Car Radio Cuts Out Every Few Seconds [Find Out Why]

If your car radio cuts out every few seconds then there is a problem with the overall electrical system. It is possible that the wiring is damaged or the ignition switch is faulty. However, the fuses can be blown. It is also possible that the entire stereo system itself is busted. 

So, you can fix the problem by replacing the damaged components, to get a detailed on how to diagnose and solve the radio cutting off and on, keep reading the article. 

Why Does My Radio Keep Cutting Off And On?

If your car radio keeps turning off and on, it’s likely because of issues like bad wiring, a problematic stereo system, a weak antenna connection, or electrical interference. 

Loose or damaged wiring, blown fuses, and unstable voltage can also be culprits. To figure out what’s going on, take a look at the wiring, inspect for blown fuses, make sure the power supply is stable, and check the antenna connection. This should help you troubleshoot and solve the problem.

Bad Wiring:

The most common reason for car radio cutting out every few seconds is broken wiring or loose wiring. If you have a radio that keeps cutting off, it is advisable to examine the wiring. 

Check if all the wires are in place and all connections from your antenna to the Stereo are intact. Please look at all fuses and ensure they are not blown. If you see any problems, fix them before operating your radio.

Faulty Ignition Switch:

If your car radio is constantly turning off and on, it could be because of a faulty ignition switch. This switch is responsible for giving power to different electrical systems, including the radio. 

Signs that the ignition switch might be the problem include unresponsive electrical accessories, dashboard warning lights, and the radio, lights, or dashboard instruments losing power on and off at times. So, if you’re experiencing these issues, the ignition switch might be acting up, causing your radio to play the on-and-off game.

Faulty Radio:

faulty radio
Source: Industry Today

If your car radio keeps turning on and off, it might be because of a bad radio. This can happen for various reasons, like faulty parts such as capacitors and resistors, blown fuses, unstable voltage, or bad wiring connections. 

These issues can lead to power interruptions, causing the radio to cut off and on. Problems with the amplifier, weak grounding, or internal faults in the radio can also play a role. So, to fix the problem of your car radio acting up, it’s important to look into and address these potential causes.

Blown Fuses: 

When fuses blow in a car, it can make the radio turn on and off. Blown fuses mess with the power going to the radio because they interrupt the electrical circuit. This interruption in power makes the radio cut out now and then. 

So, if your radio is acting up, it’s crucial to check for and change any blown fuses in the car’s electrical system. That should help sort out the problem of the radio turning on and off.

Bad Power Connection:

A bad power connection can also lead to your car radio cutting off. Ensure that the power cables leading to your battery and the fuel pump are clean and free from corrosion.

Most often it can be a bad power connection that leads to car radio cutting off every few seconds. 

Why Does My Car Radio Shut Off Randomly?

Here are some of the common reasons why your car radio turns off while driving:

Wire shorting: If you experience a short-circuit, the radio will automatically shut off to reactivate when loosened.

Amplifier circuit malfunction: If you’re driving on a long stretch of highway or don’t have enough power in your car, this may cause an issue with your amplifier circuit and result in the radio being turned off.

Charging issues: If the car battery is too drained to power the radio, you will experience a shut-off, but once charged again, it should be back to normal.

Bad wiring: When wires are bad or loose on some parts of your car, it can cause interference between other parts of the vehicle and result in a shutdown of your radio if not fixed right away.

Software problems: Many modern cars are equipped with computer systems that may have gotten a virus or other forms of malware. Since it is a smaller computer, it can be infected like a PC and cause problems with the car’s electronics, including the radio.

Overheating: If the car’s engine has been overworked and overheats, it can cause an issue with your radio which can turn off due to too much heat caused by the engine working too hard.

When your car’s battery is weak, it will take less power and stress on the radio to cause it to turn off; this can be resolved by charging your battery or installing a stronger battery.

Bonus: Check how to keep the radio on when the car Is Off.

How Do You Diagnose A Car Radio Problem?

To figure out what’s wrong with your car radio, follow these steps:

Check the fuses: A blown fuse is often the reason a car radio stops working. Look at the fuses and replace any that are blown.

Check the wiring: If the radio’s acting up, loose or damaged wiring could be the culprit. Examine the connections to the radio and make sure they’re secure and in good shape.

Check the power connection: A shaky power connection can make the radio turn on and off. Check that the wires going to your battery and fuel pump are clean, corrosion-free, and in good condition.

Check the antenna connection: If the antenna connection isn’t great, the radio might cut out now and then. Look at the antenna connection on your car’s roof or at the back of the radio to fix this.

Check the amplifier: If your car has an amplifier and it’s not working right, it can mess with the radio. Check the amplifier wiring and make sure it’s grounded correctly. These steps should help you pinpoint and solve the problem with your car radio.

Bonus: Check out why your car keeps getting dusty

How Do I Fix My Car Radio Cutting In And Out?

If your car’s radio has been giving you trouble recently, you can take your vehicle to the mechanic to fix it or repair it yourself if you know how to do it. 

First off, identify the problem by inspecting what makes up your car radio. Typically there is a circuit board with various components that need replacing if they’re damaged or not functioning correctly.

Car Radio Cuts Out Every Few Seconds; Why?
Car Radio Cuts Out Every Few Seconds

The most common problem is the battery, which could be anything from a faulty antenna to a failing speaker.

Next, you should first remove your radio from the vehicle. If you can’t access it easily, use a small flat-blade screwdriver. 

After removing the radio:

  • Inspect the board for any obvious problems.
  • Try taking them loose from the board and see if that helps.
  • Don’t damage anything inside the radio while doing this, or you’ll have to start again.

If the car radio still won’t work and you’ve followed all the previous steps, you might have a faulty radio unit. 

So you can replace it with a new one to fix the car radio issue. Check this car stereo video for a detailed guide. 

If it doesn’t work, try looking around for blown fuses or a broken wire that needs soldering.


In conclusion, the car radio cuts out every few seconds if there is any issue with the overall wiring or if the ignition switch is not working properly. Diagnose the problem properly and if you find it, then replace the damaged part. However, you can always consult the professionals if you are not comfortable with DIY work.

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