Can I install an aftermarket radio in a 2002 Silverado without doing any BCM crap?

thomas998

Original poster
Member
Nov 10, 2022
2
USA
I've put off doing anything with the radio for a while because I was afraid it would require me to go let the dealer bend me over to do some BCM programming crap, but the radio has seen better days and I'm to the point I need to get something else... just trying to find out if I can buy any radio that fits and wire it in or not.
 

Mooseman

Moderator
Dec 4, 2011
25,605
Ottawa, ON
Sure you can. Never heard of anything required as far as the BCM is concerned except if you try to use another OEM radio, then the VIN has to be programmed in. But for the trouble, get an aftermarket radio and use an adapter with it. I like the ones from PAC Audio. Only big determination is if you have Bose or not. OnStar you can ignore since it doesn't work anyway. You'll also need an antenna adapter.
 

thomas998

Original poster
Member
Nov 10, 2022
2
USA
Sure you can. Never heard of anything required as far as the BCM is concerned except if you try to use another OEM radio, then the VIN has to be programmed in. But for the trouble, get an aftermarket radio and use an adapter with it. I like the ones from PAC Audio. Only big determination is if you have Bose or not. OnStar you can ignore since it doesn't work anyway. You'll also need an antenna adapter.
Thanks for the info. I had just heard so many stories of the damned BCM controlling everything that I was afraid to mess with anything. And nope, no Bose in the truck... sadly I had a Bose system in my car and when it went tits up it was a pain in the butt to deal with as it didn't even have normal speakers...had to replace everything unless I was willing to pay for a replacement Bose radio that was way overpriced.
 

Joe_67

Member
Aug 9, 2022
56
Central Virginia
One of the best companies for aftermarket stereo is Crutchfield. They already know exactly what kinds of options you have in terms of swapping it out, know what adapters/install kits are needed, and have exceptional tech support.
 

Reprise

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Member
Jul 22, 2015
2,724
The OEM radio does communicate on the CANBus (to report its S/N, allow RAP, etc.,) but it can be replaced with an aftermarket unit. I like the Metra / Axxess components, but whichever harness you use, as long as you use one, you won't have to cut one wire in the factory harness, and the CANBus will think it has the factory radio still installed. No muss / no fuss.

When I looked up the 2002 Silverado on Metra's site, it looks like it uses the simpler harnesses and doesn't need a 'chime box' (later models use the radio to play the chime tones for 'door open', 'low fuel', etc., etc.) So that's even easier. And IIRC, steering wheel control buttons didn't appear until 2003, so that's another thing you won't need.

Being a 2002, you may (?) not even have a CANBus to worry about. But I always recommend the aftermarket harnesses; they just make things so much easier. Wire the leads to the appropriate outputs on your aftermarket radio harness inside the house where it's nice and cozy, then take it out to the truck, unbolt / unplug the OEM, plug the aftermarket harness into the factory plugs, and... 'done'. This also allows you to easily retrofit the OEM radio back (e.g.; if you sell the truck, and want to keep your aftermarket radio).

I think the 2002s still use the older Delco 'DIN and a half' radio (has the square-ish LED display in the upper RH corner) -- so if you get a replacement radio that is a 'double DIN' size, you may have to do some minor dash surgery. But the aftermarket has install kits to make it less painful. For the 2003-up trucks, since they have the double DIN opening, the kits aren't much more than two plastic side brackets and a front trim ring. :smile:

Here's a sample of what the older Delco Electronics radios look like, for reference (from what I see on Google, GM may have used a mix of old / new radios in 2002 Silverados, depending on trim level -?) Either that, or they don't have the interior images correctly organized by year. :no:
1668186869655.png

Sites like Crutchfield can advise what type of radio fits in your dash (and you don't have to buy anything from them to get that info, nor are they the only ones in the world that sell the install equipment). Their customer support used to be better than what it is now, but if you like to have good guidance on how to install things, they're still good with that (although they'll now try and upsell prewired harnesses, etc., for people who don't know how to use a wire stripper / terminal crimper... LOL) Their prices on things are a little higher, as a result.

Do make sure to get the GM antenna adapter, as Moose mentioned -- GM uses mini-sized antenna plug leads, which makes them an oddball, compared to aftermarket. The adapter makes it plug/play.
 

SpitShine_PL

Member
May 26, 2023
41
Poznan, Poland
There's one important thing to consider: your factory sound system level.
AFAIR, there was the base audio without an amp, the "uplevel" audio that came with a passive Matsushita amp and a subwoofer, and the premium audio which really slaps hard with pristine sound quality, as it had a Bose digital amplifier wired to line inputs.
I'm not sure what the availability of each level was for the GMT800 Silverados.
If you have the Bose amp, you will need a line input adapter manufactured by PAC, specifically the model for 2000-2002 years (2003 and later are different). It makes every sense to leave the Bose amp in the car if it's working alright, and just replace the factory speakers if blown (GM's factory subwoofers are kinda crappy, you can get a much better subwoofer for about 50 bucks).
I had the uplevel audio system on my GMT800 Suburban, the Matsushita amp's subwoofer section died, and being a passive unit, it was garbage anyway, so I went with a Sony head unit, a 4-way Class D Sony amp for the door speakers and a 2-channel Sony amp for the subwoofer in the cargo compartment. The factory setup had mid-range speakers in the D-pillars, so I wired them to the rear left and right channel high audio outputs of the Sony head unit, and connected both Sony amps using RCA line outputs.
 
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