Do you feel that the sound of the turn signal is louder than it should be? In most cars, the indicator sound is at the level of quiet clicks. However, if it is loud enough to hear over the music of your stereo, you must be searching for a way to disable the turn signal sound. Can you turn the blinker noise off? In most cases, yes, you can.
People sometimes complain that the turn signal is annoyingly loud. Such variation may be present even between two cars of the same make and model. In rental cars, the sound is especially noticeable. It is the side effect of the agency choosing to install a more robust flasher. A robust flasher, in turn, has a thicker bimetal strip, causing a louder sound during a turn.
Where From Does The Turn Signal Sound Come?
In many cars, a mechanical thermal-type flasher controls the flashing turn signal. An electric current flows through the device, which houses a bimetallic spring located inside the relay.
When the turn signal is ON, current flows through the bimetallic spring. It heats up, and due to the different thermal expansion rates of the bimetal, the spring bends away, breaking the circuit. Once it cools down, the spring straightens up and connects the route again. As a result, the turn signal flashes the way we can see.
The back and forth motion of the bimetallic strip occurs very quickly. The clicking sound you can hear originates from such oscillation. Depending on the design of the turn signal relay, it can be louder or softer.
In moderately new cars, i.e. those made after 1990, the turn signal operates via a microchip and an electromagnet. The chip regulates the electromagnet to open and close the circuit for the flashes. An added bimetallic strip still causes the familiar clicking. However, the strip is superfluous.
A fully electronic flasher is also a possible mechanism for controlling the turn signals. In this case, the relay uses an electronic chip and produces little to no noise. There are no moving parts. Consequently, the manufacturer may include a fake sound-producing element. The reason behind that is to alert the driver that the turn signal is in operation.
Ways To Disable The Turn Signal Sound
The first step is to identify which kind of relay your car uses. Depending on that, the disabling procedure will vary.
1. Thermal-type Relay
If your car uses a thermal-type flasher relay, then there is no way to stop the sound. It originates physically from an essential component. However, you can replace the mechanical relay with an electronic one. Electromagnet type relays are much quieter than thermal flashers.
You will need to access the space behind the dash where the electronic components attach. You can check the owner’s manual for its location. No special tools come into play for this operation. However, if your car’s dash covers are screwed on, you will need the appropriate screwdriver to open it.
2. Electromagnet-type Relay
If you have an electromagnet flasher, you can modify it. Remove the redundant bimetallic strip. It will stop the clicking sound without affecting the functioning of the relay. Take care not to damage the remaining parts of the relay. It is because the chipset is usually delicate and requires gentle handling. Getting access to the relay is the uncomplicated part of the task.
First, you have to open the casing of the relay. The trick is to find a seam and pry it open using a paper cutter. After that, locate the bimetal strip. Figure out if it can separate itself from the circuit closing element near the electromagnet. If yes, great! Remove the bimetallic strip, put the casing back on and reinstall the flasher. Once done, you are free of the sound.
However, the strip may prove impossible to remove without damaging the relay. If that is so, you can also replace the relay with an electronic chip module to disable the turn signal sound. The replacement procedure is the same as before.
3. Electronic Chip-type Relay
In this case, the turn signal sound is an external phenomenon to the relay. If a separate speaker is attached to the relay to produce the sound, you can remove the speaker.
On the other hand, the sound may originate from the car’s Electronic Control Unit through the car speakers. You need to set the sound settings to OFF in the ECU. A visit to an automobile shop may be necessary for ECU reprogramming.
Once you have completed installing the new relay, remember to check that the flasher is functioning correctly.
Different Turn Signal Sounds
How do I change my turn signal sound? If your car employs an electronic turn signal module, you are in luck. It is not necessary to disable the turn signal sound. In some vehicles, the manufacturer will put in an option to change the sound of the turn indicator.
Switch on the right indicator for two flashes. Then, switch over to the left turn signal for two blinks. In this manner, keep alternating between the left and right turn signals. You will get to hear the various available sound settings for the indicator. Once you settle on a particular sound, merely stop switching between the left and right signals. The sound setting is now ready for use.
The video meticulously demonstrates how the selection procedure works. The audio is German. However, you can turn on the closed captions in the ‘auto-translate to English’ setting. In that way, you can read the instructions as well.
Turn Signal Flasher Wiring Diagram
When working on the flasher relay, it is beneficial to know the relay’s wiring. Behind the dash, the wiring for a three-pin flasher is pretty simple. The wire from the L terminal of the flasher connects to the turn signal control switch. The X terminal is the power supply. It also has a ground terminal.
If you study the wiring diagram for the turn signal, you can understand how everything connects.
Cost Of Replacing The Flasher
A new electronic flasher relay will set you back by a mere $7 to $10. Reprogramming the ECU could be free of cost, or the shop might charge a nominal fee for the job.
In this manner, it is possible to disable the turn signal sound. Spare relays are available in any automobile spare parts shop. You can also buy the part online. Remember, you must ensure that the new relay you buy is compatible with your vehicle. Once you have the relay, replacing it is a straightforward task.
However, if you feel unsure about disassembling any of the car’s components, feel free to consult an expert mechanic. You might also get in touch with a friend of yours who knows about automobiles. All the best in getting rid of the annoying sound!