When your air conditioner is spotless and running properly, it’s not normal to be smelling anything strange. Peculiar air conditioner noises and strange smells are a clue that something is out of whack. If your air conditioner is past its prime or you haven’t had service completed recently, they can be an obvious sign you need skilled air conditioning repair in Lawrence.
Here are six of the most common air conditioner smells and how you can resolve them.
1. Central Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals
If your air conditioner smells bad when turned on, especially a chemical scent, it isn’t a positive sign. You could also notice your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical odors are often a hint that your air conditioner has a refrigerant leak. Your system uses this gas to transfer heat through copper coils, which can wear out as time passes.
Four Hints You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak
Aside from the odd smell, here are four other clues that you are experiencing a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is on.
- Ice on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Difficulty keeping your home comfortable or reaching your programmed temperature.
- Increasing electrical bills.
How You Can Repair It
A refrigerant leak needs professional repairs from a heating and cooling company like Scott Temperature. Your cooling professional will locate and repair the leak before recharging your AC with refrigerant.
Repairing a refrigerant leak usually costs between $225 and $1,600, according to nationwide averages compiled by HomeAdvisor. Your precise cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how long it needs to repair.
If your air conditioner was installed earlier than 2010, there’s a high probability it uses R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being made due to its harmful effects on the ozone layer. Consequently, repairs can be extremely expensive so it may be best to schedule air conditioning installation in this circumstance.
2. Air Conditioner Smells Like Gas
If your air conditioner smells like rotten eggs, there’s likely nothing wrong with it. But there’s a high probability you have a natural gas leak in your residence. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to signal you when there’s a leak, since the gas can be deadly in heavy concentrations.
How You Can Fix It
If you notice a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we suggest:
- Shutting off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Going outside as soon as possible.
- Calling your gas company immediately.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
People who reach us about this problem usually share their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it runs. Also known as dirty sock syndrome, this smell is frequently caused by a filthy evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Moisture can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most often seen in climates where you turn on heating at night and during the morning before switching to cooling later on.
How to Solve It
The best approach for preventing dirty sock syndrome is to regularly get a new air filter and schedule routine air conditioning maintenance with Scott Temperature. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unclogged, as excess water can also produce unpleasant odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or a strong, vinegar-like odor, it might be caused by several situations, including:
- A filthy filter
- Too much condensation
- Clogged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Solve It
Inspect your filter first. If you haven’t replaced it within the last three months and can’t see light through it, it’s time to replace it. If that doesn’t solve the issue, contact Scott Temperature at 785-269-0465.
5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic
If you’re dealing with an air conditioner burning smell or that your air conditioner smells like fish, there could be a number of things wrong. These involve:
- Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
- Motor that requires lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical malfunctions.
Electrical malfunctions should be examined quickly to avoid a fire. If you smell burning plastic when your air conditioner is operating, shut it off and call us at 785-269-0465 right away.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
A powerful ammonia odor means there may be mold growing in your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold creates.
How to Fix It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your wellness. That’s why you should have a specialist like Scott Temperature look at your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when necessary.
Our Specialists Can Eliminate Odd Air Conditioner Smells Fast
You deserve to be cozy in your home and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you need relief from your smelly air conditioner, reach us at 785-269-0465. We’ll figure out the issue quickly and fix it at a reasonable.