Have you recently had a new furnace installed and are now experiencing an unusual smell? You're not alone, because a lot of other homeowners also have this happen at first. Let’s review what’s causing this smell, and when you can anticipate it to go away, 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 certain parts to keep them from rusting. This may include the heat exchanger, which safely exhausts gases like carbon monoxide naturally produced during the heating process.
When your furnace operates for the first couple of times, the coating may emit 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 contact a heating and cooling company if the smell persists. A burning smell that lingers can mean the motor has overheated or there’s an electrical problem, among other concerns.
Dust collects inside your furnace when it’s idle in the spring and summer. 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 reduce 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 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 prevent shocks, and this smell is a sign that heat is melting this protective coating. To avoid a fire, turn off your furnace immediately and have it inspected out by an HVAC technician.
- Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies include sulfur in natural gas to warn you when there’s a problem. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, turn it off right away, leave your home and dial 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 checked and cleaned if needed.
Now that you are aware which furnace smells are normal and which ones aren’t, you’re well-equipped to take care of your new heating system. If you have concerns about an odd odor, our GV Heating & Air HVAC technicians can help. Give us a call at 763-535-2000 to schedule your appointment now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Crystal and Twin Cities and surrounding communities.