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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone! I have a '96 Bronco XLT and just recently my radio has been acting up and I have no clue why. I was driving home from work one day and all of a sudden the audio just cut out. Confused, I turned up the volume and I heard fuzziness so I know it's not the speakers but I have no idea what could be going on. I turned the radio off for a few minutes and then turned it back on to see if that would fix it and it was working again. It happens randomly at any time of day and it doesn't matter where I am driving. The road could be perfectly smooth and it just cuts out. Just today I was in a parking lot with the key turned back to just listen to the radio and *bam* it cut out!. If anyone has any ideas how to fix it please let me know before I go buy a new radio and learn it was an easy fix! :thumbup
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I hate to sound like a total car noob right now but would that really cause ALL of the speakers to cut the audio out? Like it's not just one speaker, it's all four. Plus I don't think that the speakers are the problem because if I hit seek on the radio it will just continually surf throughout all of the channels, unable to find a audible station. Should I just go buy a new radio?!
 

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Yes. I had the same exact thing happen to me. I even went so far as to rewire the speaker connections, only to discover it was the door grounding out on the connector that was causing the issue.
 

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yo K
This for the 96 from Workshop Manual
No Sound from All Radio Speakers
Circuitry.
Radio chassis.
Radio amplifier.
Radio speakers




Ford tends to suggest replacing speakers, radio ec w/a known good unit, such as; "...Substitute a known good radio amplifier (Premium system only)..."

so we can forget the pin-point tests and go to;

L4 CHECK CONNECTIONS AND WIRING
Check Radio connector (pull Radio)
Removal & Installation in 92-96
Source: by Steve83 (Steve, That dirty old truck) at SuperMotors.net

Connector Location, Behind Instrument Panel Diagram in a 96, Page 1
Source: by Ford via Chilton @ http://content.chiltonsonline.com/content/images/WD/Ford/172/WD_Ford_172137.pdf
Check for shorts between radio speaker connector.
Check radio chassis and ( if equipped) radio amplifier, wiring harness for damage and shorts.
With digital volt-ohmmeter, verify power from radio chassis connector C1 Circuit 137 (Y/BK) to ground with key to RUN or ACCESSORY

==========

CHECK ANTENNA CABLE CONNECTIONSVerify condition by operating radio chassis while engine is running, with vehicle in, or not in, motion.
Check antenna connections including extension cable (if equipped).
Are connections clean and secure?
Check to make sure antenna is securely mounted to body at ground points.
Check for presence of all required suppression equipment, radio frequency interference suppression bond and radio receiver hood bonding strap (if equipped) for security, cleanliness and metal-to-metal connection.
Check if noise can be eliminated by repositioning antenna, radio speaker or radio power feed wires away from other wires and/or brackets.

============
note; Ford still refers to alternator as a generator

Check the mounting and connecting wires of the generator's radio voltage regulator capacitor (if equipped) and radio ignition interference capacitor for secureness, cleanliness and metal-to-metal contact. AT COIL, on Driver's side of intake manifold
See diagram # k20720b below for Radio Suppression Capacitor and Wiring
Item Part Number Description
1 12029 Coil and Bracket Assembly
2 40904-S36 Screw
3 18801 Capacitor Assembly � Radio Ignition Interference Suppression
4 9D930 Wiring Assembly
5 � Screw (Part of 12029)
6 18832 Capacitor Assembly
7 � Existing Nut (Part of 12029)
++++++++++++++

Also; Radio Capacitor (Part of 9D930)

13 � To Radio Capacitor (Part of 9D930)
1 � To Fuel Injector No. 4 (Part of 9D930)
2 � To Fuel Injector No. 3 (Part of 9D930)
3 � To Fuel Injector No. 2 (Part of 9D930)
4 � To Fuel Injector No. 1 (Part of 9D930)
5 � To Idle Speed Control (Part of 9D930)
6 � To EVP (Part of 9D930)
7 � To Distributor (Part of 9D930)
8 � To Engine Coolant Temperature Switch (Part of 9D930)
9 � To TPS (Part of 9D930)
10 14305 Wiring Harness to Generator
11 9F472 Heated Oxygen Sensor Assembly
12 9D930 Wiring Assembly
13 � To Radio Capacitor (Part of 9D930)
14 � To Tab (Part of 9D930)
15 � To Fuel Injector No. 7 (Part of 9D930)
16 � To Fuel Injector No. 8 (Part of 9D930)
17 � To Knock Sensor (Except 5.8L Engine) (Part of 9D930)
18 � To PSPS (Except 5.8L Engine) (Part of 9D930)
19 � To 12A581 Wiring Assembly (Part of 9D930)
20 � To E Coil (Part of 9D930)
21 � To Intake Air Temperature Sensor (Part of 9D930)
22 � To Distributor Pigtail (Part of 9D930)
23 � To A/C Clutch (Part of 9D930)
24 � To Water Temperature Switch (Part of 9D930)
25 � To Fuel Injector No. 5 (Part of 9D930)
26 � To EGR (Part of 9D930)
27 � To Fuel Injector No. 6 (Part of 9D930)

+++++++++++++====================================

Missing or Poor Grounds
Check bond strap grounding effectiveness by wedging a large file between metal parts to ensure proper ground, such as between the tail pipe and body, or between the fender and frame, while the radio chassis is playing and the engine is running. Listen for a decrease in the objectionable radio noise. If a reduction in radio noise is noted, first try tightening body and exhaust system clamps and brackets. Then, if necessary, install a new bond strap between the two metal parts to ensure proper ground.
See Diagram k20722b for Radio Suppression Bond (Cab-to-Frame)
Item Part Number Description
1 5A103 Cab-to-Frame Isolator
2 11135 Front Floor Pan
3 � Opening in Front Floor Cross Rear Member (Drain Hole)
4 19A095 Bond Strap Assembly
5 5005 Frame Assembly
6 18496 Radiator Support

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Sound distortion can be attributed to any of three components: the radio amplifier (18B849), the radio chassis, or the radio amplifier wiring (19B113) that connects the radio amplifier to the radio chassis. If any of these components is damaged, sound quality will be distorted. The speakers will also cause distortion if any of them are grounded (CDR only).

The vehicle ignition system is a source of radio interference. This high-voltage switching system produces a radio frequency electromagnetic field that radiates at AM, FM and CB frequencies. Although components have been designed into the vehicle to minimize this concern, the noise is more noticeable if the radio is tuned slightly off channel for FM programs. Vehicle electrical accessories and owner add-on accessories may also contribute to radio interference. Furthermore, there are many noise sources that are external to the vehicle. These include power lines, communication systems, ignition systems of other vehicles, neon signs, etc.

Favoring the rear radio speaker in noisy areas will help to reduce noise.

====

Wiring Diagrams in 87-96; AM Radio, Premium Sound AM/FM Compact Disc Radio, Premium Sound Amplifier; from 1996 F-150, F-250, F-350, F-Super Duty and Bronco Workshop Manual
Source: by Ford via miesk5 at FSB

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80-96 Antenna Base and Cable

80-96 Antenna Base and Cable F-150-250-350, F-Super Duty and Bronco

The antenna mast in the F-150-250-350, F-Super Duty, and Bronco is detachable.

Removal
1. Disconnect the antenna lead-in cable from the radio.
2. Remove the cable from the retaining clips along the bottom of the instrument panel.
3. Remove the antenna mast from the antenna base.
4. Using an appropriate tool, unsnap the cap from the antenna base and remove the cap. CAUTION: Use appropriate fender protection so you do not damage paint when removing the base.
5. Remove four antenna base attaching screws and remove the antenna base and gasket. NOTE: The antenna lead-in cable can now be disconnected from the antenna base.
6. Disengage the cable from the retainer at the top of the heater plenum, and remove cable from vehicle for testing or replacement. NOTE: It will be necessary to remove the glove compartment to gain access to the antenna lead-in cable.

Installation
1. Insert the antenna lead-in cable from the passenger compartment into the antenna hole in the cowl.
2. From outside of the vehicle, pull the cable through the hole in the cowl until the grommet on the cable is properly seated.
3. Attach the cable to the base and gasket assembly through the hole on the cowl top extension. Seat the assembly on the hole pattern.
4. Install the four antenna base attaching screws.
5. Place the cap in position over the antenna base and snap the cap onto the base.
6. Install the antenna mast to the antenna base.
7. Route the antenna lead-in cable to the retainers on the bottom of the instrument panel.
8. Connect the antenna lead-in cable to the radio and check the operation of the engine and radio.
9. Install the glove compartment.

Poor Reception
- If AM reception is extremely poor and FM reception "spits" or appears to have trouble holding stations, make sure the antenna and antenna connectors are properly mated. If the antenna connectors are properly mated but the reception is still poor, refer to Antenna Tests 1 through 3.
- If only FM reception is poor, it is unlikely that the antenna is at fault. Remove the radio chassis for service.
 

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well first question is this the factory headunit or aftermarket? also does it cut out on every source (radio, cd, tape, aux, whatnot)? there still is a possibiliyt it could be a speaker as most headunits are setup that if even one speaker has a short then the entire unit will go into "protect mode" to keep anything else from being damaged. you also mentioned that you hit seek and it won't find anything. is this only when it cuts out or all the time? if it's all the time and the headunit only cuts out on radio and not other sources then the tuner is bad (replace the headunit). hope that helps
 

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It's factory. I have never replaced any sound equipment in my truck. To my knowledge it's only with the radio but I have not yet tried a tape or anything just yet because I wasn't quite sure what to do. And the radio just searches continuously when the sound cuts out. I've never had this problem until a week or so ago and now it happens at least once a day.
 

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One of the few things the aftermarket make better than Ford did, replace the radio, their really cheap for a good one now.
 

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sounds like a short in the speakers, or short in the output of the head unit. time to up grade..........
 

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+1 Stangmata, it sounds like your connectors are wiggling loose when you go over bumbs etc. so grab some electrical tape and pop the door panel. Tape up the connectors and see if that does it. Other than that, it could very well be your head unit.
 

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My truck had similar issues as yours. I'd reach down to turn the radio up when it would go out and the sound would come back full blast. THis went on for some time. I was self employed and very poor. When I finally got some money I purchased a new head unit and speakers. I thought it was just the speakers. I pulled door panels off first and swapped in the new speakers with no change. I then pulled the radio to find the factory power wire had broken loose from its soldered connector and was not making contact. (I guess in theory it could have burnt the truck up if it rubbed against the wrong spot for too long.)

I suspect this is not the only vehicle this has happened to. I'd check it out. It isn't that hard to pull our radios. You could fix it and keep the factory radio, but I personally wouldn't unless you are in the same shoes I was for the year or so I endured this.

tim
 

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the amp part of the radio could be going out. I had a similar problem with an ext amp.
 

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Did you ever figure out what caused this. I'm having the exact same issues currently
I had an aftermarket radio when I purchased my truck and a few months ago the radio would shut down and flash "protect". I knew it was a short someplace per the manual. I am not sure how the OEM radios react to a short but if I was in your shoes I would check the door speakers. With the doors opening and closing all the time I am guessing the connector disconnected/broke off from the speaker. That's what happened to me. I would start with the drivers door (most used) and look at those speaker connections first.
 

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