March 21, 2023
If you have to plug your noise when your air conditioning is on, or find yourself trying to sniff out where that new odor is coming from, there may be something wrong with your home’s AC. Different smells may mean different things. If you are wondering, “Why does my AC stink?”, we review some of the most common reasons below.
Why Does my AC Stink?
If your AC is making your home smell funky, chances are, there is a reason, because your AC should generally not produce any noticeable smells. We review some of the odors you may be sniffing out, and reasons why you may be asking yourself, “Why does my AC stink”?
- Musty or Moldy: If your AC smells musty or like mildew, moisture within your unit is probably the cause of the stench. If you smell a moldy odor, chances are that mildew or fungus has begun to grow in or near your air conditioner. This can come from various sources, so calling an AC professional is your best bet to resolve the issue. Exposure to damp and moldy environments can cause a variety of health effects, or none at all, depending on the person, and the amount of mold in the environment. You won’t want to leave the smell unattended for too long, as it is not only less than enjoyable, it could be impacting your home’s indoor air quality.
- Exhaust Fumes: If your AC smells like an exhaust pipe, then you could have a refrigerant leak. These leaks can not only be dangerous to your health, but they can also shorten your HVAC system's lifespan. Air conditioners run on electricity, not fossil fuels, so an exhaust smell is a telltale sign that the fluids inside the motor or other components are leaking.
- Rotten Eggs: If you are asking “Why does my AC stink?” and it’s because it smells like rotten eggs, you are likely looking for a solution to resolve the bad stench as soon as possible. This odor can be caused by a number of things, including a decaying animal within your ducts or a gas leak. If you smell this unpleasant odor, it’s best to leave the investigating and troubleshooting to the professionals. Open your windows and call a Marin, Sonoma, and Napa County HVAC expert right away.
- Burning or Smoky: When your AC is on, does it smell like something is burning? If so, chances are that something is. A smoky or burning aroma coming from your air conditioner can be caused by dust burning off (this should go away after a while and is nothing to worry about), having a clogged air filter, a broken capacitor, your motor overheating, electrical components burning, or more. If the burning odor doesn’t go away after a while, turn off your HVAC system and call a professional.
Any time that you have to ask yourself, “Why does my AC stink?”, you should be alert and pay attention to what you are smelling. Sometimes what you are sniffing out can be easily explained and resolved, other times, the odors are an indication to much larger problems within your HVAC system.
Bragg Cooling, Heating & Plumbing is here for all of your Marin, Sonoma, and Napa County HVAC needs. When it comes to your comfort, you deserve the best solutions at the best value. All of our technicians and installers are Bragg employees dedicated to providing you with personalized solutions that meet your goals and budget.
HVAC problems can happen at any time and often require immediate attention. We’re available to provide fast same-day service throughout Marin, Sonoma, and Napa Counties at no extra charge. Contact us today.