I know this might sound off topic but please read.
I have an AM radio which is plugged into power in the wall. There is a buzz
noise in the background of whatever stations I listen to. I turned on one
light in the house and all the sudden the noise disappeared. I turned that
light off and the noise comes back. The switch of that light is giving scr
atching noise when I switch it on/off. So if I keep the light on , I would
not hear any noise. Why is that? Is there anything wrong with electrical w
iring of the house?
1. This noise does not suggest dangerous defects in the house wiring.
AM Radio is more vulnerable to interference than FM or digital radio.)
2. Cheap radio receivers are more vulnerable to interference than
hi-fi receivers. One common remedy was to reverse polarity of the power
plug, i.e. interchange the plug prongs connected to the power wire.
3. Chuck probably meant you should inspect the wall switch that
silences the AM interference. At least, without touching, you could
remove the face plate and see whether any wire is loose. (Nudge each
wire with a wooden pencil -- not a metal conductor.) If you see any
sign of malfunction, switch off the (fusebox) breaker controlling this
switch and tighten all connections with a screwdriver (or else
call an electrician.).
Dimmer switch or regular? What sort of bulb is in the fixture? Are you in a
weak-signal area? My mother used to live in an area where the AM signals
were always weak from every station, even a 50kW station less than 20 miles
away, and it seemed that everything vaguely electrical in the neighborhood
caused noises to come and go.
If so, remove the switch and take a look. Loose connection, maybe.
Or wall switch is cheap just replace it and report back. My AM radio
is NRD pro grade receiver I seldom use. It has noise blanker which is
That not an unusual circumstance. Any change in wiring conduction can cause
You can try unscrewing the light. If there is a problem with that circuit,
that might indicate something. Or, unplug the light.
The suggestion about the illuminated switch is important, because that
little light is on when the switch is off. Many of the other
suggestions seemed mostly to apply if the radio worked badly when the
switch was on. Still, changing the switch is one obvious thing to
do. Maybe there is a carbon trace inside the switch that allows a
little bit of current to flow, erratically.
I have a 200 dollar table radio that, when the VCR right next to it is
on, it interferes with the radio's sound. Of course there is no real
need to have a play-only VCR on when the radio is on, so I can just turn
I don't know why. But I'll add an anecdote.
Sometimes there is loud background noise on AM recption. It disappears
while the microwave xor the toaster over are running. Both appliances
are on the same outlet across the house fro where the radio is plugged
in. Eventually the noise disappears "on it's own".
So, in conclusion, it's not the switch, it's the power consumption.
On Tue, 15 Jul 2014 08:27:33 -0700 (PDT), leza wang
Everyone seems to be guessing, so here is my guess - Some nearby
device in your house is creating the noise on your power lines. It
could be a TV, a florescent light, a plugin power supply for a cell
phone or some other device, a computer, or practically anything. When
you turn on the light controlled by the switch, that load drowns out
the noise. If I am correct, there is no danger or problem with your
house wiring. You just need to find the device creating the noise and
unplug it or filter it. Try turning the switch on and then unscrewing
the bulb in the light it controls. If the noise returns, it supports
my theory that the electrical noise is being lowered by the load
controlled by the switch and there is nothing wrong with the switch or
wiring. Good luck.
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