How to upgrade and customize your car horn 

Are you annoyed by the sound of your car horn? Do you get tired of hearing the same horn all the time? Well this DIY has got you covered.Through this DIY you can customise your own car horn sound. Not only do you get to customize your car horn sound but you can add up to 4 different sounds. This can also make your car different and more personal to you.



Sound FX board

Mono Amp


Cigarette lighter adapter

12v to 5v converter

Step 1

Since this DIY allows you to have 4 different sounds, you will need a way to activate the sound that you want. A simple way for this is to add buttons, each button can represent one sound. You will have to make a control panel that will be attached below the gearshift and a 3D printed enclosure will be made to enclose the buttons.

You'll then need to get some basic measurements of the area you want the panel to be fit. You can use a measuring tape to do this. You will then need to go to fusion 360 to model it.

Step 2

Next is getting through with the electronics. You will need a sound board, you can get this from adafruit, this sound board is perfect for beginners as it is really easy to use and requires no programming. You will then need a DC converter, this converter will convert the 12v into 5v. You will need a USB output, you will then need a cigarette lighter adapter to get your device powered. A mono amplifier with speakers, power in and a volume knob. You will then need an 8 ohm indoor outdoor speaker.

You will then have to connect the speaker to the amplifier, the input of the amplifier goes to the sound board which is powered by the USB. You then have to connect the cigarette lighter adapter, the converter and the amplifier with some nuts. All the hot wires should be together and all the ground wires should be together. .

You will have 12 volts coming from the cigarette lighter adapter, this then spits up when it reaches the converter it reduces to volts and then goes through the USB and powers the soundboard. The audio from the soundboard goes to the amplifier, this is also powered by 12 volts and the output of the amplifier goes to the speaker.

You can test it out before moving to the next step.

Step 3

You will now have to design the enclosure. You can use the measurements taken before to make the side panels. After designing the side panels you'll need to draw some circles at the front that will later be knocked out for the buttons to be placed. The circles should be equally spaced and once you have placed them together, cut the circles out. You then need to 3D print the design.

You can spray paint the box in a colour you prefer, preferably, one that matches the could of your car. You then have to insert the buttons into the 3D printed enclosure. Use some washers and nuts to hold the buttons in place.

Step 4

The pins on the sound board already have pullup resistors, you don't need any extra ones. You will need to group one wire from all the buttons and connect them with the help of a nut, make sure that an extra wire is placed facing down

you then have to solder the other button wire to each pin.l on the soundboard.

you can now move on to the sound effect. For this you will need to make a wav file, name the files according to the pin you want it to be recognised as and then copy it on the board with the help of a USB. You can use a sound that you already have on your device or you could just record something and use that as your honk.

Step 5

Fixing it in your car. If you don't don't want to be permanently fixed then you have to avoid drilling any holes into the firewall. You will have to find a way to get a wire through to the bumper. The horn will not be attached directly to the electrical system of the car, it will be attached to the cigarette lighter which is powered by the ignition. You need to make sure that the lighter is controlled by the ignition, this way when you turn off the car the lighter will turn off, if it is not attached to the ignition then the horn will end up draining too much battery from your car.

you will have to pass the wire and then strip the ends, then connect it to the amplifier, you can then mount the amplifier with the help of some double sided tape. You will then have to plug all the wires like done previously and stuff them into the box. You can use cable ties to make sure that all the wires are neatly placed. Once everything is fit into the box, close it and place it at its designated place, you will have to plug the cigarette lighter and test if all of the buttons and sounds are working.

To mount the speaker you will have to connect it to the wire passed through earlier and find a place to mount it in the bumper, use zip ties to secure the wire and test it out.

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