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How to Wire a Car Stereo Without a Harness?

Hello guys, yeah, yeah, it’s been a while. Sorry about that. Installing a double din head stereo with a Harness Adapter is a straightforward process. You have to connect the wire color to color. But the trouble comes when your car has no factory Harness Adapter.

Here in this article, I share some knowledge about how to wire a car stereo without a harness.  It’s a quick and straightforward process on a car stereo can install without a harness.

Image Product Name Price
Double Din Android Car Stereo
JENSEN MPR210 7 Character LCD Single DIN Car Stereo
BOSS Audio Systems BVCP9685A Apple CarPlay Android Auto Car Multimedia Player
Power Acoustik PTID-8920B In-Dash DVD AM/FM Receiver
UNITOPSCI Car Multimedia Player

Knowing The Wires

Before installing a car stereo without a harness. First, you have to understand the functions and purposes of different cables. Because a Harness Adapter has different color wires and each different color represents the various functions of the cable.

Power Wires

Power wires are mainly responsible for powering up your car stereo. This includes red, yellow, and black wires. The yellow wire helps to keep the battery stable, and it has constant power. Your car radio/ stereo will not work if the black wire is absent and also known as ground cable. The red wire is the important one which helps to turn the radio on and off.

The Antenna

You must see there is the blue wire in your car. Yes, it’s the wire which is responsible for controls the signal and power antenna for your radio. It is also known as “amp turns on wire” or “power antenna wire car stereo.”

There are two types of cable/wire, such as a blue wire and a blue wire with white stripes. The blue wire is only for the AM or FM frequencies. But the blue wire with white stripes not only connects to the two frequencies but also CDs, Bluetooth,and media on your stereo.


You must see there are two oranges cables in your stereo. They are for brightness purpose of your radio. One increases the brightness while the other one lowers it. However, some older cars don’t have these wires. Before purchasing, you have to make sure of this.

Speaker wires

The last bunch of cables is for speakers of your car stereo. They have come in pairs, so it is very easy to differentiate. The ones without stripes are for positive wires, and the other ones with stripes are for negative wires.

    a. White ones: For front left speakers

b. Gray ones: For front right speakers

c. Green ones: For rear left speakers

d. Purple ones: For rear right speakers

Once you got an overview about the function of the wires, now it’s time to start with how to wire a car stereo without a harness in a secure way.

Step 1: Cut the power

First, the essential thing is removing the key from the ignition or disconnects the battery before continuing.  Because it protects you from being electrocuted.

Step 2: Tear Off the Wire Insulation

This step is essential because if the insulation isn’t correct, then it can break in anytime. Just carefully remove the insulation of each wire of the radio and your vehicle.

Step 3: Wiring

Depending on the structure of every vehicle, there are two types of wiring.

The first type is just like the wires of the radio desk. This is a vehicle coming with a bunch of cables and no harness. If you have one like this, just connected the wire color to color. Each wire has a different purpose. Just Wire these up color to color. When you are going to connect your harness wires, I recommend soldering and heat shrinking. Because by doing this you can get the best connection of your harness wires.

The second type contains only one wire. This wire has two heads, positive and negative. Here, you don’t have to look for the correct colors. Just match the pairs. The red wire will match with the yellow wire, the black one match with the blue one, and other cables already have their pairs. Now, match the negative and positive cable, and you’ll be done. Continue the process until all of the wires are attached.

Then connect the stereo harness to the stereo/double din head unit and check whether it works.Testing for radio reception or play music and check all of the speakers. Once everything is working correctly, turn off the car once again and put everything back together again.


And you are finally done! In short, without a wiring harness, you can install your car stereo by directly connecting the wires of the radio.

If there are any other suggestions or questions about how to wire a car stereo without a harness, just let us inform.Also, all ideas will be much appreciated!

Angela E. Bouchard
Angela E. Bouchard

Angela E. Bouchard is a writer and blogger as well as the chief editor of Route Vibes. She was grown up in a small neighborhood of Linden Avenue, Orlando, FL. From childhood, she has developed a keen interest to know about everything. Such characteristic helped her to become a passionate writer as she grows up. Before starting at the Route Vibes project, Angela E. Bouchard worked as writer and editor at multiple top-notch blogs and magazines. You can follow her on different social media, including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Instagram, to know more about his work.

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