You need a fantastic new radio for your farm tractor or semi-truck, right? Both options and features are plentiful. A new radio can be as basic as AM/FM with a clock display or it can have features like Bluetooth for hands-free cellular communication, SiriusXM satellite radio, and even a weather band for people whose work day is affected by the weather.
Many people frequently worry about the wiring when replacing a semi truck radio. Of course, this is a crucial first action. The most important thing, though, is to avoid cutting the wires. To simply replace the radio in a big rig, there is no need to sever any factory wiring. In contrast to a car stereo, all of the wiring behind a semi truck’s radio is white, gray, or a combination of the two colors, as most drivers and maintenance workers will quickly discover. Without the use of a specialized instrument called a multimeter, it is impossible to distinguish between speaker wires and power wires in this type of wiring because it lacks a lot of visual cues. It is still not advised to cut and splice wires using this tool.
Quality is the next, and possibly most crucial, factor to take into account. What is the point of replacing the radio with a subpar aftermarket radio that is almost certain to break down quickly? Using an aftermarket radio from a big-box retailer is not advised because the conditions in a semi truck are different from those in cars and other passenger vehicles. We’ve all come to realize that doing a job well the first time prevents the need for subsequent attempts.
The best heavy-duty semi truck radios are those made by Delphi and Panasonic. Freightliner, International, Kenworth, Mack, Peterbilt, Volvo, or Western Star semis, as well as those from model years 2005 and newer, all come with wiring connectors that these stereos frequently accept. Although no cutting and splicing will be necessary, trucks and tractors with model years of 2004 and earlier probably need a wiring adapter. Just plug the adapter into the new radio and connect it to the truck wire connector. When you buy one of these robust Delphi or Panasonic radios, a tool to remove the old radio is included. For later use, this tool should be kept in a secure location.
The price of one of these Delphi or Panasonic radios from your dealership will be high. The new radio you ordered online won’t be in your hands today, but you’ll save a ton of money on the same products. There are a few online retailers who work frequently with Delphi and Panasonic truck radios, saving you a ton of money and ensuring a proper fit as well as retention of steering wheel and sleeper controls.