Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is working? There's likely something wrong with your unit. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to major—and expensive—troubles later. We're going to help you understand what’s occurring with your air conditioner and what you can do to change it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling usually indicates a problem with your refrigerant line. If you can't identify where the noise is coming from, that's alright. A professional can help determine where this noise is occurring. You can find 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 generate 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 damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Check out our hissing noise guide for more information.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is likely an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for further information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can indicate 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 due to a loose part. Go through our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A noticeable noise from your outside unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for more information.
  • Humming - Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep running 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 examining your system.

In most cases, we recommend shutting down 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 suspect there's something wrong with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's best to get problems fixed right away. Getting 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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