Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing odd noises when your air conditioner is running? There's a strong probability there’s something wrong with your AC. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to major—and expensive—issues eventually. We're going to help you figure out what’s occurring with your air conditioner and what you can do to change it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling usually indicates a problem with your refrigerant line. If you can't determine where the noise is originating from, that's alright. A professional 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 cause a noise outside your house. Aging ductwork can produce noise inside your house. Check out our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be created by a faulty refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Peruse our hissing noise guide for more on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is no doubt an electrical issue. Check out our buzzing noise guide for more information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can hint you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can check out more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can come from a loose part. Take a look at our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A clear noise from your external unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
  • Humming - Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information.

You can find additional information about common air conditioning problems on energy.gov


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

In most cases, 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 suspect there's a problem with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's smart to get problems fixed right away. Getting 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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