Have you recently had a new furnace installed and are now experiencing a weird 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 go away, 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 exhausts 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 dissipate the more your furnace runs.
To be on the safe side, you’ll want to call a heating and cooling company if the smell continues. A burning smell that sticks around can mean the motor has overheated or there’s an electrical problem, among other issues.
Dust accumulates inside your furnace when it’s idle in the spring and summer. That dust will burn off when you switch on your furnace in the fall, producing 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 smoothly 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 smells 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 problem. Electrical wiring is covered in plastic to protect against shocks, and this smell is an indication that heat is melting this protective coating. To avoid a fire, shut off your furnace immediately and have it checked out by an HVAC technician.
- Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies add sulfur to natural gas to warn you when there’s a leak. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, shut it off right away, leave your home and dial 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you sick, plus it’s highly 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 needed.
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're worried about a strange odor, our Thurston Heating & Air Conditioning HVAC technicians can help. Give us a call at 308-624-3485 to schedule your appointment now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Kearney and surrounding communities.