Window Air Conditioner Sounds Like Water? (Reasons & Fixes)

Window Air Conditioner Sounds Like Water

Have you ever heard a strange gurgling or dripping sound coming from your window air conditioner? Many people experience water sounds coming from their AC and are left wondering what could be causing it. The problem can be quite disconcerting, especially if you don’t know what’s behind it.

In this article, we will help you figure out why your window AC sounds like water, and what you can do to fix the problem. So if you’re tired of dealing with those mysterious drips, read on to learn more.

Why does window ac sounds like water? (With Fixes)

Why does window ac sounds like water
Image Credit: iamlilme

How does an AC work?

An air conditioner is designed to cool your home by drawing warm air from inside, cooling it, and then circulating it back into the room.

To do this, the ac unit uses a process called refrigeration, which involves the circulation of a refrigerant through a series of coils. As the refrigerant absorbs heat from the air inside your home, it turns from a gas into a liquid, and this change in state causes it to make a hissing or gurgling sound.

Common reasons and their fixes for window ac sound like water

 1. drain pan clogged

One of the most common causes of water noise in an air conditioner is a clogged or damaged drain pan. The air conditioner has a small tray at the bottom that is designed to collect any condensation that forms during the cooling process, that’s the drain pan.

To check it, look for the small tray and try to find any standing water or debris. If you find any, use a small brush or pipe cleaner to remove it.

Be sure to also check the drain pan for any visible damage signs, such as cracks or kinks. If the drain line is severely damaged or clogged and you cannot clear it, you may need to call a professional for repair or replacement.

drain pan clogged
Image Credit: brodi

2. Insufficient refrigerant

The refrigerant is responsible for absorbing heat from the air inside your home and dissipating it outside. If the air conditioner is low on refrigerant, it may struggle to cool your house effectively, which can cause your weird window ac sounds.

To check the refrigerant level, you will need to check the low-pressure side service valve on the air conditioner. This valve is typically located on the larger of the two refrigerant lines and is often marked with an “L” or the words “low pressure.” Use a refrigerant gauge to measure the pressure in the line and compare it to the recommendations. If the pressure is too low, you need to add more refrigerant to the unit.

It is important to note that handling refrigerants can be dangerous. If you are not comfortable or experienced in working with refrigerants, it is best to call a technician to handle this task.

This video can help you check your AC’s refrigerant levels.

3. The air filter needs to be cleaned or replaced

A dirty air filter in your air conditioner is created by trapping dirt, dust, and other contaminants from the air as it passes through the unit. If the air filter clogs, it can restrict the airflow and cause the air conditioner to work harder. This can lead to water drip, as well as reduced efficiency and a shortened lifespan.

To fix this problem, clean the air filter or replace it with a new one. If the air filter is visibly dirty, you can try cleaning it – but be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and allow the filter to dry completely before replacing it.

The air filter needs to be cleaned or replaced
Image Credit: lifehacker

4. Evaporator coils become dirty or covered in ice

The evaporator coils are located inside the air conditioning machine and are responsible for absorbing heat from the air inside your home. As the refrigerant passes through the coils, it absorbs the heat and cools the air, which is then circulated back into the room. If the evaporator coils become dirty or covered in ice, it can cause the air conditioner to make some dripping noises.

To inspect the evaporator coils, you will need to remove the access panel on the side or back of the window ac unit. Once the panel is off, you should be able to see the coils. If the coils are dirty, you can try cleaning them with a soft brush or a cleaning solution. Be sure to use caution when cleaning the coils, as they are delicate and easily damaged.

If the coils are covered in ice, the problem may be with the refrigerant level or the thermostat. You can try turning the air conditioner off and allowing the ice to melt, then checking the humidity level and adjusting the thermostat as needed.

When are dripping sounds normal?

While it is common for AC systems to produce some condensation during the cooling process, it shouldn’t make much noise. But there are a few instances where dripping sounds may be considered normal:

-During initial installation: It is normal for a new air conditioner to produce some dripping sounds during the first few hours of use.

-When the air conditioner is first turned on after a period of inactivity: This is because the unit is releasing any condensation that may have built up.

-When the unit is located in a humid environment: because of this, the AC may produce more condensation and, as a result, some excess water.


In conclusion, it is not uncommon for a window air conditioner to make water sounds from time to time. There are several potential causes of these sounds, including a damaged drain line, a clogged air filter, or an old or inefficient unit.

If you are experiencing water sounds and are unsure of the cause, it is important to have the unit inspected by a professional. If you have any more questions, let us know in the comments.

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