Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is working? There’s likely something wrong with your system. If you ignore it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—issues later. We’re going to help you understand what’s going on with your air conditioner and what you can do to fix it. 

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises 

  • Gurgling – Gurgling normally indicates an issue with your refrigerant line. If you can’t determine where the noise is originating from, that’s alright. A professional can help verify where this noise is occurring.
  • Crackling – Crackling could result 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.
  • Hissing – Hissing sounds coming from your AC can come from a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor.
  • Buzzing – Buzzing is likely an electrical issue.
  • Clicking – Clicking can indicate you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned.
  • Pulsating – Pulsating can come from a loose part.
  • Loud Noise – A clear noise from your outside unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler.
  • Humming – Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Check out our humming noise guide for more information. 

You can find more information about frequent air conditioning problems on energy.gov 

Should I keep running my air conditioner when it’s making a noise? 

There are some 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 down 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 air conditioner. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected cost, it’s best to get problems fixed right away. Contacting 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 schedule online for a free, in-home consultation. 

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