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Why Does My AC Make a Clicking Noise?

Why Does My Ac Make A Clicking Noise?

Has your AC recently started making a weird clicking noise? Are you concerned about the sound and want to discover the reasons causing it?

We will help you discover 5 of the most common reasons behind the clicking noise from your AC.

Air conditioners often start producing weird sounds once they have been in use for a long time. The sounds might scare you initially but soon become a normal routine.

However, sometimes, a specific sound from your AC can indicate an issue with some part of it.

The only normal sound an AC produces is that of the airflow. Therefore, most of the renowned AC companies install a sound-damping system. It consists of a two-stage compressor.

This helps keep the noise level below the 55 decibels range. Any other loud sound from the air conditioning unit can represent a problem.

We should not ignore any other sound produced by the air conditioner, especially those representing a malfunction with its system.

The malfunctioning of your AC can be considered by identifying the type of noise and then correcting it by taking proper measures.


The clicking sound from your AC can be an indication of a problem.

The reasons behind this particular noise can be as follows:

  • Problem with the compressor hardware.
  • A defective capacitor.
  • A faulty condenser.
  • Problem with the air filter fan.
  • A defective thermostat.

This article will identify and explain five major reasons behind the clicking noise from your AC.

5 Reasons Why Your AC Is Making a Clicking Noise

A noise-producing AC usually requires a repair service. However, it is not necessary to always call a service technician to repair it. You can also be smart enough to do the work independently and get the tasks done.

There can be many reasons behind your noisy AC. However, the type of noise it creates can be considered to identify and rectify the problem on time.

One of the most common sounds your AC may produce is clicking.

Below are the top 5 reasons that explain the problems behind an AC producing a clicking noise:

1. Problem With the Compressor

Ac Compressor

An air compressor is one of the most important parts of an air conditioner for its fast working. It works as an engine for the air conditioner.

It pushes the refrigerant into the air conditioner system, making the incoming air cool. Without a compressor, your air conditioner will not be able to absorb the heat and make your home cool.

Clicking noise from your air conditioner can represent some ongoing issues with the air compressor. It is an indication of a technical problem that requires an urgent fixation.

As the compressor works, it often vibrates when sucking and cooling the air. This causes the screws to loosen up. Due to continuous vibration, these loose screws make a clicking sound when hitting the AC frame.

Side Note!

If the clicking sound comes from outside the AC unit, it is most probably due to a problem with the compressor. There might be some loose screws or some intact shipping hardware needing removal.

You can use a screwdriver to tighten up the loose screws. It would be best if you unplugged the AC from the wall outlet to prevent the risk of electric shock.

In the case of intact shipping bolts, you can recognize them as plastic flaps. These flaps prevent the AC from mechanical damage during its movement and shipping.

Once the AC is fixed on the wall, these shipping bolts can be removed using a screwdriver. If stayed intact, these will create a clicking noise.

2. A Defective Capacitor

Ac Defective Capacitor

A clicking sound, along with a problem with the starting of your AC unit, can indicate a defective capacitor. It is a major indication of a bad capacitor.

You must replace the capacitor with a new one to correct the issue. Changing a capacitor is easy, so it usually does not require calling a technician. Instead, you can do it on your own by following the instructions in the manufacturer’s guide.

3. A Faulty Condenser

Ac Faulty Condenser

You often hear a single click when you turn on the AC. This click sound indicates the ignition of your air conditioner’s condenser to start its work. This sound is completely normal and a part of your AC functioning.

However, if this clicking sound becomes constant, it can indicate a problem with the electric connections of your AC. This means the thermostat continuously sends signals to the condenser to start its work, but it is not starting.

Moreover, it can also indicate the shortness of the wires inside the condenser.

You can replace the condenser on your own or call a service technician to do this work for you.

4. Problem With the Air Filter Fan

Ac Air Filter Fan

The flaps of the air filter fan are attached to the rotating unit by nuts and bolts. Over time, these bolts get weakened and loose. As soon as a loose fan is turned on, it will start creating a weird clicking noise.

Another reason can be something stuck between the flaps of the air filter fans. A clicking sound can be heard as soon as the fan touches it while rotating.

Cleaning and maintaining your AC and filter fans regularly can help reduce the noise. You can also tighten the loose fan flaps by using a screwdriver.

5. A Defective Thermostat

Ac Thermostat

A thermostat has to work extensively to cool the air for your AC. Unfortunately, the thermostat gets worn out due to continuous work over a long time.

Although it still performs its job, it will reduce its overall efficiency. A weary thermostat will also start making a clicking noise that can be heard as soon as your turn on your AC.


Your AC normally produces the sound of airflow, which is common for all units. However, if it is a different sound, such as a clicking noise, this can be an indication of a problem.

If your AC constantly produces loud clicking sounds, it is facing a problem with its compressor, having a defective capacitor, a defective thermostat, or a faulty condenser.

Repairing or replacing the defective part can resolve the noise issue.

You can also check the air filter fan for any blockade or loose screws to rectify the problem.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Does My Air Conditioner Turn Off Randomly?

If your air conditioner turns off randomly without warning, it indicates its capacitor has gone bad.

Changing the old capacitor with a new one can help resolve the issue.

What To Do if I Detect a Burning Smell From My AC’s Outdoor Unit?

A burning smell from your AC indicates that it needs a professional checkup. The reason can be a bad capacitor, a short circuit, burning wires, or a faulty thermostat.

Turn off your AC immediately and call a service technician to diagnose and treat the problem.

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