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Old 11-29-2004, 02:52 PM   #1
BeatnikTermite
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How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

This has been discussed many times here before, and I thought I would bring all of the information together in a "how-to." I have not had to do this personally, but nobody rides in the passenger seat of my car to make it necessary.

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

Permanent Fix:

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.

Last edited by BeatnikTermite; 11-29-2004 at 03:25 PM.
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Old 08-15-2005, 11:58 AM   #2
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

I just want to first off say thank you for the responses that I have received!! My husband and I have been trying to figure this radio situation thing out for some time now!!! We never even knew that these forums were out there! So thank you all for your replies!!!!!!!
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Old 11-28-2005, 07:37 PM   #3
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Quote:
Originally Posted by BeatnikTermite
This has been discussed many times here before, and I thought I would bring all of the information together in a "how-to." I have not had to do this personally, but nobody rides in the passenger seat of my car to make it necessary.

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

Permanent Fix:

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.

Well, on my 2000 Malibu, the radio reception will sound fine, but when I adjust the volume dials only slightly, the reception goes out. Then if I crank the volume, it sounds OK again. I checked my floor antenna connection and it is fine. Could my problem be the radio dials? If so, how do I remove them? Thanks for any advice.
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Old 10-30-2006, 03:42 PM   #4
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You. After numerous searches and never ending technical mumbo jumbo the solution ended up being so simple. I must have looked at hundreds of sites talking about modulators, rear window antennas and tinting, antenna grounding etc., and the solution was sitting un-attached under my passenger seat carpet. Plugged it back in and works like new!
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Old 10-31-2006, 07:08 PM   #5
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Quote:
Originally Posted by jwebber
Well, on my 2000 Malibu, the radio reception will sound fine, but when I adjust the volume dials only slightly, the reception goes out. Then if I crank the volume, it sounds OK again. I checked my floor antenna connection and it is fine. Could my problem be the radio dials? If so, how do I remove them? Thanks for any advice.
Do you lose reception or just volume? It would be pretty tough for anything you do with the volume control to affect reception, however, a bad volume control could cause the sound to disappear and re-appear. You'll need a shop to check the volume control.
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Old 06-13-2007, 08:05 PM   #6
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

This fix was right on. It was also so easy (took me 5 minutes) I feel like an idiot for driving around for 2+ years only listening to CDs in my car.
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Old 07-11-2007, 09:59 AM   #7
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

The AM band is affected first because of is wavelength. 1 MHz vs 100 MHz (center frequencies) makes a huge difference. Measure with a decent DVM the resistance between chassis ground and the shield of the antenna cable at the radio. Then measure resistance between the center conductor and the 'whip' of the antenna. Some antennas use a wire that wraps around the of the 'whip' (if you can make contact, you might have to break the coating to do so). Both readings should be well under 5 ohms especially the ground.
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Old 02-03-2010, 03:59 PM   #8
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

thank you - I was going to pull the dash to check the radio/antenna connection, and thought I would check this forum first. Very easy fix, saved me alot of time.

and thanks to everyone who contributes to these forums. Thanks for sharing your knowledge to help all of us save money and stress!
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Old 05-20-2011, 03:37 PM   #9
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Hi, could you tell me more about this plastic cover that I need to remove? It says it is located on the passenger side door threshold. I'm not sure what this is. Thanks!
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Old 05-20-2011, 04:14 PM   #10
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Quote:
Originally Posted by aem1988 View Post
Hi, could you tell me more about this plastic cover that I need to remove? It says it is located on the passenger side door threshold. I'm not sure what this is. Thanks!
the threshold is the metal trim at the bottom of the door opening
has screws holding it down,remove this to access carpet

Good luck
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Old 05-20-2011, 04:21 PM   #11
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Thanks! Totally fixed it now
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Old 05-02-2012, 05:04 PM   #12
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Talking Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

THANK YOU SO MUCH! I have been struggling without my radio in my car. My Jeep had perfect reception and sounded beautiful, and then I bought my 99 Malibu and was devastated because, even though it had only 79k miles and much better gas mileage, it had no radio! Now, I do! Muchos gracias!
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Old 07-18-2013, 05:48 PM   #13
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Well age takes it's toll. I read the post on poor radio reception on my 2000 Malibu. Thanks for mentioning the antenna wire coupling just front of the passenger front door and under the rocker panel cover and carpet. I read it and the light came on I remember that from older GM cars back to the 70s. I removed the plastic cover, lifted the carpet found the coupling, YUP, wire was uncoupled, plugged it back in GREAT RECEPTION. YOU THE MAN Thanks!!!
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Old 03-25-2016, 10:34 PM   #14
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

I have found the antenna cable in my 1999 malibu, but I can't find where I'm suppose to connect it.
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:18 PM   #15
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Re: How To: Radio Reception; FM=bad, AM=None

Thanks for the post. On my 2003 Impala the reception on both was poor. I pulled the passenger side trim and looked under the carpet but no coax cable. I noticed extra connection to the rear defrost/antenna on the drivers side so I pulled the trim and peeled back the carpet. There was the coax cable mentioned on the drivers side. So if you don't find under passenger side look on drivers side.
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