5 Top Reasons of Why Kenwood Car Stereo Wont Turn On & Their Quick Solutions

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If you find yourself here, chances are your Kenwood car stereo won’t turn on. Well, you’ve come to the right place, because in this article we’re going to discuss what causes this, as well as the best solutions for your issue.

Although Kenwood car stereos are very popular, there are a few problems that you could encounter.

For this reason, we will consider some other issues that users have encountered in the past.

By the end of this article, you should be able to troubleshoot the most common Kenwood car stereo issues.

Kenwood Stereo Features

The new Kenwood multimedia receivers have some new features that might interest you, especially if you like connecting your phone to your head unit!

  • Apple CarPlay compatibility
  • Siri commands
  • Voice control
  • It reads your messages out loud for you

Besides, obviously, all Kenwood stereos have the usual features. The above is just the latest on the market.

Benefits Of Using Kenwood Car Stereo

Of course, you’ve already heard about how good Kenwood products are, right? But what makes them so special?

For example, what distinguishes Kenwood car stereos from those manufactured by Pioneer? The latter is also very well reputed, so why choose Kenwood?

Crystal clear sound quality.

This is the most important quality of any stereo car, isn’t that so? Well, given that Kenwood dominates the radio market, obviously the sound of this company’s products will be extraordinarily good..


Considering all the features that Kenwood radios offer, the prices you will find are very reasonable.

It is true that there are more expensive units, but if you are ready to give up a small part of the features of a radio, you always have more affordable alternatives.

eXcelon product line

To put it simply, the eXcelon product line is the pride of Kenwood. These are the most advanced products, with the latest technology and the most interesting features you could look for in a stereo car.


If we’re talking about the head units themselves, you should know that Kenwood will provide both cheaper models and more expensive models with more possibilities.

As an example, eXcelon multimedia receivers are Kenwood’s best products, with the newest technology and best features, but they’re also a little more expensive.

On the other hand, you can always opt for a traditional radio receiver, if you’re not looking for anything fancy.

But if we are referring to repair costs if your Kenwood radio won’t turn on, it’s free! You might want to arm yourself with some patience because identifying the cause of the problem can take a while.

Common Problems Of Kenwood Car Stereos

As I said, despite the high quality of Kenwood products, certain problems can occur from time to time.

In this paragraph, we will consider the problems that users most often face.

In the next paragraph, you will find the solutions for the most serious of them, ie for the cases in which your Kenwood car stereo won’t turn on.

01. Kenwood Car Stereo Won’t Turn On

This is something that many people have dealt with in the past, and there may be several causes. You need to try more in order to successfully identify the culprit.

Firstly, make sure the face plate is attached correctly. Sometimes, the cause of your Kenwood car stereo not turning on could be the disconnected face plate.

This is the easiest and first thing you should try when dealing with this issue.

But there are two more things you should try if the face plate is indeed attached correctly.

Your fuse might be blown, meaning you have to replace it with another fuse that has the same amperage.

Lastly, check the wiring. It will be a little complicated to identify a problem with the wiring, and for this reason, we will elaborate on this process in the section dedicated to the cases in which your Kenwood car stereo won’t turn on.

02. There is no sound whatsoever

We do not refer here to the cases in which the sound is faint or too weak. If you can’t hear any sound, here are the causes:

The volume could be set to a minimum. This is a no-brainer, but some radios come from the factory with their volume turned to zero, which could mislead some users.

Also, if you can only hear some buzzing noises while connected to a device via Bluetooth, it might be because the device in question is too far from the head unit.

If the issue persists, turn the Bluetooth off and back on.

If that still doesn’t work, this problem might be caused by bad wiring. Make sure all wires are connected properly.

Lastly, if you’re using an AUX cable, remember that the cable itself could be the culprit.

03. CDs don’t work

First things first, eject the CD from the slot by holding the eject button.

Make sure the CDs are clean. Don’t clean them with a circular motion, as you’re only going to drag the dust across the surface. Instead, use straight strokes to make sure you actually wipe the dust off the CD.

04. Various errors

If you are unlucky and encounter these errors, you may not know what to do. For example, the screen might say “Error 05,” but you won’t be sure what the problem is.

Error 05 appears when the inserted CD is unreadable. Error 77, however, indicates that your head unit needs to be restarted … Usually, that should do the trick, but if it doesn’t, you may want to take your Kenwood stereo to a service center.

Kenwood Car Stereo Won’t Turn On – Step By Step Solutions

In this section of the article, we go straight to the point. Your Kenwood car stereo won’t turn on, so what should you do about it?

Well, we know that earlier in the article I said to check the fuse. But before that, you have to try two more things.

01. Anti-theft mode turned on

Most car radios have an anti-theft system. This feature makes it so that, after disconnecting from the battery, the stereo unit becomes unusable until you follow specific steps to turn it back on.

So how do you know that this is in fact the cause of the problem? Well, if a short text appears on the radio screen, it could be a sign that your stereo is indeed in anti-theft mode.

In this case, you need to check the user manual of your radio or contact the manufacturer to find out exactly what steps to follow.

But if absolutely nothing appears on the screen, the issue might be caused by something else.

02. Face plate not attached correctly

This is another relatively simple thing to try before other things.

All you have to do is make sure that the face plate is attached to the unit correctly, otherwise, you won’t be able to turn your stereo on.

If it’s already attached properly, it’s time to check the next thing.

03. Blown fuse

Many user manuals will suggest that if your Kenwood stereo doesn’t turn on, you should take it to a service center.

This solution remains valid, but if you plan to get it done by yourself, you have to check the fuse from behind the stereo by yourself.

If the fuse is blown, you’ll have to replace it. But if you do so, make sure you’re replacing it with another fuse that has the same amperage.

With this occasion, we remind you that at the end of this article you will find two videos that will help you repair your Kenwood stereo.

Sometimes, dealing with blown fuses and/or wiring can be difficult, so make sure to check those videos.

04. Bad wiring

If you have actually identified a blown fuse and have successfully replaced it, your head unit should work just fine now.

But the problem can also be caused by bad wiring. Carefully remove the head unit and see if there are any wires that are not connected properly.

Maybe even try to remove the wires, leave them like that for a few minutes and connect them again.

Also, keep an eye out for shorts. A short happens when two wires touch each other when they’re not supposed to do so.

05. Dead stereo unit

If you’ve tried all these things but your Kenwood stereo still won’t turn on, it’s very likely that it’s completely dead and you need to buy a new one.

If you’re still not sure, consider taking it to a service center. But if you’ve already done everything listed so far, chances of your stereo working again are very slim.

In a section below you will find a list with the best Kenwood stereos you could get your hands on.

How To Reset Kenwood Car Stereo

Resetting your Kenwood car stereo is a great thing to do when you encounter various malfunctions. This is the classic “turning it off and then back on” that miraculously works on most electronic devices.

There are a couple ways to do it, but it also depends on the model you’re using.

If you’re using one of the newer models, you will need a pointy object, such as a screwdriver, but a toothpick will do just fine. Press and hold the reset button.

It is located on the top left of your head unit. It is red and has the shape of a triangle.

Hold it for about 5 seconds, and your head unit should restart. This is called a soft restart.

If, for some reason, you want to do a factory reset, here is how to do it:

Hold the Eject CD and Volume button simultaneously and – while doing so – press the reset button which we mentioned earlier. Don’t let the Eject CD and Volume buttons go until the stereo turns back on.

The last thing you need to do is press the reset button once again after you tap on “Initialize All” on your unit.

If it sounds complicated, you can check a video tutorial which you can find at the end of this article. That should be of great help to you.

Kenwood Receivers

Frequently Asked Questions With Answers

Q: How do I reset my Kenwood car stereo?

A: Resetting your Kenwood car stereo can help you get rid of certain issues with it. For a soft reset, hold the reset button with a small and pointy object for a few seconds. It is located at the top left of your head unit.

For a factory reset, follow the steps featured in this video.

Q: What would cause a Kenwood radio to not turn on?

A: Make sure your Kenwood radio is not in anti-theft mode and that the faceplate is attached correctly.

If you already did that, replace blown fuses if there are any and check the wiring behind the head unit.

Q: How do you get your Kenwood radio out of standby?

A: Press and hold the [magnifying glass] and [back] buttons for a few seconds to get out of standby.

Q: If your Kenwood radio won’t turn on how do you fix?

A: There could be many causes behind your Kenwood radio not turning on. We recommend you check out our entire article for a detailed step-by-step guide on how to get your Kenwood radio turn on again.

Q: How do I know whether my stereo fuses are blown or not?

A: First, remove it out of its holder and carefully look at its wire from end to end. Usually, if your fuse is “blown,” you should be able to see a black smear, as if it’s been burnt.


Kenwood is a very popular brand for car radios. People choose them because they do their job extremely well for their price. Even so, there are a few problems that people encounter, some of them being extremely annoying.

Fortunately though, if your Kenwood stereo doesn’t turn on, there are a few things you could do for yourself to get rid of this problem. All you need to have is a little patience.

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3 thoughts on “5 Top Reasons of Why Kenwood Car Stereo Wont Turn On & Their Quick Solutions”

  1. I have a DNX576S installed in my 2016 Tacoma. I bought it used and the stereo was already installed. I play music through a USB drive. I frequently get “an access error” code and the USB stops playing or freezes. I’ve used the USB drive in other car stereos and never had a problem. Any idea why this is happening?

  2. My Kenwoods AHA unit works fine except for DAB which reads no signal all the time – it used to work fine – any advice welcome thank you


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