Honda Civic Radio and Stereo Installation
The Honda Civic Radio is a good unit from the factory, but for many, it does not offer the features of an aftermarket system. Some may wish to replace a faulty unit or upgrade to a CD player or add the option of subwoofers.
Unfortunately, however, like the rear speakers, Honda has not made the car stereo install easily. We need to remove a few panels to gain access to the screws holding the radio in. Unlike changing the rear speakers, at least the seats do not have to come out this time!
You will probably need a Honda to ISO connector that will convert the Honda wiring harness to the standard ISO connector found on aftermarket head units. You can buy them quite cheaply from any good in car entertainment dealer.
If you have factory keyless entry installed, the stock car radio controls the entry and the courtesy/dome light. If you wish to keep the keyless entry you will need to keep the standard stereo - But that does not mean that you cannot have an aftermarket head unit so read on!
Standard Disclaimer: The instructions given below are intended as guidelines only. Any dismantling of your vehicle you do yourself, and the author of this document cannot and does not accept any responsibility for any damage incurred by you dismantling or refitting components incorrectly.
- Phillips Screwdriver
Step 1 Glovebox Removal
Firstly, we need to drop down the glove box. Empty the contents and press in the sides so that the rubber clips can move past the edge of the trim. You need to do both sides simultaneously and the box will drop down on the hinge.
Step 2 Remove Passenger Screws
This gives access to two screws holding in the passenger side of the lower section centre console. Remove these and keep the screws safe.
Step 3 Steering Column Panel
On the driver's side there are two screws on the bottom of the panel, and one at the top above the controls. These need to be removed and keep the screws in a safe place. The steering column panel can now be removed. It is held in with three metal clips that will easily pop off when pulled.
Caution: If you have airbags installed then some of the wires are exposed when the panel is removed. These are wrapped in the yellow tubing. Be careful around them - you don't want to set off the SRS system!
Step 4 Drivers Side
When the panel is off there are two more screws holding in the lower centre console. Remove them. Finally, there are two screws in the front of the panel. One is above the cigarette lighter and the other in the ashtray. Once removed, you can pull the panel out and disconnect the cigarette lighter electrical connection.
Step 5 Removing the Panel
Here is the panel removed with the cigarette lighter connector highlighted.
Step 6 Removing factory stereo
Now you can gain access to the screws holding in the factory head unit. Below are the screw locations that I found. Different year cars may have different configurations and possibly different screw locations. There were two screws in each side, and a further screw going up through the bottom of the harness.
Step 7 Fitting New Stereo
You can now remove the factory unit. When you remove the head unit, there will be a large Honda connector (grey) an antenna (black) for the aerial, possibly a DIN cable (cd multi changer) and a green plug (if you model has keyless entry).
Step 8 Keyless Entry
If you have keyless entry and wish to keep it, the easiest method is to relocate your old stereo, either by extending the keyless entry and power, ground, ignition wires. Some shops will sell a harness for this, or you can extend the wires yourself. You can then move the radio under a seat, or to the boot/trunk, you can hide it behind the dash (wrapped it cloth so it does not rattle) or there is a secret slot for it in the lower console! This cubbyhole (see left) can be removed; it is a perfect size and has all the fixtures for a second radio. Perfect!
Step 9 Finishing Off
With the old unit out its time to start wiring up for your new radio replacement. Here you can see my Honda-Iso connector and I have some Oxygen free RCA leads for the sub. All you have left to do now is to connect your radio and slot it back into place. It is up to you whether you screw it back in or not. If thieves want to nick it, they won't be this careful when they come to remove it, and if you need to adjust wiring etc. it is easier not screwed in.
Reassembly of the panels is the reverse of the above procedure. Just remember to reconnect the cigarette lighter.
That is it all done! Now put on your favourite CD, turn up the volume and enjoy! For best results, you should upgrade the front and rear speakers. I have also added a subwoofer to enhance the bass.
Last updated on: Saturday 17th June 2017