A Smelly HVAC; The Why's & How's

There is a mysterious odor inside your home and you have no clue where it’s coming from. Many things could be causing this, particularly if you live in an older house. Strange odors in your home can be caused for a variety of reasons. A failing appliance, a gas leak, an older home, can all generate piercing sharp odors in your home. If it is gas you smell, however, leave the house and immediately call the utility company an HVAC service company.

Some nasty odors are harmless, even though they can be very unpleasant. However, other smells are dangerous and could even be deadly. It is advisable that you learn how to tell the difference between an innocent odor and a life-threatening one. If you become familiar with these smells, you know when it’s time to call in for HVAC service.

What is That Musty Old Smell?

“oldsmell”If you haven’t used your furnace since last winter, chances are it will emit an odor similar to a musty, old basement. This is especially true if you live in an old house. A musty odor can be the result of accumulated dirt and debris in your heating system as well as in the air ducts.

While this is not serious and usually goes away after a few days, you should clean the inside of your system and replace the filter. A filter that is clogged will cause dirt to enter the appliance.

High humidity, leaky pipes, or a damaged roof can emit unpleasant odors. If you have a crawlspace, the exposed ground can collect moisture over the years. This can lead to mold growth which will produce in an unpleasant, musty smell.

Something is Burning

“burntsmell”The odor of burning diesel or the smell of ozone may be coming from your heating system. This happens when the bearings in your appliance force the motor in the blower to constrain, which forces the furnace to draw more electricity.

The additional voltage can result in extreme heat buildup inside the motor of the appliance. The heat emanating from it can burn wire insulation and your appliance might produce electrical sparks that emit a burning smell.

The Smell of Sulfur or Rotten Eggs

“gassmell”By itself, natural gas is odorless. A sulfur-like odor is added to it by utility companies so that you can detect a gas leak if it ever happens. Never take a gas leak lightly.

It can cause an explosion or fire in your home and hurt you and other people inside. Breathing in the gas can also cause a variety of health risks, even death. If you have a gas leak, leave the house ASAP and call 911.

If you notice a sulfur or rotten egg smell inside your home, this might be a clue to the possibility of a gas leak. If you determine that there is gas leaking into your home, exit immediately and call a gas leak expert or your utility company.

Look out for any of these signs you may have a gas line leak:

  • Water bubbling or movement of the ground on your property.
  • Corroded fuel lines that lead to gas appliances.
  • A whistling, hissing or roaring sound coming from a gas appliance.
  • A gas pipeline has been exposed after a natural disaster.

If you notice odd smells inside your home, call PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air in Staten Island, NY for HVAC service you can trust.