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How To Get Rid Of AC Clutch Noise When Not Engaged?

We all love the chill blasting from the car’s vents, especially once we need to survive the hot and humid climate. Here we are to assist you with your AC clutch noise when not engaged. But let’s return to the start.

When the car AC is turned on, and it emits cool and refreshing air, the whole travelling becomes easy and relish. However, a car comes with an electric refrigerator filled with multiple ice cubes. The cold air that we get from the AC vents is converted from a contemporary perspective. The recent air has got to undergo multiple steps to rework into the cool and fresh air.

Common Types Of Car AC systems:

There are two types of car air conditioners types which are explained below.

1. Orifice Tube And Accumulator System:

The Orifice Tube and Accumulator system accompany the orifice tube before the evaporator and the accumulator before the compressor. This Tube controls the refrigerant flow and prevents the low-pressure mist before entering the evaporator. Whereas, accumulator holds the refrigerant and removes moisture from it to stop damage.

2. Expansion Valve And Receiver-Drier System

The Expansion valve and receiver-drier system accompany an expansion valve before the evaporator core and receiver-drier between the condenser and in-line filter kit. The desiccant during this system absorbs moisture.

It works just like the accumulator, but it’s located on the high-pressure side instead of the low-pressure side. The expansion valve works an equivalent in both systems and restricts refrigerant flow to convert the liquid into the low-pressure mist.

Why Do I Hear AC Clutch Noise When Not Engaged?

If you turn ON the AC and immediately hear a rattling noise, there are a few potential causes:

1. Compressor Break:

If your AC compressor is beginning to fail, it can make a rattling noise. This compressor failure can occur if not well maintained and rough handling of the system.

2. Pulley:

If the compressor pulley fails, they can make noises, generally a grinding, roaring, or squealing noise. The noise may be actually from the pulley if its bearings are failing. On account of increased engine loads, the compressor starts to produce noise. A wobble pulley will be the reason for AC clutch noise when not engaged.

3. Weak Serpentine Belt:

If the serpentine belt is worn out, it can slip when the compressor engages. As we know the friction is the principle for the belt to act smoothly and free of noise. A broken belt makes the condition worse.

4. Bearing Wear:

The noise may be actually from the idler pulley if its bearings are failing. The noise would start when the compressor engages due to the increased load on the engine.

5. Compressor Clutch:

The compressor clutch is a high-wear item, and if it’s worn out, it can create a rattle during operation. Only the clutch can be replaced in some vehicles, but some require replacing both the clutch and compressor. The compressor clutch is the main reason for the AC clutch noise when not engaged.

6. Miscellaneous Problem:

There are many other potential sources of noise as well. When the AC turns on, it puts the entire engine under a heavier load. This increased load can cause rattles from things like the power steering pump pulley, and loose parts (even a flexible hood prop rod can rattle under the additional vibrations created by operating your air conditioner). If you hear a rattle in your car, have a technician to inspect the cause of the sound.

Understand The Sound And Its Problem:

Learn to understand the problem with sound.

Squealing Noise:

A dry or worn air conditioner compressor belt will cause squealing noise. This noise is going to be worse during throttling your car.

Rattling Noise:

A loose or worn clutch hub or weak compressor mountings also will cause rattling noise from the compressor.

Also, look if your car engine is louder than normal

How To Get Rid Of That Clutch Noise?

Some possible solutions for fixing AC clutch noise when not engaged.

1. Visual Inspection:

Turn off the engine and pop the engine bay. Do a quick visual inspection around the pulley and compressor for the presence of debris. Make sure the serpentine belt is fixed perfectly into its position.

2. Belt Inspection:

If you see the belt is worn, shiny, cracked, then it’s time for replacing it. Replacing this isn’t an easy job to perform. If you are returning the belt on your own, remember the arrangement the way it was before. Until you know very well, do some research on what type of serpentine belt is suitable for your car model.

3. Pulley Inspection:

After removing the serpentine belt, flicker and rotate the compressor’s pulley for any grinding noise and wobbles. If so, then you have to change the pulley. Usually, your AC compressor turns randomly ON and OFF when the engine is running.

4. Compressor Dismantle:

It is not an easy job to do if you have a broken compressor clutch. Failing lock rings, teeth damage, and bearing misplacing can be serious issues when your AC clutch makes noise. If you are trying to dismantle the compressor on your own, watch out for the link:

Your AC compressor should spin freely without the AC clutch engaged, for instance, with the defrost and A/C switches turned off. If the pulley doesn’t spin free all the time, then your compressor bearing might be wiped out.

AC Maintaining Tips:

  • Run the air conditioning once every week for about 10 minutes. This may maintain pressure to keep the compressor working properly.
  • Power the defrost mode for about 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Get a full AC service.
  • Use your air conditioning in winter.
  • Re-charge your AC system.

Frequently Asked Questions:

So,here are some of the frequnetly asked questions about Why Is My AC Clutch Making Noise ,etc?-

Why Is My AC Clutch Making Noise?

The compressor clutch  pumps refrigerant through the system. A rattling could indicate it’s time to replace your worn-out compressor clutch. An air conditioner pulley making noise can also come from failing bearings.

How Do I Stop My AC Compressor From Making Noise?

You should stop Ac compressor from making noise-
  1. Purchase a compressor blanket. Ask your HVAC technician
  2. A bush or shrub is an attractive way to block the noise.
  3.  Build a fence around your condenser to block the noise.

Why Is My Car AC Compressor So Loud?

This noise may be the result of overfilling the system. Too much coolant in the system can cause damage to your system leading to complicationsns. If you hear this one, get it check it out.

Can You Replace AC Clutch Without Removing Compressor?

Yes, you can technically replace the clutch , the reason people give suggestion is that when one fails, the other usually isn’t too far behind it. It’s just a matter of convenience to replace them both you are doing most of the same steps.

What Does A Bad AC Clutch Sound Like?

Ticking, rattling, or rumbling: A loose piece of hardware could cause soundsHissing or screaming. Screaming noise from the compressor could indicate dangerous levels of pressure .


It is always your responsibility to look after your car. If you maintain your vehicle correctly, it won’t dig your wallet for money. You will also be held stress-free on a fantastic drive. Experiencing the smooth steering with a chill breeze blasting towards your face is a separate enjoying ride.

Now you know why you were hearing ac clutch noise when not engaged and how you can solve it on your own. Share this article with your friends, let us know if you are facing any difficulties with any of the methods described above.