Why Is My Air Conditioner Making A Noise?

July 26, 2019

Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is working? There's probably something wrong with your AC. If you don’t fix it, it could lead to extensive—and expensive—problems eventually. We're going to help you find out what’s occurring with your air conditioner and what you can do to change it.

8 Common Air Conditioning Noises

  • Gurgling - Gurgling usually indicates a problem with your refrigerant line. If you can't identify where the noise is originating from, that's alright. A technician 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 create a noise outside your house. Old ductwork can create noise inside your house. Check out our crackling noise guide for more information.
  • Hissing - Hissing can come from a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Look through our hissing noise guide for more on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is likely an electrical issue. Read our buzzing noise guide for additional information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can indicate 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. Take a look at our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A noticeable noise from your outside unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Check out our loud noise guide for additional information.
  • Humming - Humming can arise from fan motor issues or a busted 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 difficult to answer this question without examining your system.

In most cases, we recommend shutting off 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 something wrong with your system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's better to get problems taken care of 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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