Subwoofers can greatly help improve the standard of sound when it comes to the music that you are listening to. Sometimes, however, it is possible that your sub is not working but the amp is on.

Why does this happen? Commonly, a blown subwoofer, issues with the connection and wiring, volume and other settings, input problems, short circuits and issues with the speaker can be some potential reasons behind a subwoofer not working even if the amp has power.

Luckily, this is something that you can fix by taking a few simple steps. Let’s look into the causes and solutions for this issue in further detail through this guide.

Why Are My Subwoofers Not Working?

There are several potential reasons behind the fact that your subwoofer stopped working but the amp is on that you can go through below.

Blown Subwoofer

A blown subwoofer is one that produces a lack of sound or a mangled sound. You can also check the structure of the subwoofer itself to see if there is an issue. This will most likely be in the form of a broken cone or an issue with the coil of the subwoofer.

You will be able to figure this issue out immediately if it is the cause behind the subwoofer not working well. If not, however, you can try looking into some other causes.

Connection Issues

There can also be issues with the connections and wiring when it comes to the subwoofer, especially since the amp still has power. In this case, you should check if all the relevant cables and wires are in their place as it can be easy for them to loosen up.

There might also be other connection issues in the form of damage, breakage, incorrect attachments or more that could be causing the subwoofer to not work properly.

In most cases, the culprit is likely to be an issue with the connection, so make sure you look into this before inspecting the subwoofer for other causes.

Protect Mode

The protect mode in your subwoofer is generally built to act as a warning in case there is anything wrong with the system. Lights will flicker on if the system detects any fault or error in the subwoofer, which could range from connection issues, speaker problems or more.

In this case, the protect mode can temporarily turn off the subwoofer to protect it from any damage due to the faults. In such a situation, you will need to diagnose the issue and then try to fix it so that you can safely turn the protect mode off while also being able to get the subwoofer to start working properly again.

How to Solve the Issue

There are several ways in which you can try to solve the issue with your subwoofer. Go through these solutions below so that you can try to fix the problem by yourself.

Check the Input

There can be an issue with the inputs that might be causing your subwoofer to not work, even if the amp has power. Thus, you should first check the input connections at all possible parts of your subwoofer to ensure whether or not the unit is getting the signal in the first place.

Look out for all the cables in the input ports and whether or not they are installed properly. Make sure you also check the main stereo system of your car itself so that you don’t miss out on the inputs there.

Try disconnecting and reconnecting the cables tightly to see if this solves the problem. If not, you will need to replace the cables with better quality ones as long as you are sure that they are the main reason behind this problem.

Check the Volume

The issue could be as simple as the volume levels themselves. If you turned the volume level way down, this could very well be the reason that your subwoofer does not seem to be working. You may also have turned off the volume completely.

All you need to do here is turn the volume back up to the desired level. Make sure you also check the volume levels on the amplifier and the base unit.

Test the system out once you manage to do this so that you can confirm that the subwoofer is working well once again.

Check the Wiring

Wiring problems are pretty common when it comes to a damaged or malfunctioning subwoofer. This wiring could either be leading to the main source of power for the subwoofer or it could be connected to the speakers of the car.

Any issues with the wiring, such as too much entanglement, corrosion, fuse issues, loose attachments, faults with the ground wire or more can lead to the subwoofer not being able to function effectively.

If you have enough skill and experience, then you can lift the dashboard and check the wiring on your own. However, since this is a difficult task, it might be better for you to call a professional if you are unsure of where the issue is.

Check the Speakers

It is also likely that the fault might lie with the speakers of your sound system. In such a situation, you will need to assess the extent of the damage before you seek a solution.

For example, is the issue with the connections of the speaker? Is the speaker itself in a bad condition with torn components? Are the sound and power coming from the speakers too distorted?

Depending on how bad the problem is, you will either need to get your speakers repaired or replace them completely to ensure that they last you well in the long run.

Look for Short Circuits

Short circuits in your wires or the fuse could also damage or affect the proper functioning of the entire system, even if your amp might have power.

If there is an unexpected increase in voltage levels, the fuse will get damaged and will end up interrupting the entire system so that the excess voltage does not end up reaching the other parts of the system as well.

Similarly, if there is an issue with the positive and negative terminals of the subwoofer, then this could result in a short circuit as well. You can test the subwoofer out with other sound systems to confirm if this is the issue. In case it is, you will need to call a professional.

Check Your Settings

Make sure that the overall settings of your sound system are accurate and up to your desired levels, as they might have changed unknowingly. For instance, the subwoofer itself might have been disabled in the sound system settings.

Look into the settings of the amplifier and speakers as well along with the frequencies at which everything is set. Look into the receivers of the system as well.

The above steps should ideally help you identify the cause and solve the issue. You might need to check multiple or all of these problem points to confirm the issue. In case you are not confident with fixing the problem on your own, call a professional.

FAQs

What Is the Most Common Cause of a Subwoofer Not Working?

The most common cause of a subwoofer not working is the wiring or the connections of the subwoofer with the rest of the sound system. Leaks, breakage, twists, corrosion, loose connections and incorrect wiring are all quite common and can create problems with the subwoofer even if the amp has power.

How Can You Tell If a Sub Fuse Is Blown?

You will be able to tell if the fuse of a subwoofer is blown if it is no longer connected to the rest of the wire. The fuse gets disconnected from the rest of the wiring to prevent the damage from spreading to other parts of the system.

To check, you will need to disconnect the device, bring the fuse out and then closely inspect the wire to see if there is a gap or break.

What Will the Damaged or Bad Subwoofer Sound Like?

In case your subwoofer is not working, it will end up producing no sound or a grating, cracking, distorted, popping, flat or static-like sound. Make sure you check the sound quality at different volume levels so that you can figure out where the issue lies.

How Do I Test My Amp and Subs?

You can test your amp and subs by connecting them to the speakers and sound system. Use a multimeter to help you out as well. Keep altering the channels of the amp as well as the volume and other required settings on the subs to test the quality.

Final Thoughts

Through this guide, it is now clear that there are multiple causes and solutions behind your amp getting power but subs not working. This could be an issue with the connections, protect mode, blown subwoofer as well as issues with the volume, speakers and other settings, among others.

Make sure you check everything thoroughly to be able to fix the issue.

Last Updated on November 10, 2021