What Does This Sound Mean?

A hand turning the dial on a water heater

Your house has many important components, from your electrical system, plumbing, and HVAC unit. They are vital to living a comfortable life and are in use every single day. It can be frustrating when something is going wrong with one or any of them, especially if you’re unsure what it could be. This blog will serve as a guide to help you recognize odd sounds your appliances are making, locate the issue, and then call a professional to assist in the solution.


  • Booming - If you hear a loud booming sound from your furnace, it could be that your pilot lighting is trying and not succeeding in relighting. This can lead to a gas build-up and a large all-at-once combustion.

  • Rattling- A rattling sound coming from your HVAC system, heating or cooling, could be a sign that one of the parts of the overall system is loose and moving around within the unit.

  • Hissing - Hearing a faint or loud hissing sound from your HVAC unit could mean one of two things. It could be a refrigerant leak within your air conditioner or a leaking air duct within your furnace. It’s important to check both your AC unit and heating unit when investigating your HVAC system.

Water Heater

  • Hissing or Sizzling - If you hear a hissing or sizzling sound coming from your water heater, it most likely means there is a build-up of sediment in your tank. This can be avoided by annually flushing the tank of your water heater.

  • Whistling - If your water heater sounds like a kettle, it most likely means the water flow is being restricted. If your tank is having issues with water flow, turn off your water valve and call a plumber. A blocked water heater can lead to a burst, causing damage to your home.

Electrical System

  • Humming - It’s normal to hear a light hum or buzz when you’re near your electrical panel, but if it ever gets louder and extremely noticeable, you should contact an electrician to take a look.

  • Popping - If you have a generator installed, a noise you should watch out for is a popping sound. This could mean either you have a bad fuel mix in your generator or it’s starting to fail.

How We Can Help

If you ever hear one of these sounds in your home, don’t panic, our team of highly trained technicians has got you covered. We’re able to tackle any job in your home, from your HVAC to your electrical system.


For all of your HVAC unit, plumbing, or electrical needs and questions contact Cotti-Johnson at (774) 768-5154! Keeping you comfortable in every season.