2 Reasons Why Your Car’s Air Conditioner is Making a Clicking Noise

By March 15, 2019Repair
Mercedes Dashboard - Car's Air Conditioning is Making a Clicking Noise

Why is My Car’s Air Conditioner Making a Clicking Noise? 

Wondering why your car’s A/C is making a clicking noise? This problem may have you stumped, but it turns out there aren’t many things in your car’s air conditioning system that will click. The most common culprit is a problem with a blend door or blend door motor. The blend door is controlled by the blend door motor and is what changes the position of your vents, whether you want hot or cold air, and whether you have recirculation on or off. The climate control head is a control module that controls when and how much these blend doors move based on your inputs.

The other reason your air conditioning might making a clicking-like noise would be the compressor cycling on and off.

Why do These Problems Cause the Clicking Noise in My Dashboard?

The blend doors are designed to move in order to direct the air in the correct direction. If the blend doors are not moving because they’re stuck or broken, you will hear a clicking from in your dash. The motor can also fail and cause a clicking noise.

The compressor works like a pump to compressor refrigerant. If there is a problem in the air conditioning system, such as a leak, the compressor could turn on, then off, then on, then back off again. This cycle is sometimes audible inside the car, causing a clicking noise.

Should I Take My Car In for an Inspection if I Hear a Clicking Noise?

The biggest concern with a noise like this is that your air conditioning may not be functioning normally. If you notice your air conditioning isn’t cooling as well or doesn’t change direction when you push the button, then you should make an appointment to bring your vehicle in for an inspection. Any abnormal noise your car makes is a sign of wear or damage, but if the only problem you are experiencing is the noise, then there is likely nothing to worry about. That said, if it is left alone for too long you could end up with air conditioning that doesn’t work in the future!

Car's Air Conditioner is Making a Clicking Noise - Car Dashboard

Ignoring a clicking noise coming from your car’s air conditioning could leave you without A/C down the road


What to Look Out For When Diagnosing the Cause of the Clicking Noise

There are a few things that you as the driver can do to help pinpoint what’s causing the clicking noise. The first thing to do is to try to notice when the noise happens. Does it happen when you first start the car? After you hit a bump? Only in the rain? When you try to change the position of the vents? When you have the heat and air on? The other big thing to look out for would be how well your air conditioning is working. On cooler days it’s harder to tell, but most cars will output about 40° even when its 90° outside. If your air conditioning isn’t keeping up, then you probably have a leak. This will sometimes cause the compressor to cycle, as we mentioned earlier.

How Do You Repair a Clicking Noise Coming from the Air Conditioner?

As with any issue, before we can fix the problem we must find the problem. With most noises, it is important that we hear the noise itself. Without hearing the noise, we could be chasing the wrong problem. Once we are able to duplicate and isolate the issue we can go about fixing it.

  • If the problem is with a blend door, we will often need to expose the blend door, or at least the motor. Sometimes this includes a lot of disassembly of the dash, while others are easy to access with just a few panels.
  • If the problem is the compressor cycling then we need to figure out why, and if there’s a leak we add dye to the refrigerant system to find the source of a leak. This is because refrigerant is a gas and does not leave a trace where it is leaking.
  • Once the source of the problem is found we will let you, the customer, know. With your approval, we will order and install parts.
  • As with any problem, our final step is to confirm the problem is solved, whether that means turning on the air conditioning, taking it for a drive, or more!

Is There Any Preventative Maintenance Drivers can Take to Prevent their Car’s Air Conditioner From Clicking?

As with many car problems, there isn’t much you can do to prevent these issues from happening. The air conditioning system depends on a number of parts to perform correctly and, over time, all those parts are prone to wear. With more time, the wear will result in failure. A regular inspection may catch a problem before you notice a symptom, but there isn’t a way to prevent it from happening.

If you’re experiencing problems with your air conditioning or car in general, we’re here to help! Give us a call or stop in and experience the honest and professional service that keeps our customers coming back.

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