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View Full Version : My Sterio issue.....2 blown amps and subs?


Gofast
07-22-2010, 10:29 AM
I have a decent system in my boat. Alpine head unit into a wetsounds EQ. 1 Amp driving the tower speakers, 1 amp driving the inboat speakers, 1 amp for each sub. ( 4 amps total )

2 weekends ago, everything perfect, no issues system works as designed. Last weekend, no power to either amp driving the subs. The inboat and tower amps worked great, just no subs.

Took boat back to my installer to correct the wiring issues ( my thought was wiring ). I had LEDs that were not working and the cupholder LEDs would sometimes stay lit regardless of the switch postion. ( bad switch? ).

Anyway, got a call yesterday morning, that I had blown both amps and both subs. Amps would see 12.8 volts then go to zero when sterio powered on, no fuses blown on amps or anywhere on boat. 1 sub was revised to being "OK" steady 4 ohms measured, the other was unstable the ohms would vary from zero to 6.9. I was told I played it to loud, not aware that the subs were really working hard and it is decieving in an open air enviroment just how loud or hard you are working the system The fix was 2 new Kicker Amps and 2 new 12" kicker subs. Amps were $700 each plus labor to install. So my quick math was around $2K.

I told him , no thanks, doesn't add up. Not my first system and it was definatly not being thrashed.


So nice hundred degree day and in the boat I go tracing wires. I traced power from batteries to a fused distribuion block for each pair of amps. 1 in 2 out, 150 amp fuse in each. I had 13 volts going into and out of the dist block for the inboat and tower speaker, zero volts in the dist block for the subs. Further investigation found that the wires into the dist block were covered by the round plastic piece that keeps the screw from coming loose during shipping of the dist block. Looks like the wires made contact via the exposed threads at the end of the wire and not by the screw that is tightend down to hold them in place. Is this normal? The wire for the 2 amps that did not work looks heated/melted and lots of corrosion. Seems like it got pretty hot, the plastic insert was discolored and not clear.

I wrapped it up here and will check the amps to see they work later today. Last night it did power up, which it hadn't done before, but when I buttoned it back down I was back to no power on light on the amp. Measured 13v at the amp this time, which it did not have before. It was close to midnight so I packed it up since I was tired and did not want to overlook something.

Rob

Double D
07-22-2010, 11:25 AM
Sorry I cant help you with your problem but I have to give you sh!t because that's what we do here for fun. :D What is a Sterio?? Is that how they spell Stereo from where your from?? :rolleyes:

Gofast
07-22-2010, 11:32 AM
Maybe that's why it's not working? and that was after a quick spellcheck... Mom's a teacher and my spelling has always driven her nuts.

Thanks

Double D
07-22-2010, 11:36 AM
Maybe that's why it's not working? and that was after a quick spellcheck... Mom's a teacher and my spelling has always driven her nuts.

Thanks

Could be!! Sorry for the jab and Good Luck with your problem. I can tell you my brother was trying to repair an Amp for me to put in my boat and I learned that its just not worth trying to fix them, just replace them.

Thrall
07-22-2010, 12:22 PM
Sorry I cant help you with your problem but I have to give you sh!t because that's what we do here for fun. :D What is a Sterio?? Is that how they spell Stereo from where your from?? :rolleyes:

Is that how you spell "you're" where you're from? :D

Thrall
07-22-2010, 12:27 PM
No it is not right for that little piece of tubing to be in there and that would be a good cause for a bad connection at the dist block. Do the amps have fuses as well? Check those?

Double D
07-22-2010, 01:26 PM
Is that how you spell "you're" where you're from? :D

Busted!! :mad:

Gofast
07-22-2010, 01:52 PM
Amp fuses were all good. I'm checking all the wiring now to make sure nothing else is wrong. I'm hoping the amp is OK, the tech bench tested the amp too. ( Supposedly ) however we did get power to the amp last night. I need to check the remote wire and make sure I didn't pull or pinch it when snugging things down.

Kyle
07-22-2010, 02:57 PM
What guage power and ground wire are you using from your battery to the distribution block and then to the amps.

My distribution blocks in my boat and in my truck are plastic but every part that has to do with contact fits nicely and the screw is metal and you can test the screw with a volt meter if needed.

You may need a new distribution block. I have one time only heated the power cable up to melt the block and made conections poor. Replaced the block and down the road I went.

If you have a volt meter and there is not 12 volts when you test the pos and neg at the amp, dont bother tracing the remote wire. Amps should have a constant 12v and the remote wire is like an igniton switch.

It would be interesting to measure the resistance in the power cable from the block to the amp. Then from the block to the battery and through the fuse.


Your speakers should have a warranty on them that covers them unless they get wet. The place that installed them should have adjusted the gain and the xover to proper levels so that you can not distort the speakers. Distortion is what kills them not volume. The shop should have turned the head unit up all along with max out of the EQ, then added gain until they got slight distortion out of max power keeping you from over working the system.



Just an idea but if you have heated a wire up somewhere is it possable that you melted a power wire to an led to a pos wire somwere else. But I bet it is a switch. My bilge stayed on after I turned it off and I fooled with the switch and it finally turned off. Replaced the switch and it has been behavin' quite well.

The longer the cables the more resistance they have and I dont know how long the power cable is from your amps to battery. Resistance is going to add heat but being here in TX doesnt help either with the 100 deg days.

By the way your boat sounded great at Broken Bow.

I would be surpised if the amp is really blown and if you trashed the subs.

Gofast
07-22-2010, 03:12 PM
Kyle,

I'm running O or 2 gauge (can't remember) welding cabel for the grounds. Really large stuff. The power lead is 2 seperate 4 gauge wires splitting to 8 gauge clsoe to the amps.

The fused dist block still had the plastic insert in them from shipping. I think the only reason I was getting power was the strands at the end of the cable were making contact. ( which would lead to resitance and heat right? ) The plastic insert was slightly melted discolored for the power lead going to the sub amps.

I think the amps are good and the subs too. Not trusting anything the installer said at this point, back to doing it myself.

I pulled the rear sub and amp last night ( room for ballast when surfing now ) and not sure if I'm putting it back or not.

I agree, my assumption, is the shop tuned the system as you described below. There offer to "fix" the system claiming I blew it up, is total crap. ( he's probably a fisherman BTW ;) )

I think I'll have the system back up tonight with a single 12" instead of dual 12"s. I'm checking up on wiring a 4 Ohm dual voice coil sub to a 2 channel sub amp. I just don't trust the way he wired or the cabeling he used. I had 14 gauge wires going to the subs from each amp! I bet that was running hot from the power I was pushing to the subs.

Thanks Rob

Kyle
07-22-2010, 03:36 PM
I'm running O or 2 gauge (can't remember) welding cabel for the grounds. Really large stuff. The power lead is 2 seperate 4 gauge wires splitting to 8 gauge clsoe to the amps.

This is fine as far as guage wire

The fused dist block still had the plastic insert in them from shipping. I think the only reason I was getting power was the strands at the end of the cable were making contact. ( which would lead to resitance and heat right? ) The plastic insert was slightly melted discolored for the power lead going to the sub amps.

There should not be any obstruction in the d block. No plastic just wire against wire connectors. Maybe installer needs to have more pride with his work or slow down.

I think the amps are good and the subs too. Not trusting anything the installer said at this point, back to doing it myself.

I pulled the rear sub and amp last night ( room for ballast when surfing now ) and not sure if I'm putting it back or not.

Put it back in it sounded great


I agree, my assumption, is the shop tuned the system as you described below. There offer to "fix" the system claiming I blew it up, is total crap. ( he's probably a fisherman BTW ;) )

See what you got yourself into dealing with their kind..... Trouble just trouble.:D

I think I'll have the system back up tonight with a single 12" instead of dual 12"s. I'm checking up on wiring a 4 Ohm dual voice coil sub to a 2 channel sub amp. I just don't trust the way he wired or the cabeling he used. I had 14 gauge wires going to the subs from each amp! I bet that was running hot from the power I was pushing to the subs.

Think I am running 12g on my sub.


Thanks Rob


No thank you...and good luck!

Gofast
07-23-2010, 10:19 AM
OK, System is running ( limping? ) on 1 JBL amp from the pile in the garage and a 12" sub.

1 Amp was blown, 1 works. The speaker wire to the subs is 16 or 18 gauge, really thin. They had 4 wires running to each sub ( Dual voice Coil ) and I don't hink they were wired right. Crutchfield diagrams show the DVC subs as having a jumper at the sub, ( + to + )and (- to -) with only 2 wires going from the sub to the 2 channel mono amp. The sub was actually wired with each voice coil going to a channel on the amp. 4 wires (+ to + and - to -) on channel 1 and the same thing on channel 2.

Should this be jumpered at the sub or is running each voic coil to a sep channel on the same amp OK?

Yes, Kyle, Not happy now with only 1 sub. I will be replacing the sub. Probably going a little more power on the amps......also rewiring to heavier gauge for the subs.

Rob

Thrall
07-23-2010, 01:33 PM
I wondered the same, but ended up getting a 1ch CL-D sub amp, so no modification needed.
I believe the sub should work fine with each vc wired to a separate channel, from a power/resistance standpoint.
My sub has dual 4ohm vc's that are paralled to the hookups on the box. Amp sees a 2ohm load this way and has worked fine. Before getting the sub amp I was considering running a channel to each vc, amp would see a 4 ohm load then.
Only problem I can think of might be sending 2 differnent signals to the same speaker, might sound out of phase or something, but someone smarter than me with stereos will have to answer that.