Why Your Sky Q Box Makes a Loud Fan Noise

sky q fan noise

Last updated: July 14, 2022 at 14:19 pm

A Sky Q box is common in a lot of UK household. And as with anything electrical, it can become warm, and at times, noisy.

A Sky Q box can become noisy due to three reasons:

  • Technology
  • Dirt/Dust
  • and mesh Wi-Fi

Why Are Sky Q Boxes Noisy?

There are a few reasons that Sky Q boxes might be making noise. Some of them are to be expected, and for the most part, are unavoidable.

Others, however, suggest that you might need a new box or for an engineer to come and take a look at your current Sky Q box.

The Technology

A Sky Q set-top-box may look small, sleek, and incredibly modern. However, it works exactly the same as many laptops. Within the plastic casing there is a hard disk drive and an internal fan. As with laptops, these moving parts within the casing are inevitably going to make noise. They might make more noise depending on how much the system is being used, or if you’re asking a lot of it.

Typically, these noises will consist of a medium-level hum or whirring noise and possibly an occasional clicking from the motors on the hard disk drive. These are not cause for concern, but they can be mildly irritating. Nobody wants a clicking noise whilst they’re trying to enjoy the suspense of their favourite horror film!

To limit the “expected” noise from a Sky Q box, you can:

  • Move the Sky Q box off of any carpet or soft material
  • Ensure that there is at least 10 centimetres of space between the box and the shelf above it or television
  • Ensure there is at least 10 centimetres of space either side of the Sky Q box

Dirt

Just like laptops and personal computers, the internal fan within the Sky Q box is designed to keep the tech within the casing cool. If the fan gets clogged up with dust and dirt, or the rest of the mechanics get dusty or dirty, the core temperature will get much hotter much quicker, and this will make the fan whir louder and faster than usual.

Luckily this is unlikely to damage your Sky Q box. It would be wise to give the top and bottom of the box a regular dust to avoid this. If the noise is really concerning you, you can always contact Sky Q for advice or call out an engineer.

Mesh Wi-Fi

A number of customers have lodged complaints with Sky, reporting that their Sky Q boxes began to whir rapidly and erratically, and the box would regularly freeze or crash. After investigations, it appeared that these customers all had one thing in common. They were using mesh Wi-Fi networks to run their Sky Q box.

A mesh Wi-Fi network is a network made up of a series of nodes placed around a building or home which are all connected directly to the main router. It is often used in large buildings in order to ensure that there is full coverage across the property. It is designed to allow unlimited streaming on the 5th floor as well as in the basement, essentially.

For some reason, Sky Q boxes react poorly to mesh Wi-Fi networks, and it results in a box which freezes and whirs unnecessarily. The two suggested solutions in the Sky forums are to either

  1. disconnect your Sky Q box from the Wi-Fi and not use any of the internet streaming functionalities
  2. or connect your Sky Q box to the internet via an ethernet cable rather than by Wi-Fi. This is a cable that runs directly from a router into a device to provide wired internet as opposed to wireless

sky q remote

Other Issues Your Sky Q Box Might Have

Sky Q boxes are prone to other issues, too, that don’t involve any noise. However, some of these issues tend to crop up alongside noisiness!

Overheating

Sky Q boxes have been reported to sometimes be warm to the touch. A small amount of warmth emanating from the plastic is relatively normal, as the Sky Q boxes are actually designed with “breathable plastic”. This allows heat to be released from the top of the plastic casing.

Likewise, it is relatively normal for most technology to get at least a little bit warm. Think about your laptop, personal computer, or gaming console – they all heat up.

However, if your Sky Q box seems to be noisy (and warm) more so than normal, it might mean there is an issue within the box, preventing the internal fan from doing its job. You should contact Sky and ask them to send an engineer out to ensure that your Sky Q box is working correctly.

Connectivity Problems

Many customers have claimed to experience connectivity issues, especially with the Sky Q mini. This is sometimes due to weak Wi-Fi, but it can also be the result of failed updates.

You should try to connect your Sky Q or Sky Q mini to the internet via an ethernet cable. Also, complete a manual upgrade of both to ensure that they are communicating with one another, and able to stream and work correctly.

Unknown Error Message

If you receive an unknown error message on your Sky Q box, the first thing to try is turning the box off, then straight back on again. Often, technology can get caught up in a loop through no fault of its own, and this will help to break your Sky Q box out of the loop.

Should that not work, the next step is resetting the hard drive disk. This will delete all recordings, downloads, purchases, reminders, and series links, so be careful and do not do this if you think there is another solution! To reset your hard drive, press the Home button on your remote and highlight Settings.

Press 0, then 0, then 1, and then select. Select Reset, and then scroll down until it says Reset Hard Drive. A message will appear to check if you want to go ahead. Press Select to go ahead and reset. A set of instructions will appear on screen, and then you need to press the Standby button on the front of the Sky Q box.

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About the Author: AJ

AJ is a self-confessed soundproofing nut. He has written full-time on Quiet Living for the past 3 years, and has a wealth of knowledge about living a quieter life, soundproofing and fixing loud noises.

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