When your air conditioner is clean and operating properly, it’s expected you won’t be smelling anything weird. Out of the ordinary air conditioner noises and odd smells are a hint that something is up. If your air conditioner is past its prime or you haven’t had maintenance done recently, they can be an obvious sign you need skilled air conditioning repair in Sacramento.
Here are six of the most frequent air conditioner smells and how you can solve 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 good sign. You could also observe your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical odors are frequently a clue that your air conditioner has a refrigerant leak. Your system needs this gas to move heat through copper coils, which can break out over time.
Four Hints You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak
In addition to the weird smell, here are four other hints that you are experiencing a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is operating.
- Ice crystals on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Trouble keeping your home comfortable or reaching your set temperature.
- Increasing energy bills.
How You Can Fix It
A refrigerant leak calls for skilled support from a heating and cooling company like Bishop’s HVAC. Your cooling pro will pinpoint and fix the leak before recharging your system with refrigerant.
Fixing a refrigerant leak usually costs between $225 and $1,600, per nationwide averages assembled by HomeAdvisor. Your precise cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how many hours it takes to repair.
If your air conditioner was installed earlier than 2010, it’s likely it uses R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being produced due to its adverse effects on the ozone layer. Due to this, repairs can be significantly 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 probably nothing wrong with it. But there’s a significant chance you have a natural gas leak in your house. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to warn you when there’s a leak, because the gas can be toxic in large amounts.
How You Can Repair It
If you notice a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we recommend:
- Shutting off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Evacuating your home right away.
- Getting in touch with your gas company now.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
Homeowners who reach us to report this issue often say their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it runs. Also known as dirty sock syndrome, this smell is frequently created by 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 often seen in climates where you use heating at night and during the morning before switching to cooling during the afternoon.
How to Repair It
The best approach for preventing dirty sock syndrome is to frequently replace your air filter and schedule yearly air conditioning maintenance with Bishop’s HVAC. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system flowing, because stagnant water can also lead to unpleasant odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or a strong, vinegar-like odor, it might be the result of several issues, like:
- A clogged filter
- Too much condensation
- Clogged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Solve It
Examine your filter first. If you haven’t put in a new one within the last three months and can’t see light through it, it’s time to replace it. If that doesn’t resolve the problem, contact Bishop’s HVAC at 916-591-6889.
5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic
If you’re dealing with 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 should have lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical problem.
Electrical issues should be inspected quickly to stop a fire. If you smell burning plastic when your air conditioner is running, turn it off and contact us at 916-591-6889 without delay.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
A powerful ammonia odor means there may be mold flourishing in your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold creates.
How to Repair It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your health. That’s why we recommend having a specialist like Bishop’s HVAC look at your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when needed.
Our Specialists Can Eliminate Unpleasant Air Conditioner Smells Quickly
You deserve to be comfortable in your residence and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you are looking for relief from your noxious air conditioner, give us a call at 916-591-6889. We’ll figure out the issue quickly and resolve it at a reasonable.