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Yost & Campbell Heating, Cooling & Generators Blog

4 AC Noises Never to Ignore

What kind of noises does an air conditioner make? If anyone out there said “gentle whooshing noise of air coming from a vent” or “a clicking sound when it started up or stopped,” then they would be right. However, if they started saying things like “buzzing” or “rattling,” then there’s something we need to address.

Air conditioners are not supposed to make noises aside from the two we first mentioned. Anything else can be a sign that there is something wrong and it needs to be repaired. While it might be easy to call for AC repair in Harrison, NY, the important part is calling for help when it’s needed the most. Waiting too long while a noise impairs the cooling ability of a machine could spell higher energy bills and a shorter system lifespan.

Let’s take a look at some of the noises an air conditioner can make.

Stay Vigilant

The biggest problem with a lot of air conditioner noises is they can compound into larger problems later on. A loose screw can bump into a coil and knock it off-tilt, sending an air conditioner’s efficiency spiraling out of control. The moment anyone notices a noise like the ones we’ve listed below, call for repairs. The sooner the better!


When an air conditioner begins to rattle, it’s clear something is wrong. Usually, a rattling noise corresponds to a small component that’s gotten loose or is bouncing around the interior of the system. This can be anything from a small screw to a mechanical piece that wasn’t tightly secured or has gotten loose over years of tension.

The bottom line is that this type of noise needs to be addressed. That rattling can turn into something much worse when that small component bounces off something else and causes problems to compound.


This can sometimes occur similarly in electrical appliances or toys. When a television doesn’t turn on but starts buzzing incessantly, something is clearly wrong. The same goes for an air conditioner. Buzzing indicates a problem with the electrical system of the AC. When this occurs, stopping and starting the machine can sometimes make the problem worse. It’s better to turn it off and call a professional for help.

Hissing or Bubbling

This is a clear sign that there’s a refrigerant leak in an air conditioner. Hissing is the noise gas makes when it escapes its confines, like the refrigerant gas that is compressed in the system. Bubbling can be the sound of air bubbles forming in those refrigerant lines after refrigerant has leaked out. Either way, a refrigerant leak is nothing to scoff at and will almost certainly lead to headaches down the line. Call for help today.


Remember when we said a rattling problem can compound and get worse? Well, rattling can turn into clanging, which is when a larger part of the air conditioner gets loose. This can be much more devastating to the interior components of an AC because of just how much damage can be done. The interior components like coils and a compressor are delicate, and even a slight nudge by an out of place blower motor can cause the system to break down.

Yost & Campbell Heating, Cooling & Generators can help. Call us today to address these issues!

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