How to Remove a Car Audio Subwoofer

What You'll Need
Screwdriver set
Cloth or cardboard

If you're replacing your car audio system, you'll need to know how to remove your old car audio subwoofer so you can create room to install the new system. You may also simply want to remove the subwoofer because it's loud and will rattle. The actual process will vary between car makes and the years they were manufactured, but the following directions will give you a general idea of how to go about removing a car subwoofer. Use these steps as a guideline, and consult your owner manual for specifics about your vehicle.

Step 1 - Determine the Location of the Car Audio Subwoofer Speaker

Because subwoofers provide that deep bass you can feel in your chest, you'll likely find the speakers in the trunk or the rear of the vehicle behind the back seats and above the trunk. To access these speakers, you'll need to open the trunk and use a screwdriver to loosen the mounting screws. Or you'll need to fold down the front seats in a two-door vehicle (or open the back door in a four-door car) to access the backseats. Fold down the seats to access the speakers.

To access speakers in the trunk, you'll need to lift up the carpet covering them to access them. Position cloth or cardboard if you need to protect your vehicle or the speakers.

Step 2 - Analyze the Enclosure System

Often you can simply remove the entire enclosure system by unscrewing it from it's mounting brackets and pulling it out further so you can more easily access the wires. But if you're considering reusing the enclosure system for replacement subwoofers, then you'll need to take a closer look at them to see if you can remove the old speakers without damaging the enclosure system.

A box enclosure system allows for the easiest removal of the subwoofers. They're simply mounted inside the box, meaning you'll need to unseal the box, unscrew and unhook the speakers.

Vented, bandpass and isobaric are enclosures are more complicated for the general do-it-yourselfer to recycle. You will likely have to unscrew the enclosure system and disconnect the speakers as a whole and replace the entire unit.

Step 3 - Disconnect the Subwoofer Wires From the Amplifier

The next step is to disconnect the wires connecting the speakers to the car. This step needs to be done regardless of whether you've chosen to remove the entire enclosure with the subwoofers, or if you've chosen to remove the subwoofers on their own. A screwdriver will be necessary to remove the enclosure from the brackets. Depending on your type of vehicle and the year it was manufactured, there may also be bolt at the back of the enclosure that will need to be loosened to remove the unit from the vehicle.

Place the enclosure on cloth or cardboard. Pry open the seal to get directly to the speakers to disconnect the wires or disconnect them from the outside.

Use a screwdriver to loosen the small screws holding the wires to the amplifier system. When the wires are loosened, carefully grab the non-exposed, rubber covered parts and pull the wires away from the connections. Take the subwoofer speakers out of the car.