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I'm not an expert but often people connect subs to normal speaker wires in back of the radio. You need a dedicated subwoofer line so high frequency sound doesn't go to the subs. Only bass. Sounds like it wasn't wired properly.
if you turn the bass setting in your radio down it will take the bass out, but may take some of the bass out of the subs as well, if this occurs and you still are not satified, you either have to get a car receiver with a non fading subwoofer preout, or you could get bass blockers for all the speakers you dont want the bass in
Phase reverses the polarity of the driver so it can be matched to the other speakers and bass-reinforcement characteristics of its position in the room. You don't want the sub 'sucking in' while other speakers are 'pushing out' or a bass cancellation will occur.
Set it, listen to bass from your normal seating position, reverse it and observe if the bass gets subjectively better. Leave it in the 'better' position.
Cutoff is a variable for the highest frequency where the speaker 'cuts off'. You can experiment with adjusting it for what sounds to you like the smoothest transition betwen the sub and the othere speakers. You don't want a lot of audible overlap where the sub and other speakers are acting on the same frequencies. It may sound to bassy in that area.
Its probably not your subwoofer- its likely that your amp is showing its age after 2 years of bumping -But it could be that you have partially roasted the coil on the sub which is tripping your amp into protect mode-thus shutting down throw a different sub in there for a week and listen to it and if it stops acting up then its probably the sub if it still shuts down then it may be time for a new amp
Tapping into front or rear gets high level signal 3 plus volts at low impedance which is totally unsuitable for the sub's line level input which is more like 300millivolts > A competent tech could make up an attenuator patch or just take it to a professional car installer before you do more damage
You need to match your amp's input voltage (the gain) to the output voltage supplied via your deck's preouts. Turn you radio up to normal listening level, and turn the amp's gain until you induce audible distortion then back it off slightly. Set the bass boost and crossovers to on and type (highpass for front/rear full range or lowpass for subs).
What kind of car did you install this in? Did it have a factory radio in it? If I had to take a guess I would think that there is a factory amp that you may have hooked the blue wire from the alpine deck to. If this is the case when you switch to CD the alpine deck turns off the power to the power antenna lead(blue wire) and thus your factory amp. If this is the case hook the factory amp turn on to the blue and white wire and you should be good to go.
it might be that your wires from your amp to your subs are too thin. since they were relatively new the first three months, they were probably undamaged, but after pushing them too much, they probably have broken wires, and can't get enough power to the subs when turned up, i suggest getting thicker wires before investing in a capacitor, it could save you money.