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A Noisy Vent: Banging and Clattering, What's the Matter?

A Noisy Vent: Banging and Clattering, What's the Matter?

There’s a certain amount of noise that Buckhead homeowners should expect to emanate from their air conditioning and heating system. For example, hearing the motor cycling on and the fan running is perfectly normal and no cause for concern. A noisy vent, however, should get your attention. If you hear popping, banging or high-pitched noises from the vents, pick up your phone and call an HVAC contractor for a diagnosis.

A professional can assess the ductwork and determine if any of the following problems are occurring:

  • Airflow: When airflow to the supply or return portion of the ducts is restricted, it can cause some noise in the vents. A clogged air filter or dirt buildup in the blower can sometimes cause the HVAC system to work harder and generate noise in the process. If there’s a serious problem with the HVAC system and you ignore its cry for help, significant damage to the system can occur.
  • Temperature: Generally, the only safe noise that ductwork should make is a nominal amount of contracting or expanding. Heated air that moves through cold ducts creates some noise as the metal contracts and expands. The same thing happens when cold air moves through hot ducts. Installing insulation around the ducts can prevent a noisy vent problem. However, knocking or popping noises in the duct vents can also occur if the system was improperly installed or the home and ducts have shifted over time. These problems require professional attention.
  • Dampers: Most ductwork systems have dampers installed so that HVAC technicians can adjust them for optimal airflow. If too many dampers are closed, the operations of the HVAC system can be compromised. Hire a technician to resolve the problem by testing the internal actuator and resetting the dampers.

If you have noisy ducts that are louder than some minor contracting and expanding noises, contact Casteel Heating, Cooling, Electrical and Plumbing for help. We offer a range of home maintenance services, and are happy to evaluate your ductwork and HVAC system for problems.​