Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is running? There’s a strong probability there’s something wrong with your system. If you don’t pay attention to it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—problems later. We’re going to help you understand what’s going on with your air conditioner and what you can do to fix it. 

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises 

  • Gurgling – Gurgling generally indicates a complication with your refrigerant line. If you can’t pinpoint where the noise is coming from, that’s alright. A professional can help verify where this noise is occurring.
  • Crackling – Crackling could come from debris in the unit or aging ductwork. Debris in the outdoor unit will generate a noise outside your house. Old ductwork can cause noise inside your house.
  • Hissing – Hissing sounds coming from your AC can be created by a leaky refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor.
  • Buzzing – Buzzing is probably an electrical issue.
  • Clicking – Clicking can hint you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned.
  • Pulsating – Pulsating can be caused by a loose part.
  • Loud Noise – A clear noise from your outdoor unit can signal an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler.
  • Humming – Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information. 

You can find further information about common air conditioning issues on energy.gov 

Should I keep operating my air conditioner when it’s making a noise? 

There are some cases where you can continue to run your AC, but you do so at your own risk. It’s almost impossible to answer this question without examining your system. 

Most of the time, we recommend shutting off the unit off and bringing in a professional. 

When should I do something about the noise? 

We recommend calling a professional as soon as you think there’s something wrong with your unit. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it’s smart to get problems fixed right away. Getting a professional could help lower future expenses and keep your system running longer. 

Not sure if your air conditioner is making any of these noises? Please schedule online for a free, in-home consultation. 

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