It is done. It seems like just yesterday when I installed a custom car stereo into my Chrysler Sebring. After many months of enjoyment, someone felt they were more entitled to my stereo than I was, and made off with it. Thanks buddy (burn in hell)! I have been riding around with my totally awesome factory stereo for too long now, and my wife got me the Sony MEX-BT2700 stereo. It has everything I wanted: HD Radio, MP3 players, Bluetooth calling and music streaming, an auxiliary in port in the front, and a remote control. What follows is my intriguing tale of its installation:
Chrysler’s cryptic wiring schematics look like a mentally retarded child with a 24-count box of Crayola crayons went to town on their blueprints for the Sebring. I decided to get a wiring harness to bypass all of that nonsense this time. I also decided that instead of making my arm bend in awkward positions, I would use a jack and remove the left front tire to get at the car battery. The “maintenance free” battery placement is the most aggregating part of working on my car. The consequences of Chrysler’s placement have ensured that any future car I own will have a battery that is easily accessible. I also ordered a universal mount for my stereo. With these choices, I figured this would be a walk in the park. I was almost right.
The wiring harness was a snap to connect – just connect the colors. The mount fit as advertised. With the wheel gone, it was much easier to get at the battery. I connected my car stereo, reconnected the battery, turned the keys in the ignition and did an inadequate test. I turned the radio to the tuner, and checked that all four speakers were producing sound. They were, and I wrapped everything up and called it a day too prematurely. My test drive was out to the store, and I discovered on the way that the CD player didn’t produce sound, though it looked like it should. I fiddled with all the options, and sure enough, it was spinning the disc, but not producing sound.
I got home, and looked at the manual, and discovered that the Bluetooth source, and the Auxiliary source had the same issue. My phone was connected both times, but sound failed to come out of the car speakers. I did some Googling with no result, and then did a live chat with Sony customer support. The support was slow, but surprisingly helpful – it put me on the right path to resolve my issue.
The next day I cut the wheel in the right, then left fashion needed to get at the battery without removing it (thanks again Chrysler), and disconnected the battery. I then pulled the stereo out, and messed with the wiring in a few combinations from what the support instructed me to do. From their documentation:
If there is no sound or the amplifier turns off when playing a CD, but there is sound and the amplifier is on when playing the radio, then you may have the solid blue (antenna remote lead – ANT REM) and blue striped (amplifier remote lead – AMP REM) wires connected incorrectly. Try switching these wire connections. In vehicles designed to supply power to the amplifier through the antenna power supply, connect the solid blue antenna wire to the solid red ignition wire. In all other vehicles, connect the blue and white amplifier turn-on wire to the solid red ignition wire.
My first point of confusion is that I don’t have an amp in my car. Apparently this is still applicable. The second point of confusion is that the solid red wires should be connected to the power antenna wire along with the existing power antenna wire. This means that three wires are connected to the power antenna wire (the two red wires, plus the blue wire). In total, I believe this to be 24V of power (12V from red, 12V from blue). I was hesitant to do this for fear of damaging the unit. Apparently, this is by design, however and it will not work unless you do this step. After this, I hesitantly reconnected the stereo, and voila – it works.
I wanted to throw this out there in case any else has run into a similar problem with their car, or with their stereo.