Have you recently had a new furnace put in and are now experiencing an unusual smell? You're not alone, because a lot of other homeowners also experience this at first. Let’s review what’s creating this smell, and when you can anticipate it to disappear, as well as three other furnace smells you shouldn’t ignore.
Why Your New Furnace Smells
There are two reasons why a new furnace might smell.
Your furnace has a special finish on certain parts to keep them from rusting. This may include the heat exchanger, which safely exhausts gases like carbon monoxide naturally produced during the heating process.
When your furnace operates for the first couple of times, the coating may give off a burning smell. This is standard and the smell should dissipate the more your furnace heats.
To be on the safe side, you’ll want to contact a heating and cooling company if the smell continues. A burning smell that lingers can mean the motor is too hot or there’s an electrical problem, among other concerns.
Dust accumulates inside your furnace when it’s idle in warm weather. That dust will burn off when you switch on your furnace in the fall, creating a burning smell. This smell should go away within a few minutes.
One way you can lessen or prevent this smell is by having furnace maintenance done every year. This is necessary to keep your valuable manufacturer’s warranty valid, plus it keeps your furnace clean and ensures it will run smoothly during the upcoming heating season.
3 Other Furnace Smells You Shouldn’t Ignore
While it’s less common for a new system to require furnace repair, it can happen. Here are three other smells you should look out for and what they might mean.
- Burning plastic or rubber. If your furnace smells like burning plastic, you might have an electrical problem. Electrical wiring is covered in plastic to protect against shocks, and this smell is a sign that heat is melting this precautionary coating. To avoid a fire, turn off your furnace right away and have it inspected out by an HVAC technician.
- Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies include sulfur in natural gas to warn you when there’s a problem. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, shut it off immediately, evacuate your home and call 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you ill, plus it’s extremely flammable and explosive.
- Musty. If your furnace smells musty, you might have mold and mildew flourishing in your ductwork. We recommend having your ductwork checked and cleaned if necessary.
Now that you know which furnace smells are normal and which ones aren’t, you’re ready to take care of your new furnace. If you have concerns about an odd odor, our Tri City Fuel & Heating Co., Inc. HVAC technicians can help. Contact us at 803-265-4208 to schedule your appointment today. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in West Columbia and surrounding areas.