When your air conditioner is spotless and operating correctly, it’s not normal to be smelling anything strange. Unusual air conditioner noises and weird smells are a hint that something is off. If your air conditioner is aging or you haven’t had maintenance scheduled lately, they can be a sure sign you need skilled air conditioning repair in Corpus Christi.

Here are six of the most frequent air conditioner smells and how you can repair them.

1. Central Air Conditioner Smells Like Chemicals

If your air conditioner smells bad when turned on, specifically a chemical odor, it isn’t a positive sign. You might also observe your:

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

These sweet, chemical odors are often a hint that your air conditioner is experiencing a refrigerant leak. Your system needs this gas to transfer heat through copper coils, which can wear out as time goes on.

Four Clues You Are Dealing with a Refrigerant Leak

Aside from the strange smell, here are four other signs that you are dealing with a refrigerant leak.

  1. Bubbling or hissing sounds when your air conditioner runs.
  2. Ice on refrigerant lines or the evaporator coil.
  3. It’s hard keeping your home cool or having your desired temperature.
  4. Increasing utility bills.

How You Can Repair It

A refrigerant leak calls for experienced support from a heating and cooling company like Total Assurance AC & Heating. Your cooling technician will find and fix the leak before recharging your AC with refrigerant.

Resolving a refrigerant leak typically costs between $225 and $1,600, per nationwide averages assembled by HomeAdvisor. Your precise cost will depend on the location and severity of the leak, as well as how many hours it needs to fix.

If your air conditioner was installed prior to 2010, it’s likely it uses R-22 or Freon refrigerant. This refrigerant is no longer being manufactured due to its negative effects on the ozone layer. As a result, repairs can be extremely expensive so it may be wisest to consider air conditioning installation in this instance.

2. Air Conditioner Smells Like Gas

If your air conditioner smells like rotten eggs, there’s probably nothing wrong with it. But there’s a high likelihood you have a natural gas leak in your home. Natural gas has a sulfur-like additive to warn you when there’s a leak, because the gas can be deadly in heavy concentrations.

How You Can Fix It

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

  • Switching off your gas supply.
  • Opening windows.
  • Going outside as soon as possible.
  • Calling your gas company now.

3. Air Conditioner Smells Musty

People who reach us regarding this problem usually share their air conditioner smells like feet, dirty socks or a locker room when it’s running. Also referred to as 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 locations where you turn on heating at night and during the morning before turning on cooling later on.

How to Fix It

The best method for preventing dirty sock syndrome is to regularly replace your air filter and schedule yearly air conditioning maintenance with Total Assurance AC & Heating. We’ll keep the evaporator coil clean and the drainage system flowing, because excess water can also lead to noxious odors.

4. Air Conditioner Smells Like Vinegar

If you are experiencing air conditioner mildew smell or an acidic, vinegar-like odor, it might be caused by several problems, like:

  • A clogged filter
  • Extra condensation
  • Plugged condensate pan or drain line
  • Moldy air conditioner or ductwork

How to Repair It

Check 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 problem, call Total Assurance AC & Heating at 361-217-7080.

5. Air Conditioner Smells Like Burning Plastic

If you’re dealing with an air conditioner burning smell or that your air conditioner smells like fish, there could be several things wrong. These include:

  • Broken capacitator that’s overheating the motor.
  • Motor that needs lubrication.
  • Broken fan belt.
  • Electrical problem.

Electrical problems should be checked right away to stop a fire. If you notice burning plastic when your air conditioner is operating, turn it off and call us at 361-217-7080 immediately.

6. Air Conditioner Smells Like Cat Pee

An overpowering ammonia odor means there may be mold spreading inside your air conditioner or ductwork. The smell isn’t the mold itself, but the mycotoxins that mold creates.

How to Fix It

Mycotoxins are hazardous to your well-being. That’s why it’s important to have a professional like Total Assurance AC & Heating look at your air conditioner and ductwork and clean it when necessary.

Our Specialists Can Eliminate Unpleasant Air Conditioner Smells Fast

You deserve to be cozy in your home and shouldn’t have an air conditioner that smells bad. When you need relief from your noxious air conditioner, contact us at 361-217-7080. We’ll figure out the problem quickly and fix it at a fair price.