5 Ways to Identify HVAC Noises That Could Cause Damage to Your System

We often become oblivious to the soft humming sounds caused by our different systems/ large appliances continuously operating in our homes. Until the sounds change, of course. Many of us generally expect everything to keep running as long as it has power. However, if you are the person responsible for the health of the HVAC system and other systems in your home, you should learn of their basic functions.

Get to Know your HVAC System

There is no time like the present to familiarize yourself with your HVAC system. What types of equipment make up the HVAC system in your home? How does it look, sound, or smell while operating? Where is the equipment located?

An issue may occur that you can solve with simple troubleshooting when you are aware of the HVAC equipment in your home. Just with knowing the general location of where a noise is coming from can help inform us of a likely cause for an unfamiliar sound.


Hearing a hissing sound could indicate damage to coolant lines, a coolant leak or improperly sealed ductwork. It is possible compressed refrigerant is leaking from the compressor if you are hearing hissing from the outside condenser unit of your air conditioner.


Customers have commonly complained that air vents and registers make a tuning fork like sound. This can be caused by a lack of return air which can occur when too many vents are closed off or when large furniture is obstructing air flow. Once you have done some troubleshooting and are still hearing the sound, it is possible a larger issue exists, and you will require the help of a professional.

Rattling or Banging

You may want to investigate your outdoor unit if you are hearing a rattling noise. Turn the power to your HVAC system off prior to your investigation. This could be a result of debris or small twigs getting lodged within the unit and causing the racket. Pullies with failing bearings could also be the reason for your rattling. Tightening loose bolts, adding lubricant, or removing light debris may be all that is needed for repair. Your next form of action here should be to call the experts to prevent further damaging your system.


A frequent clicking sound is most likely the result of an issue with your thermostat. You are probably aware of the click you hear prior to the humming sound of your activated system. When there is a frequent or repeating clicking, there is a defective relay and the system is failing or timing out.


When parts within your HVAC system are operating, they are vibrating. This the low hum you normally hear from a system when it is running. If a part becomes loose, the vibrations will cause a loud buzzing sound.

High-Pitch Whistle

TURN POWER OFF. This is a warning sign from your AC unit. It is important to shut off all power to your system and call a professional. This could be a result of dangerously high refrigerant pressure.

Knowledge Is Power

Anything louder than a soft humming sound can raise cause for concern. Listen to your home; minor problems can quickly turn into expensive repairs. Chances your HVAC system will experience issues such as low refrigerant, malfunctioning thermostat, or blown fuses are much lower when routine preventative maintenance is consistent.

HVAC systems can produce a wide range of noises. We have identified common sounds and alarming noises that may be coming from the equipment in your HVAC system. Having this knowledge is beneficial when describing an issue to your HVAC professional. We are confident in our ability to provide all our customers expert HVAC services.


Breathe Easy With AirXperts 

If you need help with improving the indoor air quality in your home, the team at AirXperts is here to help. Contact us today for all your HVAC needs. Call 304-562-7300 today and breath easier tomorrow!

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