How to Tell if Car Speakers are Blown

Here are the main signs that car speakers have blown out: Distorted sound, hissing, and fuzziness. ... Telltale popping or rattling instead of music. ... Lack of bass, treble, or mid-tones. ... Lack of vibration from the speakers. ... Checking speakers for impedance.

As an avid lover of car speakers, there’s nothing more frustrating than discovering that your car speakers are blown. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to determine whether or not your car speakers need to be replaced. Here are some tips to help you identify if your car speakers are blown.

1. Distorted Sound

One of the easiest ways to tell if your speakers are beginning to blow is if you hear a distorted sound. If the sound that your speakers are producing is a little bit distorted, then there’s a good chance that it’s starting to blow and it needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, there’s really no way to fix that other than replacing the speaker.

2. Faint Rattling Sound

If you hear a little rattling sound instead of music, then the speaker is done. It’s best to replace the speaker or deal with it not producing sound at all. Rattling sound distorts the music’s overall sound and it’s worse than not hearing any sound at all. Listen closely to the specific speaker that you think is blown, and if you hear a little faint rattling sound, then it’s done and it needs to be replaced.

3. Missing Bass, Treble or Mids

Different speakers have different parts of them, so some speakers will have a built-in subwoofer and even a tweeter in them. The high-end speakers will be able to hit the bass, mids, and treble all separately. To know if there’s a problem with one specific tonality within the speaker, turn the treble, mids, or bass all the way up while the other two are down, and listen to that specific speaker. That will allow you to know if there’s a problem with one specific tonality within the speaker.

4. No Vibration

Speakers vibrate when they produce sound. If you have the ability to remove the door panel and touch the actual speaker and you don’t feel any vibration from that specific speaker, it’s likely blown, or there could be a loose connection. You can also touch the grill on top of the door panel that’s on top of the speaker, but be aware that you might be feeling vibration from other speakers as well. Compare that vibration to the vibrations on the other grills of the other speakers and see if it vibrates less. That will allow you to know if that speaker is producing any vibration or not.

5. Use the Fader

The most useful tip in this entire article is to use the fader to isolate that specific speaker on your head unit. You can fade to the left, fade to the right, and even fade forward and fade backward. Use the fader to isolate that specific speaker and try to figure out for that specific speaker what sound it’s producing or what lack of sound it’s producing. That will allow you to know if there’s a problem with the speaker, and if it’s blown or there’s a loose connection.

In conclusion, if you encounter any of these issues, you can easily determine if your car speakers are blown. Isolate that speaker, figure out if there’s an actual problem, and then you can deal with it.


What does a blown car speaker sound like?
If a speaker is completely blown, it will likely not produce any sound and may just make a soft hissing or ringing sound instead. This should be relatively easy to identify.
Is there a way to test car speakers?
Speaker Testing Option 1: Connect a 9 Volt battery to the leads of the speaker, positive lead to positive battery end and negative lead to negative battery end. If a pulse is generated in the speaker then the speaker is still functioning properly. This same practice would apply to the tweeter speaker as well.
Is my speaker blown or loose?
Physically inspect the speaker. A blown speaker can have damage that can be heard with some mechanical movement. If you gently tap on the cone of the speaker it should have a firm drum like sound. If you hear a rattling sound (like a loose snare drum), this is an indicator of a bad speaker.