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 AC. If you ignore it, it could lead to extensive—and expensive—issues eventually. We're going to help you understand what’s going on 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 find out where this noise is occurring. You can find 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 create a noise outside your house. Aging ductwork can cause 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 info.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is no doubt an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for additional information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can hint 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. Check out our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A loud noise from your external unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for additional 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 further 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 almost impossible to answer this question without examining your system.

In most cases, we recommend turning the unit off and calling a professional.

When should I do something about the noise?

We recommend calling a professional as soon as you recognize there's an issue with your unit. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected spend, it's better to get problems corrected right away. Contacting 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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