AC Techs Inspecting AC Noises

Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Published on July 26, 2019

Hearing odd noises when your air conditioner is on? There's probably something wrong with your system. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—issues down the road. We're going to help you figure out what’s going on with your air conditioner and what you can do to change 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 coming 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 result from debris in the unit or aging ductwork. Debris in the outdoor unit will cause a noise outside your house. Mature ductwork can create noise inside your house. Browse our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a leaky refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Check out our hissing noise guide for more on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is probably an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for more 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 due to a loose part. Go through our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A clear noise from your external unit can signal an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for more information.
  • Humming - Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a broken relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep operating my system 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 looking at your system.

Usually, 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 think there's a problem with your unit. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's best to get problems taken care of right away. Calling 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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