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How To Reset Kenwood Radio Without Any Technical Assistance

Last Updated on: May 10, 2024

JVC Kenwood Corporation is one of the most prolific electronics brands in the US market. Their car entertainment products, including speakers, stereos, navigation technology, and amplifiers, are the best-in-class available.


Like most electronic types of equipment, Kenwood radios occasionally need resetting to fix bugs in the firmware. If you have problems operating your car stereo, read on as I explain how to reset Kenwood radio.

Types of Kenwood Car Stereos

There are many types and sizes available in the Kenwood brand. But, you can differentiate the various Kenwood car radio models into two categories; 1DIN and 2DIN units. I detail a little more below.

Single DIN vs Double DIN Stereos

DIN is a term that denotes several internationally-recognized technical standards that car stereo manufacturers use for their products. Generally speaking, 1DIN head units, such as this JVC KD-R792BT radio receiver, are smaller, have fewer features, and are easier to use than 2DIN stereos.

1DIN Head Unit
1DIN Head Unit

On the other hand, 2DIN stereos like the Kenwood DMX 706S have a larger faceplate than the 1DIN, and most of them feature a touch screen. The 2DIN also comes with extra features, such as compatibility with phone apps that offer a great user experience and convenience. 

2DIN Head Unit
2DIN Head Unit

When Do You Need to Reset Your Car Stereo?

The most common reason for resetting is to fix firmware bugs that cause minor performance issues, such as the inability to connect with the Bluetooth function.

Other problems that may need you to perform a soft reset include unresponsive buttons and touchscreens. 

On the other hand, the car radio may have more complex issues that require a hard reset to factory settings. One of the reasons is that you need to customize your settings afresh. 

Also, you may have recently added new stereo systems like speakers or amplifiers, and you need to factory reset your headset.  

Whatever the case, I outline below the process of how to reset the Kenwood car stereo, depending on the model. 

How to Reset a Kenwood Radio – Single DIN Car Radio    

This method works for Kenwood car stereos with button faceplates, like those found in the KDC product lines. 

The first step is to turn on your car radio and press the faceplate eject button to remove it from the stereo. The eject button is usually on the bottom left corner of the faceplate for these models. 

After ejecting the faceplate, you’ll need to locate the reset button on the stereo for your particular Kenwood model. But, for most KDC models, you’ll find the reset button on the bottom section of the front panel.

However, it is a tiny button to press with your fingers. Therefore, I recommend having a pointed tool, such as a narrow-tipped pen, at hand to help you push it.

Once you find the Kenwood reset button, long-press it with the pointed tool for five seconds and release.

Your radio will reset itself and you can use it now. However, if you are still having problems with the stereo, you may want to repeat the process once or twice more to fix it. 

Also, if your car radio is new, you may want to check the fitting as that can cause your radio to malfunction. 

Another way for resetting the Kenwood car stereo is by disconnecting the radio from the battery for a few seconds. You need to turn off your car and open the front hood to access your battery. 

Next, disconnect the negative battery terminal with a wrench for a few seconds before reconnecting it again. It will reset your car radio and sort out any issues you are having with it. 

How to Reset a Kenwood Touchscreen Radio

This process shows you how to reset a Kenwood stereo in either of two ways — a soft reset and a hard reset. 

Soft Reset Kenwood Radio

This simple reset process for a Kenwood touchscreen works much in the same way as for the KDC product line models. You will also need a pointed tool to help you press the button due to its small size. 

For touchscreen models, the reset button is on the top left corner. It resembles a downward-facing triangle. 

Once you power on the radio, use your pointed tool to press the reset button for five seconds and release. 

How to Factory Reset a Kenwood Stereo 

To perform a factory reset, you will need an extra person to help you push down three buttons simultaneously. 

  • Find the Eject CD button and Volume button, which you will be pressing together. 
  • Ask a friend to help you press the reset button with a pointed tool, such as a pin or a narrow-tipped pen. 
  • While holding down the Eject CD and Volume buttons, ask your friend to press the reset button once. 
  • Continue holding down the two buttons and release them when your stereo comes back on, and the screen displays some details. 
  • Go through the information displayed and tap on the Initialize On tab. Follow through the steps shown. 
  • The stereo will ask you to press the reset button again to complete the initialize process. Once that is done, the radio will revert to its factory settings.

How to Reset a Kenwood Bluetooth Radio 

This process is for removing any devices paired with your Bluetooth radio. To start with, press the phone button and turn the Volume knob to select Settings. Push down the knob to access the Settings tab. 

Look for the Pairing tab by rotating the Volume knob and pushing it to activate. Turn the Volume knob again until you get to the Delete Device tab and press the knob to select.

The list of all the paired devices will display, and you can rotate the Volume knob to find the particular phone you want to remove from the list. 

Once you find it, push the Volume knob to select it and confirm the deletion by turning the knob to yes and pressing it. 

Repeat the process to remove all the unwanted devices from your Bluetooth list.

Pro Auto Thought: If your car radio is from JVC, then you might want to know some tips on how to unlock your unit. Proceed here — How To Reset JVC Radio In 7 Steps For Single and Double DINs.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I reset a locked car radio? 

If your car battery gets disconnected while servicing your car, then the stereo will experience a loss of power and may lock itself to prevent theft. It is a security feature common with Kenwood car stereos, and you will need the four-digit security code in the user manual to unlock it.  

However, if you are still unable to open it, you may need the dealership to guide you through the unlocking process. 

When is it time to reset your Kenwood car stereo?

If you are experiencing minor issues, then such as unresponsive buttons and touch screens or your display freezing, you may need to perform a soft reset to fix the bugs. A hard reset comes about when you need to restore the radio to its factory settings to customize it afresh. 

How do I fix HF ERROR 68?

This error occurs when your smartphone has Bluetooth connection problems with the car stereo. Resetting your radio may help to solve this issue. However, your phone may be incompatible with the stereo, probably because it has newer software than what is compatible with the radio unit. 

In this case, your phone has limited functionality, and you may need to contact your dealership for assistance. 

Where is the reset button on a Kenwood Car Stereo?

You’ll find the reset button on the lower section of the front panel after removing the faceplate for most KDC models. For the touchscreen models, however, the small triangular reset button is usually on the left-hand section of the display panel.


Learning how to reset Kenwood car stereo can help you solve the minor performance issues the car radio develops over time.

 It also saves you time and the money of going to the dealership every time you experience a malfunction.

As you have seen from the descriptions above, resetting your car radio is a simple process that takes a few minutes of your time.

However, if the radio is still malfunctioning, I recommend contacting your dealership to get professional help. 

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