Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing weird 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—troubles 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 a problem with your refrigerant line. If you can't determine where the noise is coming 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 be due to debris in the unit or aging ductwork. Debris in the outdoor unit will create a noise outside your house. Mature ductwork can produce noise inside your house. Read our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Check out our hissing noise guide for more on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is likely an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for additional information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can indicate you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can see more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can be due to a loose part. Take a look at our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A loud noise from your external unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Read 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 more information about prevalent air conditioning troubles on energy.gov


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

In most cases, we recommend shutting off the unit off and contacting 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 system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's best to get problems corrected 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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