When your air conditioner is spotless and working right, it’s not normal to be smelling anything strange. Abnormal air conditioner noises and odd smells are a clue that something is wrong. If your air conditioner is old or you haven’t had maintenance completed within the last year, they can be a clear sign you need professional air conditioning repair in Phoenix.

Here are six of the top air conditioner smells and how you can resolve them.

1. Central Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals

If your air conditioner smells bad when turned on, particularly a chemical odor, it isn’t a good sign. You might also notice your:

  • Air conditioner smells like paint thinner
  • Home air conditioner smells sweet

These sweet, chemical odors are frequently a clue that your air conditioner is suffering from a refrigerant leak. Your system needs this gas to transfer heat through copper coils, which can crack as time goes on.

Four Clues You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak

Besides the odd smell, here are four other clues that you have a refrigerant leak.

  1. Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner is cooling.
  2. Ice on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
  3. Trouble keeping your residence comfortable or reaching your programmed temperature.
  4. High electrical costs.

How You Can Repair It

A refrigerant leak calls for experienced assistance from a heating and cooling company like Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc. Your cooling pro will find and mend the leak before recharging your AC with refrigerant.

Resolving a refrigerant leak often costs between $225 and $1,600, based on nationwide averages assembled by HomeAdvisor. Your exact cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how many hours it requires to solve.

If your air conditioner was installed prior to 2010, there’s a high probability it runs on R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being produced as a result of its adverse effects on the ozone layer. Due to this, repairs can be extremely expensive so it may be smartest to schedule air conditioning installation in this circumstance.

2. Air Conditioner Smells Like Gas

If your air conditioner smells like rotten eggs, there’s likely nothing wrong with it. But there’s a significant likelihood you have a natural gas leak in your home. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to alert you when there’s a leak, since the gas can be toxic in big amounts.

How You Can Repair It

If you detect a sulfur or rotten egg odor, we recommend:

  • Turning off your gas supply.
  • Opening windows.
  • Leaving your home promptly.
  • Getting in touch with your gas company without delay.

3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty

People who reach us about this problem usually mention their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it’s on. Also called dirty sock syndrome, this smell is often created by a filthy evaporator coil that has mold, mildew and bacteria buildup. Moisture can also make your home air conditioner smell bad. Dirty sock syndrome is most common in climates where you turn on heating at night and during the morning before switching to cooling later in the day.

How to Repair It

The best method for preventing dirty sock syndrome is to routinely get a new air filter and schedule annual air conditioning maintenance with Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system unclogged, as excess water can also produce unpleasant odors.

4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar

If you are dealing with air conditioner mildew smell or a pungent, vinegar-like odor, it could be caused by several problems, including:

  • A dirty filter
  • Excess condensation
  • Plugged condensate pan or drain line
  • Moldy air conditioner or ductwork

How to Repair It

Inspect your filter first. If you haven’t put in a new one within the last three months and can’t see light through it, we recommend replacing it. If that doesn’t solve the issue, call Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc at 602-789-3315.

5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic

If you’re noticing an air conditioner burning smell or that your air conditioner smells like fish, there could be a couple of things wrong. These entail:

  • Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
  • Motor that should have lubrication.
  • Broken fan belt.
  • Electrical trouble.

Electrical problems should be inspected right away to avoid a fire. If you detect burning plastic when your air conditioner is operating, switch it off and contact us at 602-789-3315 without delay.

6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee

A powerful ammonia odor means there may be mold growing inside your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold makes.

How to Fix It

Mycotoxins are hazardous to your health. That’s why it’s important to have a pro like Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc check your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when necessary.

Our Pros Can Eliminate Unpleasant Air Conditioner Smells Quickly

You deserve to be comfortable in your home and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you are looking for relief from your smelly air conditioner, reach us at 602-789-3315. We’ll determine the issue quickly and take care of it at a competitive.