1st Gen FTW - It's AutoMedic!
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Garrison, ND
Pulling the head unit isn't hard to do - you can check for those connectors though too, yes. If the radio is still spotty, I'd be afraid that you have an amplifier (either in the head unit or the trunk) that is failing. I'd guess up in the dash though, personally.
As for replacing it, no, it isn't hard to do. You just have to bypass the factory amp, or find the right wire to activate to turn it on. I don't have any experience in that though, never have had to do it.