Installing a Subwoofer without the JBL sound system | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations
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Installing a Subwoofer without the JBL sound system


New Member
July 27, 2014
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City, State
Houston, Texas
Year, Model & Trim Level
1998 Explorer XLT
Hey guys, I've seen on this forum where there's a subwoofer in the back, but where they normally are is just a storage compartment. I've been wanting to install one, and would want to put the sub where they originally were so I won't lose any space. What would I need to get and where/how would I put the amp and stuff like that? Not really experienced in this field. Thanks in advance:D

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BTW, if it looks like I don't know what I'm talking about, I probably don't

Possible, and or partial, need list, depending on install:
  • power wire
  • ground wire
  • hi-lo converter
  • fuse holder and correct fuse for power wire
  • patch cord
  • remote wire

Here are some pics of my Budget Bass install. Click on images for larger views.






I got mine from a pick-a-part yard. It's a 91-94 generation that I carved out to accept an 8" subwoofer.

FYI: there are quite a few different versions throughout the 91-01 generations.

Listen to this guy. ^

I've done it before to. Go to a junkyard and get one from a 98-2001. They're a bigger box and give a bit more oomph.
Here's the bigger box:


As for stuff you'll need (This time don't listen to that guy :D)
  • The box itself and mounting hardware
  • A good 8 inch shallow subwoofer (Factory box isn't made for deep competition subs)
  • A decent amplifier (Most amps have a speaker level input if you have a factory head unit)
  • Wiring for all of it (8 Gauge Power/Ground wiring, speaker wires, etc)
  • A lot of time if you've never done it before.

I might move this to the audio forum for future reference though.

I've heard that doing this will make body panels rattle too though. I'm not sure how you feel about that, but its the only reason i haven't done this yet. Just one thing to think of, I love the idea though.

My body panels don't rattle. Just make sure to put them on properly with good panel clips.
Or, put some form of soundproofing on them if you have the money.

Every subwoofer will make some form of rattle in a car.

I did it to mine. Takes some work but Just like DjDom said. Grab a factory sub box at salvage yard or ebay. Replace with after market parts and hook it up like any sub install. The box will fit right in. And I've had no rattle problems more then any other vehicle.
I think the factory sub enclosure on a 98 is 0.6 CF so take that into consideration when picking a sub. And if I remember correctly an amp less then 9x7x2 should fit on the box. Class "D" amps are good space savers.
The box is not real deep. I had to make a ring out of wood to get mine to fit and seal but most will fit.
Directly below the sub in the box is a hole where a stud would go. You won't have that stud so patch that hole. If you notice there's a ring cut out out of the plastic cover. I used it and some epoxy to seal the bottom of the box.



I put the amp under my back seat since I still have the factory door speaker amp there that had to be mounted. :)
If you're lucky, you can mount the amp on the box. I know the new smaller 400W Pioneer amps would fit there no problem.