How to Install an Amp in a 2012 Chevy Cruze with Stock Radio

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If you’re looking to enhance the sound system in your 2012 Chevy Cruze, adding an amplifier to your stock radio is a great option. In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of installing an amp in your Chevy Cruze and provide helpful tips along the way.

Step 1: Locate the Grommet in the Firewall

Before you can start the installation process, you’ll need to locate the grommet in the firewall where you can pass the power wire for your amplifier. In the 2012 Chevy Cruze, the grommet is located behind the brake pedal, to the left. Simply poke a hole in the grommet and feed your power wire through it. A 10-gauge wire is sufficient for a small amp, but you can use a thicker wire for a larger amp.

Step 2: Run the Power Wire Through the Grommet

To run the power wire through the grommet, you can use a coat hanger as a guide. Tape your power wire to the end of the coat hanger and feed it through the grommet. Then, pull the coat hanger back to the inside of the car, which will bring the power wire with it.

Step 3: Connect the High-Level Input

In most cases, amplifiers are connected to the head unit using RCA jacks. However, stock radios often do not have RCA jacks. In this case, you’ll need to use the high-level input on your amplifier. If your amp does not have a high-level input, you can use a lock connector to connect it to the speaker wires. Fortunately, the Chevy Cruze stock radio does have a high-level input.

To connect the high-level input, you’ll need to locate the speaker wires. In the 2012 Chevy Cruze, the speaker wires are located behind the side panel, right above the hood release. You can easily run additional speaker wires from there to your amplifier. Make sure to properly identify which wires correspond to each speaker for accurate connection.

Step 4: Install an Add-A-Circuit for Remote Wire

Stock radios typically do not have a remote wire to turn on the amplifier. To remedy this, you can use an add-a-circuit device. This device plugs into a fuse slot and provides a 12-volt power source that turns on when you start the ignition. Locate a suitable fuse slot in your switch box, preferably one that only receives power when the ignition is on. Install the add-a-circuit and connect the remote wire from the amplifier to it.

Step 5: Mount the Amplifier and Speakers

In the trunk of your Chevy Cruze, you can mount your amplifier and speakers. Use metal self-tapping screws to mount the speakers securely. Ensure that they are positioned properly for optimal sound quality. Additionally, make sure to provide proper insulation for the power cord to prevent any potential hazards.

Step 6: Test and Fine-Tune the Sound System

Once everything is connected and properly mounted, it’s time to test out your upgraded sound system. Start your car and listen to the improved audio quality. Adjust the settings on your amplifier and head unit to fine-tune the sound to your preferences.

Overall, installing an amp in your 2012 Chevy Cruze with a stock radio is a relatively simple process. By following these steps and ensuring proper connection and insulation, you can significantly enhance your car’s audio system. Enjoy the improved sound quality and a more immersive driving experience with your newly installed amplifier.