The Best Car Horns Let Everyone Know You're There

Evan Williams
by Evan Williams
When a pitiful "meep" won't cut it, upgrade to a real horn. Photo credit: David Traver Adolphus /

Your car or truck’s horn probably isn’t something you think about very often. It’s just there, and it works until you hit the button. Until one day it doesn’t. Or maybe you’ve decided that you’re tired of the wimpy factory horn and want something that’ll give you a little bit more authority in traffic. Or you’ve decided that your car is too cool for that standard parp parp and you want something with a little more flair. No matter your reason, our picks for the best car horns can deliver more noise, more style, and even better looks than the boring honker that came with your vehicle.

For more information on the best car horns, refer to our table of contents.

1. Editor's Pick: HELLA Supertones

If you've ever seen a big pair of round horns lurking behind a front grille, especially if you're looking at a Subaru, then these are likely what you've seen. The Hella Supertone is, for some reason, the horn of choice for what seems like all Subaru WRX and STI owners. But even if you don't have a Subaru, this is a top pick for an aftermarket car horn if you're looking to swap out your mundane factory units.

So what exactly is so appealing about this recommendation? How about the 118 dB(A) twin-tone high-low sound that makes sure everyone around can hear you? Or those fresh red looks (you can get yellow if you really want to). The beep-sound of these horns work amazingly to penetrate into other vehicles, plus they have Teflon bits inside to protect from humidity and the red finish protects against corrosion. These horns are ideal for being seen and heard both on-road and off (HELLA says they're great for off-road vehicles and motorbikes too).


Loud, two-tone, cool


Won't exactly hide in the bumper

2. Carrfan Vintage Horn

You know that "aoooga" sound? The one that takes you right back to the classic cars of the 1920s, though we're not sure if they even actually used horns back then. This horn recreates that sound, bringing back those old memories with a modern 12-volt format. With a chrome finish, it looks the right amount of vintage for old cars, and, more importantly, it's loud.

This car horn delivers 110 dB with a 490Hz sound, and it will take everyone around you back to the days of classic motoring. All without you needing to squeeze a bellows, turn a crank, or figure out how to make an ancient 6V horn work with a modern car battery. Constructed from ABS and aluminum, this option comes with a mounting bolt and two connecting terminals for easy installation and setup, letting you get back on the road quickly, even if you're driving slowly. This is the ideal car horn for those who want something truly unique.


Classic sound


We're not sure if anyone will take you seriously

3. Wolo Juke Box Electronic Musical Horn

The Wolo Juke Box will do more than just a boring old honk. It'll play any one of 34 songs pre-programmed into the device like On the Road Again, the Theme from Rocky, and more, but it gets better than that. See, this horn comes with a control box that has a keyboard function. So you can program your car's horn to play just about any song you can think of, as long as you can figure out what notes to play.

That means you can make your own ice cream truck noises, surprise someone with their favorite song, or have your car play this year's hot summer jam every time someone cuts you off in traffic. It will let you adjust the volume level as well, so you aren't bothering too many people around you and it's covered by a 90-day guarantee. So if you truly want to customize your car horn, don't bother looking past this option.


Play whatever you like


Some reviews say the horn is too quiet

4. PIAA Sports Horn

Not only is PIAA a long-time name brand in car horns, the company is well known for various other automotive accessories such as fog lights and windshield wipers. This recommendation is a great modification to boost your car's signal or replace a sad-sounding factory horn. They come as a pair with a 500 hz and a 600 hz horn offering a high-low tone that blasts at 115 dB. With a higher pitch than standard horns, this is a bit of the Ferrari chirp sound that is part of that brand's iconic status.

The manufacturer says these horns are twice as loud as standard horns, but using just 2.7 amps, you don't need upgraded wiring to make them honk. The slim-fit design lets them fit into factory locations and that means they won't become part of your vehicle's styling until you hit the button. So for a subtle, easy upgrade that will be a good amount louder than your factory horn, consider this option.


Loud and attention-grabbing


Not everyone loves that high-pitched honk

5. Vixen Horns Train Horn Kit

For serious volume from your horn, you need to add air. A compressor and an array of four horns like this one will give you train-like levels of noise. We wouldn't use full pressure, because you might blast everyone else off of the road, but it's there when you need it. If you want to ensure you're noticed when engaging your car's horn, this is the kit for you.

While it likely needs professional installation, since you're going to need to find room for the air compressor and lines as well as that large number of actual horns, you'll probably find all that effort worthwhile the first time you use it. A three-gallon tank holds plenty of air, supplied by the 200psi pump. The kit includes everything you need including solenoids, lines, fittings, air and electrical connections, and even a button. Made entirely of metal and sporting a black shade for most of its components, this kit is durable and will be protected against all weather conditions if you end up having to mount the tank on the exterior of your vehicle.


Massively loud


Massively complicated

6. FIAMM Freeway Blaster

With a name like Freeway Blaster, you know it's going to be loud. Perfect for a single-horn replacement, you can also pair it with a high-note horn for a two-tone blast of sound. Putting out a whopping 133 dB of sound (measured at four inches from the outlet) this horn puts out some of the loudest volume on this entire list.

The steel housing and ABS plastic snail-curve inlet help protect the horn from water and corrosion, and FIAMM is one of the largest maker of car horns in the world so you know that they know what they're doing. With a manufacturing process that meets multiple ISO standards, you also know you're getting quality. This recommendation comes with a bracket to attach to your vehicle and a jumper wire to hook up the second horn if you complete the set. There is also a nut and wire connector to finish the job. Extremely compact, you'll easily find a place to mount this horn on your vehicle.


133 dB means big sound


That might be a bit loud if you're making a friendly horn chirp

7. FARBIN Compact Air Horn

Air horns are the loudest horns you can get, but they also take up loads of space. The designs are complex, requiring multiple loud and long horns, an air compressor and air tank, then the air lines to go with. This one shrinks all of that into a space that is larger than a simple electric horn but still pretty small. The manufacturer says that this small air horn can output 150 dB, and it has two horns for a 600 Hz low and 760 Hz high-tone sound.

The small compressor requires beefier wiring than your car might offer stock, but it includes a harness, relay, fuse, and everything else you should need. It even comes with an air filter that attaches to the pump intake and helps protect the inside components for long life and better performance which should let it get loud and stay loud for plenty of use. And if those requirements don't satisfy your needs, take a look at the other options the company has to offer.


Air horn noise with electric size


Complex wiring

8. Wolo Musical Horn

Sometimes you just want to have fun with your horn, and while you might want the one that goes with your favorite TV show, it's recently gotten hard to find. So here's the coolest one we could find, playing La Cucaracha through a set of five specially-tuned air horns. With a 120 dB output, this horn set will get heard, and playing that song will ensure you get attention. It's hard not to smile, even if you don't have it installed in your low rider but in your Camry instead. Actually, that'd be even more interesting.

Drawing 18 amps, the system requires some additional wiring and a relay, but all of that is included in the box making for easier installation. The kit also includes mounting hardware to let you install the five trumpets and compressor in a convenient location. So make yourself grin every time someone cuts you off. And if La Cucaracha isn't your exact song of choice, the company offers various other tunes including La Bamba and Tequila. Just don't drink and drive, please.


That song and many other options


That's all it plays

9. ACDelco Professional Horn

We're not sure what Professional means when it comes to a car horn, but we're going to assume that it means it's intended for heavy use. Maybe a big-city taxi or a left-lane hog German sports sedan? What we do know is that ACDelco is the in-house General Motors automotive replacement parts brand, so the company knows how to design and build parts that meet new-car specs.

Not surprisingly, this horn is designed to meet OEM fitment requirements and it comes with all of the installation hardware, including locking washer, that you should need to get your vehicle chirping again quickly, loudly, and professionally. Because this is an OE replacement, it should be similar volume as your stock horn and it should draw the same amount of current, so you shouldn't need any wiring upgrades. Installation should be a snap to replace your tired and broken old horn. This is the ideal option for car owners who just want to replace their horn with something of similar volume.


OE quality, fitment


Not a volume upgrade

10. SEGER Snail Horn

SEGER offers a pair of snail horns that can blast at up to 118 dB(A), a figure the company says is the highest for the size of the horns. This is a compact set that is designed to fit into any vehicle, even if the factory only sent you home with a single-tone. The sound level is designed to meet EU regulations and is marked with TUV approval, an important German vehicle regulations and standards group.

With a low tone of 420 Hz and a high tone of 500 Hz, this horn upgrade is even more likely to get you noticed because it's just a slightly different note than most of the other choices here. That makes your sound stand out and it's going to make people look and see what's going on. Because two horns need more current than a single horn, this kit includes a relay to let you install a dedicated power wire to the car's battery, but still use the factory horn switch mounted in the steering wheel. That's a safe and easy upgrade to stand out on the road.


Unique pitch, meets EU regulations


Needs upgraded wiring

Why Change My Horn?

Photo credit: studiostoks /

Horns wear out and fail over time, making them quiet and ineffective. Some automakers use just a small single-tone horn that you can barely hear on a good day. Some drivers want to add a more musical flourish to their daily drive. Whatever your reason for not liking the factory part, the only way to change it is with an upgrade.

What Should I Look For?

That depends on what you want. If you're happy with the factory tone but just need a new one, look at a factory-type replacement. Don't end up with one of the musical choices on the list and get a big surprise next time you chirp. Likewise, if you don't want the extra installation work of an air horn, you'll want to stick with a simple electric option. On the other hand, if you want the loudest tones possible, an air horn is your only choice.

How to Install a Car Horn

Most electric car horns are just plug and play. Find your factory horn, often in the engine bay or behind the bumper cover, unplug and unfasten the old, and plug in the new. If you're looking at an upgrade or an air horn, though, installation can be more intensive. Louder horns often need a wire run from the battery to power them, and then wired into the existing horns system using a relay. If you're not comfortable with electrical work, you'll probably want this done at a shop. Likewise with air horns, that need you to both add the electrical connections, probably including a relay, but also to install air lines and multiple horn trumpets. With a motor, air tank, and horns, just finding space for everything can be a challenge. Read the kit directions carefully and don't be afraid to call a pro.

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Photo credit: justyle /

Evan Williams
Evan Williams

Evan moved from engineering to automotive journalism 10 years ago (it turns out cars are more interesting than fibreglass pipes), but has been following the auto industry for his entire life. Evan is an award-winning automotive writer and photographer and is the current President of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada. You'll find him behind his keyboard, behind the wheel, or complaining that tiny sports cars are too small for his XXXL frame.

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Join the conversation
  • Charley Charley on Aug 06, 2022

    Very good analysis, thank you.

  • Jeremy Fosnow Jeremy Fosnow on Dec 25, 2022

    The analysis here is not very good at all. I'm not even sure as to the point of this article. None of the horns analyzed here were actually tested by anyone for the purpose of this article. Also, no sound or decibels were verified at all! All the writer did was summarize the manufacturers own product descriptions. What a waste of time.