vibrologist wrote:Hi, runnningslow:
I don't have experience with the Silverstars. On my former Windstar the original headlight bulbs quit after 9 years. I read the labels of the Silverstars and decided that's not for me: right on the package they say that they last about half as long as the LL bulbs and they cost twice as much. At least with Ford I noticed that the original bulbs last very long. But the replacement bulbs I bought at parts stores or Wal-Mart do not last nearly as long. When changing the bulbs be careful not to touch them with your fingers because the oils of the skin will affect the bulb's clarity and possibly cause heat build up. That would make them burn out early.
That radio may not be as bad as you think. It seems the volume control has some issues. There is probably some dirt inside the potentiometer. If you can take the radio out and open it up then you could spray some electronics cleaner into the potentiometer while you turn the volume knob. That should improve the contacts and make it work as designed.
When I bought my 05 Vibe it too was very noisy. I knew it needed new tires and I bought Michelin Defender because they are quiet, not mute, but quiet.
That helped a lot. But I wanted it quieter yet. I added sound deadener in several steps: first the trunk area and inside the sub woofer (moon & tunes), then in the doors and finally under the carpet. Steps 1 and 2 made a significant difference, step 3 not so much. I used a brush-on sound deadener and Peel & Seal from Lowe's and some Roxul insulation. There are some good threads on sound insulation on here. There is also a Youtube on how to remove the inner door panels.
Our Vibe is much quieter than it was when purchased but it is not comparable to a luxury car. My work really paid of in the sound quality of the Moon & Tune system. The low frequencies come through and the sound is much clearer than before.
We have another noisy car: 2000 Ford Contour 4 cylinder. I added an insulating pad under the hood and this helped keeping the engine noise in control. The Vibe may also benefit from that but I don't feel it is needed. I think the law of diminishing returns is in effect.
I appreciate the reply.!
The next time I buy bulbs, I'm going to do my homework on replacements. I always make sure I'm wearing nitrile gloves when changing them.
I don't need to make it sound studio quiet, but I'd like to make it a little more comfortable. I've never owned a particularly quiet car, definitely nothing that could be confused for a luxury car: 88 Festiva, 88 Dakota, 95 Neon, 00 Escort, 97 Aspire, a GY6 scooter, 97 Ranger and then the Vibe... not counting my wife's cars, which really only adds a 91 Escort and the 05 Corolla. I'll look for the guides on the site. I figure I can track down some of the rattles while I'm at it, too.
One thing that will help is that I know the tires are getting pretty worn. Thankfully, I don't need to worry about too much snow here in Dallas, which was one of the nice things about living in Florida, too. So, I'm not a in a big hurry to replace them. I'm hoping I could out long enough to be able to afford some new rims, too. Heck, I'd be happy with a set of the factory 17" if I could track down a cheap enough set.
Here's a brief history of the radio in question: this is the 4th car it has been mounted into. I bought it in college (circa 2000) for the Neon... totaled the car. It moved into the Aspire. When the Aspire died (transaxle) the radio was moved into the Ranger. With about 300K on it, the Ranger blew the head gasket and I bought the Vibe. The LCD on the Vibe's factory radio was intermittent and it didn't have any sort of Aux input... so in went the Blaupunkt.
Short term, cleaning the volume knob would probably help. In fact, I've been considering trying. What do I have to lose? The radio tuner has been problematic for years. Even when mounted in a car with a proper antenna, it will have a hard time tuning in strong local stations. Sometimes, it would lose the signal all together for a few minutes. Also, the CD player has been reliable... constantly skipping with the slightest bump. In these days of smartphones and iPods, I don't listen to much radio or CDs (can't remember the last time I played a CD) anyway, so that's not such a big deal.
I'm not going to replace it with anything fancy, but I would at least like the replacement to have bluetooth for easier linking to my phone and I'd like something double DIN to fill the hole in the dash better.