If you have a gas or electric furnace in your home, you’ll be using it a lot this winter to keep it warm. Strange noises and performance concerns, as well as ever-increasing energy bills, are all possible symptoms that a furnace isn’t working properly. Strange furnace odors, on the other hand, are a key indicator of a looming or ongoing furnace problem.
Never overlook furnace scents, no matter what type of furnace or heating system you have. They are, in the vast majority of cases, an indication that something isn’t operating properly. In this blog, we’ll look at some of the probable scents created by gas and electric furnaces, as well as whether or not they’re a sign of a serious problem with your heater.
Types Of Smells Emitted By A Furnace
Some of the most frequent furnace scents include:
- The odor of burnt electrical cables or plastic
- A metallic odor
- Burning dust or smoke
- Mildew or mold scents
- Animal odors
Although not all of these odors are created directly by the furnace, as we’ll see in the following sections, they may signal a fixable problem.
1. A Strong Odor Of Burning Dust
When you first turn on the furnace at the beginning of the winter season, it may emit a burning dust scent. This odor is very natural and should dissipate over several days. If the musty odor remains, change the air filter to solve the problem. If the problem remains after changing the air filter, it means the furnace is having major problems.
2. An Odor Of Metal
A component inside the furnace may have overheated, resulting in a metallic odor coming from the furnace. The odor may resemble that of burning hot plastic in some circumstances
3. The Odor Of Your Pet
The stench of pet excrement or hair can sometimes be detected coming from the registers of the furnace. It’s crucial to verify the floor-level ventilator registers if you get a strong scent every time you switch on the furnace. The problem can be solved by cleaning up the debris near the vent
4. Bad Odor Of Sewage
An open sewer line or a broken wastewater line may be near the system if you smell sewage water coming from the vents. A quick look at the outside vents will assist you to figure out what’s causing the odor. To fix the problem, you might need to call a plumber.
5. Moldy Odors
Mold odor emanating from the furnace could suggest a mold infestation in the ductwork. Mold infestation is a serious problem that should not be overlooked. The quality of indoor air can be harmed by mold infestations. Flu-like symptoms, such as sneezing and coughing, are possible side effects.
One of the most harmful odors you could encounter in your warm house is this one. If the stench is chemically different and comparable to formaldehyde, there is most likely a break in the foundation.
If your furnace emits a smokey odor, switch it off and open a couple of windows as soon as possible. When the furnace chimney (also known as a “flue pipe” or “exhaust vent”) becomes clogged, this can happen. The combustion exhaust from the furnace needs to go somewhere, so it’s pushed into the ductwork. In a case like this, be mindful to assess your safety. If the odor isn’t too strong, open a window to let some fresh air in and call a professional to schedule a service. If the odor is sudden or overwhelming, you may need to leave your home temporarily.