An air conditioner is a vital component of most home setups, as it provides cold air to ease the effect of hot weather. Even within cars, air conditioners play an important role, and as such, it can be worrying if they begin to make a lot of noise.
Why Is My Air Conditioner So Loud? Your air conditioner might be very loud if some of the screws are loose, if there is a fault with the compressor, or if there is a buildup of debris. These issues can be resolved by regular maintenance or by calling a repairer.
Wm. Henderson, a Pennsylvania-based repair service explains different types of air conditioner noise and their causes. If you are having issues with a banging noise, then your compressor is likely the culprit.
If you don’t want the stress that comes with a regular air conditioner, you can opt for a portable one instead, such as the SereneLife SLPAC10. This product also comes with a dehumidifier, making it very useful when you decide to order yours.
Is It Normal For An Air Conditioner To Make Noise?
It can be normal for an air conditioner to make noise, especially when starting up, and if the noise is not very loud. If the noise is serious, it might indicate the presence of an underlying issue that needs to be resolved as soon as possible.
For air conditioners, certain noises are normal such as the soft humming sound when you first turn your air conditioner on or off. However, you should look into the noise immediately if the noise gets persistent.
The most common types of noises you may hear are loud humming, screeching, banging, hissing, clicking, rattling, and squealing. Each distinct noise points to what may be wrong with your AC.
What Causes a Loud Humming Noise in an Air Conditioner and How to Fix it
Loud Humming noises from an Air Conditioner usually indicate an electrical or mechanical problem, such as loose wiring, overloaded circuit breakers, and contractor failures. It is often recommended not to attempt fixing this issue yourself but to call a licensed electrician.
Ordinarily, it is normal for an air conditioner to make humming noises. This is especially true when you just put on the air conditioner, and the system is coming up. Humming noises, however, become a thing for concern where these noises are very loud and unbearable.
This is because they often point to an electrical or mechanical issue which, if not dealt with in time, may lead to severe damage to your AC unit.
The popular causes of a loud humming sound from your AC are:
- The circuit breaker is overloaded: It is normal for a circuit breaker to trip once it becomes overloaded. However, if an AC unit’s circuit breaker refuses to trip even when overloaded, it becomes faulty and creates this loud humming noise.
- A faulty contactor switch:
An AC contactor switch provides power to components like the compressor and condenser fans. It is the direct link from the power supply to the air conditioner.
A faulty contractor means that while your AC gets power, it won’t turn on, leading to humming sounds. The same thing happens when there’s a problem with the condenser fans.
- Loose Wiring: Where there is loose wiring, the wires are loosely separated. This could create an electrical arc which in turn creates a buzzing sound and could even lead to a fire.
- Loose Components inside the AC Unit: If you have been using your unit for a while, it is normal to have some parts get loose due to wear and tear. Loose components moving around in an AC unit may produce humming noises.
- Vibrating Refrigerant pipes: Undercharged refrigerant pipes may cause vibration. These vibrations often sound like humming noises.
Regardless of your AC’s issue, a loud humming sound only means one thing; Time to call an electrician. Mechanical and electrical issues are not things you should attempt to fix as you don’t only risk ruining your AC unit but also hurting yourself. It is best to leave that to a licensed electrician to deal with.
What can Create a Loud Hissing Noise in an Air Conditioner and How to Fix it?
Hissing sounds from an Air conditioner Unit are usually caused by a refrigerant leak or the presence of high pressure in the air compressor. When faced with this issue, the best thing to do is to switch off your AC and call a technician for repairs.
A faulty air conditioner may make various noises. One of the most serious noises is the hissing sound. As earlier stated, hissing sounds from an AC unit means a refrigerant leak or high pressure in the air compressor.
A refrigerant leak could occur either in an AC unit’s refrigerant lines or internal valve, putting its compressor at risk of damage. It is very important to keep your AC off once you hear hissing sounds.
This is especially true when these sounds happen, even when the AC is off. Refrigerant leaks should be fixed early as largely inhaling Freon, the refrigerant gas used in AC units can be toxic to your health.
High pressure in your air compressor is another common culprit of hissing noises. This is usually caused when the refrigerant running through the air conditioner isn’t cool enough. Sometimes, the hissing sound could turn into shrieking sounds.
Hissing sounds that turn to shrieking sounds indicate your compressor is not working right. Whether you hear hissing or shrieking sounds, turn off your AC unit until your technician comes around to inspect it.
Why Do Some Air Conditioners Make a Clicking Sound and How To Eliminate This sound?
Persistent clicking sounds may indicate mechanical problems, loose screws, malfunctioning thermostats, electrical problems, or fan obstructions. Depending on the issue, you may resolve it by tightening loose screws or cleaning debris. Otherwise, you may need to call a technician for repairs.
Ideally, it is normal for your air conditioner unit to make a clicking sound when powered up. This sound usually quiets down after a few minutes. However, a situation where you hear persistent clicking sounds from your AC unit means that there’s something wrong.
When debris is stuck in your AC unit, such dirt may obstruct the fan in your AC unit. This means that every time the AC fan rolls, it hits an obstruction, thereby making a clicking sound. This case is easily fixed if you are familiar with your AC outdoor unit, as you can lift the cover and remove the obstruction.
A broken or malfunctioning thermostat may produce clicking sounds. This is the same for a broken compressor. Although with a broken compressor, there may also be a rattling sound. In the case of a broken thermostat or compressor, it is best to immediately turn off the AC unit and call a technician for repairs.
A clicking sound may also be a result of electrical issues. The sounds may be electrical signals from the control panel, meaning that the switches turn on and off, which may also cause sparking. This may be very dangerous if not quickly attended to.
Your AC making clicking sounds could be an indication of a mechanical problem. This is commonly so in the case of an older AC unit. Due to frequent use over a long period, there may be a tear, wear, and breakage of certain parts such as the valve, piston, fan, and belt.
There may be a situation where an AC unit is making clicking sounds, but it won’t come on. Problems with controls usually cause these. The culprit could be the capacitor, control board, or thermostat.
Clicking sounds may not indicate serious issues normally. However, it is best to take it seriously and call an electrician immediately if persistent and loud.
I Hear a Rattling Noise in my Air Conditioner. What is the Cause and How do I Fix it?
An AC unit producing rattling sounds is often caused by factors such as damaged motors, compressor issues, loose screws, debris, misaligned fans, or damaged fan cages. If faced with this issue, it is best to call a technician.
A rattling noise is a great indication of your AC breaking down or its parts deteriorating. Several factors could cause it. The most popular is a failing compressor. When your air compressor malfunctions, it usually makes a loud rattling noise indicating there is an issue.
Also, you will notice that your AC unit is not cooling like it used to. A malfunctioning compressor usually needs to be replaced entirely, and you need to contact a technician.
Another reason your AC may be making a loud rattling noise is if your unit has some fan issues due to misaligned fans or damaged fan cases. The fans in your AC unit are usually fixed in a precise position.
Over time and with frequent usage, these fans may become misaligned. When this happens, they tend to hit other unit parts while in operation.
One of the parts the fan blades may continuously hit is the fan cage causing the rattling sounds you hear. You should call a technician who then decides whether to replace the fans before they cause extensive damage to the fan cage and the whole AC unit.
Damaged motors also cause rattling sounds. AC units usually have more than one motor. If one malfunctions, it leads the AC to make rattling sounds. To fix a broken motor, you may need to replace old or broken bearings or lubricate the motor. It can be easily done by a professional.
Other less serious issues that may cause rattling sounds are loose screws and debris. These are common factors that may cause other kinds of noises too. They can be easily fixed by tightening loose screws and cleaning your AC unit.
Why can Cause a Loud Banging Noise in an Air Conditioner and How to Fix It?
Loud banging from an AC unit is often due to various issues ranging from loose screws or parts, broken condensers, and the presence of debris in the condenser. You may fix it by cleaning out the condenser or tightening loose screws. However, for broken condensers, you need to call a technician.
Banging noises are usually regarded as the common indicator of a problem with an AC unit. They may indicate several problems, usually loose screws or parts of the unit, and debris stuck in your condenser or a broken or faulty condenser.
If rattling sounds accompany the banging sound, then it is possible that it is due to loose screws or parts in the AC unit. Screws and parts of the air compressor may come off due to the typical wear and tear. These parts may be a connecting rod, piston pin, crankshaft, etc. In this situation, you may assemble these parts and attempt to tighten the loose screws.
If you hear banging noises from your ac, you should try to clean out your condenser. Dirt, sticks, and leaves often get stuck in the condenser. You can remove the condenser cover and clean out any stuck items. If you have problems reaching the stuck items, you may call a technician instead.
In a worst-case scenario, a banging noise may indicate a broken compressor. This is usually so when the banging noise occurs once you turn on the ac. A broken compressor usually cannot be fixed.
You can, however, replace it or buy a new AC unit if the repair costs are too high. It is important to mention that a broken fan or an imbalanced motor may also cause a banging noise. Such a situation is best assessed and fixed by a technician.