How To Fix Car Amp That Goes Into Protection Mode at High Volume
Related Car Amp Problems Amp goes into protection mode when turned on, car amp goes into protection mode, what does it mean when my amp goes into protection mode, amp going into protection mode, amp goes into protect mode when bass hits, amp going in and out of protection mode, amp goes into protect mode when turned up, why does my amp go into protection mode when i turned it on
If your car amplifier goes into protect mode when you turn up the volume high on the car stereo its usually because of voltage drop. Basically when you listen to your car amp at high volume levels it goes into protection mode because there is not enough power from the electrical system to chuck at it. If you continue to allow your car amp to run into protect because of this reason, you can damage the power supply and mosfets inside the amp. So its best to to fix your car amp going into protection mode now when the bass hits before it blows out on your.
Before you are thinking about considering to make certain upgrades to your cars electrical system, it is essential to check the ground. A inproper poor ground will also make the car amp go in and out of protect mode when turned up from the front. What you want to do is recheck it, sand the paint down and test to see if it works any better.
Things you can do to make your cars electrical system better:
1) Upgrade the Battery. The stock starting battery doesn't have the extra juice a powerful car amp requries, replacing it with a designed deep cycle one will provide better peformance. The one that we recommend is the Yellow Top Optima battery. You could even have a battery bank in the trunk just for the amps if you are running over 5000 watts.
2) Add a high output alternator. This is what provides charge to the car battery. If the car battery is getting drained more quicker then its charging, the stock alternator will fail to keep up with it. So the best way is to replace the stock alternator with a high output one.
3) Upgrade wiring kit. If you are running thin wires for your car power and ground, its not going to get the current flow its supposed to get from the car battery for audio use. But this only applies if you are using a wiring kit that is below what is recommend for the amp. 0 gauge wire is the best because of its thickness.
4) Power Cap. Installing this into your car will help stop the car amp going into protect mode, since it will help stable the voltage at high volumes. How it works is it stores energy into a bank of cells and lets it out when the car amp requires it. It also stops your car headlights dimming as well.
5) Big three upgrade. This requires to replace the stock wires inside the engine bay including the battery ground to chassis wire, alternator positive to positive battery wire and chassis to engine block wire. This will make the current flow much better around the system.
Amplifier Protection Mode Troubleshooting
One of the more confusing car stereo problems can be when an amplifier goes into protection mode. One minute it's working and the next minute it's not, usually with the green power LED on the amp turning to red or orange. Here's a brief troubleshooting method that will hopefully help you if your amplifiers ever go into protection.
- Try to determine the cause. Amplifiers can go into protection mode for several reasons. Knowing what happened before it quit working can help determine how to fix it. Did the amp malfunction as soon as it was turned on? Did it happen after blasting for hours (may be thermal overload and it needs to cool)? Did it cut out after you hit a bump (a wire connection may have come loose)?
- Tear it down. Get the amp down to it's most basic state. Remove all of the speaker wiring and RCA wiring and leave only the power, ground and remote leads connected. If you still have a problem in this state then either your amp is defective or you may have an installation problem such as the amplifier touching metal.
- Remember that an amplifier should only be connected to the vehicle through the power and ground terminals. Mounting the amplifier to the metal of the vehicle, including putting the mounting screws into metal, can cause problems for your amplifier. Always mount the amplifier to a non-conductive surface. An easy way to accomplish this is to mount the amplifier to a wood board and then mount the board to the vehicle. Don't let the amp touch the screws used to moun the wood board and don't use screws so long to mount the amp that they go through the board and touch the vehicle.
- If the amp is OK in this torn down state start reconnecting wires until you find what causes the problem. Add the RCA cables first. Then add the speaker wires one at a time. If the speaker wires cause the problem then they are probably touching metal. Check to make sure that a speaker wire isn't being pinched somewhere between the amp and the speaker. Also check that the speaker wire or speaker terminals aren't touching the vehicle metal near the speaker opening. Rear decks and door panels can easily touch unprotected speaker terminals if not properly installed.
- If you believe your amplifier is defective contact the manufacturer first. Many have flat repair rates that are very affordable and cover parts and labor as well as return shipping. However local repair shops may be cheaper if it is just a small repair. Compare the manufacturer's repair rate to that of a local shop. If you don't know the reputation of the local shop it may be better to send it to the manufacturer who will have working knowledge of the amp and parts readily available.
You may also be interested in How to Install Your Own Car Stereo System . It covers many topics including in depth car audio amplifier installation. Click here.
Back to the Newsletter Archives Index
What Is Amplifier Protect Mode?
Amplifier protection mode is a shutdown state that car amps may enter in certain situations. The purpose of the shutdown state is to prevent damage to the amp or other system components. So while dealing with an amp in protect mode may be annoying, it might save you from a bigger headache down the road.
Causes of Amplifier Protection Mode
Some common causes of an amp going into protect mode include:
- Improper installation of the amp.
- The amp has overheated for some reason.
- One or more wires have come loose.
- The amp has failed internally.
Troubleshooting Amplifier Protect Mode
Fully troubleshooting a problem like this might be over your head if you’re a novice, so it might be worth getting help from an expert or experienced friend. If that isn’t an option, or you want to get a head start, here are some easy questions you can ask yourself to get on the right track.
- Did the amplifier malfunction when it was turned on the first time? The failure is probably due to an installation problem. If you paid someone to install the amp, check with them before you do any diagnostic work on your own. Start your diagnostic by checking the power and ground cables and making sure that the amp is physically isolated from any bare metal contact with the vehicle.
- Did the amplifier malfunction after a long listening session? Your amplifier might have simply overheated.
- Did the amplifier malfunction while driving on a rough road? The wires may not have been properly secured to the system, causing them to come loose when the vehicle hit a rough road.
If any of the above situations apply, you have a great place to start the troubleshooting process. In the case of a problem that manifested immediately after installing and wiring an amp, start by checking the power and ground wires in addition to the patch cables.
Some amps go into protect mode if they get too hot, which can prevent a permanent failure. The common cause of overheating is a lack of airflow.
If the amp is located underneath the seats, or in another confined space, that may cause it to overheat. One way to test this is to set up a 12v fan so that it blows air over the amp. If the amp no longer goes into protect mode, relocating it to a less confined space, or changing the way it's mounted, may fix the problem.
Driving around with a fan blowing on your amp isn't a long-term solution. Still, if using a fan stops the amp from shutting down and entering protect mode, that's a clue that remounting or relocating the amp will fix the problem. Increasing the air gap between the top, bottom, and sides of the amp can help increase airflow, or you may need to move it to a different location.
In some cases, a loose or shorted wire causes an amp to go into protect mode to prevent a more serious problem from occurring. Diagnosing and fixing this requires checking each individual power and ground wire.
Ground problems can often be fixed by cleaning and tightening the ground connection or relocating it if necessary. Power issues may be related to a loose or burnt wire, but a blown amp fuse is also possible. Amps typically include built-in fuses in addition to in-line fuses, so check both of these.
Internal Amp Problem
If you notice that the contacts your amp fuse clips into have gotten hot, or melted, it's likely that the fuse won't make good electrical contact, and it may overheat and blow again. In this case, there may be an internal problem with the amp.
An overheating amp can also be the result of a mismatch between speaker impedance and the range the amp is designed to work with, or speakers or wires that are shorted out.
Before you dig in any further, check a few easy points of failure like fuses. Although amps usually don't go into protect mode due to a blown onboard fuse, it's easy to check and might save you from a headache down the line.
Break It Down
Troubleshooting an amp in protect mode—beyond asking the questions listed above—starts off by breaking it down to basics. You'll typically disconnect the amp from the head unit and the speakers to see if the problem still exists.
If the amp remains in protect mode at that point, there may be a power or ground problem, or a problem with the installation where the body of the amp makes contact with bare metal. Since metal components of a vehicle's frame, body, and unibody act as a ground, allowing an amplifier to touch bare metal can cause all sorts of problems.
Hook It Up
If your amplifier remains in protect mode with everything disconnected, and you're sure that there aren't any power or ground issues, the amp might be defective. However, the problem lies elsewhere if the amp is no longer in protect mode at that point, and you can look for the issue by connecting the speaker wires and patch cables one by one.
If you connect a component back up, and the amp goes into protect mode, the problem has to do with that component or related wiring or cables. For instance, a speaker with a shorted-out or damaged coil can cause problems.
In the event that everything has power, nothing is shorted out, and the amp isn't overheating, then the amp may have some type of internal fault. That typically means professional repairs or replacing the amp.
To get the best sound from your car amplifier, adjust your gain component setting so that it's under the maximum level that meets distortion. Other suggestions include changing the frequency to your unit's specified frequency numbers, tuning your car's amplifier by ear, or using tuning equipment to test each component's sound quality.
To choose the right amp for your car or truck, find your car speakers' RMS (root mean square) value and select an amp that puts out 75 to 150 percent of that number. If you're adding a subwoofer to the system, you can get a single-channel amp; otherwise, you'll need one channel for each speaker.
Thanks for letting us know!
How to Fix Car Amp in Protection Mode?
How to Fix Car Amp in Protection Mode?
An amplifier is a device that amplifies the weak signal into a stronger one, which causes the listener to enjoy the best sound quality. This phenomenon is the same for cars and houses.
Check why your car amp is in the protection mode, then act accordingly. Common methods to fix protection mode in car amp includes correcting the connection wires, prevent over-heating, check the ground wires, and reinstalling the amplifier.
If you want to enjoy good music quality, you have to use an amplifier. It is a very necessary process for every music system. It tells the signal how much distortion-free it will move and how much difficulty a signal will face in its transmission rate.
Car stereo cannot provide audio like an amplifier. It solves many audio problems and sends it to the system of the car that is used. Amplifiers can provide high power output, which other devices cannot.
Car stereos and subwoofers also need the amplifier to increase the quality of output of the used signal. Amplifier only needs around 50 watts of power to operate that is too less as compared to the car stereos and other devices like subwoofers etc.
In order to fix the amplifier protect mode, there are some possibilities; that’s why the amplifier has gone into the protection mode. There are some fixation according to the situation of the protection mode.
If the amplifier malfunctions when it is turned off for its first time, this disappointment is because of the issue of the establishment of the speaker in the vehicle. In the event that you employ somebody for the obsession of the amplifier, at that point, you need to check every one of the issues as per the speaker.
This issue will be determined as per the force and ground links, and you need to check appropriately that these wires are isolated from any metallic instrument.
If an amplifier is disturbed after a long listening session
Your amplifier in the car may be overheated. An amplifier will go into the protected mode if the amplifier gets heated. The amplifier is overheated because of the lack of the flow of the air. If your device confined under the closed space, it might cause an overheated amplifier. If you want to fix this problem, you have to attach a 12 volts fan to provide a cooling effect to the amplifier. You can fix them with a cooling fan.
If the amplifier is crashed when you are driving on a bumpy road
If the wires are not properly twisted and not properly attached to the amplifier. Then driving on the bumpy roads can disturb the jolts of the amplifier. So a loose or a shortened wire can shift the amplifier to the protected mode. This protection mode will save the heavy instruments from severe damage.
You can diagnose and fix this act by checking them by looking into the single wire that may be power and ground. This can affect the amplifier in the long run.
Easy Methods to Fix the Car Amplifier in the protection mode
In the event that any of the above issues happen when you need to investigate the enhancer by a basic methodology, following the issue occurs. You can fix it by reviewing all the ground and nonpartisan wires of the framework that can fix the issue. You additionally need to look down at the fix links that can make the principle issue the issue.
On the off chance that there is an issue in the ground wires, you can fix it subsequent to diagnosing it by fixing it and change its position if fundamental. Power issues might be because of the consumed wires and blown speaker wires.
One can easily fix the Amplifier if he knows about the problems of the amplifier. Because protected mode just symbolizes that there is any problem that is working. Speakers normally have the in-line combine, and furthermore, it has wires that are worked in the amplifier.
Presently, if your amplifier is bombed after the long utilization of the speaker, you have invested a great deal of energy in it by tuning in to it. At that point, you have watched this issue on the grounds that the amplifier has overheated as a result of the long utilization.
You can utilize an alternate kind of chilling fan to chill this impact. The chilling effect will totally undermine the main problem of the overheating of the system. The extra cooling impact can keep the amplifier in loosening up circumstances for work. If you mounted a car amp upside down, fix it immediately.
Driving a long separation on the vehicle with a shrewd cooling fan, you don’t have a changeless answer for the issue. You have experienced the correct comprehension of an appropriate arrangement. In the event that the cooling fan is on and still your amplifier is going into a secured mode, at that point, you should clear about the way that there is a deficiency in the position of the enhancer. You ought to move it by the way that air should go through it.
This substitution of the instrument is the best possible answer for the framework. On the off chance that the wind stream hole between the upper and lower framework is overseen by changing the spot, then it will assist a great deal with going towards the best possible answer for the issue. The air hole will help in a feeling of moving to adjust the framework towards a legitimate association between the distinctive wiring frameworks and speakers.
For a constant failure, break it down
In the wake of doing all the analysis and analyzing the amplifier, on the off chance that you are not arriving at an appropriate answer for the issue, at that point, you need to think about it by opening its ports. You need to consider the issue by confining the entire amplifier from its position that will give you ease in the recognizable proof. You should separate it by the impact of the issue you are confronting.
In the wake of outlining every one of the portions of wire, you need to drag it down to the end. Are the whole associations are at their position? Is any metal touching the ground wire? Presently in the wake of understanding these issues, you have a review and take a gander at the answer to the issue. This is a straightforward fixing of the amplifier from the secured mode.
Hook up all the issues
In the event that subsequent to joining every one of the answers for your issues, at that point, you need to supplant your instrument with another one just. It won’t give you an appropriate answer to the issue; however, it can make substantial harm to your vehicle soon. In the event that your concern is because of the connection of the reinforcement segment, which is the reason your enhancer has gone into the protected method of the amplifier.
To put it plainly, I need to finish up it up by giving you some fundamental standards about the fixing of the protected mode. The protected mode is for your wellbeing. The protected mode can spare you from extreme harms.
It will assist you with saving from a complete burst out of the enhancer as a gadget. You ought to comprehend the managing of the protected method of your speaker. Recoup that issue, why your amplifier is going into the protected mode.
Amplifier protection mode is only the shutdown state on which the amplifier goes to save the device from some heavy damage. Protection mode is sometimes irritating, but it is for the safety of the devices of the customers. This protection mode will save you from a severe future headache that can more irritate you.
Now, I will discuss some causes; that’s why the amplifier goes into the protection mode.
- Installation of the amplifier is not in a proper way
- The amplifier has heated due to some reason
- Some wire may remain loosen
- It might have failed internally
How protection mode is symbolized on the amplifier?
To check whether the amplifier is in protected mode or not. This changes from the amplifier to the speaker as per its assembling. At times, a little LED light is utilized for the sign of the protected mode. In certain enhancers, the speaker closes down all of a sudden with a blaring sound.
It influences the sound quality by going into the protected mode in certain amplifiers. Speakers are structured by the particular of its development into the protected mode. The client of that amplifier will obviously comprehend when the speaker goes into the protected mode.
Can I Fix My Car Radio Antenna Reception?
Most Expensive Car Stereo Ever Made
Methods to attach 6 speakers with Head Unit
Can You Put Subwoofers in a Car Door?
Most Powerful Car Amplifiers for 2021
Which Way Should Car Subwoofers Face?
Fix amp protect mode
What To Do If Your Car Amplifier Goes Into Protect Mode And How To Fix It Car Amp Troubleshooting
What To Do If Your Car Amplifier Goes Into Protect Mode And How To Fix It Car Amp Troubleshooting Rockville Audio It isnt absolutely free, however , you can have a no cost demo. This Video Downloader enables you to download music videos from YouTube with ease. You could extract audio observe from movie and convert it to MP3 format. MusiXnergizer
Monitor the statistics of your respective video. They will see perspective count and similar details, but You can t do exactly the same.
Related What To Do If Your Car Amplifier Goes Into Protect Mode And How To Fix It Car Amp Troubleshooting
What To Do If Your Car Amplifier Goes Into Protect Mode And How To Fix It Car Amp Troubleshooting, Jamendo is actually a totally free music download Web page and an open up Local community of music authors. It bills alone as "the planets major electronic support for free music".
What To Do If Your Car Amplifier Goes Into Protect Mode And How To Fix It Car Amp Troubleshooting, Nonetheless, in the event you filter your search results for Creative Commons video clips only and ensure with Each and every online video that It is okay to save the audio, It can be entirely Safe and sound to download the songs.SoundCloud is a web site that permits you to stream and download totally free audio. Material at SoundCloud is sometimes uploaded by Qualified artists, while others are shared by unbiased musicians..
I get so many questions about amplifiers going into protection (or blowing fuses after remote turn-on voltage is applied) that I've decided to provide a page to help determine if the amplifier is faulty or if a fault in the system is causing a problem.
- Many amplifiers will illuminate their protect LED during the mute delay (when you initially power up the amplifier). After a short delay (2-10 seconds), the protect LED will go off. For those amplifiers this is normal. Other amplifiers ONLY illuminate the protect LED when there is a problem. If you know how your amplifier behaves when the amp is in good working order, it will make troubleshooting much easier. If you are unsure about this, you can email me or ask someone on a forum where they're familiar with the amplifier you have. For the most part, this page is for amplifiers that go into protect mode and remain in protect mode or go into protect mode when the amplifier is driven hard.
- Many times, the protection indicator will blink to indicate the reason the amp is in protect mode. The owner's manual is the best source to help you decode the blink sequence. This is common on older Alpine amplifiers.
- Not all amps have a protection mode indicator. Some simply shut down and the power light will not illuminate when in protect mode. If the power light blinks then goes off, the amp is either going into protect mode or there is a bad connection in the power supply wiring.
- Generally, the power light is green or blue and the protect light is red but on some amps, the protect light is green and the power light is red. Look at the silkscreen on the amplifier to confirm the function of the LEDs
- Some amplifiers have multiple protect lights. For example, some of the Sony amplifiers have lights for power, overcurrent and thermal protection. The lights are always lit when the amp powers up but are normally green. When there is a fault, the LED changes from green to amber.
- Many amplifiers show protect when initially powered up (mute delay) and then switch to green. Sometimes it's a single LED that changes color (PPI). Sometimes it switches the red LED off and switches the green on (Planet Audio, Power Acoustik and similar amps). Some (like the old Autoteks) light the green LED and red LED initially then the red LED switches off.
- In MANY amplifiers, the power LED will be lit but the amplifier will be completely dead internally. This is especially true when the power supply has failed.
- There are a few amps (some JL Audio) that will go into protect and none of the indicators change. This happens when the voltage drops too low when the amp is being driven hard with an insufficient power supply. Sometimes, a VERY brief drop in voltage (too short to be seen on a standard multimeter) will cause the amp to shut down for a short while.
Again... It's helpful to know how the amplifier behaves when working properly. If your amp is working properly, pay attention the way the indicators light up when powering the amp up. If you don't know how they're supposed to behave, ask around.
The first thing you need to check is the on-board fuses plugged into the amplifier (if it has them). Not many amplifiers will illuminate the protection light when the fuses are blown but a few will so you need to check this. If the fuse holders are melted, you need to have the amp checked by a technician to determine why they melted and to determine if the fuse holders are usable. Generally, when the fuse holder melts, the contacts become badly oxidized and the clips lose their tempering. This means that they can no longer function properly and will continue to overheat.
For those who don't know what a blown fuse looks like, the one on the left below is blown. The one on the right is OK.
B+ and Remote Voltage:
Not all amps have low voltage protection but some do (MTX, Rockford and most of the Japanese brands). This means that you must confirm that you have sufficient voltage reaching the amplifier for it to operate properly.
With your multimeter set to DC volts, the black meter probe on the ground terminal of the amp (not on the point where the ground wire connected to the vehicle) and the head unit on (so the amp will have remote voltage applied), touch the red probe alternately to the B+ (battery +) and remote terminals of the amp. If the voltage is below ~11 volts, you need to check the wiring feeding whichever line is too low. Normally, both will be above 12v. It's important that you leave your head unit on during testing so that the remote line will have voltage on it, the amplifier will be on, and the amplifier will be drawing current. Sometimes the voltage will only drop when current is being drawn from the power source.
If the amp only shuts down when the amplifier tries to produce high power (when it hits a strong note), you need to measure the voltage at the time when the amp shuts down. The voltage drop should be minimal when the amp is producing/trying to produce significant output. If it's dropping below ~11v, you need to determine why.
If you have confirmed that you have sufficient voltage on the amplifier's B+ and remote terminals and have a good ground, procede to step 3.
Above, I purposely recommend placing the black probe of the meter on the ground terminal of the amp. If you place it on a chassis ground point in the vehicle and there is a bad connection between the amplifier ground terminal and the chassis ground, it will appear that the amplifier has sufficient voltage at the B+ and remote terminals (assuming that the feeds to those are intact).
If the voltage at BOTH the B+ and remote terminals is low and your vehicle's battery is not low (check the voltage at the battery with the multimeter), touch the black lead to a known good ground (a point scraped to the metal on the floor pan of the vehicle) and the red lead to the ground terminal of the amp. If you read more than 0.01v and the amp is at idle, you may have a bad ground. If you read over 0.1v, you definitely have a bad ground.
If you find that the B+ or remote voltage is low at the amplifier, you need to trace the voltage back to the source to determine where the voltage is dropping. At each connection, fuse or other point where the wire is not continuous, check the voltage. You need to check the voltage on BOTH sides of each connector and fuse holder. Since the meter leads are not long enough to reach the grounds at the battery or trunk over the long run of the power wire, you need to scratch the paint/primer/undercoat to bare metal at each point where you need to check the voltage. If you find that the voltage is good on one side of a connector or fuse but not on the other side of the connector/fuse, you need to replace the connector or fuse. In some cases, the connections between the wire and the fuse holder will be a problem. You will also see defective fuse holders.
Clues to a Bad Connection:
Generally, when there is a bad connection and the connection has been bad for an extended period of time, the insulating material around the connector will be melted. The image below shows a terminal block that melted because the set screw wasn't tight enough on the wire (this is very common). In this particular amp, the damage was so bad that the block melted the solder and pulled out of the board.
Fuses - Open But Not 'Blown':
Also, just because a fuse doesn't look blown, that doesn't mean it's intact. If there's a question, pull the fuse from the holder and measure the resistance across it (set meter to ohms). The resistance across fuses rated more than a few amps will be essentially 0 ohms. Most meters will not read to 0 ohms. To know how low your meter reads at 0 ohms, touch the leads together for 5 seconds. This is what you should read when you touch the meter across the fuse (out of the fuse holder).
An important note about the Flash demos/graphics on this site... The powers that be have deemed that the Flash content on web pages is too risky to be used by the general internet user and soon, ALL of the support for it will be eliminated (most Flash access was eliminated 1-1-2021). This means that no modern browser will display any of these demos, by default. The fix for now is to download the Ruffle extension for your browser. Ruffle Web Site. Please email me ([email protected]) to let me know if Ruffle is working well for you and what browser you're using.
An alternative to Ruffle is another browser, Maxthon 126.96.36.1990. For more information on the Flash problem and Maxthon (standard and portable), click HERE.
The following demo is from the Installation Primer page of my Basic Car Audio Electronics site. At every point where there is a green indicator, you should check the voltage. Using the demo should help you to better understand where you'd lose voltage when there is a break in the circuit.
If the voltage remains near or above 12v but the amp still goes into protect mode, disconnect all speaker wires from the speaker terminals of the amp and disconnect signal cables from the amp. It's important that you disconnect the speaker wires from the speaker terminals of the amplifier and disconnect all RCA cables from the RCA jacks of the amplifier.
If the amp powers up after disconnecting the speaker and signal cables from it, try reconnecting the RCA cables. If the amp goes into protect with the RCA cables plugged in, go to step 4. If it doesn't go into protect, reconnect one pair of speaker wires at a time. If you're using a mono amp and have only one pair of speaker wires, you'll need to disconnect all but one speaker from the other end of the speaker wires. If you find that one pair of speaker wires or one speaker causes the amp to go into protect, disconnect all speakers from the other end of the wires and separate the wires so they can't touch. If the amp still goes into protect, you have a bad speaker wire or the wire is shorted to chassis ground. If the amp only goes into protect when one particular speaker is connected to the amp, you have a defective speaker. .
If the amplifier goes into protect with the RCAs plugged in (but all speaker wires disconnected), there could be several problems. You first need to check the RCA shields of the head unit. THIS link takes you to a page where it's explained in detail. If the shield ground of the head unit is OK, the amplifier could have one of several problems. You need to power up the amplifier and measure the voltage on the shields (shiny outer metal ring) of the RCA jacks. Touch the black meter probe to the ground terminal of the amp and the red meter probe to each of the RCA shields. If you read 10v or more, the amplifier may have a shorted transformer. If you read something less than 1v, the transformer is likely OK.
Some amplifiers have a problem with broken connections between the RCA shield and the circuit board. This is sometimes difficult to check unless you know how the input circuitry of the amplifier is designed. In most of the budget amplifiers, the shield will be directly connected to the NON-bridging speaker terminals. If you have that connection, the shield ground connection is intact. Sometimes, the connection is intermittent so you need to move the RCAs while you're checking to insure that the connection is solid.
If the amp goes into protect with no RCA or speaker cables connected to it or if the amplifier blows the fuse AFTER remote voltage is applied, the amplifier likely has shorted output transistors. If that's the case, the amplifier will need to be repaired. If you'd like to repair it yourself, read the Amplifier Repair Primer page. It will help you troubleshoot many amps down to the component level.
- Colored thermal paper rolls
- Mobile patrol app for android
- Youtube the lightning thief
- Phoenix mills stock price
- Death note bed set
- 10 day 97223
- Mosaic patio coffee table
- Cape coral temperature
- Rocket league parkour map
Car Amp Troubleshooting: Recognize & Fix a Power Protect Fault
This article is designed to help car audio beginners understand and deal with one of the most frustrating things that can happen to any amp: the system shutting down and the “protection” light turning on, seemingly for no reason at all.
We’ll start with the good news. Yes, protection mode is a built-in feature of the amp, and yes, whatever caused it can almost always be fixed. You’ve probably thrown a circuit breaker in your home before — it’s exactly the same principle, though a little more complicated in execution.
What is power protect mode?
Almost all amps (and all amps you should be buying) are engineered with protection circuits. When something goes wrong in the amp’s wiring, the protection circuit trips, shutting down the entire amp to keep the problem from getting worse. It’s basically the electrical engineering version of the COVID-19 lockdown.
It’s not a blue screen of death. Just like with the circuit breaker analogy, if you follow the proper steps, you’ll have your amp working again in no time.
How to recognize power protect mode
The boring but practical answer: read your amp’s owner’s manual. If you lost it or threw it away, you can almost always find it in PDF form by searching the model number.
Manuals contain a tsunami of information, so if you’re overwhelmed, here are the things to look for:
- Whether there is a protect mode light
- What color the protect light is supposed to be
- If the protect light blinks in code to tell you what the problem is
If the last part is true, you’re on easy street. Just check what sequence the light is blinking in, look in the manual to see what it means, then skip ahead to where we talk about solutions.
If your amp isn’t a code-talker, it’s still important to understand what its lights are saying at all times. Sometimes the protect light turns on for two seconds when the amp does, like a check engine light, and then shuts off. Some protect lights are green or blue instead of the usual red.
Some amps don’t even have power lights, but this doesn’t mean they don’t have protect circuits. These amps indicate protect mode by blinking the power light before shutting down completely. If you can’t turn your amp’s power light on even by pressing the button, you might be in protect mode.
Causes of power protect mode
Amps go into protect mode for many reasons. Here are a few of the most common.
- Load mismatch. Amps will refuse to work if whatever’s plugged into them has a lower electrical resistance than their minimum threshold. This low bar for resistance is called the amp’s If an amp has an impedance of 2 ohms, a speaker with less than 2 ohms will overwhelm its circuits, triggering protect mode.
- Overheating. Amps that handle too much power without enough cooling airflow can overheat. If your amp’s system gets too hot, it will enter protect mode to keep itself from melting.
- Problems in the speaker or head unit. Sometimes breakdowns in other sound system components can trigger protect mode in connected amps. If a speaker’s wire shorts out, or if you plug an amp into a head unit that’s already powered on, the amp might shut down to prevent the problem from spreading.
- Problems in the amp. If the amp itself has problems, like a blown fuse or a wire without insulation, it will shut down.
Steps to fix protect mode
We want to warn you at the start: Unless you’re a trained electrician with access to a fully-stocked workshop, you won’t be able to personally fix every power protect fault. Even so, following these six steps will get you through 90 percent of cases.
Step 1: Check if your amp is warm
An amp that’s too hot to touch with your bare skin is a sign of two of the most common causes of protect faults: lack of airflow, and load mismatch. If your amp feels like a hot stovetop, check and see if you’ve plugged it into a unit with a lower resistance (measured in ohms) than the amp’s minimum.
If the resistance on your amp doesn’t match the resistance on your speakers or head-unit, it’s time to move your amp. Put it somewhere in your car where it will get more airflow. If overheating is the problem, attaching a fan to your amp might also extend its life.
Step 2: Check cables, terminals, and fuses
Look for clean, secure connections at every port. Make sure none of the connections have rattled loose from driving on bumpy roads, and check that they’re all free of dust, debris, and oxidation. If you notice any dirt, clean it carefully with a dry cloth.
Next, check that your amp’s grounding cables are securely attached to the car. This is also a good time to make sure that the amp is not directly touching the metal of the car at any point.
Step 3: Check the voltage on your amp’s power cables
You’ll need a multimeter for this. You can get a cheap one for about $25, or just borrow one from a friend.
Use the red probe on the multimeter to check the voltage on each of the amp’s ports. If any of them read less than 11V with your car’s engine off, or 12V with it on, there’s a problem with the internal wiring — something that should be delivering power isn’t doing it.
In that case, you’ll need professional assistance. Skip ahead to the next section.
Step 4: Check that you have a good ground
Low voltage can be caused by bad grounding. A good sign of this is if the voltage on every terminal in your battery is low.
To verify that this is your problem, touch the black end of your multimeter to some inert metal on your car, then the red end to your amp’s ground terminal. If it reads more than 0.1V, your amp is almost certainly in protect mode because of bad grounding.
To solve a grounding problem, clean your grounding wires, then reattach them more tightly to a location in your car where you’re certain they won’t rattle loose.
Step 5: Unplug the amp from the speaker
If you haven’t found the problem yet, it’s time for a classic engineering solution: try to isolate the vault within the system.
Remove any connection to the speaker, then turn your amp on and see if it’s still in power protection mode. If it starts right up as normal, the problem is in the speaker — your amp has just shut down to protect itself.
To verify that the speaker is the problem, get your multimeter again, and test its ports this time. If the voltage is less than 12V with your car’s engine on, something has gone faulty inside the speaker.
Step 6: Unplug the amp from the head unit
Same as step 5, unplug any cables connecting the amp to your radio, CD system, or MP3 player, and try turning it on once again. If it starts normally, the problem is in your head unit. Like in the last step, you can test this using the multimeter — and again, you’re looking for 12V with the car on, 11V if it’s off.
When to take your amp to a professional
If you discovered a problem with your amp’s internal wiring with the multimeter in step 3, you likely won’t be able to fix it on your own. Take it to a well-regarded sound technician.
If you worked your way through all six steps above, but your amp won’t leave power protect mode even after you’ve disconnected it from everything, then you’ll need a professional’s help to diagnose the problem. We don’t recommend taking your amp apart unless you’re certain you can put it back together.
Good luck! We hope you’re back to listening soon, hassle-free.
Pete has been working in the trades since high school, where he first developed a passion for woodworking. Over the years, he has developed a keen interest in a wide variety of DIY projects around the home. Fascinated by all sort of tools, Pete loves reading and writing about all the latest gadgets and accessories that hit the market. His other interests include astronomy, hiking, and fishing.
As the founder of House Grail, David’s primary goal is to help consumers make educated decisions about DIY projects at home, in the garage, and in the garden.