Why Is My Air Conditioner Making Noises?

AC Noises blog post“Why is my Air Conditioner making a ______________ noise?”

You might have asked yourself this question occasionally. All HVAC units make some noise when they run, because of all the components and moving parts. However, there are certain noises that require immediate attention. Depending on what the problem is, you may be able to fix it yourself, or you can give us a call at California Air Conditioning Systems to fix it in a professional manner.

What does this noise mean, and what should I do about it?

*****Before inspecting, checking, or attempting to fix anything in your AC, turn it off first!*****

  • Purr / Roar – Newer units are built to be softer than older ones, and so they will be purring along in the background as they run. Older units may have a deeper or slightly louder whir as they run, but this does not necessarily mean that they are malfunctioning.
  • Grinding – This likely indicates a problem with the bearings and belts of the blower. The belts get worn out or cracked over time. These cost your unit its efficiency, and cost you more money. If neglected, this will break and damage the whole unit. Call an HVAC technician to replace these.
    vbelts, hvac belts, air conditioning belts, heating belts, belt repairs, belt install, belt service, v-belts
  • Rattling – In outdoor AC units, things such as sticks, rocks, leaves, trash, and other debris can get trapped inside the cover of the unit. In indoor systems, toys or trash may have gotten into vents or ducts. In both indoor and outdoor units, it could be some bolts or screws that are loosening. If you can, clean the unit and tighten screws. It could be more serious, such as an issue with the compressor; if the noise persists, call your HVAC company.
  • Clanging & Banging – This is a problem with the blower. Other symptoms of a bad blower are an AC that stops working after a few hours, or does not blow cool air when it is on. An HVAC company will help you decide if you need to replace the whole thing or just certain parts.
  • Humming – If your AC is just a little noisier than normal, or if it’s making a humming noise, it could just need some lubrication. There are a lot of moving parts that need to be lubricated in order for the machine to run smoothly. Humming could also indicate that a key part of the AC has failed and the unit is trying to run without it. An AC check up/tune up would be ideal.
  • Clicking – An AC has a lot of electrical components, and one of these is the Capacitor. This is a part that sends electric currant to the motor to start it or keep it running. A clicking noise means that it might need to be replaced. This is a job for your HVAC technician.
    _Electrical Ad
  • Hissing – A refrigerant, or Freon, leak will cause a hissing noise.

    “Freon” is a heat transfer fluid, which means it is capable of absorbing heat from the air indoors and transferring it outside to get cooled down. This air is then returned back indoors for everyone to enjoy. Freon is circulated over and over by your air conditioning system to cool the air. (via)

    Leaking Freon circulating through your house is not healthy. This needs to be taken care of by an HVAC professional. 

  • Scraping – Air Conditioners have 2 fan blades. This type of noise means these might be loose, causing them to scrape against the unit walls or other parts of the AC. An AC technician will be able to get this taken care of fairly quickly.

Hopefully, this list helped you troubleshoot your Air Conditioning unit or system. As always, if you have any questions about something your AC is doing, please call us at California Air Conditioning and ask. We are here to help! 310-530-0504

(If you live in the LA/South Bay area, click here to see how you can get $10 or 10% off your diagnosis fee with California Air Conditioning Systems, Inc.)


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CALIFORNIA AIR CONDITIONING: takes pride in their professional and efficient service. Hiring the best technicians in HVAC, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration, and Heating, California Air delivers the best and most reliable service. With over 30 years of experience, California Air specializes in both commercial and residential calls. There is no job too big, or too small.

CONTACT US California Air-Conditioning, Inc.

Email us: Here!.

25217 Narbonne Ave., Lomita CA 90717.

Phone: (310)530-0504   Fax: (310)530-4004   24/7 NUMBER: (310)505-5700.

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One thought on “Why Is My Air Conditioner Making Noises?

  1. Pingback: The Disney Gif Guide To HVAC – Served Chilled

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