When your air conditioner is spotless and running properly, it’s not normal to be smelling anything strange. Peculiar air conditioner noises and strange smells are a clue that something is up. If your air conditioner is getting older or you haven’t had maintenance scheduled recently, they can be an obvious sign you need skilled air conditioning repair in Wausau.
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, specifically a chemical scent, it isn’t a good sign. You could also report your:
- Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
- Home air conditioner smells sweet
These sweet, chemical smells are frequently a hint that your air conditioner is experiencing a refrigerant leak. Your system needs this gas to transfer heat through copper coils, which can wear out as time passes.
Four Signs You Are Dealing with a Refrigerant Leak
Besides the strange smell, here are four other signs that you are dealing with a refrigerant leak.
- Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is on.
- Ice crystals on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
- It’s hard keeping your house cool or having your programmed temperature.
- High electrical expenses.
How You Can Fix It
A refrigerant leak requires skilled support from a heating and cooling company like Gilray Heating and Cooling. Your cooling specialist will locate and repair the leak before recharging your air conditioner with refrigerant.
Resolving a refrigerant leak typically costs between $225 and $1,600, based on 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 solve.
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it’s likely it uses R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being produced due to its negative effects on the ozone layer. As a consequence, repairs can be extremely expensive so it may be wisest to consider air conditioning installation in this circumstance.
2. Air Conditioner Smells Like Gas
If your air conditioner smells like rotten eggs, there’s likely nothing wrong with it. But there’s a significant likelihood you have a natural gas leak in your house. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to signal you when there’s a leak, since the gas can be toxic in big amounts.
How You Can Fix It
If you detect a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we suggest:
- Switching off your gas supply.
- Opening windows.
- Going outside promptly.
- Calling your gas company now.
3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty
Homeowners who reach us regarding this issue usually share their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it’s on. Also referred to as dirty sock syndrome, this smell is typically linked to a filthy evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Excess water can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most common in locations where you need heating at night and during the morning before switching to cooling during the afternoon.
How to Solve It
The best approach for preventing dirty sock syndrome is to frequently replace your air filter and schedule annual air conditioning maintenance with Gilray Heating and Cooling. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unblocked, since excess water can also result in nasty odors.
4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or a strong, vinegar-like odor, it can be prompted by several problems, like:
- A clogged filter
- Too much condensation
- Plugged condensate pan or drain line
- Moldy air conditioner or ductwork
How to Fix It
Examine your filter first. If you haven’t replaced it within the last three months and can’t see light through it, we recommend replacing it. If that doesn’t solve the smell, reach Gilray Heating and Cooling at 715-301-0727.
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 entail:
- Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
- Motor that should have lubrication.
- Broken fan belt.
- Electrical trouble.
Electrical malfunctions should be inspected immediately to prevent a fire. If you notice burning plastic when your air conditioner is running, turn it off and reach us at 715-301-0727 immediately.
6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee
A strong ammonia odor means there might be mold growing within your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold makes.
How to Solve It
Mycotoxins are hazardous to your health. That’s why we recommend having a pro like Gilray Heating and Cooling examine your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when necessary.
Our Pros Can Eliminate Odd Air Conditioner Smells Fast
You deserve to be comfy in your house and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you are seeking relief from your noxious air conditioner, contact us at 715-301-0727. We’ll diagnose the issue quickly and resolve it at a fair price.