CB Radios are not as popular as they once were, especially since the advent of cellphones and smart phones. However, truck drivers, taxi drivers, and other similar businesses still use CB radios to communicate with each other. Still others simply enjoy having a Citizen Band (CB) radio at home to connect with other home-radio aficionados. Since this type of technology does not work the same way as many other modern devices, set-up and use can take some time.
The installation process can be a little difficult depending on the type of CB radio one owns since these radios come in different sizes and shapes. This basic guide explains how to mount a CB radio and get it set up for use.
Mounting the Radio
If you are not an off-roader, mounting a CB radio is pretty simple. Select a metal spot anywhere on the vehicle that is in close range that is grounded to the chassis like the hood rails, bumper, the doorjamb, or the fenders. If you are an off-roader, mounting the CB can be quite a challenge because many companies that design CB radios for off-roaders design them specifically for that reason.
If you have a FJ cruiser, the best kind of mount is a Bandi mount. If your mount is not properly grounded, your CB will not provide the best performance and can possibly damage the radio. Unlike everyone else, off-roaders who mount CB radios to the bumpers or tailgates can be confronted with problems due to the lack of proper grounding.
Look into purchasing ARB, All-Pro, and other specific brands if you are an off-roader. These companies make specific CB radios to help with the mounting issues. Many drivers choose to mount their CB to the spare tire which can work, but make sure the spare tire is properly grounded.
You can mount the radio by taking the remote connector through the dash to keep the wires from protruding and getting in the way. But leave enough room so you will have access to connect the antenna cable. You can also mount the CB radio overhead if there is enough space. Avoid mounting the CB where it distracts the driver or passenger’s view.
If you have a handheld CB radio, mounting is not as difficult to do. The handheld radios have adjustable antennas. Actually, handheld CB radios take away the need to mount since they can be handheld. This may be a better option for those with smaller vehicles or find it difficult to mount the CB radio.
Whether you have a CB radio that needs to be mounted or a handheld CB you will need to make sure you have somewhere to place the microphone. It can be placed on the seat, on the floor, or you can make another hole in the dashboard.
Connecting the Power
The CB radio will be used from the 12 volt electrical system. There is one red wire and one black wire. The red wire is hot and the black is ground. The red power wire is attached to the battery or the fuse panel. Be sure to connect the black wire to a solid ground like the bumper, fender, or a spare tire. Never turn the radio on or key a CB microphone without connecting an antenna.
Connecting the Antenna
Screw the connector from the antenna cable to the back of the radio. Once it is connected, be sure to tune the radio.
Fibreglass and Magnetic
Most off-road drivers use fiberglass CB radios and other drivers will prefer the magnetic type of CB radio. The popular Wilson Flex CB antenna is great for drivers that live in areas with a lot of external obstacles like hanging branches.
Be sure to tune your CB radio by matching the chassis with the mounting location. Raise or lower the antenna to get the maximum performance.
How to Buy a CB radio on eBay
Although CB radios are not as popular as they once were among regular drivers, there is still a decently-sized market for them. Many drivers prefer to use the typical CB radio that requires mounting instead of the handheld ones, but everyone has his or her own preference. Whatever brand or model a buyer is searching for, there are usually plenty of eBay listings to check out. In fact, there are many eBay sellers that not only sell CB radios, but also sell guidelines and instructions for properly installing those same radios. Handheld CB radios with various attachments and accessories are also available, which means that virtually any type of CB can be installed properly in most locations.