Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing odd noises when your air conditioner is on? There's probably something wrong with your unit. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to major—and expensive—issues later. 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 normally indicates a complication with your refrigerant line. If you can't pinpoint where the noise is emanating from, that's alright. A professional can help verify 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 create 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 come from 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 mean 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 be caused by a loose part. Check out our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A loud noise from your outside unit can mean an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
  • Humming - Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information.

You can find additional information about prevalent air conditioning problems 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 looking at your system.

In most cases, we recommend turning the unit off and contacting 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 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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