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#4717429 - 04/05/18 05:30 PM weird interference on AM radio
JamMan Offline


Registered: 04/03/18
Posts: 3
Loc: USA
Hello! I have a Chevy 2013 Malibu. Nobody has been able to find the following problem, not the dealer, not my own mechanic, nor a car audio guy I know....

I am a big sports radio fan and enjoy AM radio. For some reason when running the A/C I get a whistle whiny sound and to make it worse, while charging my phone, I get a hiss/static noise. This doesnt happen on FM or it is very minimal while listening to FM. When I run the A/C full blast the whiny whistling sound pitches higher then finally goes away....Also when I unlock and lock the doors, you can here a quick noise of static through the speakers while the AM radio is running.

The radio sounds fine with no phone charging and no a/c running....Any suggestions? Thanks!

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#4717433 - 04/05/18 05:38 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
clarkflower Offline


Registered: 12/27/11
Posts: 743
Loc: US
I get that too in NC (on the coast)


Edited by clarkflower (04/05/18 05:38 PM)

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#4717435 - 04/05/18 05:42 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
Vern_in_IL Offline


Registered: 06/25/14
Posts: 1925
Loc: IL
Oh man this will be [censored]. Modern cars put out all sorts of harmonics. Even from passing cars I can get the whrilllllll from their engines on the radio.


https://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/a84/1272491/

Quote:
Now that you've pinpointed the noise, what can be done about it? It depends on whether your RFI source is broadcasting or cabling the noise to your radio. This matters because the cure is different. Try pulling your radio's antenna lead out. If the noise goes away or is substantially quieter, it's coming in through the antenna. If the noise stays the same or gets louder, it's coming in along the 12-volt power cables.



Quote:
A cheap AM radio makes a good Geiger counter-style device for hunting down RFI. Here, we're looking for an alternator with a bad diode. Mind your fingers.


Edited by Vern_in_IL (04/05/18 05:43 PM)
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#4717485 - 04/05/18 06:40 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
Chris142 Offline


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16946
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
My dad told me about this decades ago. He said that 99% of people dont listen to AM radio. And that the AM receiver in newer cars was built poorly and that the FM was built much better for this reason. Am is more susceptible to noise from outside sources, throw in poorly made noise filters or none at all and you get poor AM reception.
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#4717501 - 04/05/18 06:47 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
JLTD Offline


Registered: 12/15/17
Posts: 829
Loc: US
Welcome to AM. You can try shielding, filtering, improving the stereo but the frequency coming over the airwaves is still going to be corrupted at times.

I recall when I first started driving, at a certain time at night I'd get an AM station from somewhere in California. I lived on the East Coast at the time.
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#4717571 - 04/05/18 07:29 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JLTD]
Wolf359 Offline


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 4871
Loc: MA
Originally Posted By: JLTD
Welcome to AM. You can try shielding, filtering, improving the stereo but the frequency coming over the airwaves is still going to be corrupted at times.

I recall when I first started driving, at a certain time at night I'd get an AM station from somewhere in California. I lived on the East Coast at the time.


AM is amplitude modulation and is more susceptible to noise than FM. That's why they used to have resistored spark plugs otherwise you'd pick up noise from the engine. Not much you can probably do about it. You could try a different type of charger, it's probably the circuity in the charger that's putting out that noise. Try wrapping it in aluminum foil.

Also AM is almost like short wave, travels further in the ionosphere at night, in daylight the sun tends to kill the signal.

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#4717686 - 04/05/18 08:58 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
sasilverbullet Offline


Registered: 08/22/04
Posts: 1437
Loc: San Antonio, Texas
If you love AM so much find an old AM/FM radio from a early 70's Lincoln or Cadillac. They were built much better back then.
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#4717709 - 04/05/18 09:18 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
mk378 Offline


Registered: 09/27/15
Posts: 1442
Loc: USA
The big difference in the 1970s was in the tall metal fender mounted antennas. Printed on the window or little stubs are not going to work well with the longer waves of AM.

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#4717774 - 04/05/18 10:24 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JLTD]
Chris142 Offline


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16946
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Originally Posted By: JLTD
Welcome to AM. You can try shielding, filtering, improving the stereo but the frequency coming over the airwaves is still going to be corrupted at times.

I recall when I first started driving, at a certain time at night I'd get an AM station from somewhere in California. I lived on the East Coast at the time.
that's called skip. Am radio waves travel much farther at night.
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#4717823 - 04/05/18 11:19 PM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
Jooksing Offline


Registered: 03/05/18
Posts: 216
Loc: Chicago
Try a better phone charger, cheap circuits gives off electronic noise. Also check the grounding on your radio. All else fsil. Look at in line filters. Ferrous filters..https://youtu.be/jbv9PUC0xPk

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#4717838 - 04/06/18 12:12 AM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
Marco620 Offline


Registered: 02/25/14
Posts: 2215
Loc: Kansan,Heckler Koch fan
Got a great stereo and the AM acts up in Kansas City around 11am. Its like it trying to interfere with my listening to my advanced conservative studies on the EIB network with Rush. I like XM Radio but its gotten really high in price.
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#4717850 - 04/06/18 01:19 AM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: Marco620]
Wolf359 Offline


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 4871
Loc: MA
Originally Posted By: Marco620
Got a great stereo and the AM acts up in Kansas City around 11am. Its like it trying to interfere with my listening to my advanced conservative studies on the EIB network with Rush. I like XM Radio but its gotten really high in price.


How much are you paying for Sirius? I normally call them and tell them I'm going to cancel unless they can give me $30 for 6 months. Been doing it for years. I think there's a thread about it around here.

https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/4678001/Re:_Who_here_has_satellite_rad#Post4678001

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#4718035 - 04/06/18 07:51 AM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
Virtus_Probi Online   content


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 4041
Loc: New England
Avoiding interference in the AM band is a huge problem these days for electronics, many circuits will switch right in that range and that's not even thinking about harmonics. AM is a pretty crummy old technology when you get right down to it.
I would try an OEM charger if you're not using one already (assuming that your phone is a major brand) and also make sure your battery connection is rock solid, that's a nice big filter on the line in your car even when it's being charged by the alternator. A super cheapo charger from the dollar store is not likely to really meet the EMI standards it claims, one I bought at DG actually makes a fair amount of audible noise but I don't care in its application.

BTW, I use Sirius but it will get hosed up by power lines on my way to work and also drops out in patches when I drive up to ski...it's not totally reliable, either.


Edited by Virtus_Probi (04/06/18 07:52 AM)
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#4718280 - 04/06/18 11:46 AM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: Virtus_Probi]
ffhdriver Offline


Registered: 06/26/07
Posts: 430
Loc: Near Mobile
Years ago I had interference on an aftermarket AM radio from the blower motor for the HVAC. I reduced it to almost zero by putting a capacitor in line with the radio feed wire.

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#4722467 - 04/10/18 07:56 AM Re: weird interference on AM radio [Re: JamMan]
NYEngineer Offline


Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 1615
Loc: NY, NY
It's aliens talking to each other about us. Didn't anyone see Signs?


Edited by NYEngineer (04/10/18 07:56 AM)

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