How to Fix Kenwood Car Stereo Protect Mode


Kenwood car stereo protect mode giving you grief? Let’s tackle it head-on with our trusty guide on how to fix it!

 You’re on a leisurely drive, belting out tunes with your partner, when your Kenwood stereo suddenly slips into the infamous protect mode. Just like an untimely ad in your favorite Spotify playlist, it spoils the whole vibe.

Despite scouring YouTube and combing through manuals, nothing helps, and the frustration only grows. But hold on! I’m here to share a hard-earned solution to this common Kenwood radio protect mode issue.

How to Fix Kenwood Protect Mode

You’ve tried the Kenwood protect mode reset button to no avail, and you’re wondering what’s next? We’ve got you covered. We’ve investigated various methods and narrowed down a solution to this Kenwood car radio problem that’s causing quite a headache.

Fair warning though: With our guide on how to reset car audio systems and fix car audio issues, you might soon run out of excuses to avoid those persistent carpool karaoke requests!

No more suspense… let’s dive into this Kenwood stereo troubleshooting!

Why Does My Kenwood Radio Say “Protecting Send Service?”

Here are some reasons why your Kenwood stereo is in protection mode.

  • Overheating

Overheating is one of the major reasons why you find your Kenwood CD player in protect mode. If the car stereo is used for a long time, its internal parts may be overheated.

Due to the high operating temperature, the Kenwood stereo system takes it as a threat and makes itself go into protection mode. You can avoid this issue by ensuring sufficient ventilation. Furthermore, let the radio stay turned off for several hours by disconnecting the power lead to make it cool down.

  • Power Surge

After overheating, a power surge is another big reason behind the protection mode. The instability of the voltage can cause the Kenwood radio stuck in protect mode. It generally happens between lightning strikes and thunderstorms.

If a power surge turns out to be the culprit, disconnect the stereo receiver and let the storm end. Plug it in again as soon as the storm ends and check if it’s working fine.

  • Malfunctioning Components

The problem doesn’t lie within the stereo itself always, sometimes it is the component connected to the stereo. For instance, if you have connected an external amplifier to the stereo and it stops working, it might also make your Kenwood car stereo go into protect mode. You can switch your amplifier to make your stereo function again.

How to Bypass Kenwood Protect Mode

Let’s find out how to bypass the protect mode on your Kenwood radio.

  • Reset the Radio

If you are unable to spot the issue with your radio, you can try resetting it. Resetting the radio can fix the unseen problem. Here’s how to reset the Kenwood stereo:

  1. Switch on the car stereo and then detach the front panel.
  2. Once you remove the front panel, you will see a reset button. Hold the reset button for five seconds to reboot the system.
  3. The pressed reset button will make the stereo get out of the reset mode.
  • Examine the Speaker Wiring

In some instances, the shorting of speaker wires forces the stereo into protect mode. This usually happens when you fix new speakers with poor installation quality. Therefore, it is important to check the wires thoroughly.

  1. Detach the stereo receiver unit and examine the wires closely.
  2. You will see four sets of two wires in purple, green, grey, and white colors. Ensure that each wire is covered properly. Look out for damage or cuts through the length of the wiring. You may come across damages in the places where wires are packed up or touching metal parts.
  3. If you find any issues discussed above, change the wiring to get the stereo out of the protect mode.
  • Upgrade Firmware

Sometimes the protect mode error message pops up because of out-of-date firmware. Go to Kenwood’s official website and look for any updates regarding your stereo model. If you come across any updates, follow the installation instructions carefully. Turn on the stereo again after updating the firmware.

  • Change the Fuses

After resetting and upgrading your stereo, if you still find it in the protect mode, you might need to change the fuses. Check the manual and see what type of fuses you will need. Switch the fuses with the new ones and see what difference they make.

  • Reach Out to a Dealer

If you have tried the solutions mentioned above and failed to take your stereo out of protect mode, you may need to reach out to a professional. Kenwood provides a wide range of service options, and you can choose one as per your needs. The stereo should start working once it is serviced by a professional technician.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the reset button on a Kenwood radio?

Take out the front panel of the stereo and you will be able to see the reset button. If you want to reboot the device, long press and hold the reset button for 5 seconds.

How do I take my Kenwood out of protect mode?

You can take your Kenwood radio out of protect mode by letting it stay turned off for many hours. This is how it will cool down if it is overheated. You can also try resetting the stereo through the reset button. If none of the methods seems to work, get help from a dealer.

Why does my Kenwood radio keep going in protect mode?

Kenwood radio shows protect mode error message because the company has designed these stereos with protection mode. The stereo receiver goes into protect mode when there is a short circuit, wrong impedance, or damaged wiring.

Can you reset your car radio without a code?

Yes, you can reset your car radio without having a code. Just press the reset button for a few seconds and it will reset your device completely.


Now you can see you can fix your Kenwood’s protect mode using a couple of ways. There can be many reasons behind the protection mode including overheating, malfunctioning components, or unstable voltage. Regardless of the type of reason, you can easily fix your stereo by using this guide.

Last Updated on October 11, 2023 by Brian Beasley

Written by Danny Reid

Hey, I'm Danny, and I know how hard it can be to find the perfect audio gear. Need a new stereo, amp, speakers, or subs? Don't worry – my blog is here to help you cut through the noise! My mission is to give you the best reviews, so you can make the right decision for your audio needs. And if you ever get stuck thinking, "Where does this blue wire go?" don't worry – I've got tons of cool tips to help you out of any jam. So come along with me on this fun, sound-filled adventure, and let's find the perfect audio setup to make your tunes really sing!