Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is running? There's likely something wrong with your AC. If you ignore it, it could lead to major—and expensive—problems later. We're going to help you understand what’s going on with your air conditioner and what you can do to correct it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling generally indicates a complication with your refrigerant line. If you can't identify where the noise is emanating from, that's alright. An expert can help find out 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. Old ductwork can cause noise inside your house. Browse our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Look through our hissing noise guide for more info.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is likely an electrical issue. Read our buzzing noise guide for more information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can hint 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 outside unit can signal an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Check out our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
  • Humming - Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

You can find additional information about frequent air conditioning troubles on energy.gov


Should I keep operating my air conditioner 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 inspecting your system.

In most cases, we recommend shutting off the unit off and bringing in a professional.

When should I do something about the noise?

We recommend calling a professional as soon as you recognize there's something wrong with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's best to get problems corrected right away. Calling 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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