Is your air conditioner makes a loud noise when starting? For central air conditioners, the outdoor unit can be a source of noise that frustrates homeowners. Some complain that hanging outside is irritating, with the constant noise going nonstop in the background; others can hear the noise from outside, even with the doors and windows shut!
If your air conditioner is making a lot of noise, ask yourself: has my AC always made this much noise or does it sound different now? This can help you decipher between a new problem your AC is trying to communicate to you or just a naturally noisy machine. Either way, there are things you can do how to fix a noisy air conditioner and maintain the lifespan of your unit.
Reason Your Air Conditioner is Noisy
A strange noise could be a sign something is seriously wrong with your AC. If you notice the weird noises coming from your air conditioner are getting louder and louder, chances are it has to do with ageing parts. A professional technician can help you determine if it makes more sense to replace your entire unit or not.
Installing a new AC can provide many surprising benefits, such as reduced electric bills. Today’s air conditioners are quieter than ever. They are made with a heightened awareness of energy efficiency, which ultimately benefits you. While the new unit will cost money upfront, it will lower your bills by as much as half, paying for itself within only a few short years.
Where Did That Noise Come From?
#1 The AC Compressor
The compressor on your air conditioner is one of the nosiest parts in general. If you notice your compressor making more or different noises than usual, it might have to do with the compressor wearing out. Air conditioning compressors can continue to run for years after they have started to make increasing amounts of noise.
#2 The AC Drive Motor
The drive motor, also known as the fan motor, will start running loudly when it becomes worn out. At the start of your air conditioning unit’s life, the drive motor is quiet because the bearings are well lubricated, but this wears away as time goes by.
#3 The AC Fan Blade
When you hear a strange noise coming from your AC, you always want to check the fan to see if something is caught in the way or somehow compromising it. An AC unit has a fan blade located in the front and a fan blade located in the back. If one of these blades breaks, it can begin to rub against the sides of the unit, creating a lot of noise.
How To Quiet A Noisy Air Conditioner
Sometimes your noisy air conditioner checks out just fine, which is good because you won’t have to make any repairs. Yet, that means you are stuck with a noisy air conditioning unit—so now what?
If you are bothered by the sounds coming from your air conditioning unit but all parts are in working order, there are a few things you can do to help block out the noise.
Add a Fence Around Your Unit
Since outdoor air conditioning units can be really loud, some people add a fence around the perimeter to help shield out the noise. Make sure and keep your fence at least 3 feet from the unit so that proper airflow can get through.
Instead of leaving gaps between the fence planks, you will reduce the noise by overlapping wood. If you can see the unit through the fence, this will not provide a sufficient sound barrier.
The taller that your enclosure is, the better it will be able to hide the sounds. To make your shelter even more soundproof, you can treat the inner walls of your enclosure with specially made silencing panels.
Add a Partial Roof To Your Fence
While a full roof will help muffle the sounds of a noisy AC, you don’t want to completely enclose your outdoor AC unit, as it needs to freely access the air. The perfect compromise is to add a peaked roof that covers the unit on 3 sides; this will help cover up the noise more but will still allow air to easily flow in and out.
Add AC Compressor Sound Blanket
If you have a new unit that still makes a good deal of noise, a compressor sound blanket should do the trick to remove all sound. Contact your AC manufacturer in order to get an air conditioner cover made just for your make and model.
If you add an AC sound blanket to an older unit, you will most likely still be able to hear it, so this option is best for newer units only.
If you notice a noisy air conditioner, it’s a good idea to turn off your unit as a precaution until it can be inspected by an HVAC technician. They will help you get your unit fixed before the problem arise. In the long run, this can save you time and money.