(SOLVED) Whining Noise From Speakers When Accelerating

Norvan Martin
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As a car enthusiast or traveler, nothing ruins an enjoyable road trip like hearing distracting, whining noises from speakers when hitting the gas pedal. Unfortunately, this problem is all too familiar among drivers everywhere and often stems from electrical interference or ground loop issues.

By following some troubleshooting steps and employing effective solutions, you can find ways to eliminate this noise while enjoying high-quality sound while accelerating. In this article, we’ll identify common sources of whining from speakers when accelerating and offer advice for quickly solving them.

The whining noise from the speakers when accelerating can be caused by several factors, including:

1. Improper Grounding

Issue: Speaker noise during acceleration is often the result of improper grounding in the audio system. Remember, amplifiers need a solid ground connection to function properly.

Otherwise, voltage differences between different components of the system may introduce unwanted noise into the audio signal that will cause a whistling noise when driving faster. Sometimes this can result in loud accelerating sounds coming from the speakers.

Fix: A common cause of speaker noises is an improper ground connection. First of all, ensure that your amplifier is grounded. If grounded, a solid connection is critical to maintaining optimal electrical system functioning; otherwise, unwanted sounds might make their way to your speakers as an annoying disturbance.

Amplifier grounding

Proper grounding requires drilling a grounding point onto bare metal on the car’s chassis. You can also use a factory grounding point. In either case, you need to ensure that the bolt is directly connected to the metal chassis and that it does not have any dirt, paint, rust, or other residues on it. Next, connect your ground wire terminal to your bolt in the new grounding point and tighten the ground wire using a star or lock washer and nut.

Check the ground wire regularly for looseness or corrosion to make sure it’s secure; in extreme cases replacing damaged wire may be required to restore reliability.

2. Power Supply Issues

Issue: Remember, draw power from the vehicle’s electrical system. An inadequate audio power source could also contribute to whistling and whining sounds during acceleration.

An insufficient supply could force components of it to operate less efficiently or interfere with audio signals causing speakers to produce whistling sounds as the car speeds up, increasing demand for power consumption. 

This noise from the power supply can be picked up by the amplifier and subsequently amplified.

This of course leads to loud whining sounds when acceleration takes place and power demands spike significantly. When this interference takes place during acceleration, it causes significant demands which results in noise-making interference which creates whining sounds during acceleration.

Fix: One approach could be using a ground loop isolator to isolate multiple grounding points that create interference; when placed between the audio source and the amplifier this device helps block out unwanted interference noise while reducing power consumption.

Car amplifier power supply

In addition, as a matter of best practice, your amplifier should have its dedicated power line directly connected to the battery. Try to avoid tapping into existing power sources as this will increase the likelihood of interference.

3. Radio Frequency Interference

Issue: Radio Frequency Interference, more commonly referred to as RFI, can cause loud whining noise from speakers when accelerating. RFI is an electromagnetic interference phenomenon that affects electronic devices – including car audio systems.

Interference is often due to electronic devices such as mobile phones, radio transmitters, and others. If an audio system is improperly shielded against RFI, it could disrupt its signal leading to annoying whining noise when playing back audio tracks.

Fix: RFI can be reduced by proper shielding and filtering. The easiest way to do this is by installing a noise filter.

A noise filter works to eliminate noise by placing itself between the source and the amplifier to block out frequencies that cause unwanted sounds in an audio system and eliminate them before they become noticeable to listeners.

4. Malfunctioning Amplifier

Issue: If a ground connection and ground loop isolator aren’t addressing your speaker noise issue, check the car’s amplifier instead. A malfunctioning amplifier could be producing unwanted sounds through the speakers in your car.

There are several issues with the amplifier itself that could cause the wining sound. Common examples include inadequate cable routing, failing components, and so on. The cable issue is particularly popular.

The issue here is often with the routing since audio cables running parallel to power cables will be caught in the electromagnetic fields of the power cables. This then creates noise in the audio cables that travel to the speakers and create that whining sound. 

Fix: Make sure all wiring connections are secured tightly or address any loose connections immediately if they exist; loose connections must also be repaired immediately or replaced entirely if applicable.

To prevent the cable interference issue, you need proper separation between the audio cables and the power cables. Otherwise, you can shield your audio cables. 

5. Check Your Alternator

Issue: If the problem continues, it could be down to a failed alternator An alternator’s primary job is charging and powering your electrical system; when malfunctioning improperly it can produce noise through speakers or audible buzzes in your speakers.

Fix: A malfunctioning alternator is an electrical issue that should be addressed immediately. However, it is not something that you should attempt to meddle with if you do not understand your car’s electrical system and you are qualified to do so.

Car amplifier whining noise

Your best option is to have a professional mechanic inspect the alternator and certify that it is functioning properly. 

6. Issues with the Transmission

Issue: An old transmission might be showing signs that it’s wearing out. For instance, a loud whining sound when you speed up could mean that the gearbox isn’t switching gears the way it should.

Fix: Normally, this issue points to the possibility that the transmission might need to be fixed or replaced. The same goes for transfer cases. In both cases, it could suggest that other parts inside are not getting enough oil.

7. Valve Train Complications

Issue: Knocking sounds might also originate from valve train problems, such as issues with worn camshaft lobes, lifters, bent or warped pushrods, and obstructed oil paths hindering adequate oil flow to engine parts.

Fix: Make sure the intake manifold gasket doesn’t have any leaks which could cause vacuum leaks.

8. Issues with the Belt Tensioner

Issue: A malfunctioning belt tensioner might be another source of unusual noise. If it’s not keeping the belts tight as it should, your pulleys and belts might make strange noises when you step on the gas.

Fix: It’s crucial to frequently check that all bolts on parts like the alternator are tight. Bolts that aren’t screwed in tightly can create a ticking noise that resembles the sound of a power steering pump switching on and off.

9. Engine Knocking Noises

Issue: Engine Rattling Sounds Rattling sounds in the engine can be due to different things, such as using fuel with too much octane, timing your ignition too far ahead, or if your engine gets too hot.

Fix: Dealing with these rattling sounds quickly is important because they can seriously damage your engine. Start by checking the oil level and adding more if it’s low. Plus, verify that you’re using gasoline with the correct octane rating for your vehicle.

Conclusion

Accurate diagnosis and resolution of speaker noise when accelerating is essential to an enjoyable driving experience, especially since such noise could potentially come from ground loops or electrical interferences.

Troubleshooting steps must therefore be taken to identify its source and isolate its source – potentially installing a ground loop isolator or upgrading power and ground wiring respectively may help eliminate such interferences while enjoying crystal-clear audio when driving! Professional installation may also be required depending on where exactly you reside. If you are having other general speaker engine noises, check out this article.

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Norvan Martin is the founder of BoomSpeaker.com. He is a professional Electronics Engineer and is passionate about home theater systems and AV electronics. BoomSpeaker was created as an online hub to share his knowledge and experiences as it relates to home theaters and home audio electronics. My email: [email protected]  Connect on Pinterest and Linkedin