Perhaps the most widely used air conditioners are the window air conditioners. They are quite popular for heating and cooling in both domestic and commercial premises. The basic advantage of a window air conditioner is that unlike the central air conditioners and the split air conditioners, it fits well in the window giving a good look and it does not occupy any space of the room at all.
Moreover, window air conditioners do not need to be shifted every now and then from one place to the other. However, like any other air conditioning equipment, it produces noise, the intensity of which differs with the type and size of the window air conditioners. Constant noise can indeed be very disturbing and distressing to the home and surrounding residents.
It is, therefore, advisable for the consumer to compare window air conditioners by checking the sound power level labels on the unit or in the literature specifications. The noise levels are often given in decibel ratings and the higher the decibel level, the louder the unit will be. The sound pressure increases by a factor of ten for every 10-decibel increase. For example, 60 Decibels is 10 times louder than 50 Decibels and 100 times louder than 40 Decibels.
The compressor and the fan are combined in a single unit and mounted in the window air conditioners and this is the source of all the noise in the air conditioner. The other causes of noise could be worn bearings, cabinet rattles, dirty or rusty fan blades, worn rubber mountings and compressor wear. Regular maintenance can reduce the noise to some extent but with the passing of time, there is bound to be an increase in the level of the noise.
You should check whether your window air conditioner is vibrating or producing a rattling noise and if so, then it is not a normal situation. The reason for this can be improper installation or loose side panels. If, however, you hear a scraping noise, you should either take the help of an authorized service provider or you can also try to find out the cause and repair it yourself.
The following steps can help you in tracking the fault and repairing it:
You should tighten the screws holding the front panel onto the unit. You should check carefully the window all round the unit. You should then turn the window air conditioner on and press your hand against the sash. If you find that as you press your hand against the sash, the sound changes in pitch, then you should put some wooden shims in the gap between the window air conditioners frame and the sash. If, however, the pitch of the noise changes when you press your hand on the glass, you should use some insulating cellophane tape between the glass and the frame. You might have to use putty if that does not reduce the noise.
If you feel that the sound is originating from within the unit, you should take the unit out of the window and check to see if the fan blades are bent. If so, just bend them back so that they match the others.