Why Is My Air Conditioner So Loud? A Detailed Guide

why is my air conditioner so loud

Why Is My Air Conditioner So Loud? A Detailed Guide

Were you aware that air conditioner use alone accounts for about 17% of a household’s energy bill? So, if you’re paying, say $120 a month for electricity, over $20 of that is just for cooling your home. That’s a staggering $250 for AC use every year!

If you live in Missouri, though, chances are, you use your air conditioner a lot more. After all, scientists say that the Show-Me State’s summers have become a lot muggier and warmer.

That’s why the last thing you want is to find yourself asking, “why is my air conditioner so loud?” For one, because an extremely noisy AC is a telling sign that there’s something wrong with the unit. Leave things unresolved, and you may end up with an air conditioner that can’t cool your home.

Ready to learn all about the possible culprits behind your AC making such an annoying racket? Then let’s get right into it!

Loose Internal Components

A noisy air conditioner characterized by loud humming sounds can be due to loose screws or bolts. The noise you hear may result from the rapid vibrations caused by those unfastened AC parts.

A much louder buzzing can also occur with a detached or out-of-balance fan. There could even be enough space in the screwed sections of the fan to make it rattle.

Another possible culprit is an unsecured AC cover or panel. When this part comes loose, it can bang against the frame of your air conditioner. You should get it tightened ASAP, as leaving it as-is can cause dirt and debris to build up faster inside the unit.

Note that filth is one of the top causes of air conditioner woes, including unsatisfactory performance. Dust build-up, for instance, can make it harder for the AC’s evaporator coil to absorb heat. Over time, the coil can become so dirty that it ices up.

Parts That Have Completely Unfastened

Screws or bolts that have completely come loose may be the culprit behind your loud AC unit. These can create continuous banging or clanging sounds against the rotating fan blades.

If you hear such noises, turn off your air conditioner right away. Otherwise, the next thing you may hear is a cracking sound. In this case, you’d end up with a much more expensive fan repair or even replacement bill.

Intruding Foreign Objects

Since part of your air conditioner sits outside, it can be quite easy for foreign objects to find their way into it. A few examples are grass, leaves, twigs, clumps of dirt, and even stones or rocks. When these do enter your AC, they can produce rattling or banging sounds.

Apart from the loud noises, these intruders can also cause interior AC damage. They can dent or bend the air conditioner’s fan blades.

This is also one of the top reasons you should maintain proper clearance on all sides of the unit. As an integral part of your AC maintenance, be sure to get rid of vegetation and other debris near the outdoor unit.

Severe Wearing of Vibration Pads

Vibration pads are sturdy cushions that go directly under the four “paws” of your outdoor AC unit. Their primary role is to absorb the vibrations produced by a running air conditioner. Without these, the unit will make non-stop crunching noises as it hits the ground.

Over time, however, these cushions will wear out, dry, crumble, and break off into pieces. If this occurs, nothing will dampen the vibrations coming from the outdoor condenser. This will then cause your air conditioner to create deafening noises.

These pads can also develop uneven wearing, which can make the outdoor unit teeter. This can then cause the AC to wobble, with one corner or side hitting the ground as it moves or sways. As a result, you may hear your air conditioner make thudding sounds.

Lack of Lubrication

Lubricants, such as oil, help prevent too much friction from occurring on the movable parts of an AC. They also serve sealing functions on valves, as well as keep mechanical wear at bay. Moreover, these substances act as a form of noise-deadener.

Lubricants, like all other liquid-based compounds, will dry up over time. However, they can dissipate much more quickly if you add continuous heat to the formula.

Now, keep in mind that your air conditioner is always sucking up warm air. As such, the oil that lubricates all those moving parts in your AC will dry out sooner. When this happens, excessive friction will follow, which, in turn, can make the unit go all squeaky.

The longer you allow this to go on, the louder the squealing noises will get. Your AC may even begin to wail.

These scary noises aside, excessive friction also causes premature wearing on AC components. Unless you get this checked out and fixed right away, it won’t take long for your air conditioner to be on its last leg.

Leaking Refrigerant

Since 1975, there have been at least 37 reports of Freon-related job accidents in the US. After all, this chemical, also known as “R-22”, is a toxic substance that can cause asphyxiation and burns.

More than that, R-22 is a type of hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC). HCFCs are substances that, when leaked into the air, destroys the ozone layer. That’s why Freon is now legally phased out in the United States.

However, many existing and currently-installed air conditioners still run on R-22. If yours is one of these, and it’s making a loud buzzing sound, then the problem may be due to a leaking refrigerant.

In this case, it’s best to switch off your AC and get in touch with a Kearney, MO HVAC specialist as soon as possible. These are professionals who have the right tools and equipment to deal with Freon safely.

Why Is My Air Conditioner So Loud? Take the Guesswork Out by Calling a Pro

As you can see, there are a lot of possible answers to your question, “why is my air conditioner so loud?” In many cases, it could be something as simple as a small foreign intruding object. However, if your AC is quite old or ill-maintained, then the culprit can be much more insidious (as in a Freon leak).

If your AC is making such a racket that it’s disturbing your sleep, it’s time to call us here at Colvin’s. We’ll be happy to give it some well-deserved TLC so that it can go back to its quiet, efficient operation.

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