What Causes My Air Conditioning System to Rattle?

One of the pleasant side effects of home air conditioning is the soothing white noise they produce, which can effectively block distracting outdoor sounds. When your AC begins to make odd noises, it not only breaks up that barrier of white noise, it might also be a signal that the AC system needs attention.

Of the different strange sounds an AC can make, rattling is one of the most common. We have often made service calls to attend to rattling air conditioning in Tempe, AZ, so we can explain some of the reasons it can occur. If you start hearing your AC rattle, contact Goettl Good Guys Air Conditioning, and we’ll get right out to you to discover what the trouble is and fix it before it grows into bigger trouble.

Loose panels: This is the simplest explanation for a rattling sound. Sometimes the panels on the cabinets housing the condenser or the evaporator will become dislodged because of screws that have worked loose or weren’t screwed back tight enough after the panel was opened. Before considering other issues, make sure the panels are secure.

Debris: Your air conditioner’s cabinets should be as free as possible from outside contamination. But if the air filter becomes clogged, or the outdoor unit doesn’t have a clear area around it, then dirt, gravel, leaves, sticks, and other small items can enter the cabinet and start getting knocked around. This requires immediate attention: not only will such debris damage the AC’s components, but you have to find out how the debris got inside so you can prevent it from happening again.

Misaligned fan: One of the AC’s fans may be striking its casing, either because of damage (from the debris mentioned above) or poor installation. This will become progressively worse until the fan no longer works, so have it fixed as soon as you can.

Broken motors: The motors that run the fans and the condenser in an air conditioner contain the most moving parts of any component in the system. If the motors suffer damage or start to wear down, their internal parts can become dislodged and start to rattle around. This is another problem that debris infiltration can create.

Although a rattling air conditioner may need only a simple fix, it could also indicate the start of an issue that will only grow worse and trigger a domino effect of other repair needs. Since many of these problems come from debris, make sure you regularly change the air filter to keep the interior of the AC clean. But when that rattling noise starts, be prepared to call for professional help—you want the problem solved when it’s still small.

With over 70 years providing Tempe, AZ with air conditioning repairs, maintenance, and installation, Goettl Good Guys Air Conditioning is the company to call.