You probably work to keep your home clean and smelling fresh. It's frustrating when you detect a foul odor when your furnace kicks on or an odor that seems to come from the furnace itself. Since the air in your home is always circulating through your HVAC system, your furnace can pick up odors from your home, and the furnace can spread odors throughout your living space. Bad odors could come from the furnace or the ducts, and here are some possible causes.
Bad Furnace Odors That Could Be Dangerous
Sometimes, bad odors signal the need to get emergency furnace repairs. For instance, if you detect an odor like rotten eggs, the problem could be that your furnace has a gas leak, and this can be very dangerous. When you smell rotten eggs, you should leave your home until the gas company assesses the problem. Then, you may need repairs done before you can turn the furnace back on.
Another dangerous odor is a burning smell. This might smell like smoke, burning rubber, or burning plastic. This could mean some components in your furnace are overheating or melting. A fire could start if you don't have the situation repaired promptly.
A smell like parts are overheating shouldn't be ignored for safety reasons. Instead, call a furnace repair professional for help.
Foul Odors That Originate In The Ducts
Mold and mildew can grow in the air ducts under the right conditions. Once the surfaces of the ducts have mildew, the odor will be detected every time the furnace kicks on. If the ducts are to blame, you may need to have them cleaned out by a professional, disinfected, and deodorized.
Animals can also cause foul odors in the ducts. If mice invade the ducts, their musty odor and the scent of the droppings and urine will waft through the house. Plus, if a mouse or rat dies in a duct, the foul odor coming into your home could be overwhelming.
Odors Caused By Dust In The Furnace
Dust is an enemy of your furnace because it causes so many problems. A dusty HVAC system blows dust around your house, and it may affect the way your home smells.
Dust can also cause a burning odor. This happens as dust is burned off when the furnace turns on. Dust can even contribute to an overheating odor that's caused by your furnace struggling to operate with dust clogging the airflow. Tackling this problem could include keeping your house clean, using an air filter, changing the filter on your furnace, having a technician clean your furnace, or having your ducts cleaned.
The air from your furnace should have a neutral smell, so when you detect something unusual, then you should investigate the cause. If you can't figure out what's wrong or if you're worried about a dangerous situation, contact a furnace repair technician immediately so you're safe and so your furnace isn't damaged.
My name is Maura, and I am certified in HVAC installation and repair. I have many clients who call me in a panic because they have turned on their air conditioners and nothing has happened. Your air conditioning technician will get to you as soon as possible, but there are some steps you can take while you are waiting. You might just find that you are able to fix the problem on your own, although you will still want to have a professional assess the situation. In this blog I will take you through some common reasons your air conditioner might not be working and show you some easy temporary solutions.