When your air conditioner is clean and running correctly, you shouldn’t be smelling anything odd. Abnormal air conditioner noises and weird smells are a hint that something is off. If your air conditioner is old or you haven’t had service scheduled lately, they can be an obvious sign you need professional air conditioning repair in York.
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 might also notice your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical odors are typically a clue that your air conditioner has a refrigerant leak. Your system relies on this gas to move heat through copper coils, which can crack as time goes on.
Four Signs You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak
Aside from the odd smell, here are four other clues that you have a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is cooling.
- Ice crystals on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- Trouble keeping your house cool or reaching your set temperature.
- High energy costs.
How You Can Fix It
A refrigerant leak calls for skilled assistance from a heating and cooling company like Strine's. Your cooling specialist will pinpoint and repair the leak before recharging your AC with refrigerant.
Fixing a refrigerant leak typically costs between $225 and $1,600, according to nationwide averages assembled by HomeAdvisor. Your precise cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how much time it needs to solve.
If your air conditioner was installed prior to 2010, there’s a high probability it has R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being made because of its damaging effects on the ozone layer. Consequently, repairs can be extremely expensive so it may be wisest to schedule 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 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, because the gas can be deadly in big amounts.
How You Can Solve It
If you notice a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we suggest:
- Shutting off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Leaving your home as soon as possible.
- Getting in touch with your gas company without delay.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
Homeowners who contact us about this issue 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 usually caused by a grubby evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Moisture can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most common in locations where you use heating at night and during the morning before turning on cooling during the afternoon.
How to Solve It
The best way to prevent dirty sock syndrome is to frequently replace your air filter and schedule routine air conditioning maintenance with Strine's. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unclogged, because excess water can also create nasty odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are dealing with air conditioner mildew smell or a pungent, vinegar-like odor, it can be prompted by several issues, including:
- A clogged filter
- Excess condensation
- Clogged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Solve It
Inspect your filter first. If you haven’t replaced it within the last three months and can’t see light through it, you should replace it. If that doesn’t fix the issue, contact Strine's at 717-383-4479.
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 a couple of 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 examined quickly to avoid a fire. If you detect burning plastic when your air conditioner is on, shut it off and reach us at 717-383-4479 right away.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
A strong ammonia odor means there might be mold flourishing in your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold makes.
How to Fix It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your well-being. That’s why we recommend having a professional like Strine's look at your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when necessary.
Our Professionals Can Take Care of Odd Air Conditioner Smells Fast
You deserve to be comfy in your home and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you are seeking relief from your smelly air conditioner, give us a call at 717-383-4479. We’ll diagnose the trouble quickly and fix it at a competitive.