Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Hearing odd noises when your air conditioner is running? There’s likely something wrong with your unit. If you don’t pay attention to it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—problems down the road. We’re going to help you figure out what’s happening with your air conditioner and what you can do to fix it. 

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises 

  • Gurgling – Gurgling normally indicates a problem with your refrigerant line. If you can’t pinpoint where the noise is emanating from, that’s alright. A technician can help find out where this noise is occurring.
  • 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 produce noise inside your house.
  • Hissing – Hissing sounds coming from your AC can come from a faulty refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor.
  • Buzzing – Buzzing is probably an electrical issue.
  • Clicking – Clicking can indicate you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned.
  • Pulsating – Pulsating can come from a loose part.
  • Loud Noise – A clear noise from your outside unit can signal an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler.
  • Humming – Humming can be related to fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information. 

You can find further information about frequent air conditioning problems on energy.gov 

Should I keep operating my AC 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 difficult to answer this question without examining your system. 

Most of the time, we recommend shutting down the unit off and calling a professional. 

When should I do something about the noise? 

We recommend calling a professional as soon as you think there’s an issue with your unit. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it’s best to get problems corrected right away. Contacting 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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