Why is my wall buzzing?


So you’re sitting at home one night and you hear a low buzzing sound in your wall. Why is it there? Why is it so annoying? Could it be, you ask yourself- dangerous? The answer is that this isn’t a normal situation. Vibrating or buzzing sounds could be a sign of any number of potentially hazardous electrical issues – ranging from wiring, switches to outlets – all of which require immediate attention. 

Here’s what you do first

First thing’s first is to try to identify where the sound is coming from. If you’re not really sure where to begin, we’ve got a few quick tips listed here to help you figure it out. Some of the reasons you might be hearing buzzing include:

  • Poor connections inside a switch or outlet
  • Screws that fasten wires to outlets may be loose
  • Your gas or electric meter is on the other side of the wall and might need servicing
  • Air vents could be buzzing due to excess air pressure
  • Turn off your ceiling fan to make sure the buzzing isn’t coming from there
  • Fluorescent bulbs do have a low hum. If they’re in your room, shut them off to see if the buzzing stops.
  • Look for signs of bees or wasps

Electrical outlet buzzing

OK – so here’s the one you’ve gotta keep your ears peeled for. If buzzing noise is coming out of an outlet in the wall – you’re likely hearing the electrical current running to the outlet. But – here’s the snag – you don’t want to hear that sound. Wall outlets don’t make that sound unless something is wrong.

If there’s a buzz, there’s a high possibility that there’s a loose connection and faulty wiring. Loose connections do occur from time to time just from being jostled around. This is more common in older outlets and light switches. If you live in an older home and you hear that noise, it’s time to get the outlet replaced. 

Another possibility is that the outlet was simply not wired correctly. Reverse polarity from bad wiring causes the buzz. This is 100% the culprit if you plug in an appliance and the buzzing gets louder. This is a situation that shouldn’t be taken lightly, though. Reversed polarity is something that requires the immediate attention for a licensed electrician. 

Still no luck?

If you still can’t figure out what’s causing the buzzing noise, give us a call. Our licensed electricians can help quickly inspect and diagnose the problem. Particularly if the problem is electrical – we can get to it and fix it fast. Until then – good luck!