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 working? There's probably something wrong with your system. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to major—and expensive—issues later. We're going to help you find out what’s occurring with your air conditioner and what you can do to correct it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling normally indicates an issue with your refrigerant line. If you can't identify where the noise is emanating 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 be due to 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. Read our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a faulty refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Check out our hissing noise guide for more info.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is probably an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for more 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. Take a look at 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. Look at our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
  • Humming - Humming can be related to fan motor issues or a busted relay switch. Head to our humming noise guide for more information.

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


Should I keep running 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 hard to answer this question without inspecting your system.

In most cases, we recommend turning 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 an issue with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's best to get problems fixed right away. Getting 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 fill out the form below for a free, in-home consultation.

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