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How Do I Get Sirius Radio in My Car?

If you’re a car audio enthusiast, it’s likely that one of your goals is to get the best possible sound out of your system. Whether or not you’ve ever thought about getting Sirius radio in your car, there are many benefits to doing so.

If you want to get a good satellite radio with the ability to listen to almost any type of ad-free music you want, or often traffic updates on each station, Sirius XM is worth considering. But how to get a Sirius radio installed in the car? Let’s find out.

In general, getting the Sirius radio added to your car is straightforward if you have a Sirius-ready aftermarket radio installed. In this case, you have to buy a monthly subscription, and you can enjoy hundreds of stations. However, if your car stereo is not Sirius ready, you can buy a satellite radio unit and stick it to your dash.

As an Amazon Associate, ImproveCarAudio will receive a small commission from qualifying purchases made through the links in this article.

Tip: You can have the best quality stereo or an FM modulator installed, but if your antenna cannot receive and handle a SiriusXM signal, you will not benefit from the quality stations.

The most benefit you will get is by installing an original SiriusXM antenna designated for the satellite signal.

Most cars have an option to add a Sirius radio, so all you need to decide upon is whether or not you want the ability to listen to satellite radio on the go. If this sounds like something that would be useful for you, in the article below, I will explain how to get a Sirius XM Radio.

How to Get a SiriusXM Radio in My Car?

It is very simple to get a SiriusXM radio in your car. There are many different ways to install it in your vehicle at different costs, but the easiest cheapest way would be an FM Modulator.

An FM modulator takes a signal from a satellite and converts it into a regular FM radio station.

This type of setup is great for people who want to use satellite radio in multiple vehicles since there is no need to get anything extra but the modulator itself.

Where Can I Get an FM Modulator From?

You can get an FM Modulator from your local electronics retailers such as Best Buy, Walmart, or Amazon.com. There are many different FM modulators with prices ranging from $15-$70.

SiriusXM.com has its own line of SiriusXM Modulators, which are inexpensive and work equally well with satellite radio for a fraction of the costs of other popular brands.

In Which Cars Will an FM Modulator Work?

Modulators for SiriusXM radio are great for people who want to listen to their satellite radio in the car but cannot hook up their Sirius XM Radio directly into the factory-installed stereos.

An FM modulator is designed to plug directly into any standard car power port, like a cigarette lighter. Then it receives a signal from any SiriusXM radio via the antenna.

Can my car get Sirius radio?

Newer model vehicles come standard with a satellite radio receiver installed, and to activate the radio, you need to order the SiriusXM and pay a monthly subscription.

But, you don’t have a brand new car or an aftermarket stereo to enjoy SiriusXM. If your stereo is not SiriusXM ready, you can use the VAIS radio adaptor kit if you want to add satellite radio to your car’s original factory stereo.

If your stereo is Sirius-ready but not activated by the manufacturer, you need the SiriusXM SXV300AZV1 to receive the satellite signal. It is a much cheaper option than the VAIS and is universal, which means that you can connect the same adaptor to different cars.

What Cars Come With Sirius Radio?

Today, Sirius XM satellite radio is offered in many cars from major automobile manufacturers such as Toyota, Chrysler, Ford, or GM.

For more information about car compatibility, especially used ones, visit www.siriusxm.com and type your vehicle’s VIN.

If you find that your car is compatible with Sirius radio, you can easily add a SiriusXM tuner and start enjoying over 165 stations in the car.

How to Connect SiriusXM to Car Stereo?

Connecting Sirius to the car stereo is straightforward and does not take more than several minutes.

If your radio is Sirius ready, the only thing you have to do is connect it to the SiriusXM antenna, which is usually roof-mounted. For the best and strongest signal, avoid internal antennas for the satellite radios or those mounted close to the roof bars.

With the antenna connected, attach the power supply and turn on the satellite radio. 

How Do I Set Up Sirius Radio in My Car?

If you want to repeatedly come back to the same stations, setting up the Sirius radio is the last step before you can use it 24/7 in any way you want.

To make it right, follow few steps below:

  • Turn your car radio on and switch the radio source to satellite radio.
  • Tune the radio to one of your favorite channels by seeking up and down using your radio controls.
  • Once tuned to the desired channel, press and hold a numerical memory preset button to save the channel. When saved, you will see a message on the screen, and you will hear a blipping signal confirming that the station has been saved.

To use any saved channels, press the numbered memory preset as you would for a typical FM station on your radio.

Can Sirius Radio Be Used in Two Cars?

As a general rule, one Sirius subscription or one tuner can work with one car only. If you want to listen to Sirius in two vehicles, you have to install Sirius radio in two cars separately.

If your second car, boat, or bike to which you want to add the Sirius radio is already equipped with satellite radio, you just need to turn the radio on.

There is also an option to add the Sirius radio to your existing account, and by doing this, you will receive a discount.

If, however, the other vehicle doesn’t have a SiriusXM radio installed, you will need to purchase a second radio or a tuner and connect it with the existing stereo.

Another way is to purchase a Dock & Play radio which you can easily take with you from one car to another, but before you buy the Sirius radio, it’s important to know which option suits your needs best.

First of all, you need to decide whether you want a portable or built-in model. The second option is great if you don’t plan on moving it from car to car, but this can also create problems when you want to transfer the radio to another vehicle equipped with a not Sirius ready stereo.

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If you need the flexibility to take the Sirius radio with you, I recommend purchasing the Dock & Play kit and installing it on the dash.

How Much to Install Sirius Radio in Car?

Installing Sirius radio in a car is not time-consuming or expensive. You can do it all by yourself, and there is no need to send the car to the service.

If you want to have it professionally installed, the car dealer will charge around $80 for the Sirius installation. You can also go to a local electronics store and pay less, but this is still more expensive than doing it yourself.

How Much Does Sirius XM Radio Cost for My Car?

The most expensive is the radio itself, which depending on the chosen model, may cost you close to $150, like for SiriusXM Tour with 360L and Vehicle Kit.

Another portion is the monthly subscription fee. If you are a new customer, the first three months are usually free or for a minimal cost, but after that, you pay either monthly or annually, depending on the purchased package level.

There are currently three main packages, with two of which you can use in the car, and on top of that, you can choose from additional and customized packages below:

Streaming Platinum

  • 350+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NFL, MLB®, NBA, NHL®, and NCAA® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • 2 Howard Stern channels
  • Create Pandora stations
  • SiriusXM video library

Music & Entertainment

  • 325+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NHL® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • SiriusXM video library

Platinum

  • 350+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NFL, MLB®, NBA, NHL®, and NCAA® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • 2 Howard Stern channels
  • Create Pandora stations
  • SiriusXM video library

If you do not like the whole packages, and instead you prefer something better matching your needs, there is an option for selected packages, which you can further customize:

Streaming Platinum for students

  • 350+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NFL, MLB®, NBA, NHL®, and NCAA® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • 2 Howard Stern channels
  • Create Pandora stations
  • SiriusXM video library

Streaming Music & Entertainment

  • 325+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • Play-by-play of select major sports, NASCAR®
  • SiriusXM video library

Music Showcase

  • 100+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • 10+ talk and news channels
  • SiriusXM video library

Platinum Family Friendly

  • 300+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NFL, MLB®, NBA, NHL®, and NCAA® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • Create Pandora stations
  • SiriusXM video library

Music & Entertainment Family Friendly

  • 275+ channels
  • Ad-free music
  • Original talk, podcasts, exclusive comedy & news
  • NHL® play-by-play, NASCAR®
  • SiriusXM video library

A La Carte

This plan allows you to pick the top 50 favorites from all channels within the SiriusXM Music & Entertainment plan. 

Choose from a selection of programming, including commercial-free music, plus sports talk, news, and entertainment.

In addition to chosen 50 channels, you’ll also get at no extra cost several channels with news and special interests, including BBC World Service, NPR®, and The Catholic Channel.

A La Carte Gold

In the gold version, you can choose 100 channels from the SiriusXM Music & Entertainment plan. All channels are ads-free and include music, premium programming, sports, news, talk, and entertainment.

Similar to the standard A La Cartel plan, in gold, you will also receive at no extra cost special interest and news channels including BBC World Service, NPR®, and The Catholic Channel.

Both A La Carte plans require Sirius Stratus 7 Radio.

All-In-One

This is the top plan and includes the whole package with all features.

Family Friendly All-In-One

This is a lower version of All-In-One, but with removed all adult-themed channels. The plan includes tons of commercial-free music, NFL, MLB games, entertainment, comedy, world-class news, and local traffic and weather.

Both All-In-One plans require MiRGE SXMIR1 Radio.

How much for Sirius radio for two cars?

If you want to have the same Sirius plan for two cars, SiriusXM has revealed a Platinum VIP plan that costs $34.99 monthly and allows you to listen and log in from two vehicles at once.

In addition to live streaming, you will get access to more than 5k soundboard-quality concert recordings. You can check out recorded 250 videos for free on any of your devices.

The Platinum VIP is an excellent option for your family. It has all of the perks that SiriusXM regular subscribers receive with even more exciting bonus features!

For those who have multiple vehicles and want to save some money by not having o pay two separate plans on top of each other, this could be better than expected.

Especially, when Sirius offers such great benefits like live concert recordings and access to exclusive events in addition to their fantastic audio channels available 24 hours per day, seven days a week.

How to Activate Sirius Radio in the Car?

  • If you have a new vehicle with factory-installed Sirius radio, it should be already active at the time of purchase. If your radio isn’t on or does not receive correct channels, you can refresh the radio by clicking here. The process takes less than a minute, but you need a Radio ID to send the refresh signal.
  • If you purchased a pre-owned vehicle and the radio is already equipped with the SiriusXM, the free trial should be active at the time of purchase. If however, your radio is not activated or does not receive the subscribed channels, you have to do the same refreshing process by clicking here. In this case, you also need the Radio ID. Otherwise, you will not be able to send the refresh signal.
  • If you have purchased a second-hand car, but there is no information on whether it has a Sirius installed, you have to also send the refreshing signal by filling in the details under this link. If this does not work, your Sirius is not active, and you can order a new trial subscription here.

How to Get Sirius Radio in an Older Car?

The way of adding the Sirius radio to the older car depends on if your radio has installed stereo and if this stereo can receive the satellite signal.

If your vehicle does not have a stereo, receiving a signal from Sirius will not be easy. In other words, you need to have a car radio connected to speakers.

When your stereo can receive a Sirius radio, you have to activate the signal in the way I mentioned earlier in the article. If you cannot receive the Sirius signal on your stereo, there are a few options you can choose from:

  • Add FM Modulator to transmit sound from a satellite radio receiver.
  • Install an external satellite radio in your car.
  • Install a satellite radio add-on adapter kit that’s designed for your factory car stereo.

After installing the hardware, the next step is to order a trial from Sirius and enjoy the music.

Is My Car Radio Sirius Ready?

If you just purchased a car or want to add a Sirius to the existing one, you have three ways to check if your radio is Sirius ready. This check takes no longer than a couple of minutes, and you do not need any tools to do it:

  • First, check if your stereo has a Sirius logo. Sometimes the auto manufacturer will put their specific branding on it to advertise which features are available for use with SiriusXM radios, but you’ll often be able to see this right away.
  • Check if you see the SAT button. You can find this in many car stereos with an integrated satellite receiver, typically on top near other buttons like AM/FM and DISC AUX.
  • The last thing is to check the owner’s manual, where in the section about your car’s audio system you will find all the information.

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How to Reset Sirius Radio in Car?

After a long drive or while going through some bumps, you might have noticed that your Sirius radio lost the signal and has started searching for it again.

When this happens, you should check if one of your car accessories is activated, as it can consume the battery power and make Sirius lose the satellite signal.

Turning on/off an accessory for about two minutes or disconnecting from a power source will do it.

If the radio still does not work, the only way is to reset the incoming signal, and you can do it here. After refreshing the signal, your SiriusXM should start working as usual.

How to Remove Sirius Radio From Car?

If your car has a Sirius radio with a three-month trial period, all it takes is to wait until it ends and do not renew it. Sirius will not renew the trial subscription and will not bill you automatically.

But if you want to cancel an active Sirius subscription, you have to call the customer service line at 1 (866) 635 5027 between 8 am – 8 pm EST every day, except Saturday & Sunday!

The other way is to go to your online account and cancel the renewal. In this case, you will have your Sirius radio active until the end of the billing period.

How to Switch SiriusXM Radio to New Car?

To add your new radio to your account, you can call customer service at 844-263-5296 or log in to your account. In addition to moving the service to the new radio, you will be able to change the following:

  • Add any of your new radio to your existing account.
  • Check to see if you’re eligible for a multi-radio discount if you have more than one vehicle.
  • Apply any unused credits towards the new subscription after the trial is over.
  • Remove from the account any radio you no longer use.

Why Does My Sirius Radio Say No Signal?

Satellite radios have strong and stable signals reaching the car stereos. However, sometimes it can happen that you will see on the screen information about “no signal” or “acquiring signal.” If you see something like that, do not worry.

The first thing you have to do is to make sure that the SiriusXM antenna is mounted outside of the vehicle and that there are no obstructions blocking its view.

For example, you may have a problem receiving a strong signal if parked in an underground garage, but the radio should start working as usual after leaving this closed space.

Also, make sure the SiriusXM antenna cable is firmly and securely plugged into the cradle and its cable is not bent or broken. Although this may be more of an installation issue rather than a pure signal, it is worth double-checking the connection.

If the wiring is correct, turn your SiriusXM radio off and then on. This will reset the “no signal” message.

If you are using a Dock & Play or Portable Radio, remove the radio from its docking cradle to reset its memory and reinstall from scratch. This will also reset the error message.

How to Improve SiriusXM Reception?

When SiriusXM reception is weak, you will see on the screen message saying either “antenna” or “check antenna.”

In any case, you have to check if the antenna is correctly connected to the Radio or Vehicle Dock or if the connection has not become loose.

If the connection is correct, nothing is loose, and you still have an issue with the SiriusXM reception, it may be a problem within the antenna itself. For example, you may have a broken antenna cable.

If this is the case, you will need to replace the magnetic mount antenna.

Why Won’t My Sirius Radio Turn On?

Installing and connecting the SiriusXM is one thing, but the other is to make it work.

Although the installation is straightforward, and there are usually no problems with turning the radio on, it may happen that either after updates or reconnecting the battery, your SiriusXM radio will not turn on.

This is however not a problem, and the only thing you have to do is reset the radio by holding the power button for 10 seconds. After that, your radio will turn on, and it is ready to use.

If this did not work, try to disconnect the car battery cables of your automobile for a couple of minutes and then connect them back. This should solve the problem so you can start listening to SiriusXM again.

Conclusion

SiriusXM is a great way to listen to the news or music without constant annoying ads.

The only downside is the monthly subscription, but you can order the three-month free trial, and if you do not like it, do not renew the package.

If your car is SiriusXM ready, the installation is pretty easy, and you only need to activate the radio.

If however, your head unit is not prepared to receive a satellite signal, you may need to either install a new stereo with much more features than just SiriusXM or purchase the SiriusXM tuner that amplifies the signal for use with your current car stereo.

Some extra costs depend on what exactly do you need to have installed, but these are more towards installation or equipment fees rather than a monthly subscription.

FAQ

Can Sirius Radio Be Installed in Any Car?

Sirius radio can be installed in any car, but not in all vehicles in the same way.

The installation depends on the type of the car, stereo installed etc., so if your vehicle is not equipped with the factory stereo, or the factory stereo does not support the SiriusXM, you can either buy a Sirius-ready aftermarket car stereo which is the easiest option or install a Sirius satellite radio receiver in your car.

If you want to install a Sirius satellite radio receiver in your car, you will need to purchase a SiriusXM adapter kit and an antenna.

The vehicle kit includes the necessary cables and mounts to install the receiver in the vehicle. The antenna is used to receive the Sirius signal.

Can You Use XM Radio on Multiple Cars?

Yes. You can use your XM radio on multiple cars as long as you have a separate receiver for each car. You will need to purchase a separate vehicle kit and antenna for each car.

How to Activate XM Radio in Car?

To activate XM radio in the car, you will need to purchase a subscription and then call the SiriusXM customer service to activate your account.

Once your account is activated, you can start listening to the XM radio in your car.

How to Set Car Radio to Satellite Radio?

In order to set your car radio to satellite radio, you will need to purchase a SiriusXM adapter kit and an antenna.

The vehicle kit includes the necessary cables and mounts to install the receiver in the vehicle.

The antenna is used to receive the Sirius signal. Once you have installed the receiver and antenna, you can then activate your account and start listening to satellite radio in your car.

SiriusXM has as a standard 18 presets available. You can change them as per your needs, and the easiest way to do it is to use a channel list and select a station.

#1. For example, in the pop music category with the channel playing, press Menu and then press More Features to move to the next menu options.

#2. Select save as, and then the system will direct you to select a preset location in one of the 18 available press the position where you would like to keep it.

As a default, the preset system will scan all 18 preset channels for 5 seconds each. When you press the controller, the system cancels the scan and remains on the current channel.

How Does Sirius Radio Work?

SiriusXM satellite radio is a subscription service that uses satellites to provide listeners with over 150 commercial-free music, sports, news, talk, and entertainment channels.

The SiriusXM satellite radio receiver picks up the signal from the satellites and then sends the signal to the antenna. The antenna then sends the signal to the car stereo.

How to Connect SiriusXM to Car?

There are two ways to connect SiriusXM to your car:

#1. Use an adapter kit to connect the receiver to your car stereo. This method is preferable when your stereo does not support satellite radio.

#2. Use a SiriusXM-Ready car stereo. Using a stereo that is equipped with the SiriusXM Satelite radio is easier and does not require installing any additional equipment.

How to Get Free Satellite Radio in Car?

There is no such thing as free satellite radio. You will need to purchase a subscription in order to listen to SiriusXM satellite radio. However, there are often promotions that offer a free trial period.

How to Program SiriusXM Radio in Car?

To program SiriusXM radio in your car, you will need to purchase a subscription and then call the SiriusXM customer service to activate your account.

Once your account is activated, you can start listening to the XM radio in your car.

Programming the XM radio is straightforward, and all you have to do is select from the menu the station you want to listen to.

How to Reset Sirius Radio in Car?

If you want to reset your Sirius radio, you can do so by pressing the menu button and then scrolling to the settings menu.

Once you are in the settings menu, scroll down to the reset option and press it.

This will reset your Sirius radio back to the factory default settings.

If you want to refresh the Sirius radio, you have to send the SMS with the word “Refresh” to 77917.

In return, you will receive the text with a link to start the refresh radio process. 

How to Turn on Sirius Radio in Car?

If your car is equipped with a SiriusXM-Ready car stereo, you can quickly turn on the Sirius radio by pressing the SAT button on the receiver.

If your car does not have a SiriusXM-Ready car stereo, you will need to purchase an adapter kit to connect the receiver to your car stereo.

Once the receiver is connected, you can then activate your account and start listening to satellite radio.