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 major—and expensive—problems eventually. We're going to help you find 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 emanating from, that's alright. A professional can help determine where this noise is occurring. You can read 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. Old ductwork can produce noise inside your house. Read our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can come from a leaky refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Look through our hissing noise guide for more information.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is no doubt 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 see 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 clear noise from your outside unit can mean an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Check out our loud noise guide for additional information.
  • Humming - Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a broken relay switch. Check out our humming noise guide for more information.

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


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

There are limited 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 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 system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's best 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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