This post is more of a supplemental to the installation guide at Install Dr.com. The hope is that the pictures and some of the notes I took as I did the installation will make your radio install that much smoother.
The guide includes:
- Original radio removal
- Wiring new radio using a wiring harness
- Wiring diagram
- Basic steps to installing the new radio
When removing the dash panel I found it was easier to get my fingers under the panel at the bottom near the climate controls.
You’ll notice that the dash panel is not completely removed. There is no way I want to mess with anything associated with the airbags in the truck. It seemed perfectly fine to let it hang there.
I didn’t want to pay for the tool used to remove the factory radio so I tried the do it yourself version using a clothes hanger.
- The important thing is to keep the pieces of wire straight in the release holes
- I tried to mimic the factory keys, but I think I would have had more success with 4 individual pieces of wire
Below I removed part of the factory radio face to show how I was missing the release mechanisms with my home made removal tool.
For the new radio installation you will only use one of the factory harnesses. Just tuck the other one out of the way.
I always use a wiring harness when installing a radio.
- The one I used for the F-150 was a Metra 70-1771 wiring kit.
- I prefer to solder my connections instead of using bullet connectors. I’ve had trouble in the past with bad crimps on the bullets.
- Make sure to wrap your soldered connections with electrical tape or heat shrink tubing
- [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][Thanks to my little sister for the Home Depot gift card I used to buy the new soldering iron and solder. By the way, the soldering iron kit had enough solder with it to do the install.]
- I used the wiring guide on the wiring kit package and the one that came with the new radio.
- The wire colors were the same for both harnesses
Cut the packaging for your wiring harness. Seems like a simple thing, but I tore mine and ended up translating the Spanish side to do my install.
The new radio bracket should have mounting tabs that will hold it in the aftermarket dash installation kit.
- Make sure to use the tabs closest to the front
- The tabs have a wedge effect so make sure to push them in until they are tight
- I used a Metra 99-5804 Dash Kit
My new radio has USB inputs on the front and back. To make the rear input accessible I ran a 7 foot USB extension cable down the driver’s side of the dash, and tucked it away. I plan on integrating that into the center console later.
After connecting the wiring harness and USB port to the back of the new radio I secured the connections by
- Wrapping electrical tape around the USB extension connection
- Zip tying the factory wiring harness to the aftermarket wiring harness
The last snag I ran across was the screw holes on the dash kit lining up properly with the two top screw holes on the climate control assembly.
I used a heat source (otherwise known as a lighter) to warm the plastic just till it was malleable and aligned the screw holes.
I suggest making your adjustments outside of the vehicle and then try the fit. I didn’t make my adjustments this way, but I accept the consequences of my actions.
I can’t believe I even have to put this here, but don’t make yourself the end of a “you know you’re a redneck because” joke.
- DON’T catch your truck on fire because you kept your heat source on the dash kit plastic till it caught fire!
- ALWAYS take proper safety precautions even if it takes a little longer to do the task.
Then new radio looks and sounds great.