Where is that strange humming noise coming from…

Categories: Miscellaneous 429 Comments


People all across the planet have reported hearing a strange humming/droning noise at the dead of night usually in their bedrooms like my wife and myself heard last evening.

This is a bit off topic but as I am in an industry that makes a living out of recording sound and vision I feel obliged to report this weird phenomena that has occurred a second time over the last two years.

I was in the edit suite which is right next door to our bed room when my wife came in and asked me what the humming noise was, it was about 1.30am. I switched off all the equipment and could still faintly hear a low, almost mains hum in our bedroom, it is officially reported to be between 40-80 Hz.

I decided to see if the noise was only in the house or outside so we drove round the local area in Burnside, Rutherglen stopping and listening, strangely the noise could also be heard a quarter of a mile up the hill from my house facing south but going the same distance north, nothing.

I looked for the obvious train line maintenance or any kind of construction but once again nothing, the same happened about a year and a half ago and we went through the same exercise.

This strange low frequency hum has also been reported from Canada and England all with the same story only noticeable at night, we don’t have any overhead pylons anywhere near us so it remains a mystery.

Is mother earth being mined under our very feet ?

A recent question… “Anyone have any ideas why it’s mostly heard at night and in the bedroom?”

Editor : Night time is simple…a lot less noise from cars, birds etc its probably in every room but you are more in tune with your bedroom as you spend a third of your life in it and more importantly in the same place i.e.. your position in your bed remains a constant so your ears are highly tuned to that particular space.

“The Hum is a mysterious and untraceable sound that is heard in certain locations around the world by two to ten percent of the population. Historically, the area that has been most affected by the Hum is the United Kingdom, where reports have been frequent since the early 1970s. In the United States, Hum reports date from the early 1990s, with the two most publicized locations being Taos, New Mexico, and Kokomo, Indiana. The source of the Hum has never been located. The Hum does not appear to be a form of tinnitus and may not be an acoustic sound. More than just a noise, the Hum is also capable of manifesting as vibrations felt throughout the body and is often accompanied by a suite of physical symptoms that includes headaches, nausea, and pain in the ears. Analysis of the largely anecdotal data that are available at the present time suggests that the most probable explanation is that some people have the capability to interpret radio transmissions at certain wavelengths as sound. It is well established in the scientific literature that people can hear electromagnetic energy at certain frequencies and peak power levels. Previous studies have found that a subset of the population has an electromagnetic sensitivity that is significantly greater than the mean. Several hypotheses are considered and discussed as possible sources of the Hum. These include cellular telephone transmissions, LORAN, HAARP, and the TACAMO aircraft operated by the US Navy for the purpose of submarine communications. “


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429 comments on this post

  1. Richard says:

    Ah, just noticed Roslin – UK.

  2. L says:

    It is in b flat mainly ive checked the frequency many times

  3. chris says:

    i am in the US and noticing that the HUM is much louder in winter months than summer months. anyone else have a similar observance?

  4. Kirstie says:

    I live in a very small town in south east Australia but have heard the hum in all the places I have lived including Melbourne

  5. Kirstie says:

    Hi carol did you end up setting up a Facebook page

  6. Kirstie says:


    Found the Facebook page for this that are interested :)

  7. kim says:

    this has been very invasive and sort of sickening in Mesa, AZ,USA-anything from almost an electric, buzzing feel under the feet-indoors and out- to a head thrumming similar to when a car window is cracked open at certain speeds. My indoor pets (cage free rabbits and birds) have noticed this at times, and so has company- no one can figure it out, or even which direction it comes from.Glad it is not just our imaginations!

  8. Lynda Mountfort says:

    My experience started in March this year, which is the last month roughly of NZ summer. Been pretty consistent over winter, but less so for the last month to 6 weeks, only one or two really severe nights when the oscillations are faster and seem to speed me up as well! So will be interesting to see if it continues to be less severe through our summer which is starting now.

  9. Garry says:

    Hi Lynda, Where in NZ are you? I’m in Timaru and have noticed the same as you. I’m wondering if it has a relation to the oil companies with their “fracking”.
    We’re on the edge of the Pacific plate – I reckon the vibrations from fracking in the northern hemisphere could be resonating through the bed rock. I may be dampened by groundwater levels at certain times of year. Just an idea, Cheers.

  10. Seve says:

    Found the same thing ,when its 20 degrees plus at night in the summer ,i cant here it ,the colder the whether the louder the noise.
    I’m in the Goldfields in Australia

  11. Carol says:


    Hi, this is the link to facebook group.

  12. Richard says:

    Absolutely not fracking.

    Fracking has been used for decades before anti progress groups got wind of the attempts to extract from shale gas.

    There is no fracking, yet, in the UK but many hum reports so it isn’t that.

    The link to mains frequency may be key but many other possibilities exist.

  13. Richard says:

    The link to temperature maybe points to an internal problem: is warmer weather changing the viscosity of the fluids etc in the ear?

  14. Richard says:

    B flat – which one?!

  15. Lynda Mountfort says:

    Hi Garry, I’m in Upper Hutt, about 30 minutes north of Wellington. No fracking in my area, no turbines, just lots of lovely bush-clad hills and a river. I’ve heard it in other homes a little south of where I live also. Lynda

  16. Steve says:

    Richard: Fracking is definitely happening currently in the UK. Although it’s kept very quiet, it’s happening in Northumberland right now. Very few people are aware other than the landowners. They have a 3 year contract which I believe is coming to an end.. Interestingly it’s 3 years since this started for me.

    We also have an abundance of turbines, more than anywhere else in the UK – definitely another suspect, and until I heard about the fracking they were my primary suspect.

    Air temperature will allow the sound to propagate differently, I’m pretty sure we don’t hear the actual LFN from the source, but the effect on the structure of our surroundings – hence why we tend not to hear outside even when otherwise quiet. Electromagnetic radiation detector goes mad when testing walls of the bouse when the hum is at it’s worst.

    These are my findings, and believe me I’ve travelled many miles to find the actual sources.

    The fracking operation I need to look further into, and I’ll try and get some pics too, though that could be difficult due to it’s location and the nature of their operation.

    There are few locations in Europe where this is not heard, most of the UK seems to be pretty much saturated.

    Of late it has increased massively, whether this is temperature related I can’t say 100% but the past 6 weeks has been pretty bad. My old house had it 10x worse. Thank God I moved, I can think again!

  17. Garry says:

    Hi Lynda,The fracking theory might be a bit far fetched. The hum has been particularly loud over the past two nights here, however Friday & Saturday nights were silent – bliss. I could even hear the 3am freight train moving off from the station heading north. I live approx 15km from there, that’s how still and silent those nights were – just like the old days. Whatever the cause of this annoying hum is, seems to be worldwide.

  18. L says:

    Its the lower b flat. It is not the same noise as water pressure in pipes as ive checked. It goes on mainly aswinyer begins and seems to stop In the spring.
    I have also noticed a wifi address on my wifi list called CDFN.
    I have had a little look online and it seems to be an experiment in frequencies haptic feedback and space exploration or something. it might be something to look into.



  19. Richard says:

    Steve, fracking has been going on since 1947 in the UK, the current kerfuffle is over shale gas fracking. My third paragraph should have been in accord with my first two thusly: “There is no shale gas fracking…”.

    The final arbiter is measurement: get someone to do an audio spectrum analysis. Until you’ve done that all is speculation.

    Btw, I have been unable to find anything about ongoing fracking of any kind in Northumberland even on loony green sites.

    L – those links are not relevant: they are receiving data not sending it.

  20. Richard says:

    L – “lower B flat” – as I said, which one?!

    There is a B flat just above the A often used in “concert pitch” tuning forks at 440Hz, this B flat is at 466Hz. By simple division by two (an octave) we get B flats at 233, 116.5, 58.25 and so on.

    I suspect you mean 58.25. This is very close to UK 50Hz mains frequency which could easily be modulated by harmonics to sound a tad higher to the ear.

    Look, first, for a 50Hz mains source.

  21. MC says:

    I live in Hoover Alabama and we began hearing this sound last week late at night. It is a constant hum. Got on Google Earth and there is 2 rock quarries near me one is 5.5 miles NW and the other is 4 mile SW I have lived here for 15 year and never have heard this noise before

  22. Bert says:

    Yep, I think a lot of it has to do with sound waves traveling underground. I once lived near a large hospital that used huge turbines on furnaces when heating. I could hear the noise inside my house blocks away, but not outside.

    A lot of it also seems to be around 60 Hz. in the states from I think underground electrical lines.

    My current house is built on a cement slab and sometimes I hear the noise inside the house, but nothing outside the house. It seems to come from large boats idling in the waterway.

    I bet in your case the sound is traveling underground from the quarry along a strata of underground rock bed, something like that. Bert

  23. DAN Smart says:

    I hear it 24/7. When I put my fingers in my ears, I hear it even clearer. It sounds as though it is in the middle of my head–

  24. Richard says:

    Then find an anechoic chamber, step inside and shut the door. if it’s still there it’s unfortunately internal.

  25. Tamura says:

    I really don’t understand this constant humming thing but I do know that it follows me a lot an yes it does feel like it is right in the middle of my head I hate this soo much it sometimes gets soo loud at night I can’t sleep an my head starts hurting really bad I’m in Virginia an it’s not even 3 pm an right now that humming fading in an out now but tonight when I go to bed it will be louder I try an drown it out with my sleep mate that doesn’t even work this is very stressful because I never get a full 8 hrs of sleep is there anything I can do to make this go away it has to be something that we can do

  26. chris says:

    tamura, set up a small fan in the bedroom, or a noise machine. its the only thing that’s given me any relief from the hum at night.

  27. Eddie says:

    I use an air purifier set on low which creates sufficient white noise to mask the hum, and which at the same time purifies the air. I think that’s a better option for me than simply using a fan, although it’s a matter of individual choice – what works for one person might not for another.

  28. tamura says:

    Thanks soo much for the quick responses. .I do use a sleep mate that puts out a white noise but I find that it doesn’t work sometimes but I will try a little fan an air purifier thank you all soo much..I will try anything..at this point..thank you..God bless

  29. Mike says:

    I think you’re on to something when you suggest the hum is worse in the wintertime. I definitely notice it then. I agree that a fan or air purifier is the best solution to mask the problem.

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