Hearing strange noises when your air conditioner is working? There's likely something wrong with your AC. If you don’t pay attention to it, it could lead to significant—and expensive—problems eventually. We're going to help you understand what’s happening with your air conditioner and what you can do to fix it.
8 Common Air Conditioning Noises
- Gurgling - Gurgling usually 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 verify where this noise is occurring. You can read more information on our gurgling noises guide.
- Crackling - Crackling could come 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. Browse our crackling noise guide for more information.
- Hissing - Hissing can be caused by a faulty refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Peruse our hissing noise guide for more on that.
- Buzzing - Buzzing is likely an electrical issue. See our buzzing noise guide for further 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. Check out our pulsating noise guide for more information.
- Loud Noise - A noticeable noise from your external unit can indicate an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for supplementary information.
- Humming - Humming can arise from 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 issues on energy.gov
Should I keep running my AC when it’s making a noise?
There are limited 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 inspecting your system.
Usually, we recommend shutting down the unit off and contacting 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 system. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected expense, it's best to get problems corrected right away. Contacting 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.