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We Serve the Greater Vancouver Area


We Serve the Greater Vancouver Area



Why Your Air Conditioner is Making Odd Noises

ACSummer is the most common time for air conditioning issues, which should come as no surprise. It’s the most stressful time of year for those systems, after all. Preventive maintenance can go a long way towards preventing your air conditioner from developing problems due to stress, which is one of the reasons we recommend doing it every year. However, it’s not a perfect solution. You still need to keep an eye out for any warning signs of issues arising between appointments. One of the more common signs that your air conditioner is struggling is if the system is making odd noises. The following are a few common noises that indicate an issue with the system.

Short Cycling

Short cycling is a behavior where your air conditioner turns itself on and off multiple times in the span of a couple minutes, rather than going through an entire cooling cycle. There are a couple major problems with this behavior. The first problem is that short cycling prevents the air conditioner from cooling the home properly. The second problem is that the issue accelerates the rate at which the air conditioner wears down over time. Prolonged short cycling makes it more likely for the air conditioner to develop problems over time, and will shorten its lifespan by a number of years if it isn’t dealt with. Make sure that you call for repairs as soon as you notice that your air conditioner is short cycling.


Grinding is likely due to an issue with your air handler motor. The motor generates a lot of friction during operation, so to help with that the system is outfitted with oiled bearings that keep it running smoothly. These bearings wear down eventually, though, and as they wear down the friction on the motor increases. If the friction has reached a point where the system is making a grinding sound, it means that the bearings are in dire need of replacement. If the bearings are not replaced in time, the motor will eventually overheat and burn out.


If the system is making a bubbling or gurgling noise, you need to have it looked at right away. That often signifies a leak in the refrigerant line, which will slowly rob the air conditioner of output capacity. The longer the refrigerant leak goes without being patched, the lower the system’s output will drop. Eventually, the system will break down entirely if the issue isn’t patched.

These are not the only sounds that can indicate that your air conditioner is in trouble, of course. If you notice your system making any sounds at all that it doesn’t normally make, you should probably have a professional check it out for you as soon as possible. Better to have it checked sooner rather than wait for it to get worse.

Area Heating & Cooling, Inc. provides full home air conditioning service in Vancouver, WA. If you need to have your air conditioner repaired, contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our professional technicians.

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