Lights are dimming when my sub hits. Is 400 rms too much? Details in side. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-24-2013, 02:44 PM - Thread Starter
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I added a sub and an amp to my car last night. (Links to the sub, amp, and wiring kit at the bottom.)

Car: 2005 Subaru Impreza WRX
Sub: KICKER CVR102 10"
Amp: Pioneer GM-5500T
Wiring Kit:Scosche KPA6 1200W 6-Gauge

When the sub hits at decent volume the lights will start dimming and progressively get worse.

We Checked voltage at the battery and from the ALT to the battery negative terminal while the car was running. At the battery it starts out at around 14VDC then it starts dropping when there are base hits. If the base hits are continues the voltage will keep dropping. From the ALT to the Battery negative terminal the voltage remains between 13.5VDC and 14ish VDC

I'm suspecting that we need to reground (making sure that it's metal on metal not just connector to bolt) the amp , battery negative, along with any other grounds that might be recommended.

I've been reading about the BIG three upgrade. (Upgrading the ALT to battery positive, battery negative to chassis, and battery negative to engine grounds to a thicker gauge wire.) But I'm not sure if that is necessary for only 400 w/rms.

My other thought is that 400 w/rms may be to big for the OEM battery and ALT.

All thoughts are welcome and appreciated.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Kicker+-+CompVR+10%22+Dual-Voice-Coil+2-Ohm+Subwoofer/9892994.p?id=1218190732306&skuId=9892994&st=kicker%2010%20&cp=1&lp=5

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Pioneer-GM-5500T-2-Channel-Bridgeable-Amplifier-with-820-Watts-Maximum-and-Bass-Boost-Volume-Control/21881655

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Scosche-KPA6-1200W-6-Gauge-Car-Amplifier-Install-Kit/10629475
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-24-2013, 05:27 PM
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Car is 9 years old? Is the battery also 9 years old? Thats one of the first thing i would check.

wiring? when you grounded the wiring to the car...did you scrape all the way down to bare metal, and get a good clean solid connection?


Once you confirm the wiring is right, i would go and have the battery and electrical charging system checked out..and replace the battery if its the original.


Then after those two things are done...you can look at a cap, or doing the big three.
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post #3 of 8 Old 02-24-2013, 06:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tundrSQ View Post

Car is 9 years old? Is the battery also 9 years old? Thats one of the first thing i would check.

wiring? when you grounded the wiring to the car...did you scrape all the way down to bare metal, and get a good clean solid connection?


Once you confirm the wiring is right, i would go and have the battery and electrical charging system checked out..and replace the battery if its the original.


Then after those two things are done...you can look at a cap, or doing the big three.

Just got back home. I cleaned up the chassis to negative battery terminal, positive and negative battery terminals, ALT connection, and made sure i was at bare metal for the amp ground. It took away about 90% of the light dim at 50% volume. If i go from 50% volume to 60% the lights will will start dimming more.
50% volume is what my target volume level as my ears can only handle the mids and high up to that point. Keeping that in mind. Should I tune it for higher or is 50% volume ware I should be tuning for?
The battery is 4 years old so it may be time to look into a optima yellow top.
fyi My deck is a Sony XAV-62BT

Thanks for the reply.
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-24-2013, 07:41 PM
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Couple of things.

Get a second person as it makes it easier on you and faster.
Check the voltage drop at the amplifier using a bass heavy track at different volume settings.
Is it a quick drop? Or is it a huge voltage sag that is continuous. If it drops quick but returns to the usual 14 or so volts then its just your voltage regulator is a bit slow which is common . That drop in voltage is easy to see causing your lights to dim.

If you see the voltage dip and continue to fall to 12 volts and under, I would say that your alt and battery are not up to the task of running your car and audio system.

I never recommend the big 3. Just the big 2. Unless you have added a much larger output alternator the factory positive run that the alt to battery is sized correctly. Adding a larger gauged wire does nothing. You can check the termination points as they can become oxidized. Clean the wires and the connections.


The comment on the age of your battery and alternator was spot on. If your battery is old it may not have the envy storage capacity to supplement the alternator .
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post #5 of 8 Old 02-24-2013, 07:42 PM
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Oh yeah, go with a sears diehard platinum . Far superior to an optima battery. Made by odyssey. They make some magnificent batteries. Great warranty and can usually find a sears about anywhere.
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post #6 of 8 Old 02-26-2013, 10:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Oh yeah, go with a sears diehard platinum . Far superior to an optima battery. Made by odyssey. They make some magnificent batteries. Great warranty and can usually find a sears about anywhere.

I went with the Diehard Platinum and found the root of my problem when I was handed the battery.
The battery that came in my car was a 26r and my car calls for a 35...
Lights are now brighter and the stereo is louder. I still get some light dim but only after running the stereo for a good 20-30 min, so and upgraded ALT is probably in the works...
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post #7 of 8 Old 02-27-2013, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChutesAndLadders View Post

I went with the Diehard Platinum and found the root of my problem when I was handed the battery.
The battery that came in my car was a 26r and my car calls for a 35...
Lights are now brighter and the stereo is louder. I still get some light dim but only after running the stereo for a good 20-30 min, so and upgraded ALT is probably in the works...
]

probably not the differnce between the 26r and the 35, as much as it was the difference between the old worn out 26r oem battery, and the brand spanking new diehard platinum.

glad you got this sorted out!!smile.gif

Tim
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post #8 of 8 Old 02-27-2013, 10:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tundrSQ View Post

]

probably not the differnce between the 26r and the 35, as much as it was the difference between the old worn out 26r oem battery, and the brand spanking new diehard platinum.

glad you got this sorted out!!smile.gif

I also ordered a used STI 90amp alt ($60 shipped) to swap out my WRX 75 amp alt. So that should help too.
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