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Old 04-16-2013, 09:22 PM   #1
moman2
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Broke my subwoofer harness cord - how to fix wiring?

The audio in my car was unclear at times, so I went to BMW and they said that my car (e46 330ci) needed new amplifiers (both the sub amp and the main amp). I went ahead and bought the parts and started by replacing the sub amp in the trunk.

When removing the subwoofer, I accidentally forgot to unhook the main cord (the one with the wiring harness at the end) from the top of the sub amp assembly (I didn't even know it was attached there). As a result, as the subwoofer came down, the cord got yanked and I think it got detached from whatever it was connected to. I tried checking the power leads with a multimiter and got nothing. The subwoofer doesn't work at all as a result

I'm planning on removing the trunk lining and looking for the other end of the cord. Does anyone happen to know what the cord with the sub amp harness is connected to on the other end? Does it go straight to the main amp, or is it routed through somewhere else?

Thanks in advance!
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Last edited by moman2; 04-16-2013 at 09:23 PM.
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Old 04-16-2013, 09:32 PM   #2
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It should be speaker wire coming directly from the sub/main amp depending on your setup. Pictures would help. And you haven't done anything serious. Don't worry.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:09 PM   #3
moman2
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Well, that's a relief

Here are pics of the cord in question.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moman2 View Post
Well, that's a relief

Here are pics of the cord in question.
So, if I understand your statement, you are saying that you think you pulled the other end of the harness from whatever it's plugged in to?
I'm trying to be sure that you are not saying that the harness into the subwoofer was the one that you think you broke...?
EDIT: It's 100% unlikely that you pulled the other end of the harness out of whatever else it's plugged into. You probably couldn't do it if you tried. It would take an enormous amount of brute strength to rip those wires out as a harness....

Last edited by basketthis; 04-16-2013 at 10:19 PM.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:17 PM   #5
moman2
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Imagine pulling down firmly on the cord that can be seen hanging in the pictures. That's essentially what happened.

I wasn't dumb enough to forget to unplug the actual harness that does into the amp when removing the sub speakers
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:04 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by moman2 View Post
Imagine pulling down firmly on the cord that can be seen hanging in the pictures. That's essentially what happened.

I wasn't dumb enough to forget to unplug the actual harness that does into the amp when removing the sub speakers
Nah. You didn't hurt that harness. Trust me. You have nothing to worry about. No way you pulled hard enough to pull it out of anything. Maybe damaged the wire a little or something. Other than that, you're good.

EDIT: Unless there's a harness on the other side of that hole that somehow came unplugged. Again, highly unlikely. A good way to check is to yank on the harness real good. If it comes out, track down where it needs to go and plug it back in.

EDIT 2: And did you test with the new amp prior to "breaking" it? Are all other connections plugged in to the amp?

Last edited by basketthis; 04-16-2013 at 11:08 PM.
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:07 PM   #7
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Then why is there no power in it? Before I started messing with it, the sub was working fine...

Perhaps it's the speakers that I broke?
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:12 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by moman2 View Post
Then why is there no power in it? Before I started messing with it, the sub was working fine...

Perhaps it's the speakers that I broke?
Maybe. If you set your multimeter to the ohm setting and put it to the subwoofer terminals, it should read a low ohm load (2 or 4. It won't be exactly, but in that area you're fine). Put the positive on one terminal and the negative on the other.
Again, I still think you should yank really good on the the harness. If it's disconnected, it WILL come out...

Last edited by basketthis; 04-16-2013 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:17 PM   #9
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Nah. You didn't hurt that harness. Trust me. You have nothing to worry about. No way you pulled hard enough to pull it out of anything. Maybe damaged the wire a little or something. Other than that, you're good.

EDIT: Unless there's a harness on the other side of that hole that somehow came unplugged. Again, highly unlikely. A good way to check is to yank on the harness real good. If it comes out, track down where it needs to go and plug it back in.

EDIT 2: And did you test with the new amp prior to "breaking" it? Are all other connections plugged in to the amp?
I will try yanking on it tomorrow, that's actually not a bad idea!

And yeah, I'm 100% sure that the amp itself is OK, because I tested it in my M3 afterwards. (luckily I didn't make the same mistake with the M3's harness!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by basketthis View Post
Maybe. If you set your multimeter to the ohm setting and put it to the subwoofer terminals, it should read a low ohm load (2 or 4. It won't be exactly, but in that area you're fine). Put the positive on one terminal and the negative on the other.
Again, I still think you should yank really good on the the harness. If it's disconnected, it WILL come out...
I'll remove the speakers again tomorrow and see what I find out. Thanks!
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Old 04-17-2013, 04:35 PM   #10
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The harness runs up into the rear deck then over towards the driver side rear speakers, and down through the fire wall all the way over towards the driver side C pillar IIRC. You'll probably need to pull off the deck and figure out where you broke the connection.

Side note: Have you checked fuses?
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dont listen to these fuQ faces... just go to a junk yard and get a used complete left rear end. i cracked my left rear control arm on the highway because i was driving w/o shocks... lol! ***Was too busy caking on these bitches instead of taking care my car!***

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Old 04-17-2013, 06:36 PM   #11
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So I tested everything again today and this time, I did get a voltage reading from the harness. Not sure why I didn't yesterday, as I made multiple attempts.

Next, I picked up the sub+amp assembly and heard a rattle, and upon closer examination I found out that something was loose inside the amp itself. I opened it up and sure enough, this coil fell off:

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I replaced the old amp with a new one and all is well!

Thanks for all the replies. Turns out that the cord itself is built like a tank, so if your sub isn't working, it's most likely the amp
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moman2 View Post
So I tested everything again today and this time, I did get a voltage reading from the harness. Not sure why I didn't yesterday, as I made multiple attempts.

Next, I picked up the sub+amp assembly and heard a rattle, and upon closer examination I found out that something was loose inside the amp itself. I opened it up and sure enough, this coil fell off:

Attachment 501020

I replaced the old amp with a new one and all is well!

Thanks for all the replies. Turns out that the cord itself is built like a tank, so if your sub isn't working, it's most likely the amp
Yeah, usually damaging the harness itself takes an act of God. Lolol.
Glad you figured it out. Thanks for the update!
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Old 04-18-2013, 10:18 PM   #13
Grande D
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moman2 View Post
So I tested everything again today and this time, I did get a voltage reading from the harness. Not sure why I didn't yesterday, as I made multiple attempts.

Next, I picked up the sub+amp assembly and heard a rattle, and upon closer examination I found out that something was loose inside the amp itself. I opened it up and sure enough, this coil fell off:

Attachment 501020

I replaced the old amp with a new one and all is well!

Thanks for all the replies. Turns out that the cord itself is built like a tank, so if your sub isn't working, it's most likely the amp
Yeah, the harness is quite strong. I had the whole subwoofer basket hanging from the harness by accident when the clips popped out with more force than it should have required, and everything still works.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaymalls View Post
dont listen to these fuQ faces... just go to a junk yard and get a used complete left rear end. i cracked my left rear control arm on the highway because i was driving w/o shocks... lol! ***Was too busy caking on these bitches instead of taking care my car!***
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