The air conditioner is designed to make your home or office comfortable and especially when the weather is hot outside. A freshly installed air conditioner will, however, run optimally for several months before calling for servicing and maintenance. There are, however, times when the air conditioner will be functioning optimally but cause bad smells in the house. There’s a reason for concern if your AC has been producing foul smell lately. Several factors can cause bad AC smells. Outlined below are some of the most common causes of AC foul smell.
- Mold, Mildew, and Must
Mold, mildew, and must are mainly caused by excess moisture in both the HVAC system and your home. As long as conditions are right, mold will start growing almost everywhere in the house tainting air quality. The best way to prevent mold and mildew from spreading is by keeping an eye on indoor humidity levels. With the foul smell already in, the first step here would be to replace the AC filters, fix all water leaks, and improve drainage in the house. Investing in a whole-home dehumidifier can also help prevent this problem from happening.
- Stagnant Water And Dirty Evaporator Coils
Stagnant water in the HVAC system may also be the reason for foul smell coming from the air conditioner. If the AC produces the smell of stinky feet or dirty socks, then chances are the condensate drain pan is clogged as well as dirty evaporator coils. Although you could try draining the stagnant water and cleaning the evaporator oils, calling a professional cleaner or technician to help out would be a wiser step.
- An Overheating Motor
We all know AC systems use a series of motors to push air inside the coils and air vents. Although the AC might be functioning correctly, an overheating motor, mechanical problem, or even wiring issues may cause the AC to produce a burning smell. The overheating motor can cause damage to the unit itself, a reason you should turn the AC system off immediately. Have the system checked and serviced by a certified electrician before turning it back on.
- Leaking Gas
If the AC seems to produce the smell of rotten eggs, then chances are you have a leaky gas inlet. While natural gas is odorless, manufacturers add mercaptan, a chemical that produces a distinctive rotten-egg smell when released to the air. The first step you should take if you detect this is to turn off the AC system, then all electrical systems, including the gas inlet. If the smell doesn’t fade away, call a technician immediately for proper diagnosis and repair.
- Rotting Carcass
Rodents and other pests may find their way into the HVAC duct system. A dead and rotting critter will produce a punchy foul smell, similar to sulfur, with the AC system helping spread the fouls smell to the rest of the house. Be sure to turn off the AC system on detecting this, then open up all windows and doors to allow fresh air in. Unless you can pinpoint where the dead pest/animal is, call an AC repair professional to help out.
These are some of the most common causes of AC foul smell. Take the proper precautionary measures once you detect these to avoid a disaster.