How To Tell If Speakers Are Blown

How To Tell If Speakers Are Blown

Our speakers in our cars can make or break a journey. Nothing beats a road trip with your favorite tunes playing in the background, meaning that it is you, your car, the music and the road.

The problem is of course that speakers don’t last forever. As a result, you will certainly need to find a replacement or be able to repair your speakers (see also ‘What Are Coaxial Speakers?‘). 

But how exactly can you tell if your speakers are blown? In short, anything from a strange distortion to now being able to hear your music correctly can mean your speakers are blown (see also ‘What Is A Two Way Speaker?‘).

However there’s far more to it than this. Our guide will explain everything you might need to know about how to tell if your speakers are blown and how you might be able to fix them or avoid it altogether.

Read on to learn more. 

Telltale Signs That Your Speakers Have Blown 

There are some obvious signs that your speakers have blown, and here’s how you might be able to tell. 


This is perhaps the quickest and easiest way to tell if your speakers have blown in your car. Simply set the speaker’s volume to mid range and listen out for any signs of distortion.

Distorted sounds, fuzzy sounds and an almost robotic tone can be the clear indicator that your speakers have blown, usually due to a blown voice coil. 

Half Sound 

Another easy way to tell if you have blown your speakers is to select one of your favorite songs that you know uses both of your speakers in isolation. 

You can do this by listening to a song using your headphones where a part of the song will play on the left side or right side only. 

Select this song and play it in your car. If you cannot hear the isolated sounds, then the chances are that one of your speakers has blown! 

Popping Sounds And No Music 

Another red flag that can suggest your speakers have blown is that your speakers aren’t playing music at all – but instead you can hear loud popping noises. 

Adjust the volume all the way down and if you still only hear popping, then your speakers have unfortunately met their day!

No Bass 

One indicator that your speakers have blown is that songs with lots of bass are simply not coming through your car’s speakers as they used to. 

To check this, play around with your car radio’s equalizer settings and test for bass and treble. If you’re struggling to hear any response from this, then you can assume your speakers have blown.

Zero Vibration 

If you are not getting any vibration response from your car’s speakers, then you might be experiencing either blown speakers or a wiring issue. 

There’s no easy way to tell this unless you access the wires themselves and test out multiple wires to eliminate the culprit. 

The Drowning Response 

The Drowning Response 

Much as you might hear a robotic tone if your speakers have blown, you may also get the response via your speakers as though the artist of the song were underwater or drowning.

This can also be a result of poor settings on your car radio (see also ‘How To Reset A Pioneer Radio‘), so be sure to check this first before you do anything else. 

Obvious Damage 

Physical damage to your car’s speakers can cause them to blow. Look out (or at least be aware) of any physical damage that has led to your car’s speakers becoming damaged and blown.

How To Avoid Blowing Your Car’s Speakers 

There are some ways you can avoid blowing your car speakers, so here’s what you should know. 

Don’t Blast The Music 

Your speakers can be sensitive and setting the volume too high can cause your car’s speakers to blow. Try to set your speakers to half way and no higher for the majority of your car journeys. 

However, some speakers will be relatively loud to begin with – so you may need to set the volume even lower than this. 

Look After Your Car 

Looking after your car can prolong the life of your speakers very easily. Be careful to avoid liquid getting into your car as this can easily break your car speakers and of course, lead to the signs we’ve shown above. 

Not only this, you should also be aware of dust and other debris getting into your car speakers. While dirt and dust is unlikely to damage your speakers quickly, over time it can build up and cause significant damage to them. 

Avoid DIY 

Some people find they have caused their speakers to blow out or sound bad ever since they tried to replace them or add something to them. 

If you are unsure about what to do when it comes to modifications or repair, be sure to contact a professional instead to avoid any chances of this.

What To Do About Blown Car Speakers 

If you are convinced that your car’s speakers have blown, then you should head to a car accessory store or mechanic to contact a professional about the problem. 

They will be able to advise you whether you need a replacement or some easy repairs on your speakers and can do the work for you, or at the very least tell you about your next steps. 

Try to avoid playing any more music through the speakers if you suspect damage as this can make it much more difficult to resolve the problem and could potentially make it worse – or more costly! 

But the best thing overall you can do is to simply avoid physical damage and playing music too loudly in the first place. 

Final Thoughts 

You can tell if your car speakers have blown by listening to the response your speakers are giving you and by inspecting for physical damage. Be sure to contact a professional for further advice. 

Dave Oliver

Dave Oliver is a seasoned car modification expert with over twenty years of experience in the field. His knowledge spans from restoring vintage models to implementing the latest customization technologies. He brings his passion and expertise to life through informative and engaging articles.

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