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Why Are My Car Speakers Crackling? We Sound Test 4 Reasons!

Last Updated on: May 25, 2022

Most experts consider loudspeakers the weakest link in the sound reproduction equipment chain. Even the slightest oversight can lead to specific problems, despite upgrading to a quality aftermarket stereo and amplifier.

Well, as you may know…

It can get annoying to have car speakers crackling while listening to your favorite music on a road trip.

Let’s try and find more ways to understand the cause of that crackling sound. Hopefully, this straightforward reference guide will help you fix car speakers quickly or know if professional help is already necessary.

Understanding The Crackling Noise Issue In Most Car Speakers

Every car owner must understand that finding the cause is the first step in resolving audio system problems, whether the crackling sound or something else.

Many problems with car speakers happen due to poor quality cables and connections, incorrect installation, overheated amplifier, or blown-out fuse.

But to address the crackling sound more accurately, the following are the most common causes and how to fix car speakers crackling problems:

1. Connectivity Issue

car audio wire diagram.jpg

Once you start hearing unusual sounds from your car speakers, such as the annoying crackling noise, check the wire connections first and foremost.

It is time-consuming but crucial to check the wire connection when diagnosing the noise. A bad connection can result from damaged connectors, like torn speaker wires or a possible loose connection.

It’s best to check all the wires to identify the source of the problem accurately.

If the speaker cables connecting to the amp are damaged or improperly installed, you will experience interference in your car audio. 

Check the wired connections if you have a custom sound system — the way we install them sometimes can be a cause of the crackling speakers. If you have not resorted to an upgrade yet, then maybe it’s time to replace the wires of your old sound system.

Due to a loose aux cable, there may have been a slight disconnection between the stereo and the speaker. You may also try to turn off your car audio, test the wires and ensure proper connection.

Remember that you may only resolve the noise issue if the problem is from the aux cable or merely a bad connection. However, a replacement might be necessary if the speakers crackle due to the head unit problem.

2. Poor Signal

Poor Signal

Wires transmit electrical signals to your car speakers. Sound distortion occurs when electrical devices, like power lines, interfere with the signal.

Either the antenna cable lacks protection, or there might be an electromagnetic interference close to the antenna that causes static.

Factory speakers can be tricky, so many car owners resort to customizing theirs. Some surfaces reflect the sound, while others absorb it. Not to mention that poorly-fitted speakers can also affect sound quality, especially when playing loud music.

The high volumes can cause speakers to crackle. So, if you find that one of those things is a problem for you, it will help to go for an equalizer installation. Or you can avoid bass boosted music; you will hear tweeters make crackling noises due to strong and deep bass transmission.

If you have an amplifier, you can listen to music at any volume level; it can produce signals without any problem, even at low volume. However, you might have a malfunctioning amp if the speakers crackle at high volumes.

High pass filters in your car audio system’s front and rear decks allow better regulating of bass sounds through your door speakers. Having such filters in place helps reduce too much bass in high-volume music; these filters also work well in forcing low frequencies.

3. Faulty Component

Faulty Component

When you’re trying to fix crackling car speakers, you also need to check the internal components. Problems with the speaker’s cone are often repairable, as you can replace broken or cracked cones. It requires technical skills and experience to check if the voice coil is the problem.

Crackling car speakers may likely occur when a voice coil touches any magnet nearby.

Bass boosted music has so much force that it can sometimes disconnect the speaker’s cones from the voice coils. If you attempt to repair broken cones but misalign the voice coil against the magnet during assembly, the car speakers crackle issue will persist.

Likewise, a damaged voice coil causes speakers crackling issues. It will help to check the ohms with a multimeter. Getting a measurement of anything more than 1.0 ohm means you have blown car speakers that need replacement.

Other components that can fail and cause noise in your car speaker are the resistor, transistor, solder joint, and capacitor. You must first locate the problem source to fix the solder joint.

Solder typically does not bond well with other components; resoldering the joint will fix the issue, allowing it to stand up to vibrations. After these troubleshooting steps, inspecting the amp will be your next course of action.

4. Damaged Amplifier

Damaged Amplifier

Amplifiers help you regulate your car music and adjust it based on your preference. Many car owners experience speaker crackle issues resulting from a faulty amplifier.

One of the most common problems is clipping or the interference between the amp and the power supply voltage.

Such concern can also occur when you play your music too loud, as amps have their limits, no matter how pricey they are. Despite several noise concerns due to lousy grounding, the problem could be something else if you find no dusty ground point or loose wire upon inspection.

To determine that your amp is defective and needs a replacement, see that you install it on a non-conductive surface and run at maximum power capacity. Then check if the amp heats excessively or has that nasty burnt smell because all troubleshooting steps won’t work if you have a blown-out amp.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why do car speakers make a popping sound?

Problems with the wiring system, amplifier, bad connection, and damaged voice coils are the most common causes of unusual sounds in audio systems. Aside from using an amplifier, you need to try different methods.

Such methods include investing in a ground loop isolator and adjusting your volume; with voice coils off center, it will create crackling noise. If you still can’t fix crackling car sounds, that’s when you should probably consider a speaker replacement.

How do I prevent car speakers crackling sound?

Any hardware problems can cause speakers to crackle, aside from speaker wires and connection issues. Ensure regular maintenance care, as even one malfunctioning component within the system, can cause unwanted noise.

Moreover, you can prevent speaker noise by avoiding music with too much bass and moving speaker wires away from electrical cords to avoid frequency interference. Lastly, get new, quality speakers if necessary.

What causes voice coil misalignment?

The voice coil sometimes separates from the cone due to the force of loud bass sounds. When such a thing happens, you will notice unusual noise at high volume and almost hear nothing at low volume. A voice coil typically surrounds the electromagnet at the back of the diaphragm.

In most cases, you can resolve a misaligned voice coil by easing it back to the center in small speakers with no adjustments. But for blown-out voice coils, it’s best to seek professional services for repair or replacement. Be mindful, though, that voice coil repair can be pretty costly.

Can crackling sounds cause damage to your car’s audio speaker?

The first thing you must understand is when your car speaker starts making unusual sounds, there might be a chance that it’s already faulty.

On the contrary, if your speaker is still functional, crackling noises can strain the voice coil. If such a problem persists longer, it may cause severe and permanent damage to the electrical parts of your speaker.


Conclusion

Unusual noises, such as your car speakers crackling sounds, can help you identify a problem. If none of the contributing factors is the culprit, or if the noise persists, it’s only practical to seek professional service to determine the cause.

Although sometimes, it also helps to discuss things with a knowledgeable friend or family member to keep you from making a costly mistake. Even when these people can’t fix car speakers, they can play the part of being an excellent sounding board for you.

At best, you may ask specific individuals about a similar experience, especially if they have a car speaker identical to yours.

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