How do I change the sound of my car horn?


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We may not be able to change our singing voice (sorry, karaoke fans), but we can change our car or truck voice. Vehicle horns are safety equipment, intended to warn another driver or wandering pedestrian of an impending collision or other danger. While there are also certainly times when they are used to indicate our displeasure, they can also say, with a quick double tap, a less threatening “you can continue” or even “goodbye!” “

Often times, an automobile manufacturer’s region of origin and the price of a particular model can determine the types of horns and sounds used. Metal-sounding disc horns are more traditionally associated with Asian imports (and motorcycles), while conventional snail-shaped horns were once more common in domestic and European designs, but are now found throughout the industry. .

Cheaper models often only have one horn, but two – usually a combination of high / low tones – are more common. For a while, a few high-end domestic models had four.

Since most horns are operated by a switched 12-volt power supply, adding a second horn or changing the sound (or just the sound level) is normally straightforward, although basic mechanical skills are required. necessary to do it yourself.

In some cases, prefabricated solutions exist; The Subaru WRX is a model where upgrading the horns and positioning them behind the grille so that they are visible is so popular that several aftermarket companies sell direct mount brackets, wiring adapter harnesses, and even complete sets.

For the rest of us, expect to have to cut and join wires to fit different types of electrical connectors. Start by locating the original horns and determining their wiring connection and how they mount to the vehicle. Note that the removal of some trim parts or components may be necessary to gain access to your factory horns.

A bracket attached with a single bolt is typical, although individual horns can be attached to the bracket with a nut; many replacement horns will fit directly into these brackets. Using different style pavilions may require custom fitments or even relocation and should be considered. Pay attention to the orientation of the new horns so that opening a trumpet does not cause it to fill with water or dirt, or the horn to make contact with the bodywork. You wouldn’t want your car’s new voice to be hoarse.

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