Why Does My Air Conditioner Smell?


Summers in Lewes, DE, are warm and humid. You’ll rely on your air conditioning system to provide relief from the sweltering heat. If your AC unit blasts a smelly odor through your home each time it cycles, you won’t be relaxing in optimal comfort. Read on to learn about three reasons why your air conditioner smells and what you can do to get rid of the problem.

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1. Dirty Filter

A dirty air filter may harbor bacteria, mold, and other organic debris. As the debris decomposes, it releases gases. Each time the air conditioner cycles, those gases are blown through the vents and into your house. Check the air filter monthly, and replace it when it’s dirty.

2. Clogged Condensate Drain

The condensate drain collects and removes moisture condensed out of your home’s air during each cooling cycle. The drain stays warm, wet, and dark at all times, making it a perfect place for bacteria and mold to thrive. These microorganisms release metabolic byproducts that may smell like old cheese, stinky feet, or rotten eggs. An annual tune-up keeps the condensate drain clear and odor-free.

3. Debris in Ducts

If you’ve never had your house’s air ducts cleaned, debris in the ducts could be releasing an odor every time your air conditioner cycles. You could test this by switching off the cooling system and turning on the heating system. If you smell the same odor from a heating cycle, it’s probably buildup in the ducts rather than an air conditioning problem. Dust, mold, or even a dead animal could be in the ducts.

Expert Assistance Ready and Waiting

Sabrs is a trusted provider of air conditioner repairs in Lewes. You can also turn to us for heating repairs and heating and cooling maintenance and installation. Our indoor air quality solutions will help you breathe easier. If you’re a Lewes area business owner, you can also count on us for reliable heating, ventilation, and air conditioning services. For more details on the causes of a smelly air conditioner, get in touch with us at Sabrs today.