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 system. If you ignore it, it could lead to extensive—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 usually indicates an issue with your refrigerant line. If you can't identify where the noise is originating from, that's alright. A professional can help verify where this noise is occurring. You can find 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 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 come from a damanged refrigerant line, an internal valve leak or the compressor. Peruse our hissing noise guide for more on that.
  • Buzzing - Buzzing is no doubt an electrical issue. Read our buzzing noise guide for more information.
  • Clicking - Clicking can hint you have a loose part or that the fan is misaligned. You can see more information in our clicking noise guide.
  • Pulsating - Pulsating can come from a loose part. Take a look at our pulsating noise guide for more information.
  • Loud Noise - A clear noise from your outside unit can mean an issue with your compressor, damper, fan or air handler. Look at our loud noise guide for more information.
  • Humming - Humming can begin with fan motor issues or a damaged relay switch. Read through our humming noise guide for more information.

You can find further information about common air conditioning problems on energy.gov


Should I keep operating my system when it’s making a noise?

There are a few 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 shutting down 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 unit. While AC repairs can be stressful and an unexpected cost, it's smart to get problems fixed 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.

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