9 Bad Air Conditioner Unit Smells & What to Do to Remove the Stench?

fotex2021-08-26T10:45:22-07:00August 26th, 2021|Blog, HVAC Blog|

Sometimes your air conditioner can emit foul odors if it doesn’t get regular cleanings or maintenance done to it. If you have a weird smell coming from your AC and want to know what it could be, our Atlas Cooling & Heating team came up with nine common and bad AC smells and what you can do to remove them.

1. Rotten Eggs

If a rotten egg smell is coming from your AC, this could mean that there is a potential gas leak that is getting into your ductwork. If this is the case, try to safely turn off the gas supply, call 911 or your gas company to report the leak, and evacuate your house immediately.

2. Dirty Socks

You might think the smell of dirty socks is coming from your unwashed laundry; however, this can mean that there is bacteria growth in your air conditioner. The smell isn’t harmful, though, and our team can quickly assist our customers with any HVAC cleaning or repair needs.

3. Musty Mildew

When your air conditioner runs, extra moisture escapes because of the airflow, getting trapped in the ducts. This trapped moisture can lead to mold and mildew buildup in your AC ducts. Our Atlas Cooling & Heating team can efficiently assist you if you have AC blockage or need quick maintenance on your HVAC unit.

4. Burning

A slight burning smell when you first turn your HVAC on isn’t usually a cause for concern. However, if you smell an extreme burning smell or the aroma of gunpowder, this could mean that there is an electrical hazard that could potentially be sparking. If the situation is serious, evacuate your home and call the fire department. When the problem has been figured out, call one of our team members to assist you with any HVAC repairs or installations.

5. Exhaust Fumes

Exhaust fumes are a smell that your AC shouldn’t create for a long time. However, if an exhaust fume smell persists, this could mean that there is a leak in your refrigerant line or motor. If this is the case for you, turn off your system and call one of our technicians for repair services.

6. Vehicle Coolant

Your AC is filled with an antifreeze vehicle coolant, like Freon, which can sometimes smell sweet. However, this smell can alarm you of a Freon leak, which is very dangerous and toxic when inhaled. If this happens, stop running your AC right away and call one of our technicians to help you find and fix your AC leak.

7. Cigarette Smoke

The smell of cigarette smoke is usually due to someone smoking inside, so the smoke gets caught in the air filter, releasing the cool air into your home. If this is happening to you, schedule one of our Atlas Cooling & Heating team members to come and perform regular maintenance and cleaning service on your AC unit.

8. Skunk

 If your air conditioner is emitting a skunk spray odor, then this means a skunk is probably sprayed right near your AC unit. This strong smell is then circulated through your ducts and into your house. If this happens to you, reach out to one of our technicians to assist you with cleaning out our air ducts.

9. Garbage

If a severe garbage smell comes from your air conditioner, it most likely means an animal has gotten into your air ducts and died, which is the smell emitting into your home. Call one of our team members at Atlas Cooling & Heating to remove the animal and clean out your ducts.

How We Can Help Keep Your HVAC System Safe

Our Atlas Cooling & Heating team provides many HVAC and other home services. If you’re looking to get maintenance done or replace your HVAC system, we can quickly and safely get the job done for you. Give us a call or go online today to get a free quote and speak to one of our team members at (877) 452-8527 or atlasheatingandcooling.com!