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Dodge Challenger Rear Speaker Upgrade PDF Print E-mail
Written by Lance   
Thursday, 22 March 2012 04:40

In order to fully round out your stereo upgrade, the factory rear speakers must go.  This is another easy job to tackle, but the fitment of the package tray and being hunched over in the rear glass area doesn't make it the most enjoyable job in the world.  However, the end result is well worth the trouble.

 


Tools:

 

-Panel/Trim Tool, preferably Nylon

-#2 Screwdriver

--I used a #2 Bit with a stubby adapter for the back screws

Objective: Remove the factory rear speakers and replace them with your speaker of choice.

We will be upgrading from the factory, paper-cone disgrace to an Infinity Kappa 62.9i:

 

The end product will look like this:



Step 1: Making Space

Literally…we are going to want to make as much space as possible.  The backseat is a nice size if you are sitting, standing up/kneeling off the seatback and into the rear glass was clearly not something engineered into the Challenger

The first thing you want to do is move both FRONT seats as forward as possible.  As always, it doesn't hurt to disconnect the negative battery cable just in case.

Step 2: Lower the Rear Seats

Pretty simple thus far.  All you need to do here is grab the pulls and pull.  This will drop the seats down, which not only lets us keep the fabric in good shape, but gives us access to the clips we need to remove.

Step 3: Remove 4 Retaining Clips

There are going to be (4) Retaining Clips we will need to remove:



I prefer to look at this as Right and Left since that is how speakers are geared...Just know that both sides are mirror images.

When you see the seat latches just to their inside will be a pretty large retaining clip.  This essentially holds the rear deck panel upholstery in place.  Slide your trim tool under, pry up, and store it aside.

Now come in and find the retaining clip that holds the rear door panel to the that same piece.  Slide the trim tool in, pry up, and set it aside.  If I remember right the heads are two different sizes, so keep that in mind for reinstallation.

Now, repeat the retaining clip removal on the other side.  You are now ready to wrestle with the rear deck panel.

Step 4: Removing the Rear Deck Panel

This one is a pain.  Not tough, but a pain.  You might have to pull on the rear door panel to release a few clips for more clearance as well.  Don't pull it hard near the rocker because it is anchored with a #2 Phillips Screw:



Essentially all you need is enough clearance to slide the rear deck panel down and out of the way.

Yep, we won't be tossing it out of the car..that would involve removing seatbelts and all kind of other fun stuff that just makes it more logical to attack it by leaving it in place.

Before you just grab it and pull it out and down, note that the edges are stiff enough to scuff up your C-Pillar material.  The C-Pillar is that trimmed piece that runs from the headliner to the package tray along the rear glass, just like your A-Pillar does up front with the dash and windshield.

What I found was best is to start on one side, pull forward gently, and as soon as an opening appears towards the C-Pillar get your hand/fingers in and bend the rear portion down.  This will let you flex the deck plate just enough to clear the C-Pillar without scratching it up. 

Do the same for the other side and then slowly weasel the entire rear deck panel down the frame, along the seatbelt, and to a point where you can access the rear speakers:



Step 5: Removing the Rear Speakers

Each of these amazing, heavyweight speaker (sarcasm alert) are held in place with (3) #2 Phillips Screws.  In all honesty, I value the hardware more than the speakers.

Generally one screw is located to the side, another is toward the front of the rear deck panel, and the last is sort of centered toward the back glass.

A screwdriver will not fit back here...My Stubby screwdrivers didn't do it either.

What I did is run a #2 bit into an adapter that let me then use a wrench to turn it loose.  The good news is once you break it free, you can twist it by hand.  Try to use a magnetic bit so you don't risk dropping it into some crevice and having to go fishing.

Once all three screws are removed simply set them aside in a safe-place.

Step 6: Removing the Rear Speaker

Finally, an easy and gratifying step.  All you do here is lift the speaker up, disconnect the factory wiring, and toss it out for woodland critters to laugh at.

Step 7: Dynamat

Since you are upgrading the speaker, why not go the extra step while it is easy to do and put down some sound deadener.  This will help reduce rattles and vibrations to further enhance your new speakers.

This is straight forward, cut a piece to fit, pull the back, smooth it out, and then cut around the hole.  It is hard to lay down a perfect fit thanks to the wiring and C-pillar proximity, but anything is better than nothing in this case.

I like to come in from the trunk and thread the screws up to "locate them."  This helps a lot in my opinion.

Step 8: Wiring

If you have a factory drop in speaker, just reconnect the harness.

If you've got an aftermarket speaker for the factory head unit, decide whether to A-Cut, B-Splice, or C-Install an Adaptor.  My advice is to spring for the adaptor as it is true plug-and-play and you can revert back to stock any time.

If you are running an amp, just tape off the factory harness and run your speaker wire from the amp.

Step 9: Install the Speaker

Once you have the wires in place, go ahead and set the speaker down in place.  Note that many will require an adapter to fit in the factory opening.

Use the same (3) #2 Phillips Screws and tighten it down:

Passenger Side:

Driver Side:

 



Step 10: Test the Speakers

Again, make sure you have sound, like the sound, and go ahead and dial-in any aftermarket settings like swiveling tweeters etc.

Step 11: Install the Rear Deck Panel

Once you like the sound, re-check all your hardware.

Now slide the rear deck panel back into place.  I once again suggest going one side at a time.  Bend the corner in again to avoid scuffs.  Once it is seated, do the same for the other side.

It may take a few jostle to get the panel seated again, but once it looks good, check to makes sure you can line up the rear trim panel piece with the appropriate holes.

Install the retaining clips up top first.

Now push the rear door panel back into place and then punch the retaining clip back in its' slot.

Raise the seats, check the sound, and you are ready to enjoy the new speakers!

 
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