I bought a new car stereo as a gift for my daughter’s 18th birthday (dang I feel old!) and thought I’d just take it home & install it myself. I did that sort of thing pretty regularly back in my single days, and thought it might be a fun Saturday afternoon job for my son and me.
Last night I popped the new speakers in place. Piece of cake. Then I took a look at the dashboard to see what was in store for us for the weekend… Yikes! She drives a 10-year-old Honda Civic, and the radio looks like it was molded into place with the rest of the dash. I thought I’d need a chisel to get it out.
I knew it had to be easier than that so I got online — did a little digging. There are lots of sites that will tell you how to get the dash apart, for a price. And I’m cheap. Then I bumped into Install Doctor, where I was able to download a pdf with detailed instructions and photos of the entire dashboard disassembly, radio removal and installation process, for free. And we like free! (on the Civic the radio drops out the bottom of the dash, so no chisel is required.)
The website has several sections to it, all with lots of good information on car stereo selection, installation & troubleshooting. There are a couple of dead links on the home page for discussion boards, which makes me think that the site might be fairly new. But the instruction pdf’s are actually worth paying for; very slick, very professional. They even have buttons in them for navigating around inside the document. Someone obviously spent some serious time putting all of that together. While they don’t have every vehicle listed, they do have a lot.
And the odd thing is, there really doesn’t seem to be a commercial angle to the website at all. They aren’t selling anything… only an ad or two on some of the pages. Go figure; somebody doing this out of the goodness of their heart!
I don’t know who is responsible for Instal Doctor, but I’m sure grateful. I’d bet the Best Buy installer guys probably aren’t very happy about it though!