Tips for Dealing with a Loud Outdoor AC Unit

A noisy outdoor air conditioning unit can ruin your enjoyment of your home, especially when you are trying to relax outside. Determining the cause and finding a fix can help you enjoy a cool home and a quieter atmosphere. The following tips can help.

Tip #1: Examine the unit

Begin by tracking down the cause of the noise. First, examine the unit up close when it it running. A rattling or banging noise from the exterior of the unit indicates vibration or an improperly secured casing. Sounds from within the unit can usually be traced to the fan. Squealing, for example, usually indicates poor lubrication or something else that is causing friction as the fan rotates.

Tip #2: Fix the fan

If you suspect the fan, cut off all power to the AC unit and then remove the outer casing. A small amount of household lubricant at the rotating point on the fan should fix squealing. For good measure, make sure the attachment screws on the fan are secure, and also use a shop vacuum to remove any dirt or debris inside the unit.

Tip #3: Secure the case

After replacing the case or covering on the unit, make sure it sits flush to the ground and that the screws holding it in place are secure. If you heard rattling from the case, check that nothing is loose in that area. Tightening up a few screws can fix these sorts of noise issues.

Tip #4: Add some insulation

If vibration is at the root of the sound, it can be well worth it to invest in a vibration pad for your AC. These vibration and sound-absorbing pads sit beneath the AC unit, so you may want professional installation help if you aren't comfortable lifting the unit for the installation. Another option that can help dampen the noise from a loud fan is an AC insulation blanket. These blankets wrap around the unit and are specially fit to the model and make of the AC unit. You can contact the manufacturer of your unit to find the blanket sized for your machine. 

Tip #5: Build a fence

For minor noises or if the low hum of the unit is still distracting, consider erecting a low fence around the unit. Just make sure the fence sits several feet away from the machine so air can still circulate around the AC unit as it runs. The fence will act like a sound barrier, helping minimize the noise.

Contact an AC contractor such as Wright Total Indoor Comfort in your area if you are still concerned about the sounds you are hearing from your unit.