How to fix a humming noise from a laptop's power adapter

Written by lita mcleary
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How to fix a humming noise from a laptop's power adapter
Know how to deal with humming noise from your laptop's power adaptor. (digital camera adaptor image by Sid Viswakumar from

With continued use, a power adaptor--which is necessary to recharge a laptop's battery--can malfunction and become unusable. Several ways exist, however, to troubleshoot power adaptor problems before having to purchase a new one. If you hear a humming noise from your laptop’s power adaptor, a number of factors may be causing it.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Voltmeter

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  1. 1

    Check if the adaptor is properly attached to the power port of the laptop. Check if the power cord that is attached to the adaptor is properly plugged. Unplug the power cord from the power outlet first, and then unplug the other side of the power cord from the port on your adaptor. Unplug the power adaptor from the laptop. Reattach everything properly and see if the humming noise stops.

  2. 2

    Confirm that the power adaptor you are using is compatible with your laptop. Each brand or model of laptop has a specific power adaptor required. Using a power adaptor for another laptop may damage the laptop’s battery and affect other hardware parts.

  3. 3

    Test the power adaptor using a voltmeter. Check the volt measure that flashes on the voltmeter screen. If you are testing a 100V adaptor and the voltmeter flashes 100V or higher, the adaptor is functioning properly. If the voltage is lower, the adaptor must be replaced.

Tips and warnings

  • If your old power adaptor has been damaged and you need to purchase a new one, read the “output voltage” level on the sticker attached to the adaptor. The voltage (e.g. 100-240v) should be the same as your original adaptor, and the “amperage” should be the same or higher than the original adaptor. The adaptor plug should also fit your laptop.
  • You must attach the power adaptor to a power cord before you can use it. If you tested the power adaptor and found out that it is working properly, the problem may lie on the power cord. Change the power cord and see if that solves the problem.
  • If the humming noise does not stop after completing the steps above, unplug the power adaptor from the laptop immediately and consider buying a new one.

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