5 Causes and Solutions of Bad AC Filter Smells

5 Causes and Solutions of Bad AC Filter Smells

One of the most essential parts clients can do is to ensure the effective operation of their HVAC
system. If you want to prevent the AC unit from malfunctioning, you must make sure that all of its
components are thoroughly cleaned and maintained. People who breathe in the contaminated air
will have serious health problems such as runny nose, coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, difficulty
breathing, chest pain, etc.

5 Causes and Solutions of Bad AC Filter Smells

A Moldy or Musty Smell: The most typical and offensive smell coming from an AC unit is by
far a moldy and dingy one. In order to remove the moisture from the air, an AC unit either
gathers it in a drip pan or through a drain line. The collection of water in the drip lines or
drain pan, which can encourage the growth of fungus or mildew, is typically the cause of a
smelly air conditioner. A leak in your air conditioner may also lead to a musty or stale smell.
Leaks happen due to clogged air filters, clogged drain lines&low refrigerants. AC air filters that
are filthy can also cause this smell.

Solution: Try replacing or cleaning your AC air filters, fixing existing water leaks, and
optimizing drainage.

Smells Like Chemicals: A refrigerant leak may be the source of the chemical-like smell coming
from your air conditioner. Freon, a chlorofluorocarbon, is a typical refrigerant found in air
conditioners but is gradually being phased out. But still, whenever you suspect a freon leak, you should proceed cautiously. Refrigerant leakage may result in seizures, dizziness, and other health complications.

Solution: You should quickly have it checked by a specialist. Open the windows wide in the
meantime to ensure proper ventilation in your home. This will stop any negative effects from
the chemical leak as well as keep the smell outside. You have to understand, professional technicians
should only operate refrigerant refilling. Please don’t attempt to complete it yourself.

Smells Like Burning: Burning smells are a sign that the circuit board, fan, or other electrical
components in an air conditioner, which contains several electrical parts, are malfunctioning.
After a lengthy period of inactivity, dust may accumulate within your air conditioner, which is
a more common cause of this type of smell. This dust can burn off and provide an awful smell
when turned on after being off for a while.

Solution: As this is a critical matter, immediately turn off the HVAC system from the breaker
box. Consult with your nearest air conditioner expert for help.

Smells Like Rotten Eggs or Dirty Trash: If the air conditioner starts to smell like rotten eggs,
there may be a gas leak. Carbon monoxide poisoning can take place in gas ducted heating
systems with add-on cooling due to gas leaks or partially burned gas. It also smells like rotten
eggs as a result of dead rodents, birds, or insects in the ducting or duck system.

Solution: To ventilate the space and turn off the AC, it’s crucial to open every window.
Contact an HVAC professional straight away. To prevent such an unpleasant situation and
prevent your AC from smelling like a carcass, it’s necessary to always pest-proof your unit.

Smells Like Cigarette Smoke: If someone smokes at home, the smell of cigarette smoke
is absorbed by the evaporator coil and filter. Due to this, when you switch on the air
conditioner, the attached tobacco particles are dislodged and circulated via the vents of your
home, resulting in an unpleasant atmosphere. This causes both headaches and allergic

Solution: Replace your air filter, or you can customize your air filters to get rid of the
smell of old tobacco smoke coming from your AC vents. Additionally, you may smoke outside.

In conclusion, don’t allow anything to contaminate the air within the home. You must choose the right filter size for your AC filter, change your air filters once a month, etc., to avoid an unpleasant smell and
maintain the efficiency of your air conditioning system. We recommend using a reliable residential
air filter supplier, like Custom Filters Direct, who can provide you with quality MERV air filters to suit
your air filtration needs.

Photo – Jonathan Borba

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Shannon Lazovski

Owner & Senior Editor of Detroit Mommies, Shannon has 20 years of experience in the digital marketing space specializing in the subjects of fashion, beauty, travel & parenting. She obtained Detroit Mommies in 2017 and has been perfecting its digital footprint and sharing her reviews, parenting advice, and offering local Michigan event announcements ever since. Shannon is also the Senior Fashion & Beauty Editor of DetroitFashionNews.com and is known for her original fashion, beauty & travel blog, Glamorous Moms now shannonlazovski.com. As a writer, Shannon is known for her service & product reviews, travel reviews, fashion & beauty trends, and styling advice for women and moms on the go. She is currently the President & Founder of the Glamorous Moms Foundation, the CEO of the beauty brand Glameselle, and has been awarded the Elite 40 under 40 award and featured on numerous print and television media outlets both locally and nationally.

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