As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

How to Play Music From Phone to Car Without Aux or Bluetooth

Bluetooth and Auxiliary cord are two common technologies used for playing music on the vehicle from your phone. While the auxiliary cord is reliable and more common among older car models, bluetooth is preferred for its convince and comes with any new vehicle these days.

But what if you want to play music in your car without using any of these two methods?

As good as both of them are, you can have your reasons for not using them. Maybe your smartphone doesn’t have a 3.5mm headphone port, or maybe the Bluetooth in your car isn’t working, or both.

How to Play Music From Phone to Car Without Aux or Bluetooth

Whatever the case, there’s no need to worry as vehicles come with multiple ways to connect your phone. Below we’ll discuss some of the common methods in this regard.

1. Add a Bluetooth Receiver

Adding a Bluetooth receiver is the best option if your car’s Bluetooth is not working or if there’s no built-in Bluetooth at all. These receivers are plugged into the 3.5mm input jack of your car stereo. After this, they can be paired with your phone’s Bluetooth to stream any audio soundtrack you want.

For charging, these receivers use a USB connection or have a built-in battery.

If the 3.5mm input jack and USB port are located close to each other, the USB-powered receiver would be good. But if that’s not the case, you should go for a Battery-powered Bluetooth receiver.

2. Add Bluetooth FM Transmitter

The bluetooth receivers are great but need aux input of your car stereo for the connection. What if you want to add Bluetooth to your car but there’s no aux input?

This is where Bluetooth FM transmitters come in handy.

You’ll have to connect an FM transmitter to the cigarette lighter port. This will provide enough power for the transmitter to work properly.

Now, select the ‘FM mode’ of the transmitter which will then display the frequency you’ll need to set your car stereo at. Tune your system radio to that frequency and you should be able to play music from your phone to your car.

3. Cassette Tape Adapter

The third unconventional method for connecting the phone to the car stereo is the cassette tape adapter.

First, you’ll need to insert the cassette tape adapter plug into the headphone jack of your phone.

Then turn on your car radio and set the volume to the lowest level. Now insert the adapter into your car radio’s tape deck. This will automatically switch your radio’s sound input to cassette tape. If it doesn’t, you’ll need to do it manually.

This is it. Now, you’ll be able to enjoy music in your vehicle through a cassette tape adapter.

4. USB Connection

The methods we discussed above are imperfect in one way or the other. You either get an unreliable connection or simply an average-quality sound.

If you’ve tried those methods and found such problems, then I would suggest you try the USB connection as the last resort.

All car models for the last 10 years or so have a built-in USB port. While primarily designed to play music from a USB drive, you can use this port to connect your phone via a USB cable.

The main advantage of a USB connection is that it gives you reliable and high-bitrate music, while charging the phone at the same time.

There are different types of USB cables available in the market. Depending on your phone, it can be either an Apple Lightning cable, a new USB-C cable, or an older micro-USB cable.

Once you’ve selected the cable, connect its one end to the USB port of your phone and the other end to the USB port of your car stereo. After this, the stereo will recognize the device, you’ll get a notification, and it’ll ask for the permission to access the phone system for audio files.

Allow access and you’re good to go.

The only potential downside of the USB connection I can think of is the fact that many old models don’t have it.


These were some of the ways you can play music from phone to car without using aux or Bluetooth. In case you’re unable to go with any of the above methods, there’s only one option left for you: upgrade your car stereo.

New car stereo units not only give you more control over your music and plenty of connectivity options, but you also get extra goodies in the form of a touchscreen display, in-dash GPS navigation, integrated DVD player, and Apple Carplay/Android Auto compatibility.

Michael Brown is the founder of, a website that provides car audio installation guides and tips. A self-taught car audio enthusiast, Michael has been installing and modifying car stereo systems for over 15 years.

Leave a Comment is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to