By: Jeremy Neisser
I will be discussing the importance of the illumination wire on a car stereo wiring harness. This wire is responsible for dimming the screen on your aftermarket car stereo and is directly connected to your instrument cluster. It provides a negative or positive trigger that tells your radio when you turn on and off your headlights.
Having a bright car stereo screen shining in the corner of your eye while driving down a dark interstate highway can be distracting and potentially dangerous. Therefore, understanding how to properly use the illumination wire on your car stereo is crucial for a safe and enjoyable driving experience.
The illumination wire on a car stereo wiring harness is responsible for dimming the screen on your aftermarket car stereo.
The wire is directly connected to your instrument cluster and provides a negative or positive trigger that tells your radio when you turn on and off your headlights.
Properly using the illumination wire can improve driving safety and reduce distractions.
How to Use the Illumination Wire on a Car Stereo
To use the illumination circuit on a car stereo, you first need to ensure that your factory radio harness has a connection for this option. Here's a simple trick to verify this: clip your aftermarket harness onto your factory harness and locate the orange wire with a white stripe. Follow this wire to the factory harness and check if there is a wire in the same pin location. If there is, it's a good indication that your aftermarket radio can take advantage of a factory dimming option.
Once you have confirmed that your stereo has an illumination wire, you can use it to control the brightness of your stereo's display. Simply connect the illumination wire to the corresponding wire on your car's wiring harness. This will allow your stereo to dim its display when you turn on your headlights, making it easier to see and reducing glare while driving at night.
What Do I Hook Up the Illumination Wire To?
How to Connect an Illumination Wire to an Aftermarket Radio
When it comes to connecting an illumination wire to an aftermarket radio, there are a few things you need to know. Most aftermarket wire harnesses come with an orange wire, which is usually the wire you will connect to the orange wire that came with your new stereo.
However, if your vehicle doesn't have a wire for a dimmer connection at the harness behind the stereo, you can use a volt meter to find which wire gets 12 volts when the headlights are on.
To connect the wires, you'll need to wire your new radio harness along with the wiring of your aftermarket stereo. Connect the orange wire on the new radio harness to the orange wire with the white stripe on the aftermarket harness that clips onto your factory harness.
There are a few helpful resources you can use to make sure you're connecting the wires correctly. You can refer to the wiring diagram that came with your aftermarket radio, or you can consult the manual that came with your vehicle.
If you're still unsure about how to connect the wires, you can also reach out to a professional installer for assistance.
What Happens When You Short Circuit the Illumination Wire in Car Radio?
If you short circuit the illumination wire in your car radio, it is highly likely that you will blow a fuse that is connected to the dashboard lights in your car. Additionally, the instrument cluster lights may also stop working due to the short circuit.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Purpose of the Illumination Wire on a Car Radio?
The illumination wire on a car radio is used to control the brightness of the display on the radio. When the headlights of the car are turned on, the illumination wire sends a signal to the radio to dim the display so that it is not too bright and distracting while driving at night.
Where is the Best Place to Connect the Illumination Wire on a Car Stereo?
The best place to connect the illumination wire on a car stereo is to the car's wiring harness. The illumination wire is usually orange, and it should be connected to the orange wire on the car's wiring harness. This will ensure that the radio display is properly dimmed when the headlights are turned on.
What is the Difference Between the Illumination Wire and the Dimmer Wire?
The illumination wire and the dimmer wire are two different wires on a car radio. The illumination wire is used to control the brightness of the display on the radio, while the dimmer wire is used to control the brightness of the other lights on the radio, such as the buttons and knobs. The dimmer wire is usually connected to the car's dimmer switch, which allows the driver to adjust the brightness of the radio lights.
Why is There No Illumination Wire on My Radio?
If there is no illumination wire on your radio, it may be because your radio does not have a display that needs to be dimmed. Some radios have LED displays that do not need to be dimmed, so they do not have an illumination wire.
What Color is the Accessory Wire on a Car Radio?
The accessory wire on a car radio is usually red. This wire is used to provide power to the radio when the car is turned on. It is important to connect this wire to a power source that is only active when the car is running, such as the ignition switch.
What Does the ACC Wire Connect to on a Car Radio?
The ACC wire on a car radio connects to the car's accessory circuit. This circuit provides power to the radio when the car is turned on, and it is usually connected to the car's ignition switch. It is important to connect the ACC wire to a power source that is only active when the car is running, so that the radio does not drain the car's battery when the car is turned off.
Hi & Welcome!
My name is Jeremy and I have been an avid car nut for many year. My first car was an 1987 Honda CRX. I put in my first Kenwood stereo, amp, 2 10" JLs and a CB Radio in it and have been an avid user of CBs and car radios for years. I'll do my best to share my tips, information and thoughts to help you with whatever question you might have, ABOUT ME