When your air conditioner is fresh and running correctly, it’s expected you won’t be smelling anything odd. Unusual air conditioner noises and weird smells are a sign that something is out of whack. If your air conditioner is old or you haven’t had service completed lately, they can be a clear sign you need pro air conditioning repair in Lake Forest.
Here are six of the most frequent air conditioner smells and how you can repair them.
1. Central Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals
If your air conditioner smells bad when turned on, specifically a chemical scent, it isn’t a great sign. You may also observe your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical smells are often a hint that your air conditioner has a refrigerant leak. Your system uses this gas to shift heat through copper coils, which can wear out over time.
Four Hints You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak
Besides the strange smell, here are four other signs that you are dealing with a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is operating.
- Ice on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Trouble keeping your home cold or having your programmed temperature.
- Increasing utility expenses.
How You Can Fix It
A refrigerant leak needs skilled assistance from a heating and cooling company like 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning. Your cooling specialist will find and fix the leak before recharging your AC with refrigerant.
Resolving a refrigerant leak typically costs between $225 and $1,600, based on nationwide averages assembled by HomeAdvisor. Your total cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how much time it requires to repair.
If your air conditioner was installed earlier than 2010, there’s a good chance it has R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being manufactured as a result of its adverse effects on the ozone layer. Consequently, repairs can be very expensive so it may be smartest to consider air conditioning installation in this situation.
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 home. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to alert you when there’s a leak, as the gas can be deadly in large amounts.
How You Can Solve It
If you smell a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we advise:
- Turning off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Going outside promptly.
- Contacting your gas company immediately.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
Homeowners who contact us to report this situation usually mention their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it’s running. Also called dirty sock syndrome, this smell is often linked to a filthy 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 often seen in areas where you turn on heating at night and during the morning before switching to cooling later in the day.
How to Fix It
The best way to prevent dirty sock syndrome is to frequently change your air filter and schedule routine air conditioning maintenance with 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unclogged, because stagnant water can also result in noxious odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or a pungent, vinegar-like odor, it might be caused by several situations, including:
- A clogged filter
- Excess condensation
- Plugged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Repair It
Examine your filter first. If you haven’t changed it within the last three months and can’t see light through it, it’s time to replace it. If that doesn’t fix the problem, call 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning at 949-204-0859.
5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic
If you’re noticing an air conditioner burning smell or that your air conditioner smells like fish, there could be several things wrong. These entail:
- Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
- Motor that should have lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical trouble.
Electrical malfunctions should be checked quickly to avoid a fire. If you smell burning plastic when your air conditioner is on, switch it off and contact us at 949-204-0859 immediately.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
A strong ammonia odor means there may be mold present in your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold produces.
How to Fix It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your wellness. That’s why you should have a specialist like 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning examine your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when needed.
Our Specialists Can Eliminate Unpleasant Air Conditioner Smells Rapidly
You deserve to be comfortable in your house and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you are seeking relief from your stinky air conditioner, contact us at 949-204-0859. We’ll determine the problem quickly and resolve it at a fair price.