Air Handler-Heater Odor: What is it?

Air Handler-Heater Odor: What is it?Some household odors and smells, such as from your kitchen sink disposal or waste bin, while not very pleasant, may come as no surprise. Grinding orange peels or a quick spray cleaning is all it takes to remedy the odors. However, what do you do when you detect an unusual or foul furnace smell from your air vents? Here are some tips!

Evaporator Coil

The evaporator coil on your heat pump or furnace collects a very large amount of condensate during the cooling months. This makes a perfect breeding ground for mold, mildew and other foul-smelling contaminants. If you smell musty odors from the air vents, your evaporator may must need a good cleaning with a disinfecting foaming coil cleaner. You’ll also gain greater heating and cooling efficiency by cleaning away additional dirt and grime to promote clear airflow.

Dry Condensate Drain

The drainage system on your heat pump may contain a drain trap like the one under your kitchen sink. During the heating months, water in the trap evaporates which leaves a clear passage for sewer-like odors to backdraft into the blower compartment. Pour a half-gallon of a 50/50 mixture of bleach and water into the condensate pan. This will kill any microorganisms in the drain pipe. Continue to pour another few gallons of water to flush the system.

Gas Leak

Most furnaces use natural gas for home heating. While modern furnaces employ safety mechanisms to prevent or alert you of gas leaks, there is always the possibility of a gas leak occurring in your home. Since natural gas is odorless, utility companies add a chemical to it so that leaks may be detected by sense of smell. The chemical smells like rotten eggs to many. So, if the furnace smell in your home is like rotten eggs, get everyone out immediately and call 911 from outside.

If you need a professional HVAC technician to inspect your heat pump or furnace smell, please contact NisAir Air Conditioning and Heating today. We’ve served residents of St. Lucie County, Martin County, Palm Beach County and Indian River County areas since 1973!

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Martin, Palm Beach, St. Lucie and Indian River Counties in Florida about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about weird odors and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 772-207-1658.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “piotr-marcinski/Shutterstock”

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