When your air conditioner is spotless and running correctly, it’s not normal to be smelling anything odd. Unexpected air conditioner noises and strange smells are a sign that something is up. If your air conditioner is past its prime or you haven’t had a tune-up completed within the last year, they can be an obvious sign you need professional air conditioning repair in Hodgenville.
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 smell, it isn’t a positive sign. You might also observe your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical odors are often a hint that your air conditioner is experiencing a refrigerant leak. Your system relies on this gas to shift heat through copper coils, which can crack as time goes on.
Four Signs You Are Dealing with a Refrigerant Leak
Aside from the weird smell, here are four other signs that you are dealing with a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is cooling.
- Ice on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Trouble keeping your home cool or reaching your set temperature.
- High utility costs.
How You Can Fix It
A refrigerant leak requires experienced repairs from a heating and cooling company like Phelps Heating & Cooling, Inc.. Your cooling technician will find and fix the leak before recharging your system with refrigerant.
Resolving a refrigerant leak usually costs between $225 and $1,600, according to nationwide averages put together by HomeAdvisor. Your precise cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how long it takes to solve.
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, there’s a high probability it runs on R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being made due to its negative effects on the ozone layer. Because of this, repairs can be extremely 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 possibly nothing wrong with it. But there’s a high chance you have a natural gas leak in your house. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to signal you when there’s a leak, because the gas can be fatal in big amounts.
How You Can Solve It
If you detect a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we advise:
- Switching off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Evacuating your home right away.
- Contacting your gas company without delay.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
Individuals who contact us about this problem often report their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it’s on. Also called dirty sock syndrome, this smell is typically linked to a filthy evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Condensation can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most common in areas where you turn on heating at night and during the morning before transitioning to cooling during the afternoon.
How to Repair It
The best way to prevent dirty sock syndrome is to routinely get a new air filter and schedule routine air conditioning maintenance with Phelps Heating & Cooling, Inc.. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system flowing, because stagnant water can also produce noxious odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or a strong, vinegar-like odor, it could be caused by several problems, including:
- A filthy filter
- Extra condensation
- Blocked condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Fix It
Examine 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 fix the problem, call Phelps Heating & Cooling, Inc. at 270-358-3167.
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 several things wrong. These include:
- Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
- Motor that needs lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical problem.
Electrical issues should be inspected right away to stop a fire. If you detect burning plastic when your air conditioner is running, turn it off and reach us at 270-358-3167 right away.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
An overpowering ammonia odor means there could be mold flourishing in your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold makes.
How to Repair It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your well-being. That’s why we recommend having a pro like Phelps Heating & Cooling, Inc. examine your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when needed.
Our Pros Can Take Care of Strange Air Conditioner Smells Fast
You deserve to be cozy in your house and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you need relief from your stinky air conditioner, give us a call at 270-358-3167. We’ll diagnose the issue quickly and take care of it at a competitive.