Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is working? There's probably something wrong with your system. If you don’t pay attention to it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—troubles later. We're going to help you find out what’s going on with your air conditioner and what you can do to change it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling generally indicates an issue with your refrigerant line. If you can't pinpoint where the noise is originating from, that's alright. A technician can help determine where this noise is occurring. You can find more information on our gurgling noises guide.
  • Crackling - Crackling could come from debris in the unit or aging ductwork. Debris in the outdoor unit will create a noise outside your house. Old ductwork can cause noise inside your house. Read our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a leaky refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Check out our hissing noise guide for more info.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is no doubt an electrical issue. Read our buzzing noise guide for more information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can hint you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can find more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can be caused by a loose part. Take a look at our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A loud noise from your outdoor unit can signal an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Check out our loud noise guide for additional information.
  • Humming - Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a broken relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

You can find additional information about frequent air conditioning troubles on energy.gov


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

There are limited cases where you can continue to run your AC, but you do so at your own risk. It's difficult to answer this question without inspecting your system.

In most cases, 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 recognize there's something wrong with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected cost, it's smart to get problems fixed right away. Calling a professional could help minimize future expenses and keep your system running longer.

Not sure if your air conditioner is making any of these noises? Please fill out the form below for a free, in-home consultation.

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