AC Techs Inspecting AC Noises

Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

Published on July 26, 2019

Hearing weird noises when your air conditioner is on? There's likely something wrong with your unit. If you ignore it, it could lead to major—and expensive—troubles down the road. We're going to help you find out what’s occurring with your air conditioner and what you can do to fix it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling generally 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 determine 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. Read our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can come from a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Peruse 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. Go through 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 more information.
  • Humming - Humming can be related to fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep operating 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 hard to answer this question without looking at your system.

Most of the time, 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 a problem with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's better to get problems fixed right away. Calling a professional could help minimize 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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