Troubleshooting your DS18 Amplifier when it enters Protection Mode

Troubleshooting your DS18 Amplifier when it enters Protection Mode

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To minimize electrical damage to your amplifier and the components it’s powering, DS18’s amplifiers utilize a shutdown state known as Protection Mode.

This can be caused by:

  • improper installation leading to unexpected dips or increases in power
  • overloading caused by improper matching of impedance loads
  • overheating caused by overuse
  • phasing out
  • an internally flawed or dead amplifier

Troubleshooting this issue can cause a major headache for some new members of the LOUD family. So, if you’re looking for ways to get control of the issue let’s start here:

When did your Amplifier enter Protection Mode?

Pay close attention to when your amplifier enters Protection Mode!

If your amplifier enters Protection Mode as soon as it’s turned on this could be a sign that your issue is in your installation. This could be due to the position and placement of your amplifier or improper placement of your power and ground cables.

If your amplifier enters Protection Mode in the middle of a drive out in the fields, your amplifier might not be properly connected to your system.

If your amplifier enters Protection after an intense listening session, your amplifier could possibly just be overheating. To prevent this from happening, try placing your amplifier in position where it can receive proper ventilation. If that doesn’t work try mounting a cooling fan for better air flow.

Simple Solutions

If you cycle your ignition and your amplifier doesn’t reset out of protection mode, it could be time to get your hands dirty. Assessing the reason your amplifier entered Protect Mode requires getting back to the basics. This involves disconnecting your amplifier from your system and its components to see if the issue persists.

If you’ve removed your amplifier’s speaker wires at the terminals and it remains in Protect Mode your issue could be in your installation, either with your power or ground RCA’s. This can be caused by a lot of things; but this usually happens when you allow an amplifiers Power wire, or speaker wire to touch bare metal. To handle this, disconnect your RCA’s, check all connections for tightness and fraying, then re-cycle your ignition.

If your amplifier powers on with no RCA’s connected then there is a signal short from the source unit or internally in the amp. This requires testing through each source (Radio, BT, etc.) to figure out where the issue is coming from. Make sure you clean and tighten your connections or relocate your amplifier if necessary.

If your RCA’s are disconnected and your amplifier still enters Protect Mode, then plug your RCA’s back in and disconnect your speaker wires. From here you can re-cycle your ignition. If your amplifier exits Protect Mode once your speaker wires are disconnected there is a short in your speakers or frayed wire from installation.

If you recycle the ignition, with RCA and speaker wires disconnected, and the amp is still in protect, the amp has an internal short and needs to come in for repair or exchange if qualified.

If you have followed all these troubleshooting steps and the amplifier is still in Protect Mode, your amplifier needs to be examined by the professionals at DS18. Please contact

Troubleshooting an amplifier in protect mode requires getting back to the basics of system installation. If your amplifier is not defective, a simple retracing of your installation steps will help you find the problem quickly.

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