My Air Conditioner Is Making Weird Noises

December 4, 2020
5 min read
My Air Conditioner Is Making Weird Noises

Troubleshooting Steps When your AC is Making Loud Sounds

You are hearing a noise coming from your AC and are wondering if that means there is a problem. That’s exactly what a responsible homeowner should do. While it is normal to hear some sounds coming from your air conditioning system, but sounds are signs of a problem.

Odd or new noises coming from any part of a heating or cooling system is very often an early sign of trouble. From all our experience in maintaining and repairing AC systems across Corpus Christi that we have at Tiger Heating & Air, we have an important piece of advice: Do not ignore any sound that is odd or different.


AC Making odd noises diagnosis for hissing, buzzing, squealing, and clanking

We usually think of the normal sound AC units make as a hum. You also are going to hear that sudden sound of your air conditioning kicking on. These are the normal sounds that should mean everything is working fine.

These normal noises can be quite loud. Your outdoor unit, called the condenser, may be loud enough to hear when you are outside or otherwise not far from the unit. Most air conditioners run with sounds as loud as 70 to 80 decibels. That is about as loud as a running dishwasher or nearby light traffic. That still might not mean you have a problem, but it’s something to look into.

Listen closely and try to identify what kind of noise your AC is making. Depending on what the sound is, there are a variety of different types of problems that could be happening to your air conditioning system.

At Tiger Heating & Air, we regularly get calls from Corpus Christi homeowners who tell us about the odd sounds their AC is making. Our highly experienced team of AC repair technicians knows what each odd noise means and knows how to fix whatever the problem is. We are able to repair any brand or type of cooling system you have.


If it sounds like metal is grinding together inside your AC, that is not a normal AC noise and does indicate there is probably a problem.

Potential Cause #1: Your AC’s blower fan belts are loose or in some way damaged. That alarming noise could be the sound of the belt rubbing up on other components inside the unit.

Potential Cause #2: That sound could be coming from your compressor. What you might be hearing are pistons in your compressor not working properly.

Your Solution: Call an AC professional. If the problem is with your fan belt, it is not an repair that many homeowners can make themselves. Depending on how soon you caught the problem, this may be a quick and easy repair for our Tiger AC team to do. If the problem is with the compressor, then it might have to be replaced. Having a professional HVAC tech look at your system will mean that the right problem is identified and fixed thoroughly.


If you are hearing something that sounds like a hissing noise or even screaming, call us right away at (361) 371-7541. This could indicate a major problem that you do not want to wait to get addressed.

Potential Cause #1: This sound might mean you have an issue as dangerous as a refrigerant leak. Refrigerant leaks are serious, even potentially fatal, hazards to your health. It also causes further problems with your home’s system and, if left unaddressed, could damage AC valves.

Potential Cause #2: A hissing or screaming noise might mean your compression pressure has become too high.

Your Solution: First, turn off your AC. Because this sound could mean a health danger to your family, you should shut your cooling system off right away. Then call a professional to safely handle whatever is causing this sound. Call Tiger AC for service in the Corpus Christi area at (361) 371-7541. You can call us at any time. We are available for 24/7 emergency service.


Potential Cause #1: If your AC is rather old, this sound may mean there is a problem with your AC’s motor fan such as with the belt slipping (newer air conditioners do not use a belt system).

Potential Cause #2: There could be a problem with the bearings on your air conditioner’s motor fan. This is more likely if you have a new unit without a belt.

Your Solution: Some homeowners may feel able to handle the maintenance steps in tightening up or readjusting any components that are loose. But if you aren’t confident in such DIY tasks, schedule a tune-up with a professional AC technician to diagnose and fix whatever the problems are.


If that humming sound has now become a buzzing sound, that could mean there is a problem. While a variety of issues could be causing it, at least one is quite serious and requires immediate attention.

Potential Cause #1: It is possible that your system has components that are malfunctioning. This might be a minor issue with loose parts or damaged feet on your outdoor compressor or the fan blades could be loose or out of balance.

Potential Cause #2: A buzzing sound could mean that you are dealing with a serious problem such as a refrigerant leak or a broken compressor. Turn off your system and call us immediately at (361) 371-7541 if you suspect this could be the case and we will come out quickly to make sure your system is safe.

Potential Cause #3: You might have an electrical issue.

Potential Cause #4: You simply have a dirty air filter.

Your Solution: Make sure your air filter isn’t dirty or clogged. If changing a dirty filter doesn’t stop the sound, you may want to see if you can tighten a loose part or replace a missing or damaged foot. Call an HVAC professional if you aren’t able to handle those tune-ups or if that doesn’t resolve the problem. A trained AC repair technician will have the tools and experience to identify what the problem is and get it fixed.


Potential Cause #1: Does it sound like something is banging around inside your AC? It does sometime happen that parts inside your air conditioner become loose or break off. This can cause a sound like banging.

Potential Cause #2: This sound could mean there is some issue with your compressor, and it might need to be replaced.

Your Solution: You may be able to find and tighten the loose part yourself. Otherwise, call in a professional. A loose part often will create a lot of harm to your system over time.


Do not ignore it. Different or odd sounds coming from your air conditioner are often clear signs that something is wrong. It is often advisable to even turn off your system if you hear concerning sounds. While there are many problems that only require a quick and easy fix, there are others that are more serious and even potentially dangerous to you and your family.

Call Tiger Heating & Air at (361) 371-7541 and let us know what you are hearing.

We will be happy to come out and check your system. You will have peace of mind in knowing that an experienced AC repair technician has correctly found the problem and made sure no other serious problems exist. You will have an air conditioner working – and sounding – back to normal.


Getting even minor problems fixed right away can save you money in the long run. You may even see your energy bills going down. When your system is not working properly, it is having to work harder to keep your home cool. Getting small AC issues fixed or your HVAC system tuned-up will have your system operating at peak efficiency. Not only that, but by getting needed repairs done right away means you will avoid, or at least put off, more costly repairs or even needing to get your AC system replaced.


It is always possible, although not likely, you have an air conditioner that is beyond repair.

Old air conditioner sitting on curb outside of Corpus Christi home

There are several reasons a repair is not the right choice:

    If repair service is going to be expensive or your AC has needed several repairs recently, it may be time to replace it. AC repair costs can add up, and that money will be better spent on a more efficient system that will last you a long time.
    If your AC is at least 10 years old, it could be on its last legs. You may have to soon face even more repairs or find that it suddenly stops working. That is never something you should have to deal with in the heat of a Corpus Christi summer.
    You could have an HVAC system that is too old, inefficient, or simply the wrong size unit for your home. These are some of the top reasons that causes a cooling system to use up a larger amount of energy to cool your home. It would be smart to invest in a new system that will reduce your monthly bills with lower energy consumption.


You need to work with an experienced and qualified heating and cooling company to make sure you get a repair that fully addresses the problem. You also want a company that provides professional air conditioner installation and knows how to determine exactly the right system needed to completely cool your home. Tiger Heating & Air has been providing proven air conditioning repair service for nearly decades across the Corpus Christi area.

Call Tiger in Corpus Christi at (361) 371-7541 and let us how we can help you today!

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