If your air conditioning system has a problem, then it might start to make unusual noises. While you might not notice quieter sounds to start with, you'll certainly notice if your system makes grinding noises. These sounds can be loud enough to be alarming.
Why do air conditioning systems sometimes make grinding sounds?
Loose Fan Belts
If a fan belt in your system loosens or moves out of its place, then it might start to rub against or hit other parts close to it. While this often makes a softer sound rather than a grinding noise, a belt will grind if it catches on another part and can't move freely. You can usually solve this problem by repositioning or replacing the faulty belt.
Compressor Piston Problems
The compressor in your system uses pistons to compress the refrigerant gas that fuels your air conditioning. These pistons sometimes tell you that all is not well in your compressor by making a grinding sound.
For example, you might hear these sounds if the compressor has areas of wear or damage that make the pistons rub against other parts as they move. Or, in some cases, the pistons themselves might become too worn to work efficiently and smoothly.
If your problem comes from your compressor or its pistons, then you might need to replace your compressor. If the damage is severe or wouldn't be cost-effective to repair, then you might have to completely replace your air conditioning system.
Broken Bearings Or Blades
If any of the metal bearings or fan blades inside your air conditioning system break, then they might start to rub against surfaces and other parts close to them. If two metal parts of your system come into contact, then you'll hear a distinctive metal-on-metal squealing noise. This grinding sound can be painful to hear.
If you catch this problem early, then you might be able to fix it by replacing the worn or broken bearing or blade. Once everything is in the right place again, your air conditioning should stop making grinding sounds.
If your system makes grinding sounds, then don't ignore the problem. This kind of noise isn't likely to go away on its own. It can be an early warning of a potential system failure if you don't find and fix the sound's source.
To get help, turn off your system to prevent any more damage and contact a local air conditioning repair service, such as Superior Group.