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Why Does My AC Make a Popping Sound?

Have you noticed weird sounds coming from your AC unit lately? Maybe these sounds are popping noises that almost sound like a big piece of popping popcorn, or perhaps they sound more like firecrackers. Popping sounds are not unusual when it comes to air conditioners—however, if you do hear these noises, turn your system off straightaway and contact AC repair specialists.

For excellent AC repair or maintenance in Orange County, give Dynamic Air Services a call at (949) 979-4409.
Air Conditioner Making Pulsating Noise
When you hear your air conditioner making a popping sound or a pulsating noise, it’s important that you turn the system off and call a repairman. This is because these noises can often indicate a serious issue that may cause a safety hazard or irreparable damage. Take a look at some of the reasons why your air conditioner sounds strange:

The Unit is Freezing Up

We all enjoy a cool and comfortable home when warm weather strikes. However, if you set your temperature too low, you may cause your air conditioning unit to form ice. Most air conditioners have a sensor that is able to detect ice formation. When it does, the system will go into defrost or dethaw mode to get rid of the ice.

The popping you are hearing when this happens is the sound of the ice cracking and falling inside of the unit. It’s normal for an air conditioner to occasionally freeze up. But when this happens frequently, especially if it happens consecutively, there is an underlying problem that needs to be addressed by an AC repair technician.

Electrical Problems

Sometimes air conditioner electrical connections become loose or frayed. Any popping or pulsating noises you hear could be the sound of these connections sparking. It is urgent that you turn off your air conditioner immediately and call a repairman. Not getting this kind of issue repaired right away could result in an electrical fire.

There is Water or Liquid Inside of the Unit

When water gets inside of an air conditioning unit, it can cause major problems with the internal mechanics. You may hear a popping noise because the unit is trying to get rid of the water. This issue most often occurs after heavy rain storms. Take a look at the outdoor unit to see if there is any debris that may be blocking any drainage areas.

You can also check the drain pan and the condensate line to see if they need to be emptied or flushed. Sometimes condensate lines can develop clogs which can cause water to back up into the unit. Even if you are able to find and fix the cause of water in your unit, you will still need to contact an AC contractor. This is because the water will have most likely damaged sensitive parts inside of your air conditioner.

Internal Mechanical Issues

This is the most common reason for a popping or pulsating noise in your air conditioner. Occasionally, bolts, screws, joints and other parts become loose in the system. They may bang against other internal parts or the sides of the unit. Fans can also become dislodged easily and start to bang around inside of the system.

While these are common issues, they can cause heavy damage if not taken care of immediately. A bolt or fan is easily replaced, but coils and other sensitive parts are not as easily replaceable. Be sure to call a heating and cooling specialist to inspect your system and get to the root of the problem.
When Popping Noises Aren’t a Big Deal
Popping and cracking noises coming from your AC may not be as serious as the issues above. There’s no need to worry if the noise doesn’t occur often or if the noise rarely occurs when the AC kicks on. Changes in temperature cause the duct in AC systems to expand, resulting in a popping or cracking noise when the system first kicks on. This is normal and is generally harmless.

A less serious cause of popping sounds can happen when you have new vents installed or you have your vents cleaned. If this is the case, there could be pressure buildup inside. This pressure can cause the ducts to expand and this may make an audible popping sound. This problem will likely correct itself over time. However, unless you know for sure, you should call an HVAC specialist if your AC is making a popping sound.

If the popping noises in your AC occur all season, your ducts may be leaking air or not properly configured. In this case, scheduling repair could not only stop the noises but could even lower your energy bills.
Importance of Preventative AC Maintenance
Calling a heating and cooling specialist when you encounter problems is an excellent way to quickly get control of the situation. However, the best thing that you can do for your air conditioner is to schedule preventative, regular maintenance. Here are some of the reasons why this is so important:
  • Lowers frequency of damages and repairs.
  • Decreases monthly energy costs.
  • Extends the lifespan of the unit.
  • Improves indoor air quality.
  • Saves time and money.
It is highly recommended to schedule air conditioning maintenance at least twice a year so that you can prevent the kinds of issues illustrated above.
AC Repair Service in Orange County
If you are concerned about weird noises coming from your AC unit, the best thing to do is to call a professional. A Dynamic Air Services technician will be able to troubleshoot your system without causing more damage and help you choose what next steps to take. Our highly trained team is ready to take on any heating and cooling problem. From cracked heat exchangers to ductwork leakages. The Dynamic Air Services team has got your back.

If you are in need of AC repair in Orange County, CA, contact the team at Dynamic Air Services today! Give us a call at (949) 979-4409 or contact us online.
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