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Why Is My Doorbell Chime Humming After Installing?

By Sophia W. Martin
1.8K views 2 mins read

Have you recently installed a new doorbell only to be greeted by an annoying hum instead of a pleasant chime? And thus is left to wonder why is my doorbell chime humming after installing.

Well, it could be anything ranging from incorrect wiring, improper grounding, poor installation, interference from electrical sources, or worn-out components that trigger the humming issues.

In fact, even internal misalignment or obstruction, incompatible chime issues, and transformer power issues can lead to this irritating noise.

Now the question is, how do you fix that in the first place? Well, that’s what this guide is all about.

Read on to find out!

7 Reasons & Solutions Why The Doorbell Chime Is Humming After Installing

The moment you press that button and hear the humming buzz, you’re probably right. There’s something wrong with your doorbell system.

Now the question is: what is it? Well, here are the potential reasons for the humming issues and also the solution you’re here for:

Reason 1: Incorrect Wiring or Improper Grounding

If the doorbell chime is humming, there’s a high chance that incorrect wiring somewhere within is causing the issue. Usually, the loose connections inside play the ‘culprit’ part. Plus, if the wires touch negative spots, it can cause the chime to hum. The same goes for reverse polarities.

As the heading says, improper grounding, too, can trigger the issue. After all, what else can disrupt electric flows better than this one and create electrical noise?

Incorrect Wiring or Improper Grounding
Incorrect Wiring

The Solution

I’d say you better leave this to experienced electricians. They can find out the faulty wiring and loose connections in your doorbell circuit with a multimeter and voltage tester.

Once they figure that out, it shouldn’t be a problem to fix up the connection with the push button, chime unit, and transformer. If it’s a case of reversed polarities, they can fix that too by establishing the right flow of electricity.

When it’s improper grounding, the professional should be able to find the missing or faulty ground connection at the chime unit or transformer. They need to install a proper grounding strap or wire there. This will create a safe path for the stray electrical current and fix the humming issues.

Reason 2: Poor Installation

If you don’t ensure proper installation in the first place, the doorbell chime can hum. Basically, using inferior installation materials and improperly secured components can trigger this issue. And of course, if you don’t tighten the screws enough where they can leave space and create vibrations, your chime can’t help humming.

The Solution

Look out for loose brackets, screws, or vibrations. If you see any, reinforce the mounting slightly and check if the humming sound goes away.

In case that doesn’t work out, you can call a professional and ask him to check the installation materials. And, if needed, replace them with high-quality components to stop the noise.

Reason 3: Interference from Electrical Sources

I bet you’ve got electrical devices in your home. Probably some of them come with transformers or motors. FYI, these components can trigger electromagnetic interference and make the doorbell hum once the button is pressed. But this usually happens when you’re putting those devices too close to your doorbell.

Interference from Electrical Sources
Interference from Electrical Sources

The Solution

You may need to relocate the transformer or motor-based electric devices away from your doorbell chime. This should lower the electromagnetic interference that is possibly causing the humming.

Reason 4: Worn-out Components

Over time, the doorbell chime components start to wear down. This mostly happens in the case of traditional mechanical chimes. The worn-out components can be anything like the springs and metal contacts.

Even the striker mechanism can go bad with time. If any of these parts start to deteriorate, the vibration issue can pop up, and the same goes for humming noises.

The Solution

Call for a professional who can disassemble your chime unit and check out the components for wear and tear. Depending on the parts’ condition, he may replace them.

But if too many components are triggering the issue, probably replacing the whole chime unit only can resolve it.

Reason 5: Internal Misalignment or Obstruction

Don’t underestimate the ability of debris or dust to create a humming noise. Obstructions like these exist to make it pretty rough for parts to move smoothly.

And guess what comes next? Exactly! Vibration and noise. Plus, the misalignment of internal components can also mess with the functionality of your chime unit.

Internal Misalignment or Obstruction
Internal Misalignment or Obstruction

The Solution

If you’re confident enough and follow the manufacturer’s instructions, carefully open your chime unit.

Try using compressed air to gently get rid of the dust and debris from the internal components. By the way, a soft brush should also be enough for the job. Stay cautious, as being even a bit rough can damage the delicate components.

Once you’re done with the cleaning, reassemble the whole thing and turn the power back on. If the humming is still there, I’d recommend consulting a qualified electrician.

Reason 6: Incompatible Chime Issue

There’s a chance that it’s a compatibility issue between your smart doorbell system and the transformer.

If there’s actually an incompatibility, the electrical mismatch makes the unit receive incorrect voltage or current. And you know what comes next after that—the humming.

The Solution

You may need an experienced electrician here. He’ll look into the compatibility level between the current chime, transformer, and doorbell.

He’ll match it up with the manufacturer’s specifications in the first place, along with compatibility charts, of course. If he notices any incompatibility there, he might suggest installing a new chime that can keep up with your doorbell system.

Reason 7: Transformer Power Issue

A doorbell chimes perfectly only if the transformer delivers a lower voltage to it. But sometimes the transformer itself can fail to reduce the voltage or give the correct output.

And what are the possible outcomes? Abnormal operation of the chime unit, including the humming buzz. By the way, the transformer can also act weird if there’s any issue with the incoming power supply.

The Solution

Let the electrician handle this one, who can assess the transformer’s functionality more accurately. The first thing he should do is measure the voltage output and check if it’s as per the manufacturer’s specifications.

If there’s anything wrong with the transformer, he will replace it with a new unit. This one should have a voltage rating perfect for your doorbell system.

What to Do If The Humming Persists?

Sometimes even after trying all the fixes, the chime can still humk. I’d say you try two things in such a case.

Add A Resistor

The name says it all. A resistor is basically a component that is designed to create resistance to the flow of electricity. This will a bit lower the voltage that is reaching the chime.

Not always, but sometimes, a decrease in voltage can fix the humming issue. This usually works when the doorbell system is providing a bit more voltage than required.

Replace the Chime for A New One

When nothing else is stopping the humming, this is your last resort.

A new chime will get rid of the compatibility issue and handle both the voltage and signal smoothly. Plus, it will fix the issue of worn-out components that can possibly trigger the humming buzz.

Troubleshooting & Maintenance Tips for Future Cases

Why is my doorbell chime humming after installation? Are you still asking this same question? I guess not. At least not if you’ve really checked out the above parts of the article.

But what about future issues? I say you better note these tips down if you want to deal with them.

  • After pressing the doorbell button, notice if there’s any change in the humming. If there are, the button itself can be faulty.
  • Don’t forget to turn off the power at the circuit breaker before you start working with your doorbell.
  • Check the transformer’s voltage output with a multimeter and compare it to the manufacturer’s specification. If the difference is significant, consult an electrician.
  • Clean the dust and debris every few months. This will help to prevent malfunctions. It’s better to use compressed air for the cleaning job.
  • Rely on your visual inspection. Do it regularly over the transformer, doorbell button, and chime unit. And if you see any signs of corrosion or damage, address it immediately. 
  • When the system gets older, ask a qualified electrician to inspect it periodically. This will help you detect potential issues before they get serious. 

Concluding Words

Doorbell chime humming might not be dangerous, but it’s still totally irritating. Clearly, you’re on the same page. But like in the blog, I’ve told you the reasons and solutions to this issue. To be honest, I think stopping it from happening is far easier.

I’m just glad that, at least from now on, I won’t have to call Joe and ask why is my doorbell chime humming after installing. Let’s hope you won’t have to worry about that too.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why does my Ring doorbell make noise?

The humming issue can happen due to anything like incorrect wiring or improper grounding, poor installation interference from electrical sources, and worn-out components. Even internal misalignment or obstruction, incompatible chime issues, and transformer power issues can trigger this.

Is it safe to ignore a humming doorbell chime?

It’s not dangerous, but it can surely be irritating. So, it’s better to address the issue as soon as you notice it.

Can a faulty doorbell cause a fire?

Yes, it can. A worn-down transformer that is incapable of reducing the incoming voltage can trigger the electrical current to surge and ignite a fire. 

Can I touch doorbell wires together?

Yes, you can, but it’s nothing I’d suggest. Though these wires operate at voltages like 16–24 volts, it’s better to follow safety precautions before touching them.

How long do doorbell chimes last?

They can last up to 10 to 15 years. But that goes for chimes that are well-made and correctly installed.

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