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Brown's Heating & Cooling Blog

The Various Sounds You Don’t Want Coming From Your AC

Perhaps, in the not too distant future, we will have air conditioners that self-diagnose malfunctions and report them back to the homeowner in explicit detail. It’s really not too far-fetched of an idea if you really think about it–a smart air conditioner to go with your smart thermostat, right?

Unfortunately, this isn’t quite the reality yet, and we have to rely on other methods for our air conditioners to send us warning signals that something is amiss. Maybe it’s a decline in cooling power or an unexplained increase in your energy bills. Or, it could be that your circuit breakers for the indoor and outdoor units keep tripping.

One of the most common signs that something is indeed wrong with your air conditioner is strange sounds coming from the system. But what qualifies as a strange sound? Honestly, it’s going to be anything that’s different from the normal, everyday noises you hear coming from the system.

Like what, you ask? Read on!


Have you noticed a pretty loud, mechanical shrieking sound coming from your air conditioner? YOu’re right to be alarmed! This is most likely the sign of a motor problem or at least the sign of a motor bearing that is wearing down. The fact that the motor bearing wore doesn’t isn’t uncommon nor is it necessarily “bad,” however it is something that needs to be addressed.

A worn-down motor bearing eventually creates too much friction on the motor, and it permanently damages it. Our technicians can quickly and accurately replace the bearings in order to save your motor and prevent subsequent damage.


A grinding noise is also possibly a sign of a motor problem. It’s usually caused by a motor that has accumulated too much dust or lost too much lubrication. Again, this is a normal part of wear and tear, but it still isn’t something you should ignore.

In addition to this grinding noise, you might smell a foul odor coming from the vents–this is a sign that the motor is already overheating. Please turn off your AC system and call our pros right away!


Rattling could end up being a really minor “problem,” as it could be the sign of nothing more than a loose cabinet door, something you can probably fix on your own with a few twists of a screwdriver.

Alternatively, though, it might be that loose components are being knocked around in your system’s blower fan, o you might have bent fan blades. It might even be that your air conditioner’s cabinet is coming loose from the slab, or you have duct damage that needs to be addressed.

Hissing (or Bubbling)

This is the sound that a refrigerant leak makes as it is escaping out of either the evaporator coil or the condenser coil. Refrigerant is what makes the cooling process possible, and if it’s allowed to continue it can lead to a premature air conditioner breakdown.

For professional air conditioning service in Monument, CO, contact Brown’s Heating & Cooling today!

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