How to Diagnose Funny Computer Noises

by ContributorUpdated September 28, 2017

Computers make noises for a variety of reasons. Some of these sounds are normal and actually indicate that something is working properly. Other sounds, however, indicate that something needs to be looked at and possibly fixed. Use this list to diagnose funny computer noises.

Turn on your computer and listen for beeping noises while it's booting. This can mean that either your computer has a stuck key on the keyboard, a password, an alarm or that it doesn't pass the Power On Self Test. Test the keyboard by turning off your computer, removing the keyboard and turning your computer back on. If the beeping is gone, the keyboard is the problem. If the "Num Lock," "Caps Lock" and "Scroll Lock" lights are flashing, your computer has a password. Remove and reattach the case cover to make the alarm stop. A failed POST starts a beep code to clarify why your computer didn't pass the test.

Move the speakers if you hear loud popping or cracking when they are on. The noises are normal when the speakers are first turned on or off, but if the sound continues it means that something around the speakers may be causing them to make these sounds. If moving them doesn't fix this, the speakers might be failing or already broken.

Clean the power supply fan if you hear weird whining or grinding noises from the back of your computer. Unplug your computer before doing this. If cleaning doesn't fix the problem, you may need to replace the power supply unit. Also make sure that the fan isn't hitting anything, such as wires, when it spins.

Listen for a soft whirling noise when the CD-ROM drive is in use. If you don't hear any noise or you hear a clicking, there's a problem with the drive. Another issue is if you hear sounds when it's not being accessed. The drive may need to be replaced if you have any of these issues.

Take a monitor that is making noises or flashing during standard use to a professional. Sounds are normal when a monitor is turned on and off, when an operating system or game is opened, and when you change the resolution.

Place your hand on top of a hard drive that is making sounds. If you feel vibrations, it means that it's failing. Back up all of your data to prevent loss from happening before you're able to install a new drive.


A computer repair professional has the right equipment and knowledge to diagnose the problems that you can't.

More Articles