2003 Pontiac Montana Radio/DVD issues

Tiny
CLIQ20
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 PONTIAC MONTANA
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 10,700 MILES
I had my kids put change in my original CD player so I removed and replaced with a replacement from ebay. Everything worked except for the DVD player spound (we can see picture fine) and the overhead console controls for the radio don't work. I told the person I purchased from that it didn't work and they refunded my money after I paid the dealership 40 bucks to unlock the radio. Then I bought another thinking it was a radio issue. Luckily I found a dealer that unlocked the new one for free using their Tech 2 computer (I got to watch them this time). The DVD sound and overhead console controls still don't work. I don't know what to check first other than a fuse, and that's too simple. It's almost like the radio doesn't recognize that there's a DVD player attached and to spit out the sound. The wiring sounds simpler than that and I don't understand what could be wrong. The first replacement was from a Montana (not sure if with DVD player or not) and the second was from a Sunfire. To me, it doesn't seem like it would make a difference, I'm sure all the radio's are the same.
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 1:50 PM

10 Replies

Tiny
BRIAN 1
  • MEMBER
Have it scanned for any dtc's in the radio or dvd player. There is a fault in the sys so it will show a dtc. Trying to dagnose dvd problems are very hard. It could be the dvd player, the rear video/audio module. Could also be another bad radio because the dvd player runs throught the radio. When they had the tech 2 on it did they try and communicate with any other modules?It could also be a short to ground and open circuit or short to power. This problem will be beyond just checking a fuse, these parts are very expensive and hard to diagnose. Post back with what you find and any other questions.
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 2:39 PM
Tiny
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When he had the tech 2 hooked up to it there were no diagnostic issues or any previous fault codes. He wasn't a technician though and i'm not sure he knew much about it other than hooking up the tech 2 and pushing the walkthrough buttons. My thought is that maybe something was disconnected from the harness when I initially put the replacement radio in or maybe these radios that i'm replacing with don't have the capability to host a DVD player. I just don't know how and why they would make these players different. To me all it needs to do is recognize there's external input. The last thought I had would be to ditch the ability to use the CD player and reinstall the original radio (since it was the last one that worked with the DVD player) and put it back in so at least the kids can have DVD sound (or at least it will tell me if the problem is the radio or something else). Of course, I expect I'll have to take back to dealer to unlock it and I don't know how many times they'll do it for free. The strange part is that nothing fried or acted strange when I removed the original as to seem like something blew out which almost tells me its something to do with recognizing there's a dvd player there. I would think the video routes through a different channel to the rear screen.
Also, can you tell me what a DTC is, i'm not familiar with the car repair acronymns. I'm learning as I go.
Maybe they can hear sound through the headphones only?
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 3:39 PM
Tiny
BRIAN 1
  • MEMBER
A dtc is diagnostic trouble code, if there is a fault in the sys it will have a dtc, which will make it easier to diagnose a problem and a direction to go in. Also the radio you installed was it an aftermarket or factory radio?As far as the dvd sys thats the way they design them. Post back with any other questions.
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 3:52 PM
Tiny
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There were no DTC's that showed up initially. He matched up the VIN codes on the glove box door to make sure the questions the tech 2 was asking him were answered right. I told him it was strange that the DVD sound wasn't working. And he checked DTC's again. Nothing.
Both radio's I tried were used factory radio's but not necessarily from 2003 pontiac montana's. They were from various other vehicles with the same style radio.

My only choice is to check wiring and/or another radio. My wife is frustrated because she thinks i'm screwing it up. But i'm not taking it to a dealer only to have them tell me that I need a new radio from them and installed for $500 and then it still not work.

Any other thoughts?
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 4:19 PM
Tiny
BRIAN 1
  • MEMBER
Well looking at the diagnostic chart only problems would be dvd player, radio or an open, short to ground, short to voltage on the DVD audio left signal (+) circuit and the DVD audio right signal (+) circuit between the DVD player and the radio. These are the possible causes.I"ve had a couple of these where I replaced the radio and found out I got a bad one and had to replace it again. Most of the radios in the 2000 to 2005 models were pure junk, I"ve had alot of trouble with them, most radios are from another vehicle that was sent in and fixed and sent somewhere else, then someone else's radio was fixed and sent to someone else. Most radios are exchange radios.I"ve had a rash of them. But try the above. It's hard to answer without proper equipment and testing.
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Monday, January 12th, 2009 AT 5:24 PM
Tiny
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Well I couldn't find any wire issues that were obvious but I didn't dig too deep. The back overhead console controls do not work at all. However the headphones do. So what would that mean? Anyway. I am going to see if they can deal with it like that. If not I am going to try to replace with the original radio. Thoughts?
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Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 AT 6:42 AM
Tiny
BRIAN 1
  • MEMBER
It could be in the overhead console unit. But can't say for sure, to hard to say with out proper testing, the rest of my advise would be a guess.
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Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 AT 10:27 AM
Tiny
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So maybe there are different models for these years vehicles? The ebay person I bought from said this radio wasn't setup for dvd. I really didn't think there was a difference in the radios or models. Do you kno where I could get model number information for a 2003 montana with a DVD player?
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Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 AT 1:39 PM
Tiny
BRIAN 1
  • MEMBER
You never told me that the radio was not for dvd. Thats the problem wight there. There are different model radio's because not all the montana vans had a dvd player, it was an option. As far as a part number the only one that can give that info is the parts department at the local dealer.
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Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 AT 2:50 PM
Tiny
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Well, honestly I didn't know. I have no idea what vehicle the radio came out of when I get from ebay. I assume I have to wait to find one that I know came out of one with a DVD player. I just assumed they were all the same. My bad and thanks for the help.
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Tuesday, January 13th, 2009 AT 3:55 PM

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