Problem: Radio Reception is bad to non-existant. AM is usually worse than FM.
Reason: Antenna connector has come loose, and needs to be reconnected. This happens when a passenger pushes the carpet toward the firewall and disconnects the plug.
Affected Model Years: 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003
1. First check to make sure the antenna at the back of the radio has not come loose. 2. Remove the plastic cover on the front passenger door threshold held in place by three pressure clips. 3. Peel back the carpet on the front seat passenger floor. 4. Locate the coax antenna cable running along the side. 5. Reconnect the two pieces of antenna that have come loose. 6. Roll the carpet back, and re-install the threshold cover.
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Check your connections on the antenna again. Am usually gets decent reception. sounds like your antenna connection isnt fully connected either at the stereo connection or at the actual antenna connection.
I have the exact same problem with the exact same stereo. I started by removing the in-line AM/FM/VHF Separator and connecting the antenna directly to the stereo. The static/popping/fade-out continued. Today I swapped to a new antenna, but it did not help. I swapped back to the original antenna and for a brief while, I had good reception. The I went to coil the excess antenna cable and the static/popping/fade-out resumed. I have narrowed it down to either the antenna connector coming out of the back of the stereo or an internal circuit. Either way, it does not look like a do-it-yourself fix.
I was having the same problem with a jvc kd hdr 30. I Installed it myself over a year ago and never wanted to deal with the issue. Finally, I decided to take a look at it today.
On my head unit, all wires were connected except one blue one with a tag that says "do not connect to power, for remote device or power antenna only." This unit is in a '97' MBZ E320 with no visible antenna; I think it is part of the windshield. In any case, between the wiring diagram in the manual and the harness that is part of my car, I was left with 2 blue wires to choose from, one with a white stripe and one with a gray stripe. After testing both for power or ground, I determined neither had power with key on or off. Both had high resistance ground when compared to the chassis ground. In other words, I measured between chassis and these wires. First, I took a wire and connected it to the chassis ground and connected the other end to the blue wire coming from the unit while tuned to a local am station. This simply killed all reception am or fm but did not harm the unit. Next, I connected the blue wire with gray stripe of the car harness to the blue wire of the unit and again this killed all reception. Then I connected the blue wire with white stripe of car harness to the blue wire of unit and presto magic I had great am reception.
I am guessing that this blue wire with white stripe must be part of the antenna itself or perhaps is a connection that increases antenna power. Maybe 'power antenna' on tag refers to an actual powered antenna (like as in amplified?) and not as in an antenna that rises up out of fender, as I believed.
This may not help the first person with the question, but maybe it will help someone out there who searches for these kinds of answers like I do from time to time.
There is not an easy answer for this one. Some troubleshooting needs to be done. I have seen the Rockford Fosgate system in many of the newer Sentra's. Try hooking a known working speaker to a nonworking position. This will tell if it is a speaker problem. If the problem persists, this could be stereo or amplifier.
Terrible reception troubleshooting, a bad antenna will give poor FM and no AM. If both have bad reception, this is a stereo problem. You can remove the stereo from the dash, place a small pick tool or screwdriver into the antenna jack and test reception. If the reception problem clears, this is a antenna problem. I have seen car detailers pull the connector from the rear window antenna and forget to plug it back in too.
I see you've already read the "Troubleshooting" section of the manual! The only other things I can think of to check would be the actual connection between the radio (aka head unit) and the antenna. It's usually just a press-fit connection behind the radio, but if it's loose, corroded, or is touching some other metal, it could affect the reception. There's also the small possibility something changed at the transmitter tower for the radio station. That happened in my area once, where they changed the direction in which most of the signal power was being broadcast. Westside reception got better, eastside reception got worse.