Have you ever experienced your speakers making noises when the car is not running? This is a weird yet potential problem, especially when you have a car radio or music player that can power on even when your car engine is off.
Static coming from car speakers can be very irritating, but easy to diagnose. This guide will show you how.
Potential reasons why the car speakers make noises when the car is off
The following are possible reasons why your speakers are making noises despite the engine being off.
- Any kind of electrical interference
Anything that can distort or transmit electrical signals like mobile phones, power cables, or a plugged USB port can cause electrical interference. Anything that can transmit electric signals may cause the speakers to emit noises even when your car engine is not running.
- Radio is still getting power
If you can still power on the radio even when your car’s engine is off, then your radio is getting constant electricity. This could be one reason for your problem.
- Low-quality speaker wires
If your speaker wires are of low quality or the wiring made was not properly done, then the car radio may still be receiving power. Static noises may come from poorly-wired speakers.
- Poor grounding
If your car radio is not properly grounded, you may hear some static noises. To resolve this, proper grounding must be established, or replacing grounding wire with a thicker wire may do the trick. This problem rarely happens when the car radio is on.
- Antenna lead noises
To check if the antenna is making the weird noise, unplug it. If the nose disappears after unplugging the antenna, then you should install it to a device to suppress the noise. This breaks the ground between the antenna and receiver.
- Alternator and engine noises
If the noise comes from the power and ground wires that are connected to your receiver, then this may be an alternator or engine noise. The noise is described as a whining or clicking sound. Usually, the sound varies depending on the engine speed.
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The types of noises that car speakers make
The following are possible noises coming from the speakers even when the car engine is off.
- Static noise or white noise
Static noise or white noise can be from the speaker's electrical system. As mentioned, these noises could be due to poorly patched cables or wiring.
- Clicking or whining sound
Clicks or any whining can be due to the power wires or ground wires that are connected to the receiver. This is due to the engine, and the sound often varies depending on the speed of the engine.
- Hissing noise
Hissing is also due to problems with the electrical system. If you hear this problem, consult a mechanic or a technician to inspect your vehicle.
How to identify and fix speakers that make noises when the car is off
To fix a stereo you need to first identify the culprit. Because you’ll be ruling out different reasons for the noise, the following must be considered:
- Check any patched cables.
- Remove your receiver connection from the car’s dashboard. Do this while your stereo is powered on to listen for any weird noises.
- From the back of the amplifiers, disconnect the speaker’s cables. Afterward, switch your car off and listen for any noise.
- Check your car battery or alternator.
- Check car engine noises. Install a device known as a noise filter so you can avoid these annoying noises.
Fixing the noise
- Insulate all wires and patched cables. Ensure that there is no magnetic field near or around the car. Consult a certified specialist to check for broken or poor wiring.
- If the problem is your antenna, install a component called noise suppressor to sever the ground between the antenna and receiver. This device also stops any noises from distorting the car’s audio system.
- Install a noise filter in the middle of the battery and the alternator to reduce noise. You may also place install a sound filter on your receiver to reduce any signal problems.
- If you have a newly installed amplifier, then this may be the culprit. The new amp may be poorly mounted, and this can cause noise. You can adjust a car amplifier and use grommet or rubber feet to isolate the amp from the car chassis. If this does not help, your new amplifier may need a device to suppress its noise.
- If the problem lies in your car, start by placing the fluid in your battery. If this does not work, take your car to a mechanic to check your alternator and battery.
- Old vehicles with noise coming from the speakers should be tuned. Usually, this noise may increase when your engine is on, as well as when you speed up.
- Noise may also come from the distributor cap, carbon – core wires, and resistor spark plugs. Ground the ignition properly.
- If this irritating noise does not go away, book your vehicle for an upgrade. A mechanic can help you improve the chassis grounding wires and the charging wire of your batteries. Usually, large and thick cables will replace old wires that run the alternator to the positive end of the battery, the negative end to the car’s chassis as well as the wires from chassis running to your car’s engine block.
- If, after all these steps, you still hear noises coming from your speakers, you must take your car to a professional technician.
Ultimately, the easiest way to avoid audio issues like the car speakers making noise when the car is off is by relying on a professional car radio and speaker installer to install your system. It may be expensive, but a professional can save you hundreds of dollars in the end. If you hear noises coming from the speakers or any part of your vehicle, contact a certified technician right away.
James is a certified auto technician specializing in commercial vehicles. With 30 years of experience under his belt, James has encountered almost every type of automotive issue there is! Besides his day job at the repair shop, he is also an amateur race car driver.