How to Change a Radio on a 1987 Dodge Ram

The 1987 Dodge Ram truck presides as a forefather of sorts to one of the longest running lines of cars, trucks and SUVs. The standard stereo system used in the 1987 Dodge was an AM/ FM stereo cassette player. Replacing the stock stereo system requires that you adapt the late 1980's stereo wiring to a standard platform for contemporary stereo models. Once the wiring gap has been bridged, the only remaining challenge is fitting the new stereo into the stereo mounting dock of the truck, and for that there are faceplate adapters.

Tools Used: 10 mm wrench, Phillips head screwdriver, Wiring harness adapter, Faceplate adapter

Change Radio

Lift the hood of the 1987 Dodge Ram. Disconnect the negative battery cable from the negative lead post of the battery with a 10 mm wrench. Move the cable away from the battery until the stereo installation is finished.

Remove the five screws on the top lip of the dashboard with the Phillips head screwdriver.

Remove the screw directly above the factory stereo with a Phillips head screwdriver.

Pull the entire dash panel away from the dashboard. The dash panel extends from the left side of the steering column to the right side of the stereo mounting dock.

Remove the two screws on either side of the factory stereo with the screwdriver.

Pull the factory stereo from the stereo mounting dock and disconnect the wiring from the back of the radio. Pull out the antenna cable from the back of the radio. Remove the bolt that connects the metal braid ground strap to the back of the radio with the 10 mm wrench.

Slide the aftermarket stereo faceplate adapter into the vacant opening in the dashboard.

Pull the stereo wiring in the antenna cable from the stereo mounting dock to the opening of the faceplate adapter.

Connect the Dodge stereo wiring to the wiring harness adapter. Connect the wiring harness adapter leads to the back of the aftermarket stereo.

Slide the aftermarket stereo through the faceplate adapter and into the stereo mounting dock.

Replace the dash panel onto the dashboard and reinstall the five screws at the upper lip of the panel. Reinstall the one screw above the stereo.

Place the negative battery cable clamp onto the negative lead post of the battery and tighten the clamp to the post with the 10 mm wrench. Close the hood of your 1987 Dodge Ram.

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