Air conditioners will, by nature, make some noise. In fact, some people even swear their air conditioner is the best “white noise” while drifting off to sleep. If you have an air conditioning system that is suddenly making sounds that are anything but soothing, you may have a problem.
Central air conditioners will typically operate well for 10-15 years if they are properly maintained, but it is not uncommon to hit some repairs along the way.
Some troublesome sounds of an aging or damaged air conditioner might include:
- Bangs or thumps
- Hissing noise
- Rattling noise
- Grinding noise
- Buzzing noise
- Whistling noise
If you have experienced any of these off-putting sounds, there is a chance your air conditioning system may need to be repaired or replaced. Let’s explore what might cause some of these issues, and how to approach them.
Bangs or thumps coming from your AC
Being startled by a banging sound coming from your air conditioner can be jarring. It may signal a problem with the air conditioning’s compressor. The compressor is the component of the unit that distributes the necessary refrigerant throughout the system, pushing out warm air and cooling the fresh air coming in.
Is this an easy fix? Not likely. Compressors are not meant to be disassembled apart from the unit, so there is a chance you may need to replace the air conditioning unit.
Hissing noises coming from your AC
A hissing noise may indicate that there is a leak somewhere in your refrigerant line. You may also notice warmer air coming from the AC system. Alternatively, it could mean there is a leak somewhere in your home’s ductwork or a malfunctioning valve. It is a good idea to have a professional inspect to determine what the source of the noise is.
Rattling noises coming from your AC
A rattling noise could be nothing to worry about at all and is most likely caused by one of the following issues:
- A loose part or panel within the unit
- Loose fan blades
- Debris in your main unit outside
Any of these causes for rattling are usually a quick fix, either by cleaning the area near your air conditioning unit or tightening a component. Still, it is always a smart idea to consult with an HVAC technician to make sure the problem is fixed correctly.
Grinding noises coming from your AC
If you’re hearing a grinding or screeching noise from your air conditioning system, the motor may be malfunctioning or on it’s way out. The motor runs the fan, which will partially work or completely stop operating with a faulty motor, thus not eliminating warm air from the house. You will also likely notice a major change in temperature. A fan belt that needs replacing may also factor into this issue. If you have an older AC unit and its fan belt has come off the track or is frayed, it may start to screech or squeal. Call a professional immediately to address the repair.
Buzzing noises coming from your AC
A buzzing noise could be a dangerous sign that there are electrical issues with your air conditioner. A buzzing sound may also be a sign of an obstruction near the copper lines that are connected to your air conditioner. Whether connector lines or internal, if you experience this sound, turn off your AC immediately and call a professional HVAC technician. It may be a fire hazard.
If the noise is coming specifically from your outside unit, there may be something wrong with the capacitor, which is the small part shaped like a cylinder that supplies electricity to your device. If this is the case, the capacitor would likely need to be replaced.
Whistling noises coming from your AC
Similar to when your air conditioning system makes a hissing noise, a whistling could signify that there is a duct problem, and air is escaping through a leak, causing the whistle. If you have damaged ductwork, it will affect the entire HVAC system, so it is important to have it fixed as soon as possible. It will also result in inefficient operation, causing your utility bills to increase.
Call the air conditioning experts in Buffalo, MN
When your air conditioning system is on the verge of breaking down, don’t panic. The professionals at DeZiel Heating & AC specialize in dissecting and determining what the sounds coming from your air conditioning might mean and how to fix them. We are happy to come out to your home or business and inspect your AC, keep you cool and get your system back up and running efficiently. To learn more, call DeZiel Heating & AC today at (763) 684-3965.