How To Use a Car Subwoofer For Home Theater? [Get Set Up]

how to use car subwoofer for home theaterr

Missing your car subwoofers at home? I feel you! The sound quality of the subwoofer is truly something phenomenal and clearer compared to the normal speakers in the home theater. More crisp and soothing, a car subfloor gives a smooth output that anyone would miss in their home theaters. I mean who doesn’t want a top-notch sound in a home theater setup and eliminate the loud and distorted sound? 

But to replace the home theater sound system with a car subwoofer, you need to do a lot of work. The setup is complicated and delicate. As subwoofers are made for cars, installing them in the home theater is risky if you don’t know exactly how to do it. I have mastered it after several tries and in this article, I will share all my experiences. 

People wanting to use a car subwoofer for home theater, do stay with me. In this article, I will discuss using a car subwoofer in a home theater for the best experience. 

Ready to learn the setup? Let’s begin!

5 Steps To Use Car Subwoofer For Home Theater: Learn And Apply

I have divided the steps of using a car subwoofer for home theater into five parts. This segregation will make it easier to learn the process. See there are a lot of technical mechanisms in this process. So I can’t say that it is an easy task to do. The results may not be as effective as you are expecting. As car subwoofers cover small areas, they may not be the best for a large home theater. 

But anyway, we can discuss that later in this article. Now, we would focus on installing the car subwoofer in the home theater. If you are wanting to do it, you need some supplies that are listed below: 

  • Car subwoofer;
  • Stereo cable;
  • RCA cables;
  • 12/ 16 gauge speaker wires;
  • Wire strippers;
  • 12-volt power inverter;
  • Surround theater sound system;

Yes, quite a lot of materials are needed to accomplish this project. It must be better to have a home theater subwoofer rather than having a car subwoofer considering the materials are labor needed. 

Once you gather the supplies, we can move on to the steps of setting the car subwoofer in the home theater. Let’s start!

Step 1: Convert And Monitor The Power

The very first concern of this project is to manage the power. Note that a car subwoofer is suitable for connecting to only 12-volt power which is generated by the car battery. But such low voltage is not there in the home theater sound system. Home theater sound systems usually give a 110V power output. Connecting to high power would simply blow the car subwoofer. 

So the first task is to convert the power with a power inverter. Get a power inverter that can convert the power from 110V to 12V. With that, you need to plugin one to the subwoofer and the other to the wall outlet. However, this won’t suffice. Amplifying the power is mandatory for adjustment. We will see that in the next step. 

Step 2: Plugin To The Car Amplifier

Now the power is converted, you can proceed to amplify the power. For that, you need either a 12 or 16 gauge wire. Decide the gauge number according to the subwoofer you are using. The manual of the subwoofer would have the instructions. Else you can ask the seller of the wires. 

These wires will connect the car subwoofer to the car amplifier. The wires go beneath the terminal of each device. Make sure to match the input color to the color of the wire. I mean, plugin the red wire into the red terminal and black wire into the black terminal. Use wire strippers in case you need to cut the ends of the wires. 

Step 3: Connect The Cables To The Home Theater Amplifier

After amplifying the car power, you have to work on the home theater. Use stereo cables to connect the car subwoofer to the amplifier of the home theater sound system. One side of the cable will go inside the input plug of the subwoofer. The other end will be plugged into the home theater amplifier. 

Remember to match the colors of the cable and the inputs. The white cable goes into the white terminal and the red one to the red terminal. 

Step 4: Connect The Home Theater Speakers

You have primarily attached the cables and connected the subwoofer to the home theater. Now is the turn to connect the speakers to the entire system. Ideally, you will have two speakers on each side of the room and one at the center. You need to connect all of them to the home theater amplifier that is connected to the subwoofer. With RCA cables, attach these speakers to the home theater amplifier. 

Step 5: Connect The Power Inverter And Switch On

The main part is to connect the entire system to the power inverter and switch it on. In the first step, we had not plugged in the cables but only mentioned that we would need to convert the power with an inverter. 

So in the end, connect the subwoofer to the power inverter and connect it to the wall outlet. Now the connections are secure and proper. Test the sound by playing your favorite music or song! Sounds damn cool, right? 

Use Car Subwoofer For Home Theater

How Effective Is A Car Subwoofer For Home Theater? 

You have already learned to set up the home theater with the car subwoofer. If you have a car subwoofer, you can surely think of setting it up in the home theater rather than getting a new subwoofer. However, is this the best idea? NO!

I believe that readers of this article have already decided on installing a car subwoofer in their home theater. In that case, you may not like to hear why it is not the best idea. But I would still say that if you have an alternative, you shouldn’t install a car subwoofer.

There are quite a few reasons why buying a home theater subwoofer is more beneficial than having a car subwoofer. Let’s have a look at the reasons why installing a car subwoofer in the home theater is not recommended: 

  • You require a lot of wires and other appliances for the setup. Also, each device has to be adapted with the other device. So the process is pretty technical and a single mistake can harm the devices and cause accidents. Finding the right device and cables, connecting them, and setting them up is quite a troublesome and risky task;
  • Car subwoofers perform the best in a small and congested area as it is inside a car. When you place them in the large space of the home theater, you will never get the output you get in the car. Also, monitoring the volume and bass of the subwoofer is quite complicated. If you install a home theater subwoofer instead, the sound output would be top-notch, and monitoring it would be simpler;
  • As mentioned before, you need a bunch of devices and supplies to connect a car subwoofer to the home theater system. Buying these devices generally cost you more than buying a new subwoofer. So you see, using a car subwoofer is not economically viable unlike installing a home theater subwoofer;

These are some considerable drawbacks of using a car subwoofer for the home theater. However, if you are still adamant to use a car subwoofer, you should do it with utmost caution and care. Follow each step mentioned above so that you don’t make any mistakes or meet with an accident. 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Can You Use A Car Subwoofer For Home Theater? 

Yes, you can use a car subwoofer for a home theater sound system. If you want a crisp and clear voice instead of a loud and harsh sound, you can consider having a car subwoofer. 

However, the setup of the car subwoofer with the home theater is quite complicated and risky. The primary issue is to convert the power. You need to convert the power of the home theater sound output to 12V which is suitable for the car subwoofer.

So you need the right set of equipment and devices to use a car subwoofer for the home theater. Otherwise, a wrong setup would damage the devices and can even damage the original home theater sound system. 

Can You Replace Your Home Theater Subwoofer With A Car Subwoofer? 

Yes. It is possible to replace the home theater subwoofer with a car subwoofer. But to be honest, it is not the best decision to make as a home theater subwoofer gives better output than the car subwoofer. 

For replacing, you need to disconnect the home theater and attach the car subwoofer to the system with a bunch of materials and devices. But the output won’t be the best as a car subwoofer is made for a small area.

The output will be low-pitched and weak. To resolve this issue, you may need to use more power (risky!), install a larger cage for the subwoofer, or get a DSP. Otherwise, you won’t get the sound output from the car subwoofer as you were receiving from the home theater subwoofer. 

Can You Connect A Car Subwoofer To Home Theater TV? 

If you want to directly connect the car subwoofer to the home theater TV, it is possible. But for that, you need to connect the TV to the car subwoofer. 

To set up the car subwoofer to the home theater TV, you would need an HDMI cable. Connect one end of the HDMI cable to the TV input. Next, find out the audio input plug in the car subwoofer.

Now insert the other end of the HDMI cable into this audio plug of the subwoofer. As the TV and car subwoofer are connected by the HDMI cable, you will get audio output from the subwoofer. 

How Long Does It Take To Set Up A Car Subwoofer To Home Theater? 

If you are ready with all the supplies of cables, wires, and appliances, setting and connecting a car subwoofer to the home theater won’t take long. 

Investing 2 to 4 hours would be enough to set up a car subwoofer to the home theater sound system. The maximum time is consumed for converting the power from 110V to 12V which is suitable for the car subwoofer.

Connecting the wires would also need quite a time. The rest of the time is spent on placing the speakers, connecting the cables, converting the power, hiding the cables, and testing the sound quality. You can do it in an hour if you are an expert!

How Much Does It Cost To Use A Car Subwoofer To Home Theater? 

You require quite a bunch of supplies for connecting and using a car subwoofer to the home theater. Starting from RCA cables to power inverters, there are a variety of materials you would need for the project. 

Depending on the devices you are buying, the cost would vary between $50 to $150. The power inverter is the costliest among the supplies. Then come the cables and wires. Add the cost of the amplifier too. If you already have some of the supplies with you, you can save up for this project. 

Final Thoughts: 

I have explained each step of using a car subwoofer to the home theater in detail so that there remains no confusion. Though it is possible to connect a car subwoofer to the home theater sound system, it is not always the best idea. If you have the option of using a home theater subwoofer, please do that for the best experience. 

Now that I have clarified the matter, would you use a car subwoofer in the home theater? If yes, make sure to do it right by following the steps!

M Monerujjaman

Hi, I'm M Monerujjaman, The Author of Daily Living Home, have been working in the field of home renovation and interior decoration for years and mastered the best techniques to keep a house well-decorated, clean, and tiptop. This is my field of expertise and passion. On that note, I have established this website to pass on my experience and knowledge in reforming the home of your dream.

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