about the prospects of a bad reputation and "word of mouth" recommendations, they wouldn't care about one more lost customer...

    Anyhow, thx for the suggestions... Rep for all :D
     
  7. Check for coolant and other fluid leaks, if it's overheating like crazy from the moment you turn it on it sounds like your head gasket has gone.
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2005
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  8. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    Remember, the squeaky wheel gets the grease.
     
  9. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Yeah, when the thermostat was replaced, the cooling system was checked for leaks and other such problems. None were found...

    If the problem does continue cropping up, I'll have to look beyond the cooling system though, as it now checks out. THX, and some other people did suggest the head gasket as well. Sounds like good advice...
     
  10. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Decisions, decisions :) Anyhow, I did buy one today...though they're booked on installs so can't quite meet the "same day install" which they advertize...

    With the replacement of the power antenna, as well as the install kit for my car, it came to $367, but includes free install... They'll get to it Thursday morning. Went with the Alpine; will see once it's installed if I made the right choice....

    With the other repairs that needed doing, that does it for the money I have available to me now, but wanted to get some of these car problems outa the way. Prefer not having to go back down on a continual basis, on an emergency like situation; and would rather some of the underlying issues are dealt with in one shot so I don't have to keep thinking about it :)
     
  11. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

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    Goku, what make and model car is it? I didn't see the info anywhere above and I want to make sure I never buy one like it.
     
  12. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    96 Mercury Mystique... I think the line was discontinued...

    Anyhow, the problem is largely to do with Rich Ford here in Albuquerque, NM, it seems... tbh, I feel as if I had been bamboozled by this dealership. :down: :( :mad:

    Having a friend tell me that people he knows who works at local parts stores have indicated having to sell more parts to peeps who buy cars from that one dealership then any other; doesn't make me feel any better. Between my account and what others have told him, I don't think he would ever plan on going their either... I'd never recommend them to someone else...

    BTW, he suggested next time I consider the dealer he just went to ;)
     
  13. Admiral Michael

    Admiral Michael Michaelsoft Systems CEO Folding Team

    Man that sucks. So many problems and the dealership just basically shrugged you off. Thats not good for business, tell everyone you kno to stay away. I hate businesses like that.
     
  14. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    Son Goko,

    I had a 1995 Ford Contour (same as the Mystique). They are great cars, if you take care of problems before they arise. The engine is a bear to work on though. Let me point you to a great forum for all things "Contique": http://www.contour.org/
     
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  15. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Thx for the link... BTW, as to the car's former condition, I don't entirely know. Thing is, I bought it used at about 57,500 miles. I also bought it from a dealer, that I was to learn didn't take care of problems before putting it on the lot. tbh, I have no idea all that might be going on with it, let along how the former owners took care of it...

    If there's one good thing that might come out of this whole ordeal; I've gotten so disgusted having to take it in for things that should have been dealt with before it was sold to me (in many cases); it might be enough to convince me to look into learning about working on an engine/fixing many of these probs myself. Well the smaller one's...

    I'm kinda getting tired of having to pour out money which I don't have, and then still have yet another thing to get fixed. I have other things in my finances that need tending too besides...
     
  16. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Yeah, what makes matters worse (for me) is that I'm currently in college. I have been since 97, and though I had some savings and money on the side (saved up over 5 years or so) it's now depleted and I have a mountain of debt that I can't pay (besides student loans, and the car loan which my father has been paying for me, as the car is also jointly in our names). Well at about $7,000 besides, I said frak that... I don't really like being in a lot of debt and wasn't about to let it continue. But I can't pay it off, and am essentially bankrupt :( I understand that it takes money to make money; and further that if one doesn't have they might have to borrow against a future (expecting that in return and much more). It's an investment after all, and one based upon capital one must borrow. But things have carried on a rather long time...

    tbh, I'm in worse financial shape, then I'd care to tell people... Almost finished with 1 major (this fall), another is longer away, and am in need of a meaningful career about now. Course I also studied, probably a wider variety of things then many, but really do need to buckle down and get something finished :laugh:

    The whole idea of another car, was to get rid of the need for continual repair bills. The old car was at 115,000 miles, and at that time where everything started needing to be done. Now, rather then repair bills in the thousands of dollars a piece, it's now in the hundreds a piece :(

    It was against this (and more then I'd care to mention) that the dealer had left me with car (for my $8,000+) that should not have been put on the lot till it's myriad problems were dealt with. This much I can say... I don't appreciate this, when I'm in financial dire straights and in school so I can get some sort of a career started. I can certainly say, they lost my business even for the time when my finances will hopefully be in order, and I will have much more money then now, to spend...
     
  17. Nooooooooooooooooooooo.


    Ooooooooooo.

    O.

    Never buy from a dealer - my advice to everyone out there. Always buy private. Dealers are only out to make money, they don't care about the car or the customer.
     
  18. trainmaster77

    trainmaster77 Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    I used to compete car audio and after reading through this thread ... you have no budget or at least you havent mentioned one.

    I can honestly stay stay away from the cheaper kenwood and alpine stuff.

    the most simple solution right now would be a single din sanyo cd/cassette deck... for under $300

    http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_3212.html . thats just an example link.


    As far as the motorized antenna ..they are very inexpensive. if you are going to replace the head unit i suggest doing that first being the ground relay for the motorized antenna may be bad on your stock radio. If the antenna still doesnt work after replacing the head unit then do the antenna.

    what happens with the antenna is simple .. it runs off the remote ground relay same as any amplifiers you would have installed ..so when you turn the key backwards ..the radio turns on alogn with any amplifiers and the antenna rises.

    I hope this helps.
     
  19. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Thx guys for the input. Anyhow, the update:


    Well, they did get the radio installed today, but not the antenna. Slight slip up at the store.

    They told me to bring it by Thursday morning for the free install, that they had me down for an appointment. Come sometime between 9 am and 11 am. So I set the alarm, dragged myself outa bed earlier, and got down there.

    Only thing is, the people in their building that does the installs (the store is seperated over multiple buildings) had no record of the appointment :( There was only 1 guy written down for one, and it's guessed the sales man just forgot. The installer asked the sales guy about appointments for the day, and mine wasn't mentioned.

    They managed to squeeze the readio in because of this, but installing the antenna without having the notice handed to them would have been troublesome. Another appointment was made for Monday to get that done (but directly with the guy who does it). I brought the receipt I got from the cash register down with me, so all the info was on the receipt...

    BTW, the antenna still won't go down... I'm thinking the motor might be shot, but we'll see Monday. The motor just makes noise like it's trying to work but can't... Sort of like what happened with a motorized seat belt I had in a previous car when it ceased functioning and I was told the motor needed replacing...
     
  20. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    Go to a self wash car wash and spray the high pressure spray at and into the antenna. Then get some silicone spray lubricant and spray the hell out of the antenna. Sounds like it might just too much crud making it not work.