Have you recently had a new furnace installed and are now noticing a weird smell? You're not alone, because many other homeowners also experience this 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 disregard.
Why Your New Furnace Smells
There are two reasons why a new furnace might smell.
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 produced during the heating process.
When your furnace runs 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 continues. A burning smell that lingers can mean the motor has overheated 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 turn on your furnace in the fall, producing a burning smell. This smell should disappear within a few minutes.
One way you can decrease or prevent this smell is by having furnace maintenance done each year. This is required 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 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 prevent shocks, and this smell is a sign that heat is melting this precautionary coating. To avoid a fire, shut off your furnace right away 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 problem. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, shut it off right away, evacuate your home and call 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you ill, plus it’s highly flammable and explosive.
- Musty. If your furnace smells musty, you might have mold and mildew growing 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 well-equipped to take care of your new heating system. If you're worried about an odd odor, our Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning HVAC technicians can help. Give us a call at 760-784-9034 to schedule your appointment now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Bishop and surrounding areas.