Woman wondering why her AC is acting up

Why does it smell bad when my air conditioner runs?

We 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 impact 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. Make sure to let the gas company turn it back on for you. It’s not something you want to tackle yourself.

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

Just like anything in your house, if your air conditioner isn’t cleaned properly or taken care of, there’s a good chance that dirt and dust will gather. And because components of your air conditioner aren’t front and center, cleaning them can often go overlooked.

Buildup of mold, dirt and other particles is one of the more typical culprits of odor with air conditioners. It can take place with the coils, drain pain, air ducts or even your filter. Thankfully, regular maintenance can help avoid this buildup and reduce the chances that an unfriendly smell starts spreading throughout your home.

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

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 remove 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 changed your air filter, go ahead and replace it with a brand new one. We typically recommend changing your filter every two to 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 switched the filter and it’s not reducing the smell, it’s probably time to contact a professional. Especially if it’s been an long period of time since your last air conditioning inspection. They can review the situation to see if a thorough cleaning can do the job. You might consider having your air ducts cleaned. Professional duct cleaners can take a look to see if your indoor air quality would improve from a proper cleaning.

If you have frustrations about the odors in your home, 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. can help you assess the situation and talk through possible solutions. You should be able to enjoy your cool indoor space in the warmer summer months, without having to suffer with unfavorable odors. You can schedule an appointment with our experts online or give us a shout at 949-204-0859.

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