Today more than ever, cars are extra stylish and fun to drive. They have extraordinary technology and performance far beyond what many people ever dreamed possible. While many people drive cars that are great looking and handle like a dream, most leave a lot to be desired when it comes to the horn. If your vehicle has a weak or less intimidating horn or you just want to upgrade, here’s a few things to know about car horn replacement before you dive in.
The Wimp Horn
Cute high pitch horns aren’t as disruptive and when you need to warn another driver that you’re in his blind spot, that little squeaky horn just doesn’t get the job done. The standard horn that most people are accustomed to is actually a combination of high pitch and low pitch horns that sound at the same time.
As a clever cost cutting method, many car makers today only install the high pitch horn — but don’t fret. You can pick up a low pitch horn and add it along side the factory unit for a more commanding tone. Simply mount the new low pitch horn near the factory unit and follow the included wiring instructions.
The Broken Horn
For a number of reasons, your car’s horn may simply not be functioning properly. If your vehicle’s horn has ever been submerged in a flood or deep puddle or even if it’s just old and worn out, it may emit a less powerful sound or no sound at all. Replacement horns are available and can be easily installed by removing the old unit, plugging the wires into the new one and then mounting it in the stock location.
Who could ever forget that novelty horn from your favorite movie or perhaps that truck that you saw on YouTube with a freight train-style air horn installed? If you’ve ever wanted to customize your vehicle’s horn there are tons of options available. Everything from train horns, to songs and even just different tones are available, and most come as a kit with everything you’ll need to swap it out easily. Just make sure to check your local laws first before going too crazy.
Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop
Sometimes when horns fail they can get stuck open. Either the horn itself fails and creates the problem or the trigger in the steering wheel could be the problem as well. If you ever find that your horn gets stuck sounding, there’s a quick fix until you can get it to the shop. Go find your the fuse panel, locate the fuse for the horn and remove it. Pulling the fuse out cuts the circuit from the battery to the horn and renders it nonfunctional. This way you don’t have to drive across town to pick up the kids or to the store with the horn blasting the entire time.
Your car’s horn may not get used nearly as much as other features but it still speaks to the character of your ride. If you’re horn isn’t functioning, is too gentle for your preferences or if you’d simply like something that stands out, there are plenty of options.
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Erich Reichert has been an editor and on-air personality in the radio control car hobby for 12 years. A certified car nut since birth, he has written for internationally published titles such as RC Car Action, RC Driver and Xtreme RC Cars, as well as Stuff Magazine, Road and Track and Super Street. He's covered everything from product reviews and tech articles to high-profile lifestyle pieces and celebrity interviews. Erich found his passion for writing after a successful career as an art director, working with brands such as Pepsico, NASCAR, MTV, Nintendo, WWE, Cannondale Bicycles and HBO. He's also a father, an avid hockey fan and an FIA race license holder who enjoys hiking, playing drums and movies.