Kathy and I love listening to music on longer treks. Unfortunately the factory Ford speakers in the E-450 Chassis leave a little to be desired. Ok, they leave a LOT to be desired.
It’s not all their fault. RVs are loud while driving. It’s a function of weight, tires (all 6 of them), bad aerodynamics, and lack of sound deadening material. Long story short, there’s a fair bit of road noise in the cab which makes it difficult to hear your music – especially when the factory speakers have the acoustic properties of a paper cup.
On the plus side, our RV has a decent head unit from Jensen that supplies 40W of power x 4 channels. Sure, a full system with an Amplifier would be better, but it would also cost a lot more than this upgrade costs.
Here’s the video I made during install. Step by step instructions, plus a link to the speakers I used are below the video.
List of Supplies For This Project:
Inexpensive Speaker Options – All Ford E-450 speakers (front and rear) are 6″ x 8″:
- Infinity Primus 6″x8″ Speakers →
- Rockford Fosgate Punch 6″x8″ Speakers →
- Pioneer 4-Way 6″x8″ Speakers →
- Kenwood 6″x8″ Speakers →
- Wire Stripper & Cimper →
- Female Quick Disconnects →
These are what I used to connect my speakers
- Phillips and Flathead Screwdriver
- T20 Torx (Star) Driver →
Link is to a full driver kit – very useful for RVers
- Soldering Iron Kit
- 6″x8″ Speaker Baffles
Prevents rattling & protects from moisture/condensation
- Ford Speaker Harness Adapters →
I’ve read these ship with reverse polarity so need to be rewired. I didn’t use adapters
If you prefer to solder all your connections then you don’t need a crimp tool or the quick disconnects.
Speaker Wire Polarity
It’s important to attach the positive wire to the positive input on the speaker, and the negative wire to the negative input. It probably won’t hurt the speakers to mix them up, but it won’t sound great – especially if you wire it right on one door and wrong on the other.
Ford uses different wires for each door. The wires for many recent Ford vehicles including the 2012 E-450 are:
Solid white wire is Positive +
White wire w/ brown stripe is negative –
White wire w/ violet (purple) stripe is Positive +
White wire w/ orange stripe is negative –
Click on images for full-size
The end result of the upgrade was well worth the investment! The speakers sounds so much warmer and fuller than the factory speakers. In fact, the upgrade makes me want to upgrade the speakers in the living area of our RV too – but I’ll leave that for another post.
Until next time, happy trekking!