Why does my air conditioner smell bad? If you’re asking this question, your HVAC system might be telling you something. Often, unpleasant smells from your air conditioning unit are caused by excess humidity or moisture. But sometimes foul odors could indicate more dangerous problems.
Why does my A/C smell like dirty socks?
Your air conditioning unit may have dirty sock syndrome. Surprisingly, this has nothing to do with your Uncle Ned’s stinky feet. Dirty sock syndrome is when your air conditioning unit gives off a moldy smell, caused by mildew and bacteria built up on the evaporator coil or sitting water that doesn’t drain.
Why does my A/C smell like it’s burning?
Dust may settle on your air conditioner’s heat exchanger over time. When you turn the unit on, the heat produced by the motor burns the dust and can cause a burning odor. But a burning smell may also be an overheating motor or an electrical issue, which is not something to mess around with.
Why does my A/C smell like sewage?
If you smell sewage, it’s likely caused by a backup in the sewer system. A sewer line may have ruptured near your home’s ductwork. Even small amounts of methane from sewer gas can be dangerous, so don’t ignore the unpleasant smell.
Why does my A/C smell like gun powder?
A short in the circuit board or fan motor may generate a gun powder odor right when the unit kicks on. You could need a circuit board or blower fan replacement.
Why does my A/C smell like exhaust?
An air conditioner isn’t powered by gas but does use other fluids like refrigerant to operate. You may smell fumes if refrigerant is leaking out of the compressor, condenser, or evaporator.
Why does my A/C smell like a rotten egg?
If your air conditioner smells like rotten egg, a bug, rodent, or bird may be decomposing in your HVAC units or in the duct system. Your air conditioner may also smell like skunk. Rotten egg and skunk stench could indicate a natural gas leak, which should be dealt with extreme caution. If you suspect a gas leak, evacuate your home immediately and use a neighbor’s phone to call 911.
How do I know if it’s coming from the A/C?
Your HVAC system can carry odors throughout your home, so unpleasant smells may not be from your air conditioning unit. The smell of sewage may be from the diaper your partner just changed in the upstairs bedroom, not a ruptured sewer line. The easiest way to tell if it’s coming from your air conditioner is to eliminate obvious odor sources, then see if the stench returns when you switch on the A/C or lingers when you turn it off.
When should I call a professional?
Leaking fluids and electrical problems pose a serious risk to your family’s safety, so contact a professional to have your air conditioner inspected and repaired if you smell skunk, gun powder, sewage, or exhaust. If you do suspect that decomposing animals or mold may be hiding in your air conditioning unit or ductwork, call your HVAC technician right away to avoid further damage to your equipment.
Heating & Cooling Two provides air conditioning tune-ups and a variety of maintenance packages so you can keep up with repairs. If your equipment stinks, schedule service. We can troubleshoot the problem, fix your HVAC, and get rid of the smell. Contact us for more information.