Intermittent buzz from breaker box


Old 11-05-04, 08:14 AM
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Intermittent buzz from breaker box


I co-worker recommended this site, I hope someone can shed some light on this problem.

I am hearing a buzz coming from our breaker box. It happens about every 5-10 minutes and is pretty consistent. The buzz lasts for a second or two then totally goes away. Last night, I thought I heard it coming from the kitchen... upon further investigation, it seemed to be coming from the stove. So now I have definatly verified that this comes from the stove and also from the breaker box. I am not certain if the two noises happen at the same time or not. The noise is fairly loud at the breaker box and can be heard on the other (outside) side of the wall. Could a breaker be going bad or something like that?

Thanks for any help!

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Old 11-05-04, 08:17 AM
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Something is loose. Tighten it. You might want to have a professional check the panel since it's a dangerous world in there.

Does this happen only when the stove is on? Or also when it is off?

If it is cycling somewhat predictably, then it's probably due to an appliance that is also cycling, such as a clothes iron, a refrigerator, a sump pump, a waterbed heater, a heat pump, an air conditioner, an electric oven, etc.
Old 11-05-04, 09:31 AM
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Thanks for the quick reply! I haven't noticed if it is an appliance etc, cycling but that is what I was thinking. Would it have to be an appliance on the same circuit or could it be anywhere in the house? Reason I ask is I have an old (beer) fridge ... that's the only thing I can think of that is sure to be on its way out soon.

By loose, you mean a cable in the breaker box?

Thanks again!
Old 11-05-04, 01:13 PM
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check inside the panel and look for corroded or burn marks on any of the wires.could be a loose connection somewhere causing an arc.feel the outside of the panel for heat as that is usually a good indication.breakers do go bad as well and if a breaker is not sitting tight in place could cause an arc on the busbar.could be a number of things but more often than not when u hear that buzz,that's what it is
Old 11-05-04, 01:23 PM
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Thanks for the tips and help! I will check out the box when I get home to try and isolate. I am very comfortable with electical work, but was a bit clueless when I began hearing this noise.

Thanks again

Old 11-09-04, 05:54 AM
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Well --

It seemed to have been a loose breaker in the box. They are very sloppy when you take the panel off; sliding up and down fairly easily. Not sure if that is normal or not, but anyway, pressed on all of them to make sure they were seated, replaced the cover, and haven't heard the noise again [yet].

Thanks everyone for your help!!

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