When your air conditioner starts emitting unusual or funky aromas, it is a good idea to take notice because it could be a sign of a major problem. Disregarding unpleasant smells coming from your cooling system can lead to additional damage to your HVAC system or even pose a risk to your health and safety.
Depending on the smell, the cause may be bacteria or fungus in the system. Other times, it could also indicate something mechanically wrong with the air conditioner. Some smells are a sign of a hazardous situation, including a natural gas leak.
At Premium Air Services LLC, we are skilled at diagnosing and fixing these type of problems. If you smell something weird coming from your AC, there's a good chance our team of talented specialists has smelled it, too—and fixed it! We’ve earned our reputation as the premier company for air conditioning repair in Tomball.
What does a specific odor billowing out of your air conditioning mean? Here are a few common air conditioner aromas and what they may mean:
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Feet
If your air conditioner smells like feet, it may be due to a buildup of bacteria or fungus inside of it. When moisture collects inside the unit, it can create an environment that is conducive to the growth of bacteria and fungus. This can result in a nasty odor that is often described as smelling like stinky feet.
Another potential cause of an odor of stinky feet might be a dirty air filter. If an air filter becomes clogged with dirt, dust and other contaminants, it can cause poor air quality and a musty smell that it similar to the smell of feet.
To solve this issue, it's important to have a professional inspect and clean your air conditioning system, including the evaporator coil, drain pan and condensate drain line. It's also important to exchange the air filter on a regular basis to provide good air quality and protect against the development of bacteria and fungus.
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Rotten Eggs
If your air conditioning equipment reeks of rotten eggs, it might be the result of a natural gas leak in the unit or in the surrounding area. Natural gas has a recognizable odor, often described as smelling like rotten eggs or sulfur, which is added to it to make it easily detectable.
A natural gas leak is extremely dangerous and requires immediate attention. If you suspect a gas leak, turn off your air conditioning system, immediately open windows and doors to ventilate the area, get everyone out of the building and call your gas company or emergency services immediately.
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Mildew
If your AC smells like mildew, it may be due to a buildup of moisture inside the unit. When moisture collects inside an air conditioner, it can foster the growth of mold and mildew. This can cause a musty odor that resembles mildew.
Another possible reason for the smell might be a clogged air filter. When the air filter becomes clogged, it can result in poor air quality and a musty smell that has a resemblance to mildew.
Regular air conditioning maintenance from Premium Air Services LLC can help avoid both of these situations, because a good cleaning, inspection and filter change is a very good way to keep your system running at its best!
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Urine
One of the most distressing situations is when your AC smells like urine.
If your air conditioner reeks of urine, it could be due to a variety of factors. One possible cause is a accumulation of bacteria or mold in the air conditioning system. This can happen if moisture accumulates in the system and creates a wet environment that favorable for bacterial growth. The bacteria can create a foul odor that resembles urine.
Another potential cause of the stink could be a plugged drain line. The condensation that forms inside the air conditioning unit needs to drain away effectively, but if the drain line becomes filled with debris, it can cause water to back up and collect inside the unit. This can produce a musty smell that can stink like urine.
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic
If your AC smells like burning plastic, this could indicate an electrical concern with the unit. Over time, the electrical elements in the air conditioning system can wear out or break, which can make a burning smell that resembles plastic.
Another possible reason for the smell could be a foreign object lodged in the the air conditioner. If something foreign gets stuck in the air conditioning system, it can get hot and result in a smell similar to burning plastic.
If you smell burning plastic coming from your cooling system, it’s worthwhile to contact a professional right away.
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Gas
If your air conditioning smells like gas, it could be because of a natural gas leak in the unit or in the surrounding area. Natural gas has a distinctive smell, often described as smelling of rotten eggs or sulfur. That’s because an odor is added to natural gas to make it easily detectable.
As mentioned previously, a natural gas leak can be VERY harmful and requires immediate attention. If you suspect a gas leak, turn off your air conditioning system, open windows and doors to air out the home, get everyone out of the building and call your gas company or emergency services as soon as possible.
Why My Air Conditioner Smells Like Fish
If your air conditioning equipment smell like fish, it could be due to a build-up of bacteria or mold in the unit. Moisture causes an environment that fosters the growth of bacteria and mold. This can cause a disgusting odor that is sometimes described as smelling like fish or, as mentioned earlier, it also can create a smell like dirty feet.
Another possible cause of the smell could be a dead animal or other biological material caught within the air conditioning system. This often can happen if an animal such as a mouse or bird becomes trapped inside the unit and dies.
To solve the issue, it's important to have a professional inspect and clean your cooling system. They should be able to determine the source of the smell and take the appropriate steps to remove any contaminants and stop the problem from recurring.
Why My Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar
There could be several reasons a home's air conditioner smells like vinegar. One possible cause of the smell could be a dirty air filter. Another potential cause of the smell may be a refrigerant leak. Sometimes after the refrigerant leaks, it can generate a chemical odor that is described as smelling of vinegar.
To fix the issue, it's beneficial to have a skilled mechanic inspect and clean your air conditioning. If the odor continues after the cleaning and exchanging the air filter, it's best to reach back out to a professional to diagnose and repair any hidden issues with your air conditioning. Or, the mechanic can tell you if your air conditioning ought to be replaced.
If you are wanting to upgrade, Premium Air Services LLC can help select the ideal unit to fit your home’s needs. We offer trustworthy, expert air conditioner installation in Tomball.
My Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals
If the smell of chemicals is coming from your air conditioning equipment, it could be caused by a refrigerant leak. If the refrigerant leaks, it can create a chemical aroma that is often described as smelling like chemicals or paint thinner, vinegar or acetone.
One other possible cause of the smell could be something wrong with the electrical wiring or elements inside the air conditioning system. This can cause a burning smell that it similar to chemicals or burning plastic.
If you suspect a refrigerant leak or an electrical problem, it's important to shut down your air conditioning system immediately and contact a professional to inspect and repair the unit. Refrigerant leaks can be hazardous and may require immediate attention to protect against injury or damage to your residence.
Strange Smell Coming from Your AC? Call the Pros at Premium Air Services LLC
If your air conditioner reeks and you aren’t able to fix it smoothly on your own, reach out to the cooling professionals at Premium Air Services LLC. We have plenty of experience working with a wide variety of air conditioning systems. Our crew has fixed countless air conditioning concerns through the years—including funky smells. Call us today for quality AC repair in Tomball!