AC Techs Inspecting AC Noises

Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Published on July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is on? There's probably something wrong with your unit. If you ignore it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—troubles later. 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 normally indicates a complication with your refrigerant line. If you can't pinpoint where the noise is coming from, that's alright. A technician 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 generate a noise outside your house. Mature ductwork can create noise inside your house. Check out our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be created by a leaky refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Look through 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 mean you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can find more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can come from a loose part. Check out our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A clear noise from your external unit can mean an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Check out our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
  • Humming - Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Check out our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep running my AC 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 difficult to answer this question without examining your system.

Most of the time, 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 something wrong with your air conditioner. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected cost, it's better to get problems corrected 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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