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Help! My Air Conditioning Stinks!

My Air Conditioning Stinks

If your air conditioner has a bad odor, and in turn is making your home smell funky, there is likely an issue.

There is nothing quite like escaping the Western New York heat and humidity by turning on your home’s AC. The cool breeze, dry air, and fresh feeling that it creates, can make even the hottest and most humid day, pleasant. If you have your AC on and notice a bad odor spreading throughout your home, it can really ruin the experience. If you are thinking, “Help! My air conditioning stinks!” there is probably a reason. We review some of the common culprits below.

Why Does my Air Conditioning Stink?

If your air conditioner has a bad odor, and in turn is making your home smell funky, there is likely an issue. The most common unpleasant aroma homeowners notice coming from their AC is a musty and damp smell. That odor is usually caused by mold or mildew being in your air conditioning unit.

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. According to the EPA, molds produce allergens (substances that can cause allergic reactions) and irritants. Allergic responses include hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash. Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. If mold or mildew is in your AC, it is likely affecting your home’s indoor air quality.

Let’s take a look at some of the common causes that your air conditioning may be causing you to plug your nose.

Problem with Your Ducts: Homes with forced air HVAC systems, use ducts to distribute conditioned air throughout the house. With age, these ducts can acquire a blockage or leak. If you need to replace your ductwork, and haven’t, your ducts can pull in air that they shouldn’t and distribute that air throughout your home. This air may have dust, debris, and other things in it than can cause an issue with the airflow, causing mold and mildew to develop and creating that undesired odor.

Evaporator Coil Complications: Air conditioning essentially works by removing heat and humidity from your home. The evaporator coil absorbs the warm air and moisture, cools the air and eliminates the moisture, and then cycles the dry air back through your home. If your evaporator coil is frozen or dirty, it will not work as intended, and the moisture will not evaporate. This can cause mold and mildew to breed. You can usually avoid complications with your evaporator coil by keeping your air filters clean. Clean air filters help to ensure proper airflow throughout the system.

Drain Line and/or Drain Pain Issues: When a large amount of condensation forms on the evaporator coil, it drops into a drain pan and then exits out the drain line. If the drain line is blocked, condensation and water can back up into the drain line and pan. This can create sitting water, which can lead to mold and mildew developing, and making your air conditioning stink. Be sure to check your drain pan regularly to ensure it is not full and there are no indications of a clogged drain line.

AC System is Too Big: Having a HVAC system that is too large for your Western New York home can cause issues. When it comes to AC, if the system is too big for your home, air can be cycled through your home too quickly, resulting in improperly dehumidified air going throughout your home. This can cause excess moisture to develop, and create a stale odor. When selecting an air conditioner for your home, consult a Hamburg AC professional on the size that is recommended.  

Your Air Conditioning Shouldn’t Stink

The only things you should smell this time of the year are fresh cut grass, new blooming flowers, and the occasional rain. If your air conditioning has an overpowering and less than desirable stench, something isn’t right.

At Duffett Plumbing, Heating & AC, we are here for you. When summer heats up, our team gets down to business. We fix, tune up, and replace air conditioners here in Hamburg and Erie County. Our friendly, experienced techs are ready to help with all your cooling needs, no matter how hot it gets outside. We’re your team for reliable AC service in Hamburg, NY. If your air conditioning stinks, or you have another AC issue, contact us right away.