Doorbells have replaced the traditional way of knocking on doors. They make it easy for us to know that someone is at the door without them having to knock repeatedly. However, the frequent use of this device can cause the button switch to get stuck, and that would cause the device to keep buzzing non-stop. A buzzing doorbell is a malfunction that can sometimes be dangerous.
A buzzing doorbell can cause a fire. If your doorbell is humming or buzzing relentlessly, the switch might be stuck in the contact position. If the device buzzes for a long time, the transformer’s electromagnet will burn out. However, you can prevent a fire outbreak if you attend to the situation quickly.
In this article, I will explain some of the possible causes of buzzing doorbells and how you can fix them. I will also answer other queries you might have on this topic. Read on to find out more.
What Is the Cause of Buzzing Doorbells?
The humming or buzzing sound in a doorbell is usually from the transformer.
The buzz is often caused by an electromagnetic field of the current that makes the metal laminations vibrate and create the buzzing sound.
If the transformer is overheated or shorted, it would make a buzzing sound and overheat.
Mounting the transformer loosely to a panel or junction box can further increase the noise.
Another thing that could make the door buzz continuously is when the button is stuck in the contact position.
If that is the case, the chime or bell will not work even when pressing the button delivers current to it.
How to Fix a Buzzing Sound from a Doorbell
The frequent use of the doorbell button is one of the reasons why it gets bad quickly.
The solution to this problem is easy and quick. If you do not want to replace the entire unit, you can buy and replace the button.
However, ensure you buy the same button for your doorbell brand and model, as a different button might not work.
1. Turn Off the Power
Before you start troubleshooting and fixing this problem, turn off the power.
Turn off the circuit breaker that controls your doorbell’s power.
You can turn off the main breaker if you do not know the particular breaker that controls the doorbell.
While the voltage of a doorbell’s transformer is low and safe for humans, it is always best to take out the power, as you are unsure of the voltage being used.
2. Remove the Plate
The next step is to unscrew the plate from the wall.
You need to use the right screwdriver to unscrew the plate.
There is one screw at the top and another at the bottom (for most models), and you need to remove both of them.
3. Remove the Button
After unscrewing and removing the plate, the next step is to remove the button.
Most times, the button might pull out with the plate.
However, if you take out the plate and the button is still stuck on the device, you have to pull it out gently.
The wires connecting the transformer to the plate might be wrapped around the screws, so you have to free the screws and remove the cables.
If your model comes with clipped-in wires, you have to cut them.
4. Strip the Ends of the Wire
This step is for those whose model comes with clipped-in wires.
After cutting the wires, strip them to enable you to install the new button.
Those whose wires are wrapped around the screw do not need to strip them, except they are broken or damaged.
5. Install the New Button
If you are not sure of the exact button to buy, take the button to the local electrical shop after losing it out.
Compare it side by side to ensure you are purchasing the right button. If you have your button, the next stage is to install it.
The first step to installing the new switch is connecting the wires.
Attach the cables the way they were when you loosened them.
For those with wire wrapped around the screw, put the screws in the holes, wrap the wires around the screw, and tighten the screws to hold the wires securely.
For those with clipped-in wires, clip the stripped wire after joining it.
Once the cables are in place, replace the faceplate and screw it.
6. Restore the Power
It is time to test your little experiment.
Turn on the circuit breaker you turned off earlier.
Listen to the doorbell before pressing the button.
If the problem is fixed, the buzzing sound will no longer be there.
Next, you have to test the device to see if it is working.
Push the doorbell button, and it should work normally.
However, if replacing the doorbell button does not fix the issue, you might need to check the transformer or replace the entire unit.
If that is more than your expertise, consider outsourcing it to the right professionals.
Are Doorbell Wires Dangerous?
Most of the parts in a doorbell are low voltage, making them safe.
However, the transformer of a wired doorbell might not be safe to touch.
You need to be careful working around it, as electric shock rules apply.
Touching it might result in severe injuries.
Hence, you should turn off the power completely when changing other components in the device.
Why Does a Doorbell Transformer Go Bad?
A doorbell’s transformer can get damaged for a couple of reasons, including bridged wires or staple-pinched wires.
In some cases, squirrels or mice can eat the wires, tearing the insulation.
When that happens, there could be a short circuit, which can burn out the transformer.
Does a Doorbell Transformer Make Noise?
Doorbell transformers make a small amount of noise.
The sound is very faint, and you can only hear it when you get very close.
However, once you start hearing the sound from a distance, chances are the transformer or other components of the doorbell are faulty.
How Do I Know If the Transformer of My Doorbell Is Bad?
You can tell if your doorbell transformer is bad by its voltage and the sound it makes.
If the transformer’s voltage is less than 16 volts, you need to replace it as soon as possible.
If the device continually buzzes even after changing the switch, it is a sign that the transformer needs replacing.
The doorbell is one of the most useful appliances in the home.
Still, many homeowners pay very little to no attention to it.
If your doorbell is buzzing or humming non-stop, you need to check it out immediately.
Do not leave it unattended; hoping the issue will resolve itself.
That constant buzzing can overheat the transformer, burning it and resulting in a fire outbreak.
Hence, you should replace the doorbell button or transformer or replace the entire component once it starts buzzing endlessly.
Cheers, tools owners!