We depend on our HVAC system to keep our homes cool and comfortable in summer and warm and cozy in winter. During the tense summer season in Las Vegas, NV the air conditioning system is an actual life saver. When the HVAC system begins to produce nasty odors, homeowners do not usually know if they should turn off their central air to get relief from the odors or have a comfortable but smelly home. When the HVAC system develops nasty smells, this often indicates a problem. However, an central air system can develop a number of different smells, all pointing to a certain type of problem. Air Supply Heating & Air Conditioning will share some of the common odors that an HVAC system can produce, what they mean, and what needs to be done to correct the problem.
Central AC Smells like Car Exhaust
An air conditioner unit runs on electricity and not any type of fuel or combustion engine. So when your air conditioner smells like car exhaust, this is not normal. Some fluids are used that when heated can smell like car exhaust. One fluid is the refrigerant, which can leak and when heated, will smell like exhaust. When you notice the exhaust odor coming from your air conditioning system, you will want to turn it off. Only a professional HVAC technician can repair and recharge an air conditioning system. Hopefully you fix the problem early enough to prevent other problems.
AC Heater Smells like Fire or Smoke
The air conditioning system should not ever catch on fire, so if you are smelling smoke, fire, or a burning smell, it is often due to overheating. The burning smell may smell like gun powder or even a plastic like smell. The gun powder like odor is produced when a component has overheated. A plastic burn is the electrical system melting or has burnt. A rubber smell is the blower’s fan belt burning up. Again, turn off the air conditioning system to prevent further overheating problems. To ensure the air conditioner doesn’t require repair or a belt replacement, contact an HVAC service.
AC Smells like Rotten Eggs
Often the smell of rotten eggs is actually the scent of decay. When you have a nasty rotten egg like odor coming from your air conditioner, there might be a dead animal that got stuck inside. In most cases, a dead rodent is inside the air duct, but occasionally there may even be a bird that got stuck in the air conditioner unit somewhere close to the blower which is why you are smelling the dead animal. You can look for the dead animal yourself, but if you can not find or reach it safely, seek professional assistance.
Musty Smell from AC Vents
When you notice a musty odor coming for your air conditioning, this can be a sign of mold. Mold may have develop in the air duct, on the evaporator coils, or inside the air handler. You will need to treat the HVAC system to get rid of the mold. But then you will need to determine why mold developed in the first place. The air conditioning system should not develop mold. If there is mold you need to determine what caused the mold. There may be a leak or the condensation system be clogged. If you cannot treat the mold yourself or are able to determine the cause of the mold, seek professional HVAC services.