How to Integrate a Touch-Screen Infotainment System into an Older Vehicle?

In the current era of technological advancement, it’s easier than ever to equip your older vehicle with modern features. A touch-screen infotainment system is among the most desired upgrades for many car owners. This article will guide you on how to successfully integrate a touch-screen infotainment system into an older vehicle. We will discuss in detail the steps, the tools needed, and the considerations to bear in mind.

Determining the Right Infotainment System for Your Vehicle

Before you embark on the installation process, you need to ascertain the type of touch-screen infotainment system that fits your vehicle best. This is a crucial step tailored to ensure your system works efficiently and fits seamlessly with your car’s interior design.

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Every vehicle is unique in terms of design, wiring system, and space for dashboard components. Therefore, you need to measure the dashboard space to determine the size of the infotainment system you can install. On top of that, you need to understand your car’s wiring system. This will aid in the compatibility check between your car’s electronics and the prospective infotainment system.

In terms of selection, there are numerous infotainment systems available in the market. They vary in terms of features, sizes, and prices. Some of the popular features include GPS navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, reverse camera integration, and voice control. It is crucial to choose an infotainment system that suits both your vehicle’s specifications and your personal needs.

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Gathering the Necessary Tools and Equipment

After determining the right infotainment system for your vehicle, the next step involves gathering the necessary tools and equipment for the installation process. It’s important to note that the installation process requires a certain set of tools, some of which you might not readily have at your disposal.

The basic tools for installing a touch-screen infotainment system include a screwdriver set, wire strippers, wire cutters, crimping tools, and soldering iron. If you are not comfortable with using these tools, it may be wise to consider professional installation.

Another crucial part of the installation process involves ensuring the infotainment system is properly connected to your vehicle’s power supply. To achieve this, you will need a wiring harness adapter that matches your vehicle’s factory wiring. This adapter will allow you to plug your new infotainment system directly into your car’s existing power supply without the need to alter the wiring system drastically.

Steps to Install the Touch-Screen Infotainment System

Before starting the installation process, ensure you have all the necessary tools and equipment at hand. It is also crucial to understand the installation procedure beforehand to avoid making irreversible mistakes. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to go about the installation process.

Firstly, you need to disconnect the car’s battery to ensure no electrical current is flowing while you work. This is a precautionary measure aimed at preventing electrical shock and damage to the car’s electrical system.

The next step involves removing the factory stereo from the dashboard. This process differs from one vehicle to another due to the variation in design. It’s advisable to refer to your vehicle’s user manual on the best way to do this.

Once the factory stereo is out, connect the wiring harness adapter to the factory wiring. Ensure each wire from the harness adapter matches with the corresponding wire in the factory wiring. This step is crucial to ensure the new infotainment system receives power once installed.

Lastly, connect the infotainment system to the wiring harness adapter and gently push it into the dashboard space. Secure it with screws, if needed.

Troubleshooting Common Installation Issues

Despite following the instructions diligently, you might encounter issues during or after the installation process. It’s important to understand how to troubleshoot these issues without causing further damage to your new infotainment system or your vehicle’s electrical system.

One common issue is the infotainment system not turning on after installation. This could be due to a poor connection between the system and the vehicle’s power supply. Inspect your connections and ensure the wiring is done correctly.

Another common issue is the infotainment system not responding to touch. This could be due to a fault with the touch-screen itself or a glitch in the system’s software. In this case, consult with the system’s manufacturer for troubleshooting guidelines or possible replacement.

Maintaining Your New Touch-Screen Infotainment System

After successful installation of your touch-screen infotainment system, it’s important to understand how to properly maintain the system to ensure its longevity. Proper maintenance entails regular cleaning of the touch-screen, updating the system’s software whenever updates are available, and protecting the system from extreme temperatures which could damage its sensitive components.

Remember, your vehicle’s infotainment system is more than just an entertainment gadget – it’s an investment. Therefore, taking proper care of it will ensure you enjoy its benefits for a long time.

Retrofitting the Dashboard for the Infotainment System

After you have successfully removed your vehicle’s old stereo and connected the wiring harness adapter, the next phase involves retrofitting the dashboard to accommodate your new infotainment system. This process may require you to modify the dashboard, especially if the old stereo was considerably smaller than your new touch-screen infotainment system.

Retrofitting the dashboard usually requires a dash kit. This kit comes with custom-made brackets and faceplates that will help you mount the infotainment system onto the dashboard securely and seamlessly. Bear in mind that the dash kit should be specific to your vehicle’s make and model to ensure a perfect fit.

Once you have the dash kit, start by securing the brackets onto the sides of the infotainment system. Next, place the infotainment system in the dashboard’s opening and secure it with the screws provided in the dash kit. Finish off by attaching the faceplate to cover any gaps and give your dashboard a neat and professional appearance.

However, in cases where extensive modifications are needed, you might want to consider hiring a professional to perform the retrofit. Extensive modifications could involve cutting into the dashboard or rewiring the system, tasks that need a certain level of expertise to accomplish successfully.


Incorporating a touch-screen infotainment system into your older vehicle may seem like a daunting task. However, with the right guidance and tools, it is a process that can be successfully completed. It requires careful planning, from selecting the right infotainment system to acquiring the necessary tools and equipment, followed by a meticulous installation process.

Remember to take safety measures such as disconnecting the car’s battery to prevent electrical shock. If there are issues after installation, engage in thoughtful troubleshooting or consult with the system’s manufacturer for assistance. Lastly, remember to maintain your new touch-screen infotainment system properly to maximize its performance and longevity.

With your new touch-screen infotainment system installed, you’re sure to enjoy an enhanced driving experience with the added convenience of modern technology. Whether you’re navigating unfamiliar roads, streaming music, making hands-free calls, or reversing with the assistance of a camera, your infotainment system is more than just an upgrade; it’s a transformation of your vehicle into a modern, high-tech machine.