92.7 FM went on the air in 1964 as WBCO-FM, the sister station to WBCO. WBCO was founded in 1962 by Thomas P. & J. LaVonne Moore and Orville J. Sather as Brokensword Broadcasting Co. When the Moores and Sathers bought out the investors, it became Sa-Mor Stations. Full ownership was assumed by Tom and LaVonne following Orville's death. The stations were sold to Mike and Donna Laipply in 1991. In 1996, both stations were sold to the Ohio Radio Group, based in Ashland Ohio, who also owned stations WQIO and WMVO in Mount Vernon, Ohio, WNCO & WNCO-FM in Ashland, Ohio, WMAN-FM in Fredericktown, Ohio, WFXN-FM in Galion, Ohio and WXXF in Loudonville, Ohio. They would later add local WYNT in Upper Sandusky, Ohio to the group making it the largest radio ownership company in Ohio. In 2001, Ohio Radio Group was purchased by Clear Channel Communications, which had to sell two stations—WBCO and WQEL—that were purchased by Scantland Broadcasting, then current Saga Communications.
The station was assigned call signWBCQ on October 26, 1978. On August 16, 1987, the station changed its call sign to the current WQEL.