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Serving The Greater Fresno Area Since 1970

Serving The Greater Fresno Area Since 1970


Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning Blog

5 Sounds No Heater Should Make


If your car or your computer started making odd noises, we hope you wouldn’t ignore it. After all, these noises may be the warning sign that allows you to catch a repair need before it shuts the whole system down.

The same idea applies to your heater.

A heater will make some noise when it runs. After all, silence indicates the heater isn’t operating at all.

There are noises that your heater should and shouldn’t make. Let’s look at these two categories so you can figure out if your system needs a heater repair in Fresno, CA.

5 Noises From Your Heater That Should Worry You

We aren’t trying to stress you out. It is important to know what noises aren’t normal to hear from your heater though. These are 5 sounds that no heater should make and when you hear them, should prompt a call to a technician to have your system checked.

  1. Rattling: When your heater starts to run, it may sound like it is shaking quite a lot. This rattling sound is actually an indicator that something is loose within your system. It may be caused by a loose blower door or air handler screen. It may also be caused by loose bolts or screws. Don’t leave rattling sounds unchecked!
  2. Clanging: There is a chance that you heard a rattling sound and didn’t realize it meant trouble. That noise may have changed into a clanging nose. This indicates that the loose part (likely a bolt, screw, or even a fan blade) has broken free and is now bouncing around.
  3. Hissing: This isn’t a normal sound that occurs whenever your air flows through the heater. Hissing indicates that air is being forced through a small opening. Depending on the kind of heater you have, this may indicate a leak in your ducts, a leak in your heat pump refrigerant line, or a leak in your heat exchanger.
  4. Screeching: This is an unpleasant sound that is usually caused by metal scraping against metal. The common cause for this sound is a dry blower motor belt or dry blower motor bearings.
  5. Buzzing or humming: Noticing a buzz or loud hum coming from your heater? You may need to have electrical connections checked. This may also indicate a crack in a heat exchanger or other problems.

What Heater Noises Are Normal?

Your heater isn’t silent unless it is off. Here are the sounds that a properly functioning heater actually should make.

  1. The whoosh of air: This is the main sound you always want to hear when your forced-air heater is running.
  2. A click before start-up: When your thermostat senses that the heater needs to turn on, you should hear the system respond with a click.
  3. The sound of the system starting up. This may sound akin to a motor starting up, almost a “windup” type of noise as the fans start to rotate and fuel/refrigerant and air start to flow.

Has your heater begun to make noises that worry you? Then now is a good time to schedule heater repairs to get things back in order.

Contact Donald P. Dick Air Conditioning to schedule your repairs. We strive to provide honest answers and solutions to the problems our customers experience while remaining highly competitive in price, and offer the fastest turnaround you can find! 

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