Why does it smell bad when my air conditioner runs?

July 22, 2019

Many of us install air conditioners to help us feel relaxed in our homes. But when you start to experience unpleasant odors coming from your cooling system, it’s more than just annoying. It can greatly influence your home comfort.

Where do the smells come from?

Focus on what the odor smells like. If the odor resembles a rotten egg, this could be a signal of a gas leak. If this is the case, you should open your windows, turn off the gas supply, evacuate the home and reach out to the gas company. Be sure to have the gas company turn it back on for you. It’s not something you want to mess around with.

If it doesn’t smell like rotten eggs, you probably have a different problem.

Just like anything in your indoor space, if your air conditioner isn’t cleaned correctly or taken care of, there’s a good chance that dirt and dust will develop. And because components of your air conditioner aren’t clearly displayed before you, cleaning them can often go overlooked.

Buildup of mold, dirt and other particles is one of the most common sources of odors with air conditioners. It can happen with the coils, drain pain, air ducts or even your filter. Thankfully, ongoing maintenance can help prevent this buildup and reduce the probability that an unfriendly smell starts diffusing throughout your home.

Heat and moisture can contribute to increased mold growth, particularly in warmer climates. Not only can mold and mildew create a nasty smell, but it can also negatively impact the quality of air in your home.

It’s also possible that a tiny creature navigated into your duct system and died. You can turn off your air conditioner and either give our team or pest control a call to come and retrieve the animal.

What can I do?

Assess your filter. This is a common culprit for air conditioner odors. If it’s been a long time since you’ve swapped your air filter, replace it with a brand new one. We typically advise changing your filter every three months. But it’s also vital to keep in mind other factors that would require you to replace it more often, such as pets in the home or if a family member has allergies or asthma.

If you’ve replaced the filter and it’s not making a difference, it’s probably time to contact a professional. Especially if it’s been an lengthy period of time since your last air conditioning examination. They can assess the situation to see if a thorough cleaning can do the job. You could consider having your air ducts cleaned. Professional duct cleaners can take a look to see if your indoor air quality would be enhanced from a proper cleaning.

If you have concerns about the odors in your home, Hix Air Conditioning Service, Inc. can help you take a look at the situation and talk through possible solutions. You should be able to enjoy your cool indoor space throughout the warmer summer months, without having to suffer with undesirable odors. You can schedule an appointment with us online or give us a shout at 918-682-8238.