A noisy phone line can present a variety of problems in a number of different ways for users. It can make conversations difficult if not impossible, it can affect internet performance on dial-up or DSL connections, and it can hinder the operation of other devices connected to your phone line, to name a few different repercussions that are the result of a noisy phone line. There are also a number of potential causes for noise on a phone line. Let’s consider five things which are possible causes for that noise on your phone that’s driving you crazy:
- Faulty Wiring – Anything from a loose connection to squirrels munching away on that tasty insulation could be the root cause of faulty wiring. Wiring that has become intermittent due to corrosion or abrasion often results in noise on the line. If the noise is in the form of a crackling sound on the phone line, this is a strong possibility.
- Weather – Rain-induced moisture or lightning can adversely affect the quality of your phone line. Lightning strikes will cause intermittent popping noises, whereas rain intrusion can cause connection problems or a humming sound on the line. If the problem presents itself whenever the weather gets wet then this is likely the cause of your noise and your phone should be back to normal when the weather clears up.
- Electrical Interference – Proximity to power lines can induce an electrical hum over the phone lines. The only solution for this is to separate the lines. In the case of high power lines nearby, it may be necessary to install filters on your phone line to cancel out the interference. High power radio station transmissions in the vicinity can even be heard over a phone line. Check with your phone service provider if you feel this may be your issue.
- Corrosion – Older or improperly insulated wiring can corrode, resulting in poor connectivity/conduction. This is most often seen at terminal points, where bare copper wiring connects to distribution panels, interface points, wall jacks, etc. Check all connections, focusing on areas where lines are exposed to the elements.
- Other Devices on the Line – Fax machines, answering machines, DSL modems, or splitters can all be the source of noise on a phone line. Depending on how and where they are connected to the land line, they can cause anything from a minor nuisance to internet disconnects and signal loss. DSL modems should be separated from your phone line with a DSL filter, and dial-up users should disconnect other devices when logging online.
If you are experiencing consistent problems with noise interference on your phone line, your best option may be to schedule a full inspection of your wiring and connection points by a professional in order to determine the source and solution to the problem.