This is a pretty basic instructable on how to repair or replace a horn speaker that is not working on a 2004 Ford Taurus.
My car was involved a minor fender bender a little while ago, and the horn sounded funny since then. I decided to replace the speaker with a new one.
The principle is the same and can be applied for every car, but there will be minor differences in the setup and placement of each car horn.
This should be done in a garage or a driveway to minimize the risk of being struck by a passing car.
Also, gloves should be worn for the portions of this where hands could be hurt.
The involvement of electricity is minimal, but care should still be taken when wires are being manipulated.
Step 1: Items Needed
FIRST CHECK THE FUSE! In many cases, a blown fuse is the whole issue, and that is a cheap and quick fix.
For the Taurus, the entire bumper needs to be removed to replace the horn. In may cars, this is not necessary. My original plan was actually to just cut the wires attached to the horn and attach them to the new horn speaker so I would not have to remove the whole bumper, as this is a pain. Unfortunately, Ford decided to make the horn wiring inaccessible without removing the bumper.
Changing the horn is actually very easy; it is the bumper that takes most of the work. If you have a vehicle that has the horn above the bumper, this should only take about 10-15 minutes.
Tools / Items Needed
Drill or screwdriver
Assorted size sockets
Assorted size wrenches
New plastic bumper pins- ($2-3). there is a good chance that these will be damaged upon removal and will need to be replaced
New horn speaker (I got mine for about $15 on Amazon, but the price varies depending on what you are getting)
Step 2: Removing the Headlights
Before the bumper comes out, the headlights must be removed.
All steps can be seen in the pictures.
Remove the screw with the hex head first.
Each headlight has 2 pins located on the top which must be pulled straight upwards to remove. Pliers can help, but they can be removed by hand.
After that, just unplug the power cable from the vehicle to the light, and the entire assembly can now be removed and put on the side.
Step 3: Removing the Bumper
This part is not fun on a Taurus.
There are several different types of screws holding the bumper in place.
First I removed the grill which has 4 bumper pins holding it in place. 2 can be removed with a screwdriver, and 2 had to be pried out with pliers. Depending on whether these were damaged, they may need to be replaced. They are only designed to be used once, but sometimes they can be salvaged if you are really careful. I was not.
Second I removed the hex head screws under the bumper. There were 6. I could not get a good pic from under the car, but you can see the holes when I am holding the bumper.
Third, and this is the pain.... there are 3 screws under the headlight. 2 directly under (can be seen once the headlight is removed), and one about 6 inches further back. These screws are placed very badly, so that I was only able to remove them with a wrench and my hand at a very awkward angle. Those 6 screws (3 per side) took me almost 20 minutes to remove, and just as long to put back.
Last, there is one screw in the wheel well directly in front of the tire. It is easiest to turn the tire all the way first, so the screwdriver can fit. Then turn the wheel the other way for the other side.
Now the whole bumper can be removed. Yay!
Step 4: Removing and Changing the Horn
In the Taurus, the speaker is located on the left side of the car, in front of the wheel well. If you cannot find it in your vehicle, the wiring can be traced from the fuse box.
There is a nut holding the horn onto the frame of the vehicle. Unscrew the nut and remove the horn from the car.
Unplug the power cable from the car to the horn. Some vehicles do not have a wiring harness, the wires just connect directly to the speaker with a quick-disconnect. These can just be pulled off.
(It was at this point that I decided to connect the original speakers to a 12V battery just to see if it worked. Turns out, it worked fine. During the fender bender, the speaker just got pushed against the bumper and the weird noise it was making was the speaker vibrating against styrofoam. Go figure.)
Connect your new speaker to the existing wires. The wires can be connected to either tab on the horn. Push the horn button to test. If it is not working. the speaker was not your issue. Check your fuse, and if that isn't the issue either, you need to have the whole wiring redone. I strongly suggest that be done by someone certified.
Remember to put everything back together IN THE EXACT REVERSE ORDER that you took it apart. Otherwise, you may end up putting the headlight in and then realizing that you forgot to screw the bumper in first. This may, ahem ahem, have happened to me.
If you did this successfully, please let me know. I am curious if anyone finds a better way to remove the screws under the headlight.