How to Break In a Subwoofer? Some Easy Method

When getting a subwoofer for your vehicle’s entertainment system, your dealer will probably advise you to break it. Not in the literal sense though, it is an essential step to get the best out of your sound system. To handle your queries on this matter, we will show you how to break in a subwoofer.

Before looking at how to do it, you should know what it is. Most car audio systems have low compliance suspension. In this case, you cannot comfortably play bass frequencies. As such, there are things to perform to loosen its spider components and make them flexible.

When the unit is new, you will notice that the woven part is very stiff. At this point, it shows a high free air resonance. It will need a lot of power for it to reach its highest output. On the other hand, if broken in, it has a lower free air resonance, meaning the subwoofer has a higher output at a low power threshold.

How to Break In a Subwoofer: Step By Step Process

Do you need to break in a subwoofer? While not a must-do, if you want your audio unit to perform to its best, you need to do it. The good thing is that it is a simple process and won’t cost you much. Additionally, it is a one-time process, and once achieved correctly, you are good to enjoy your vehicle’s sound system.

If you skip this process, there are problems that you may experience with the subwoofer. For instance, you may have a burned coil, which can cause excessive heat buildup and affect the signal distribution.

Below are the steps to follow to break in your new subwoofer.

Step 1: Install the Sound System

The first step calls for the installation of the subwoofer. This is a straightforward process and requires standard mechanics tools to pull. If you encounter any problem, you can check on the subwoofer’s user manual.

Ensure the connections are in proper shape and the audio system is ready for entertainment. Also, check on the system’s ventilation, where they should be open. Another important thing is that the sub has to be sturdy at the point of installation.

A look at how to break in a subwoofer Reddit chat room, many pundits suggest that you build a rig to hold the system.

Step 2: Start With a Short to Moderate Breaking In

Breaking in, in its essence, is playing music to make the spiders more flexible. Play your favorite music at low to medium volume. What subwoofer break-in songs should I play? Go for music with bass at the indicated volume. Let the joints play in the music unit for 2-3 hours daily as you gradually increase the volume.

 Step 3: Adjusting the Volume

Adjust the volume after you notice a low free air resonance, as the spiders are getting loose. You can try out softer subwoofer break in tracks. When tweaking the volume, you need to be keen on extreme changes. They include shrieking sounds and a burning smell. If you notice any of them, you should tone down the breaking.

How long does breaking in a subwoofer take? Typically, playing tracks on the system 2-hours a day for 2-3 weeks is enough to loosen the woven material and improve its suspension. However, the time will depend on various factors, like the type of weaving, the subwoofer brand, and its size.

You can check out this video to know more about breaking in a new subwoofer.

A Faster Way of Breaking in Your Subwoofer

There is a faster way of making your subwoofer’s components flexible. Here, you will need a tone generator, a jack pin, and an amplifier. If you lack a tone generator, you can use your phone and download a tone-generating application.

Mount the subwoofer on a steady platform in free air; that is without any obstruction. Connect the jack to your mobile phone and amplifier. Perform a frequency sweep of 30-60-Hz. 40-Hz is the best frequency to break in a subwoofer. Let it play at this frequency for 20-24-hour to break in.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How Long Does It Take To Break In A Subwoofer?

Breaking in a subwoofer is a crucial step to perform when you get a new unit. It is the loosening of the weaving or spiders to allow for a low free air resonance. You start by playing a bass tune at moderate volumes or 2-3-hours daily for 2-3 weeks. During this period, you gradually switch up the volume and change sounds for all-around flexibility.

The period is dependent on many factors, like subwoofer manufacturer and hardiness of the spiders.

Q: How Do You Break In A Subwoofer Fast?

The standard timeframe of making a subwoofer’s spiders less rigid is 2-3-weeks. If you cannot wait for this period, there is a shorter process where you use a tone generator. Connect your subwoofer to an amplifier, the same to your tone generator or mobile phone with a tone generating app.

Sweep the frequency at 40-Hz and let the tune run for up to 24-hours. Do not forget to have the subwoofer on a steady platform for stability.

Q: Should You Break In A Subwoofer?

When you get a new subwoofer, you may think that you just have to plug it in and blast your music. While this is a way to go, you will not get the best out of this music system. After installing the subwoofer, you should break it. Breaking in is making the spiders flexible to produce high sound quality at a low power output.

Q: Do Subs Smell After Breaking In?

During the breaking in your subs, you may notice some smell. It may be a cosmetic smell, similar to its packaging, a sign of expanding weaving. If you notice a burning scent, it means you are going extra fast with the breaking in. Reduce the power output and volume to do away with a burning smell.

Q: Do Subs Get Louder After A Break-In?

The primary purpose of breaking in subs is to improve sound quality. It gives you a smooth tune when you play music. Loud music does not translate to quality. When it is so loud, it may be a pointer of a stiff spider; hence, you need more breaking in sessions.

Final Words

A subwoofer does not require too much in maintenance practices. However, you need to break it in when you buy it. This piece gives you an in-depth view of breaking in subs, including its necessity and how to do it. Use the instructions to guide you to bring the most from your music system.

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Hi there, I am R. Hasan Tito, a mechanic, and owner of this website. My friend and I created this website to share our knowledge, expertise, and experience with our fellow mechanics' community and car users. I am a specialist and certified automotive mechanic (Both Heavy Commercial and Private Cars). I worked as a Mechanic and Mechanic Supervisor for over fifteen years at Global Rebound Automotive companies - Toyota, TATA, BMW, Nissan, TVs, and Others. Now, I enjoy my new role of leading a team of automotive experts (in their respective fields) and publish new content on a regular basis on my website and social media.

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