Window Air Conditioner Compressor Noise: Main Reasons & The Core Solution On How To Fix It

window air conditioner on a brick building

Last Updated: July 9, 2021

Every sunrise comes with a to-do list to keep up a hectic routine to manage.

And...

As the moonlight hits, all we need is a deep, peaceful, and uninterrupted sleep. 

Modern ACs can help us enjoy a peaceful night with balanced temperature and noise control. However, at times, the window air conditioner compressor noise can become irritating and interrupting.

Hence, you wish to rid of noisy window air conditioners.

Today’s discussion is on how to quiet a noisy window air conditioner, so, let’s have a look at our possibilities!

Why You Have A Noisy Window Air Conditioner

A loud window air conditioner is perhaps the most annoying summer problem unless you don’t have an AC at all. There are several underlying reasons for such issues. And one of the common reasons is the lack of attention on the yearly maintenance of the machine.

If you are concerned about window air conditioner noise reduction, pay attention to the maintenance before anything else.

You can do that by clearing up debris in the outside unit. For that, set a scheduled checkup on the unit and use a blower to take off the residue.

Another reason for the noise can be the damaged blades which can create excessive vibration in the unit and thus lots of noise. If you’re wondering how to quiet a window air conditioner, you’ll most probably have to focus on the performance changes regularly to get rid of the problem early on.

However, if, for any reason, you fail to do the needful, you will end up having window air conditioner compressor noise problems.

Luckily, many DIYs can help resolve the issue.

Most Common Noises In An Air Conditioner

old window air conditioner on a brown wall

Usually, you will hear a humming sound; people don’t normally notice it until it gets louder. Here are some sounds to look out for and the common reasons why they happen:

Rattling And Vibrations

It is linked to the compressor which is the loudest part of an AC.

If it is mild, a soundproofing blanket can come in handy. But if it is getting louder, you might need to replace the compressor altogether. However, compressors are costly, and therefore most people prefer replacing the entire unit with a new one.

Popping Noise

Once again, it is because of malfunctioning of the compressor when it ducks the liquid refrigerant. Or the fan blade in the motor hits something. In such cases, only a professional can help you to resolve the problem.

Clicking

This could be due to electrical issues, or the blades may be hitting something. Nevertheless, it is a basic problem that demands professional attention. Troubleshooting without any experience and assistance can cause a much greater loss.

Squawking Sounds

At times, too much pressure builds up inside the compressor. As a result, you will hear loud, screeching noises. 

If you hear anything like a scream shut down the compressor right away and seek professional help to identify and resolve the matter.

For a layperson, it is hard to identify the reason for the noise.

You should seek professional assistance if you think that the problem is beyond your expertise. As an owner of a window AC, you can avoid the problem via some basic DIY tricks. Doing so will also add life to your machine and will save you from reinvesting now and then.

Tips On How To Make A Window AC Unit Quieter

men working on installation of air conditioner

Care of a window AC is a step-by-step process. Following these tips will help you find the reasons for noise and then you may be able to work on eliminating the problem. Let's review the pointers that you can check on to have a soundproof AC at your home.

Ensure Proper Installation

It all starts with the proper installation of the AC, ideally in a solid wall to have a better chance of achieving the effects of the quietest wall air conditioner.

It should be perfectly leveled from side to side with a slight tilt towards the back.

Such positioning will prevent moisture pooling in the AC. Also, reinforce the brackets during installation. The purpose is to ensure the secure installation of the device.

Make sure every loose part is tightened, otherwise, it will vibrate or rattle, making annoying sounds. Also, ensure proper placement of weather stripping, gaskets, and seals. Here you can also use caulking or spray foam to fill in the smallest crack.

Check For Debris

You will often hear sound because of the twigs, leaves, or other debris stuck in the unit. To avoid this, maintain a routine for periodic cleaning of your installed AC. 

You can vacuum or wipe clean the unit to remove the slightest dirt particles.

Make sure there are no insects stuck in there, and the air filters are clean. In addition, pay attention to the cleaning of fan blades and condenser coils.

Check For Loose Parts

Loose parts like nuts, bolts, belts, or spring clamps are another common cause of the noise. You can avoid the problem by ensuring they are secured well. If there is nothing here, check for the unit housing pieces and front cover plate.

Also, ensure that the fan blades are aligned well so they can rotate freely. You may also need to ensure that the compression feet are supple. Noise-canceling gaskets, grommets, and washers are an effective solution too.

fan of window air conditioner

Always Keep It Lubricated

One way to avoid any noises is to keep the AC parts lubricated well.

Some squeals and squeaks are due to insufficient lubrication. All you need is light machine oil for lubing all the moving parts in the AC.

These parts include the blower wheel, fan and fan motor, or bearing. Lubing at the start and end of each season is the best you can do.

Likewise, if the joints or brackets are making too much noise, apply grease well. Otherwise, you can insert silicone or rubber strips. They will absorb all the vibration between moving parts.

However, if nothing works, you might need to forget about the hunt for tricks on a quiet window air conditioner and focus on investing in a new one. 

The fact remains that all air conditioners can make noise, whether it is due to maintenance issues or if they have aged.

But while a well-built unit may be expensive; it will be quieter and long-lasting which is a good return on investment, after all, you can’t put a price on your peace of mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some common questions on the topic with the most appropriate response to each:

Why is my window AC making a loud noise?

Even the best AC will make a certain amount of noise.

However, as the machine ages, it starts creating apparent sounds. These sounds are usually resulting from damaged or rusted parts of the machine, fan, or compressors. Or else it can be due to a lack of proper care and lubrication.

How can I make my air conditioner quieter?

The best way to avoid the problem is to ensure proper check and maintenance of the AC.

It demands proper installation of the machine in a solid place. For additional soundproofing, you can add cushioning around the AC during installation. It will keep the metal from vibrating and creating annoying sounds.

Which AC makes less noise?

Mini-split ACs make minimal noise. They have an average noise level of 32 decibels with a ductless system. The ductless option reaches up to 30 SEER, which is higher than the traditional split system.

Further, these AC use small tubes to connect the wall-mount units to the condenser installed on the outside.

Such a setting distributes the conditioned air via wall-mounted units and hence reduces noise.

How to make a window AC quiet & keep it quiet?

You can do that by checking the internal components and tightening all the loose ends. Also, ensure that the fan blades are not bent or have any interruption. Keeping the AC clean from all types of debris will also help you avoid noise, it is also effective in reducing noise from return air.

Furthermore, you can add foam weather stripping around the frame. Doing so will cushion/soften even prevent vibration between the parts.

This is how you deep clean a window AC to improve its performance and avoid noise:

When to replace a noisy air conditioner?

If your unit is getting older, the best idea would be to replace it. Excessive noise is the most common indicator for replacement. It usually occurs due to age and can lead to severe problems like leaks and faults in the compressor.

Moreover, due to aged machinery, you will see more voltage consumption, hence higher bills.

Therefore, replacing just the compressor will be a bit moot at this point, perhaps even more costly, in the long run. Thus, a more leisurely and cost-effective way to get rid of annoying noises and enjoy better cooling is to replace the entire machine.

Conclusion

As the focus of this discussion was to find answers to “how to quiet a noisy window air conditioner,” proper care is the core solution. And for that, you can do DIY like a periodic check-up, tightening or loosening parts, and lubricating.

Every machine has a lifetime to serve. After that, nothing can make it work like a new one. At such times it is always an economical idea to replace it with a new one. Hopefully, this discussion helped you get the idea of resolving your problems.

I wish you peaceful sleep this summer season!

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