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Discussion Starter #41
This is where my bundle of wire come out from under the carpet behind the kick panel. Mine is the shiny bundle,..

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Once you get it ran to the rear seat side panel, it's just a matter of routing the wires to the speaker locations. Running the wires takes more time than anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter #42
I'll get an earlier start tomorrow and post the rest...rear seat speaker install (cutting holes) and the sub and amp.
 

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Discussion Starter #43
With the wiring in place, the next move was install the rear seat speakers. At first I suspected the speakers would mount to the metal frame and only the grill would go in the plastic side panels. But having the rear seat side panels pulled loose, I found that's not the way things were. The speakers actually mount to the plastic panels. You can see in the next pic in the area where there is a round place missing in the insulation, there are two posts sticking up with holes in the end of them....



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Easy to see that's where the speakers will attach, but obviously the hole for the grill will have to be cut.
 

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Discussion Starter #44
Here are some pics of the grills that will go in the holes. You can see the part numbers of them in a couple of the pics, different part number for each one. That's because the surface where they go is not flat, it's kind of concave and angled slightly differently front to back on each side.

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I got the grills off ebay, they're the OEM grills for a Challenger for the rear seat speakers. The last pic includes an OEM 3-1/2" speaker fpr reference, not what I installed, but at the time of that pic I didn't have the Kickers in hand yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #45
I measured the diameter of the back of the grills that will need to protrude through the hole and came up with 2-1/2" for the size of the hole needed. I thought about that for a while and pictured myself in the back seat with a power tool about to cut large holes in my car.

The holes needed to be centered over the speakers, as close to round as possible and as close to 2-1/2" in diameter as possible, and done neatly. The best tool for that in my mind was a hole saw. If you've ever used a hole saw, say on 3/4" plywood, it works nicely, the pilot bit drills in, the surface is hard so the pilot bit holds the hole saw blade firmly centered until the teeth dig in, and you get a nice clean hole. But, if you've ever drilled in something thin and soft like plastic, you know that as soon as the teeth of the hole saw hit the surface it tries to walk around, and the pilot bit digs into the sides of the pilot hole allowing it to walk around, and you end up with a nasty oblong hole with scratches all the way around. PLUS the surface on the side panels is not flat, it's concave as mentioned above, so all the hole saw teeth don't make contact at the same time making it want to walk around more.

So a jig was needed, to both put the pilot bit exactly in the center, and to guide the hole saw. I had a piece of aluminum flat bar in the garage and cut a piece as long as the ears on the speaker..
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The plan was screw it in place where the speaker mounts and use the hole in the center to mark the center between the mounting posts where to drill. Then I decided it needed more than just the aluminum to guide the bit, so I added a piece of wood, which would need to fit inside the hole saw when it was used later from the other side...

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It was too tall on a test fit and has to shorten it..

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Discussion Starter #46
This is what it looked like bolted in place..

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And how it worked with the drill to make a center hole so the hole saw could be used from the other side to cut the larger hole in the right place...

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Discussion Starter #47
Here is the pilot hole from the outside...

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I could have drilled with the hole saw at this point, but wanted a longer pilot bit on the hole saw. Since the hole was already in place, the pilot bit didn't really need to be a 'bit", more of just a guide. I had some scrap 1/4" steel rod in the garage that happened to be the same size as the pilot bit, so I cut a 6" piece of that and put it in the hole saw in place of the pilot bit. Once inserted in the pilot hole, it was long enough to go all the way through the plastic, wood and aluminum bar on the jig still installed on the back. Also since it was a smooth bar I didn't have to worry about it digging in sideways making the pilot hole bigger so by default it was able to hold the hole saw blade in place better.

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Taped up a bag to catch at least some of the mess..

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Discussion Starter #48
Fortunately it worked like a charm, here's the finished hole, and you can see the jig inside...

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Cleaned the mess, and removed the jig, and bolted the speaker in...

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Something to note, I used the screws that came with the Kicker speakers. They were longer than the plastic mounting studs and would have went all the way through, had to cut them down, one post is a little sorter than the other, so cut the screws accordingly...

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Discussion Starter #49
And with the grills snapped in, here is how it came out...

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Apparently I got the holes located pretty well since the curve back side of the grills matches the curve on the panel pretty well.
 

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Discussion Starter #50
After all that, the sub was easy. There was foil covered rubber sheeting covering the hole, I had to cut it out with a razor knife...

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Since I got the sub off ebay as well, it didn't have mounting screws/bolts. I had to pull one out of one of the speakers and run to the auto parts store and buy a pack. Sorry, I don't remember the size, but was able to match it, and bolt in the sub...

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Discussion Starter #51
Connecting the wires to the 3-1/2s was like the dash, used about 6" of the cables that came with the speakers (with the spade lugs) and spliced them in. For the sub, I found some Dodge speaker connectors on ebay and spliced them on the ends of my cables. Again did the 9 volt battery test on the existing 6-1/2s compared to the sub, and connected the positive and negative from the amp to match the polarity of the 6-1/2 speakers.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
At the amp...here's a couple of pics of the amp after I took it out...

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Notice the 3 screw holes on the amp...

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These are the holes the amp mounting screws go into.
 

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2018 Dodge Challenger T/A Plus in Yellow Jacket w/5.7L and A8 automatic
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Great job on everything......
 

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Discussion Starter #54
The amp is on the side up above the emergency brake pedal and above the side kick panel. If you remove the under dash cover on the driver side (you have to pull out a couple of those plastic push in keepers to get it out) and look up the side wall of the car you'll see it...

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There behind the OBD2 port is the amp. That black cloth covered thick cable coming in from the left and going up to the white connectors near the top is the factory speaker wire harness that used to plug directly into the bottom of the amp. This picture shows the new amp already in place, so after the white and black connectors near the top of the pic, that black more shiny taped up wire bundle plugged into the bottom of the amp with the multi-colored wires is my break out adapter harness that there are pics of earlier in this post. That green pair of wires on the right goes to the center dash speaker, the bundle on the left side going down is the rear speaker harness.
 

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Discussion Starter #55
Here are a couple of pics showing two of the screws holding the amp up in it's bracket. There are three total that I pointed to in the previous pic. You can see that to remove/install the amp, you don't remove the screws, just loosen them since they fit in keyhole style holes....

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The top screw is up there under the wires...

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There are actually two on the bottom, I could only get a pic of one, but you get the idea.

That said, I'm kind of an old fart, and these cars are about 8" off the ground. Getting my head and shoulders up under that dash and my long monkey arms up in there to mess with mounting that amp was a real pain. Even more so the next day lol. It's easier to get the amp out with the two wiring connectors unplugged, but once you get the three screws loose and lift it up just right, it's easy to get out. Putting it back is kind of a challenge to get all three screws lined up to drop it back in place, but with a little patience it can be done.
 

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Discussion Starter #56
I didn't take a picture of the new amp, it's just like the old one, but it is about an inch and a half longer.
 

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2018 Dodge Challenger T/A Plus in Yellow Jacket w/5.7L and A8 automatic
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Can you confirm (or deny) that the amp for my 2018 Challenger w/SG II is located in the rear deck area? I could have sworn a few times I’ve ridden in the back seat (R/R seat) that I’ve heard a faint noise of a fan running. I did a google search, and read a few threads, but all they discussed was the subwoofer location.
 

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Discussion Starter #58
When I powered it up, all the speakers played, even the center speaker. I attribute that to the fact it originally was in a car with all 10 speakers. It sounded pretty good. But I wanted to see if anything could be done at the dealership to change the sales codes to Sound Group 2 to make sure the right cabin EQ curve would be applied, and so the head unit would know it was now driving a larger amp and more speakers.

I also installed the remote start kit while I was doing the stereo upgrade, so the next day I had an appointment at a dealer to active that, so while I was there I got them to look into what they could do about possibly changing the sales codes to match the new (used) hardware.

Turns out those sales codes (amp and speaker config) can't be changed. I also had found a TSB online about amps that may need a software update, so the tech did a software update to the amp while I was there. Unfortunately, on the way home, I only had 6 speakers working again. So either the reflash for the new remote start or the software update on the amp dumbed the amp back down to match the equipment that is associated with my VIN number.

I had recently purchased AlfaOBD, so the next day connected to the car and looked up Cabin EQ Curve in the body control module. I found the Cabin Equalization Curve Number setting under ECU Configuration 3, and changed it to Premium 2 for Challenger (Alpine 12ch) (LA) and as soon as I set it all the speakers started playing and sounded better.

I ran that way for a few days, but in the Engineering Menu on the Uconnect head (that you get to by pressing the driver side AC temperature up and down buttons at the same time for about 5-10 seconds) it said the Cabin EQ curve was a three digit number, 223. Actually I looked at that before starting anything so that was the setting for the original sound group 1 six speaker system, and it didn't change after changing the setting in the body control module with AlfaOBD. I ran like that for a few days and kept checking every now and then to see if maybe the Uconnect checked in with the body control module and updated, but it never did. My thoughts were that while I had the amp set to the EQ curve it needed via the body control module setting, that the radio was still applying a different EQ curve for the 6 speaker system ahead of the amp.

Today a light bulb came on in my head. I had noticed an option in that Engineer Menu about setting the Uconnect radio back to factory default. I haven't changed many user settings and knew I'd lose my radio presets, but I went ahead and did the rest to factory defaults hoping it would then check in with the body control module on a fresh restart. Luckily it did! Once it booted back up and I set all my presets back, I checked the Engineer Menu and looked at Cabin EQ curve and it's now 22 instead of 223, and sounds even better.

So, I think I did it. I'm officially/unofficially up to Sound Group 2. Since some of the changes were made with AlfaOBD, if I ever get reflashed for any reason, I'll lose them and have to reset them, but I can live with that.

Sorry for the long thread about all the details, but if anyone ever wants to make the upgrade, maybe some of this will make it easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #59
Hey Greg, not sure where the amp is on the 2018, I know they made some upgrades. I do know the sub amp is back there if you have one of the bigger sub packages instead of the 8" deck sub. But I would think the normal amp would be in the same area.
 

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Discussion Starter #60
Also, I have to say I had a lot of help and input from some good folks on this site. All this started with GSBrockman's really great post about installing remote start, which I wanted to do, That post helped a ton in the install of mine. And as this evolved into the stereo upgrade, I had a lot of input from EngiNerd about the sales codes and radio and Jimmy07 about AlfaOBD in some side communications. I want to say thanks to you guys for your patience with my questions.

And Scottie K if you're still following this, it can be done! It does take a tweak with AlfaOBD, but it can be done. I've looked a couple of times on ebay for more of those rear seat speaker grills but haven't seen any. You can probably search those part numbers on the web and find them new from a parts place. I'd suggest BAMWholesale, if they have them they'd have the best price. That's who I purchased the remote start kit from, and some plastic molding pieces I cracked the process.
 
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