How to clean the air conditioner drainage with your own hands

The air conditioner makes gurgling sounds: what to do?

For many of us, silence in the home is an important part of a productive holiday. Manufacturers understand this, and regularly put quiet air conditioners on the market. Such devices emit noise at the level of 20 dB or even less. This is a great solution for a bedroom, study or children’s room. Such split systems are especially in demand in large cities, where the level of noise pollution is significantly higher than the comfortable norm.

After listening to the city noise for a day, we are still ready to put up with the hum of the refrigerator or vacuum cleaner, but we fall into perplexity when our quiet air conditioner makes gurgling sounds or squelches. It’s scarier if the device makes strange noises immediately after purchase and installation, or, even worse, when it’s turned off!

In any case, every user should notice a sudden gurgling in the air conditioner during normal operation, and eliminate this attack in time. In this article, we will briefly explain why the split system can make extraneous sounds similar to gurgling, what to do about it and whether it is worth solving this problem, especially with your own hands at home.

General information

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If the air conditioner is working properly and properly configured, it should produce a low monotonous hum, but not gurgling or whistling sounds.

If the air conditioner has started to make strange extraneous sounds, similar to gurgling, listen to them. Most likely, the gurgling will not be constant, but abrupt, with different volume and frequency. Often these sounds are heard when the device is turned on, but sometimes users can hear them when the air conditioner is turned off.

In 99% of cases, these sounds come from the internal (wall) unit of the air conditioner. But we hasten to reassure you: the probability of serious damage is extremely low. Of course, there is a problem and it needs to be fixed, but the repair work will not take much time and money.

We will immediately answer the question about self-repair. At home, you will not be able to perform a full diagnosis, and therefore you will not be able to repair the device. This is only possible for a specialist from the service center. He has not only the necessary tools, but also the knowledge and invaluable experience. We do not recommend doing repairs if you have neither the skills nor the practical experience. Otherwise, you risk shortening the life of the air conditioner.

Causes of extraneous sound

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Often the reason lies in one thing: incorrect installation of the drainage tube. Due to improper installation, the unit may make gurgling sounds in high winds, as air enters the drainage tube, through which condensate flows out. As a result, the air mixes with the water, causing the sounds of gurgling to be heard.

Did you know that water in the air conditioner is formed as a result of the natural cycle of changing the states of the refrigerant, when it goes from a gaseous state to a liquid state.

And some users confuse the gurgling with the buzzing of insects that accidentally (or intentionally) got inside the air conditioner housing. But if you get closer to the block, you can recognize these sounds as a buzzing sound. However, in this situation, you can not do without cleaning and disinfecting the split system.

If the gurgling is heard when working in heating mode, it means that the outdoor unit has begun to defrost (this is not a problem, it should be so), or the copper tube through which freon circulates is damaged. This is already a serious breakdown that requires the help of a specialist.

These are the main reasons. In this case, the repair takes no more than an hour. Provided that it is performed by an experienced master. If the cause is more serious than the wrong installation of the drainage pipe or its bend, you will have to perform more serious repairs. But such cases are rare. In any case, before the repair, it is necessary to diagnose and accurately determine the cause of extraneous sounds.

How to solve the problem?

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Contact the service center for assistance. Only an experienced technician will be able to determine the exact cause of the fault and quickly eliminate it.

And you, for your part, can help a specialist if you record before the call when and how often extraneous sounds are heard, what is the weather outside the window at this time, where exactly the gurgling sounds are made, in which part of the split system.

Most likely, the master will find a fault in the drainage pipe and install it correctly, eliminating other people’s mistakes. It does not take much time, and such a service is not very expensive. But replacing a copper tube will require more experience and financial resources, but this is not as scary for your time and wallet as it may seem at first glance.


Now you know why the air conditioner is gurgling in the on or off state, what to do and whether it is worth trying to fix this problem yourself.

In most cases, such extraneous sounds do not signal a breakdown. However, only an experienced service center technician can determine this for sure. We are convinced and have repeatedly repeated that any malfunctions should be shown to a professional before drawing conclusions. The specialist has enough experience and knowledge to understand why the water gurgles in the split system and whether something needs to be done about it.

Have you ever encountered such a problem? What was the reason for the annoying gurgling coming from the air conditioner? Tell us about your experience in the comments below. Your tips and recommendations will be useful for both users and wizards. Good luck!

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