Have you recently had a new furnace installed and are now experiencing an unusual smell? You're not alone, because many other homeowners also have this happen at first. Let’s review what’s creating this smell, and when you can expect 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 stink.
Your furnace has a special finish on specific parts to keep them from rusting. This may include the heat exchanger, which safely gets rid of gases such as carbon monoxide naturally created during the heating process.
When your furnace operates for the first couple of times, the coating may give off a burning smell. This is normal and the smell should go away the more your furnace heats.
To be on the safe side, you’ll want to call a heating and cooling company if the smell persists. A burning smell that sticks around can mean the motor is too hot or there’s an electrical problem, among other concerns.
Dust accumulates inside your furnace when it’s not running in the spring and summer. 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 each year. This is necessary to keep your valuable manufacturer’s warranty valid, plus it keeps your furnace clean and ensures it will run properly during the upcoming heating season.
3 Other Furnace Smells You Shouldn’t Ignore
While it’s less common for a new system to need furnace repair, it happens. Here are three other odors you should watch for and what they might mean.
- Burning plastic or rubber. If your furnace smells like burning plastic, you might have an electrical issue. Electrical wiring is covered in plastic to protect against shocks, and this smell is an indication that heat is melting this protective coating. To prevent a fire, turn off your furnace right away and have it checked out by an HVAC technician.
- Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies include sulfur in natural gas to alert 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 growing in your ductwork. We recommend having your ductwork inspected and cleaned if needed.
Now that you are aware 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 a strange odor, our Watts Electric & A/C Inc HVAC technicians can help. Give us a call at 601-736-7362 to schedule your appointment now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Columbia and surrounding communities.