How to Replace a KIA Stereo

Updated March 23, 2017

Kia owners who wish to upgrade their stereo systems can choose from a variety of aftermarket stereo decks. The stock head unit in the Kia can be replaced by a professional car audio technician for a cost, or you can swap the factory unit for a new model and save money. Choose a stereo that fits within the Kia's stereo dock, obtain the necessary adaptors, and have the new stereo installed and working in under one hour.

Lift the Kia's bonnet and disconnect the negative battery cable from the negative battery terminal with a 10-mm wrench. Move to the inside of the vehicle.

Grab each of the dash panels containing the air vents on either side of the stereo assembly and pry them from the dashboard. Remove the two screws at the top of the stereo with a Phillips-head screwdriver. Grab the centre dash panel at the top of the trim and pull it away from the dashboard.

Remove the four screws surrounding the stereo bracket with the screwdriver and slide the unit from the dashboard stereo dock. Unplug the stereo wiring and antenna cable from the back of the factory radio.

Slide the aftermarket faceplate adaptor into the vacant stereo dock. Pull the stereo wiring and antenna cable from the back of the dock to the front of the faceplate adaptor. Connect the Kia's stereo wiring to the wiring harness adaptor leads. Plug the wiring harness adaptor lead connectors into the outlets on the rear panel of the new stereo unit.

Slide the new stereo into the faceplate adaptor until it snaps into place. Replace the dash panel over the stereo and screw in the two screws at the top of the panel with the screwdriver. Place the two dash panels containing the air vents into the slots on either side of the stereo and press firmly to snap them back into place. Return to the battery.

Replace the negative battery cable onto the negative battery terminal. Tighten the cable to the battery lead with the wrench. Close the Kia's bonnet.

Things You'll Need

  • 10-mm wrench
  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Faceplate adaptor
  • Wiring harness adaptor
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About the Author

Jule Pamplin has been a copywriter for more than seven years. As a financial sales consultant, Pamplin produced sales copy for two of the largest banks in the United States. He attended Carnegie-Mellon University, winning a meritorious scholarship for the Careers in Applied Science and Technology program, and later served in the 1st Tank Battalion of the U.S. Marine Corps.