Have you recently had a new furnace put in and are now noticing an unusual smell? You're not alone, because a lot of other homeowners also have this happen at first. Let’s review what’s creating this smell, and when you can anticipate it to disappear, as well as three other furnace smells you shouldn’t disregard.
Why Your New Furnace Smells
There are two reasons why a new furnace might smell.
Your furnace has a special coating on specific parts to keep them from rusting. This may include the heat exchanger, which safely exhausts gases like carbon monoxide naturally produced during the heating process.
When your furnace runs for the first couple of times, the coating may give off a burning smell. This is normal and the smell should dissipate the more your furnace heats.
To be on the safe side, you’ll want to contact a heating and cooling company if the smell persists. A burning smell that lingers can mean the motor is too hot or there’s an electrical problem, among other issues.
Dust collects inside your furnace when it’s idle in the spring and summer. That dust will burn off when you turn on your furnace in the fall, creating a burning smell. This smell should go away within a few minutes.
One way you can decrease or prevent this smell is by having furnace maintenance done each year. This is required to keep your valuable manufacturer’s warranty valid, plus it keeps your furnace clean and ensures it will run smoothly during the upcoming heating season.
3 Other Furnace Smells You Shouldn’t Ignore
While it’s less common for a new system to require furnace repair, it happens. Here are three other odors you should look out for and what they might mean.
- Burning plastic or rubber. If your furnace smells like burning plastic, you might have an electrical issue. Electrical wiring is covered in plastic to protect against shocks, and this smell is a sign that heat is melting this precautionary coating. To avoid a fire, shut off your furnace immediately and have it inspected out by an HVAC technician.
- Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies add sulfur to natural gas to alert you when there’s a problem. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, turn it off right away, evacuate your home and call 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you sick, plus it’s extremely flammable and explosive.
- Musty. If your furnace smells musty, you might have mold and mildew growing in your ductwork. We recommend having your ductwork checked and cleaned if needed.
Now that you are aware which furnace smells are normal and which ones aren’t, you’re ready to take care of your new heating system. If you have concerns about an odd odor, our 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. HVAC technicians can help. Give us a call at 949-204-0859 to schedule your appointment today. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Lake Forest and surrounding areas.