Skip navigation


Bill's Superheat, Inc. Blog

Keep Your Ears Peeled! Five Bad AC Noises

We’ve all been there—you’re trying to get some sleep on a hot night and you’re awoken by some uncomfortable sounds. While they otherwise would make you think that something is going wrong in your house, you know for a fact that these noises are coming from your air conditioner. Before you go back to bed and ignore it, we urge you to consider calling for help.

Unfortunately, your air conditioner just can’t talk to you. The closest it will get to telling you that something is wrong with it, is by making strange noises that wake you up in the middle of the night. So, if you end up going back to sleep, you’re aiding in the neglect of your system.

It’s important to invest in your central air conditioning in Kalispell, MT, and that starts with calling for repairs when they’re needed!

The Important Noises to Address

Before you panic, let us remind you that it’s going to be okay. The fact that your air conditioner is making noises and isn’t completely broken down is good news. This means that the system can be fixed, and that a professional will be able to target the problem and repair it.

So, keep reading to learn more about the different noises your system could make. Try writing down what it sounds like, or even using your smartphone to record the noise!

Rattling and Clanking

Rattling and clanking are simple noises that point to one specific problem—a component has gotten loose and is banging around in your system. Rattling signifies it’s a screw or some small component, while a louder clanking noise signifies that it’s a larger component. Either way, this needs to be fixed before the component bumps into a more sensitive one.


Buzzing usually signifies that something is going wrong with the internal electrical system of your air conditioner. Similar to the sound a malfunctioning computer chip makes, a buzzing noise likely needs quick repairs that are otherwise inexpensive.

Hissing and Bubbling

Hissing and bubbling are unique noises that pertain to a refrigerant leak. The hissing is the gaseous refrigerant leaving the system, and the bubbling is the noise made when oxygen has infiltrated the refrigerant line. Regardless of which noise you’re hearing, your refrigerant leak needs to be patched and the refrigerant needs to be recharged.


Clicking is another electrical problem but it’s different from buzzing. Every time your system turns on, it clicks before you start hearing the air come from the vents. That’s called the “capacitor” which is responsible for signaling the system to turn on and off. If you’re hearing multiple clicking sounds, then chances are high that something is wrong with your capacitor.


Screeching is never good and it’s the only sound on this list that could signify a whole host of problems. However, the most important thing to remember is that a loud air conditioner should never be ignored. If your AC is screeching or making a noise that’s incredibly obnoxious, turn it off and call for help!

Contact Bill’s Superheat, Inc. for help. Here to Save the Day!

Comments are closed.