Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is on? There's likely something wrong with your system. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—issues eventually. We're going to help you figure out what’s happening 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 identify where the noise is coming from, that's alright. An expert can help determine where this noise is occurring. You can find more information on our gurgling noises guide.
  • Crackling - Crackling could result from debris in the unit or aging ductwork. Debris in the outdoor unit will cause a noise outside your house. Mature ductwork can produce noise inside your house. Browse 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 on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is probably an electrical issue. Check out 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. Go through our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A loud noise from your external 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 be related to fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep using 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 turning 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 an issue with your air conditioner. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's better to get problems fixed right away. Getting 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 fill out the form below for a free, in-home consultation.

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