What Caused the Air Conditioner Sounds Like Running Water?

In the summer, you might be using your air conditioner more frequently. However, some days you can hear the air conditioner sounds like running water. This might be an indication that there’s an underlying problem with your portable air conditioner.

It’s hard to miss since most air conditioners don’t make noise. Please look at what might cause it and how to fix the problem.

Read also: How to Fix Window Air Conditioner Compressor Noise

Air Conditioner and Portable AC Sounds Like Running Water

An air conditioner works with a refrigerant that evaporates to create cooling air. As the liquid refrigerant converts to gas, the heat in the air gets absorbed and cooled down before passing out from the coil. This process commonly doesn’t produce any annoying noise, but if you start hearing water noises such as dripping or running water, you might want to observe what caused it.

Initially, some factors cause your AC sounds like running water. The first and most common problem is a clog in the air filter. It can happen when you put the portable AC in a setting that allows dirt to enter the system.

air conditioner sounds like running water

Over time it’ll pile up and clog the air filter. This leads to other things, such as the moisture around the air conditioner would turn to ice and then melting, causing a leak in your portable AC.

Clogging problems could also happen in the drain line. For example, a portable AC has a drain hose that could be clogged with dirt and mold. This could cause the condensation result to travel back and then leak out of the vents of the portable AC.

There are some factors that cause your AC sounds like running water. The first and most common problem is a clog in the air filter

Another problem that might cause a portable AC leak is a faulty condensate pump. The condensate pump works to pump out the result of the condensation process through the drain hose. However, if the pump is not working correctly, it could only accumulate water.

It will eventually leak through the unit instead of the drain hose. If you have a portable AC, they come with a drip pan to collect condensate products. However, it could fill up over time. If that happens, you might experience water pooling under the portable AC. 

If your air conditioner makes a hissing sound instead of AC running water, there might be a leak in the refrigerant. This is far more concerning as it could result in serious problems. This leak could also stop your portable AC from blowing cool air. Instead, it will not serve its function as an air conditioner.

How to Stop Portable AC Sounds like Running Water

A full drip pan is the most straightforward problem to fix. First, you must detach the portable AC from any power source and manually drain the water. While at it, dry them out to prevent weird smells or bacterial growth in such a damp component.

If you have a clogging problem in the air filter, you can clean them up yourself. Take the filter out after unplugging the portable AC and clean them with running water and soap. Dry them thoroughly before attaching the air filter back to the portable AC. You can do this as a monthly routine to keep the portable AC running smoothly.

It should help you to stop the AC sounds like running water. On the other hand, if you want to unclog the drain hose, you can use a long stick that goes into the drain hose. Make sure to rinse them afterward before attaching them back to the portable AC.

That is all you need to know about air conditioner sounds like running water. However, if you tried fixing it yourself, but it seems like it doesn’t solve the problems, you might need to contact an HVAC technician to help you look into it.

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AirconMag is an experienced author and Air Conditioner expert. With years of practical experience in the field authored several informative articles on various aspects of AC unit, including installation, maintenance, and repair