Startup Problem (Amplifier/Head-Unit?)
- Car: 1996 Mustang GT Convertible
- Stereo/Headunit: VR3 VRVD640G (180 Watt); connected using Metra RCA cable wiring harness
- Sound System: Stock Mach 460 (230 Watt)
I have had this stereo/headunit in the car for close to a year with no problems. The only note would be that, when putting the unit in, there was usually a "pop" noise when the unit was turned on; gradually, this noise went away and only happened occasionally (it got to the point where it would only occur once in a while when the unit was not manually turned off when the car was turned off, thus powering on automatically when the car was started).
Last week, I drove about 10 miles, stopped, and parked/turned off the car (nothing abnormal; I left the stereo on, as I was in a hurry). When I came back out and restarted the car, I immediately noticed the voltage meter bouncing wildly, the radio was trying to turn on but kept restarting, the "popping" noise could be heard a few times, the car's theft light/ABS lights flashed on the dash, and the car itself started to stall out/die as I tried to go. I managed to get the radio turned off (manually) during all of this before I turned the car off. Starting it up again, it fired up normally as if nothing had happened (even turned on the headunit and the sound was normal).
I have had this happen a number of times since (and also tested it in the driveway to see if it would occur, which it does). It has happened when the radio was left on... and also when it has not been on. It seemed to happen about every 4-10 start-ups... but definitely occurred more when the radio was left on. It happens the same way every time that it does occur... right on start-up, and you can see right away that it is going to occur due to the out-of-the-ordinarily wild fluctuations of the voltage meter.
After testing this, we took the fuse out (20 amp fuse; it wasn't blown) that powers the amplifier (under the hood). Since doing this, the car has consistently started up fine with no problems (the radio has been left on, turned off, etc.; obviously, there is no sound, but it powers up). The car has started up fine 20+ times; so, it is pretty safe to assume that the problem is either the amplifier(s) or radio.
So, I have a number of questions from this. Does anyone have an idea why this would be happening (especially now... considering it has worked fine for months previously)? Yes, the headunit might not be the highest quality... but it still shouldn't be pushing like this. Is it that the headunit is no longer compatible with the amplifiers? It is hooked up with the correct wiring harness. Why isn't this "power surge" blowing the fuse?
Any other suggestions? I doubt anyone has actually had this happen to them… but you never know I guess. Basically, I just want to know what needs to be replaced here... the headunit or the amplifiers (or both).
Re: Startup Problem (Amplifier/Head-Unit?)
I would get the battery checked for free at Orielys and checked with or without a load on it??Sometimes a bad battery can cause a lot of electrical issues,. Get the battery checked and see from there first thing I would do.