iHeartRadio CarPlay: A Complete Guide

iheartradio carplay - featured image

If you love listening to music, podcasts, or other radio programs as you drive, the iHeartRadio CarPlay App would be perfect for you.

You can use it with most iPhone versions, as well as a car model that supports CarPlay.

Also, you can tune in to iHeartRadio stations and stream your favorite audio throughout your journey. 

iHeartRadio CarPlay plays iHeartRadio tracks in your car using your iPhone and a CarPlay-compatible vehicle. For iHeartRadio CarPlay to work, you must download iHeartRadio to your iPhone, and iHeartRadio must be available in your area. 

 This article talks about iHeartRadio CarPlay — specifically, what iHeartRadio and CarPlay are, and what devices support them.

I also have some iHeartRadio CarPlay tips, such as downloading iHeartRadio, using iHeartRadio CarPlay, and possible iHeartRadio CarPlay issues you may encounter. 

What Is iHeartRadio?

iHeartRadio is a free digital music streaming and radio service compatible with iPhone versions that support iOS 13.0 (or later). You must download and install the iHeartRadio app on your iPhone to listen to any audio from this digital service. 

Currently, iHeartRadio is only available in the following countries:

  • USA
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • Australia
  • New Zealand

Interestingly, not the United Kingdom!

iHeartRadio apple CarPlay - audio playing

iPhones That Support iHeartRadio CarPlay

As noted above, iHeartRadio runs on iOS 13.0 or later, while CarPlay runs on iOS 7.1 or later.

Therefore, if you want to use iHeartRadio CarPlay, you need to have a device that supports iOS 13.0 or higher.

Unfortunately, this means that if you have an older iPhone, you have to upgrade to a newer version to use iHeartRadio CarPlay.

iPhones 5, iPhone 6, and upwards are all compatible at the time of writing.

Cars That Support CarPlay

As mentioned earlier, if you want to use iHeartRadio CarPlay, your car model must support CarPlay. Most of the major car manufacturers currently produce car models that support CarPlay.

To date, there are over 600 car models that support CarPlay — most of which are 2016 models or newer.  

iHeartRadio CarPlay Guidelines

Suppose your iPhone is compatible with iHeartRadio, your car supports CarPlay, and you live in a region where iHeartRadio is available.

In that case, you can start enjoying iHeartRadio CarPlay in all its glory.

Below are some iHeartRadio CarPlay guidelines to help you use the app to the best of your ability.

How To Download iHeartRadio to Your iPhone (Which can then be used in CarPlay)

If you want to use iHeartRadio CarPlay, you have to download the iHeartRadio app to your iPhone.

Luckily, you can find the iHeartRadio app in the iOS Apps Store, and downloading the app is free. 

Here’s how to download iHeartRadio to your iPhone:

  1. Visit the iOS App Store from your iPhone.
  2. Search for iHeartRadio.
  3. Select iHeartRadio from the results.
  4. Tap “Install.”

OR click this link to visit the App Store page.

iHeartRadio app on the apple app store

How To Use iHeartRadio CarPlay

It’s easy to use iHeartRadio CarPlay as long as you meet the requirements I outlined earlier.

Here are guidelines on using the iHeartRadio CarPlay app. 

Once you’ve download iHeartRadio to your iPhone:

  1. Switch on your car.
  2. Activate Siri on your iPhone.
  3. Connect your iPhone to your car’s head unit using a Lightning-to-USB cable (Unless using Wireless CarPlay). Your iPhone’s home screen will display on your car’s head unit, and CarPlay will launch when you connect.  
  4. Look for the iHeartRadio app from the apps displayed on your car’s head unit.
  5. Press iHeartRadio. By doing so, you launch iHeartRadio, and all its features will appear on the head unit.
  6. Tell Siri what you’d like to listen to on iHeartRadio OR use the screen to select audio.
  7. Enjoy the CarPlay app as you drive.


iHeartRadio CarPlay Features

The iHeartRadio CarPlay app allows you to listen to all your feature music and stations, such as:

  • Thousands of live and local AM and FM radio stations. From all around the world!
  • Famous personalities like Ryan Seacrest, Sean Hannity, Colin Cowherd, and many more.
  • Listen to a range of formats such as:
    • Radio
    • Music
    • News 
    • Podcasts
    • Talk 
    • Comedy
    • Sports: (ESPN Radio & Fox Sport)


iHeartRadio CarPlay - for you page

iHeartRadio CarPlay Premium Features 

There are two sets of levels of paid plans, iHeartRadio Plus at $4.99 per month and All Access at $9.99 a month. 

Essentially the Plus plan only covers a small selection of the all-access plan, which is powered by Napster.

iHeartRadio Plus: ($4.99 Per Month)

  • Replay: Giving subscribers the ability to instantly replay songs from live and custom Artist Radio stations and then return to the station in progress
  • Save: Save songs from live radio and custom Artist Radio stations directly to their My Music playlist for playback at any time
  • Search: Search from a library of millions of tracks
  • Unlimited skips: Skip as many times as you want. Subscribers don’t have a limit on the number of songs they can skip

iHeartRadio All Access: ($9.99 Per Month)

All of the iHeartRadio Plus features, plus:

  • Listen Offline: Subscribers can listen on the go, without needing an internet connection, using up your mobile data. Data can add up with CarPlay
  • Build subscribers’ personal music libraries: Completely create, control, and curate playlists from millions of tracks
  • Give subscribers total flexibility: No playback cap and the ability to delete and sequence playlists and manage unlimited playlists.

Find out more at iheart.com/upgrade/

iHeartRadio CarPlay Issues

iHeartRadio CarPlay is incredible as it allows you to listen to iHeartRadio services as you drive, making your ride more enjoyable.

However, like every other digital service, iHeartRadio CarPlay isn’t perfect. You may encounter minor issues while using iHeartRadio CarPlay.

 Some iHeartRadio CarPlay issues include:

  • CarPlay doesn’t activate automatically. When CarPlay doesn’t start automatically on your car, you’ll be unable to use iHeartRadio CarPlay. If you encounter this issue, try to restart your vehicle and the iPhone. 
  • CarPlay doesn’t detect your iPhone. When this happens, CarPlay is probably restricted on your phone.  You can change this in the settings.
  • Disconnection issues. Sometimes, iHeartRadio CarPlay will disconnect suddenly. iHeartRadio CarPlay always requires a stable internet connection, so make sure there’s no issue with you going online. Alternatively, it could be to do with the connection between the phone and the vehicle. See our article on CarPlay keeps disconnecting for more information.


IiHeartRadio CarPlay - app icon

Final Thoughts

iHeartRadio CarPlay is great as it allows you to listen to the radio while you drive.

As long as you have a compatible iPhone and car, and iHeartRadio is available in your area, you can use this radio app in your vehicle.

iHeartRadio CarPlay is free and is safe and easy to use, especially when paired with Siri.

Comparable to the TuneIn CarPlay app, but with less choice of stations. 

However, iHeartRadio CarPlay doesn’t replace the standard entertainment system in your car.

It’s just an app, so when you disconnect your iPhone from your car’s head unit, you close CarPlay and go back to the car’s standard interface.

Picture of Alex
I loved my car but was frustrated with my media system. So I upgraded my stereo, making silly wires and precarious phone mounts a thing of the past. The Apple Car Play stereo was so good I wanted to show more people how this could be done and truly upgrade their cars multimedia system! Founder StereoUpgrade.com
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