Why Is There a Funny Smell When I Turn on the Heat?

Why Is There a Funny Smell When I Turn on the Heat?

Have you noticed a strong, strange odor when you turn on your furnace? What causes this funny smell when you turn on the heat? Air Today has the answers.

Funny smell when heat first turns on

Is there a strange smell that comes from the vents when your furnace first turns on? Not to worry: You’re not alone. Countless homeowners report smelling a pungent burning scent when their heat first kicks on, and while it’s hard to ignore, it just means your heat is working. When your heating system is turned off for long stretches of time, dust and debris are able to settle in the ductwork and on the heat exchanger. Therefore, when your heat first turns on after a long period, the heating elements burn away that dust. If you ever wondered what burning dust smells like, that’s what you’ve noticed when you crank the heat up after a long time. Fortunately, this is just a normal part of furnace operation and is no cause for concern.

Mold and mildew in Charlotte, NC

Typically, dust and dirt get burned and blown away after a couple of hours. However, if you notice a particularly strong smell that doesn’t seem to fade away, you may be dealing with more than dust in the HVAC system. Does the odor coming from your vents smell musty or damp? If this is the case, dust is probably not the culprit. Musty odors are typically attributed to mold or mildew growth in the heating system. Mold is known to grow inside ductwork and on dirty furnace filters. The first and best way to combat mold and mildew growth in your heating system is to change your air filters. A fresh air filter every month will keep clean, healthy air flowing through your ductwork, reducing mold growth and eliminating those musty odors in your home.

Still can’t get rid of unpleasant smells coming from your air vents? Give the HVAC experts at Air Today a call. Our team will help get rid of unwanted odors so your comfort isn’t compromised this winter in Charlotte. Call today!


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