Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

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

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling generally indicates an issue with your refrigerant line. If you can't determine where the noise is originating from, that's alright. An expert can help determine where this noise is occurring. You can learn 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 create 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. Check out our hissing noise guide for more info.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is probably an electrical issue. Check out our buzzing noise guide for more information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can indicate you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can find more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can come from a loose part. Go through our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A noticeable noise from your external unit can indicate 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 damaged relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information.

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


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

There are a few 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.

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 a problem with your air conditioner. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's better to get problems taken care of right away. Contacting a professional could help reduce 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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