When your air conditioner is clean and working properly, it’s not normal to be smelling anything strange. Unusual air conditioner noises and odd smells are a clue that something is wrong. If your air conditioner is old or you haven’t had service done lately, they can be an obvious sign you need skilled air conditioning repair in Des Moines.
Here are six of the top air conditioner smells and how you can fix them.
1. Central Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals
If your air conditioner smells bad when turned on, specifically a chemical smell, isn’t a positive sign. You could also notice your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical smells are typically a sign that your air conditioner is experiencing a refrigerant leak. Your system uses this gas to move heat through copper coils, which can wear out as time passes.
4 Hints You Have a Refrigerant Leak
Aside from the weird smell, here are four other hints that you are experiencing a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is cooling.
- Ice crystals on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Trouble keeping your residence cold or achieving your programmed temperature.
- Increasing electrical expenses.
How You Can Take Care of It
A refrigerant leak needs professional repairs from a heating and cooling company like Heartland Heating & Cooling. Your cooling pro will pinpoint and fix the leak before recharging your air conditioner with refrigerant.
Repairing a refrigerant leak often costs between $225 and $1,600, based on nationwide averages put together by HomeAdvisor. Your total cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how many hours it takes to solve.
If your air conditioner was installed early than 2010, it’s likely it has R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being manufactured because of its adverse effects on the ozone layer. Because of this, repairs can be significantly expensive so it may be smartest 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 chance you have a natural gas leak in your residence. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to alert you when there’s a leak, because the gas can be toxic in large amounts.
How You Can Solve It
If you smell a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we recommend:
- Switching off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Going outside promptly.
- Call your gas company now.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
People who reach us about this situation usually mention their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it runs. Also referred to as dirty sock syndrome, this smell is frequently caused by a dirty evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Excess water can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most typical in areas where you use heating at night and during the morning before turning on cooling later in the day.
How to Fix It
The best way to prevent dirty sock syndrome is to regularly change your air filter and schedule routine air conditioning maintenance with Heartland Heating & Cooling. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unclogged, because standing water can also create noxious odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are dealing with air conditioner mildew smell or an acidic, vinegar-like odor, it might be the result of several issues, such as:
- A clogged filter
- Extra condensation
- Clogged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Resolve It
Inspect your filter first. If you haven’t changed it within the last three months and can’t see light through it, we recommend replacing it. If that doesn’t resolve the smell, contact Heartland Heating & Cooling at 515-344-3579.
5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic
If you’re experiencing an air conditioner burning smell or that your air conditioner smells like fish, there could be a couple of things wrong. These entail:
- Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
- Motor that should have lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical malfunctions.
Electrical problems should be examined quickly to stop a fire. If you smell burning plastic when your air conditioner is on, shut it off and call us at 515-344-3579 right away.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
An overpowering ammonia odor means there might be mold spreading inside your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold makes.
How to Fix It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your wellness. That’s why it’s important to have a professional like Heartland Heating & Cooling look at your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when recommended.
Our Specialists Can Eliminate Strange Air Conditioner Smells Rapidly
You deserve to be cozy in your house and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you need relief from your smelly air conditioner, give us a call at 515-344-3579. We’ll figure out the problem quickly and fix it at a reasonable.