Subwoofer cones can have a puncture, crack or sustain damages because of several reasons. This is because they are not as strong as other parts of the subwoofer. Regardless of the cause of the damage, you can repair it with an easy-to-follow DIY method.
If you want to know how to fix a subwoofer cone, strengthen the weak areas, and know what causes it to crack, read on to learn more about subwoofer damages. These tips will help you save money, and you will not have to replace your subwoofers fast.
Why Do Subwoofer Cones Get Damaged?
Cracked and torn cones can happen to any subwoofer. When your subwoofer is cracked, it will make an annoying buzzing sound or crackle that will also affect the quality of the sound it gives. However, this does not mean that it is time to buy a new subwoofer.
Several things cause damages to subwoofer cones:
- Changes in humidity and temperature in the cabin can cause damages to the cone. This is especially common if the subwoofer is old because they are at risk of breaking. It may be a good idea to replace old cones to avoid cracking.
- Damages to the cones, especially paper cones, can happen when voice coil travel is greater than it should be. For example, when you play music at 60Hz using a mid-bass subwoofer that should play at a minimum of 120Hz, you risk damaging the cone.
- Sharp objects: When sharp objects hit the subwoofer in the truck or doors, especially if they do not have cover grills, it can cause them to tear or crack.
To avoid damages to your cones, know how to take care of your subwoofers properly.
How to Fix a Subwoofer Cone
Subwoofer cones take in a lot of pressure when music is playing. They vibrate at a speed of hundreds or thousands of times per second, and this can cause them to wear out fast. However, repairing a damaged cone is not difficult. Here is a step to step guide on how to fix a cracked subwoofer cone like a pro.
What You Will Need
There are several things you will need to repair your damaged subwoofer cone:
- Glue (Gorilla, Tacky, Elmer’s, or any other good quality wood glue)
- Soft paintbrush
- Paper towel or coffee filter (if the cone is made of paper)
- A small plate or container
How to Fix a Cracked Paper Cone
Paper cones are some of the weakest subwoofer cones that you can have. They are fragile and get damaged very easily. Here are the right steps to take when fixing a paper cone.
Step 1: Remove the subwoofer from its place. This might involve disassembling the car door panel if the cracked subwoofer was at the door. After taking out the subwoofer from its place, gently clean the cone with a wet cloth being careful not to damage it any further.
Step 2: The next step is to prepare the glue. To do this, pour some glue into the plate or container and water it down to ensure that it can soak the cone properly. Mix the glue with water at a ratio of 1:3. Be careful not to add a lot of water because it will make the cone soggy and cause the glue not to stick.
Step 3: Apply some glue on the cracked area using a soft paintbrush and let it dry. If the crack is severe, you may need several applications to ensure that it is well sealed. Remember to apply the glue on both sides of the cone. Regardless of the number of applications, ensure that the glue layer is not too thick, especially if your subwoofer is small. Too much glue can damage the foam ring because the cone will not have the right weight.
Step 4: Using your scissor cut the paper towel or coffee filter to size. The filter should cover about a quarter to a half-inch on every side of the cracked area. Using your paintbrush, apply some glue on the top and bottom of the patch and cone and glue them together. Depending on the wattage of the subwoofer, you may need two layers of patches for safety. However, if the subwoofer has a lower wattage, one layer of the patch should suffice.
Remember to cover the cracked area entirely and do not leave any dry edges. These edges can create a buzzing sound when you are using the subwoofer. Gently rub your finger over the edges to ensure that they stick to the cone. If necessary, put some extra glue to get the edges safely stuck on the cone. Wipe off any excess glue with a paper towel but remember to do this before the glue dries up.
Step 5: Flip the subwoofer over and repeat the same process. Once you are done, leave the subwoofer for some hours in a well-ventilated area to allow it to dry. When it is nicely dry, you can paint the area to match the cone. Should you decide to paint it, do not apply a thick layer of paint and avoid using rigid paint because the subwoofer’s vibrations will cause it to crumble.
You are done! Now, put the subwoofer back in its place and enjoy your music.
- Tear the coffee filter instead of cutting it to prevent the edges from peeling over time and allow the fiber to bond with the cone better.
- The glue you choose should not be elastic when it dries up
- If possible, use a coffee filter instead of a paper towel
How to Fix Plastic and Aluminum Cones
Though aluminum, plastic, Kevlar, and polypropylene cones are more durable than paper cones, they can also sustain tears or cracks. When this happens, you need to know how to repair them correctly.
What You Will Need
- Nail polish remover
- Sandpaper( grid 800 or 1000)
- Epoxy glue ( Loctite subwoofer repair glue)
- Elastic foam ( for plastic cone)
- Mounting tape
- Soft paintbrush
How to fix it
Here is how to fix a busted subwoofer made with these types of materials.
Step 1: Remove the damaged subwoofer from the car and clean the cone. To clean it, wipe both sides of the cone with a nail polish remover and tarnish around the crack with the sandpaper. After tarnishing, wipe both sides with the nail polish remover again to get rid of all debris that resulted from the tarnishing.
Step 2: Mix the glue and apply a thin layer of it on the top side of the cracked cone. Ensure the glue you use is high-quality, vibration resistant, durable, and fast-drying. Allow the glue to dry.
Step 3: Make patches from the carton box for aluminum and plastic cones or a thin elastic foam for fixing a cracked plastic cone. The patches should be larger than the patches you can use to repair plastic cones because you need the extra length and strength to cover the damaged area well. If the cone is deformed, use mounting tape for additional support. Stick the tape to the back of the cone while repairing the front side. Remember to remove the tape when you finish fixing the cone.
Step 4: Using the paintbrush, apply enough glue on the patch and cone, then place the patch on the cracked area. Apply more glue to any gaps on the edges, then put a little pressure on the patch for some minutes.
Step 5: Turn the subwoofer on the other side and repeat the same process. If you have used tape, move it before apply glue and patch on the cracked area. When done, gently put some pressure on both sides of the cone using your fingers. This will keep the patches closer to each other, making them strong.
Step 6: Allow the subwoofer to dry for several hours or overnight in a well-ventilated area and put it back to the car.
- When testing the subwoofers, do not play music at maximum volume right away. Start with a lower volume and increase it gradually.
How to Protect Subwoofer Cones from Damages
Though you can quickly fix your cracked subwoofer with the above steps, it may be ideal to protect them from damages in the first place. One of the best ways of protecting them from mechanical damages is using covering grills. However, this may not be possible if you have several subwoofers.
You should also ensure that you do not put any sharp objects in front of the subwoofers in your truck. Items such as a toolbox, wheel spanners, or safety triangles can hit the subwoofer during a sudden break and damage the cone.
To avoid constant repairs, buy high-quality durable subwoofers with aluminum, plastic, propylene, or Kevlar cones. These materials have a longer lifespan when compared to paper cones and are not at risk of damages due to cabin temperatures and humidity.
Read our guide if you are interested to know How to Increase Volume of Speakers without adding Amplifiers
Your subwoofers should give you the best sound at all times. However, if your subwoofer cones are cracked, you will not enjoy the sound they make. Knowing how to fix a cracked subwoofer will help you save money you could have used to replace the subwoofer and ensure that you get quality sound.