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My house everyonce in a while, gets burning smell - only upstairs, it smells like it is coming from the vent. I have had my heat on since October, but the smell only started in November. I had someone come out and look at my heating system, and I did need to change my filter, but the smell happens even when I have the heat turned off. I have no idea what else to do

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I'm going to guess that there is something in the heater area which doesn't belong there.  It might be insects or worse.  Get someone else in to look at the burner/heater unit.  The other problem could be a stuck fan which is burning...although that usually starts as a squealing bearing.

Posted on Nov 26, 2008

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You should look in the air handler( Where the indoor blower is located) or in the plenum (where the duct system originate at the air handler) for any dead and rotting rats. Residential central air systems are sealed (uses circulated air only) and do not use outdoor air.

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Hello
Its possible the motor is going bad,more likely the blower wheel assmebly needs to be cleaned.

Have a look at the blower motor assembly for dust and dirt on and around the blower motor and wheel.Clean it off with a damp rag and a vacum cleaner.
Check the area for any trash or loose stuff that could be causing this smell.

Usually when a motor goes bad it will run for a while then slow down,then stop on thermal overload.

Then when it cools off it will restart.

Feb 10, 2011 | Air Conditioners

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I have 3 central ac units for my house. 1 for the upstairs and 1 for the west side of house and 1 for the east side of house. just had a very cold night and the east side of house vents smelled like...


To make sure that there is not a problem with your blower test it on cool. if it runs good. then start the heater on auto and it should be okay. but still supervise the operation for about 5 mins. if you still smell something burning . then call an AC Technician for help.


Albert Saavedra
AC Technician
Fort Worth/Dallas TX
773-627-8766

Dec 28, 2010 | Air Conditioners

1 Answer

Strong burning smell coming from vents and from inside rheem electric central heat. Smells like rubber burning.


You must have to open it, try to clean it..and check for some eletric cables with short circuit or bad cables burning and overheating...check the motor fan and if it has a bad AC capacitor
check the photo, and you will have an idea.v4ndre_0.jpg Good luck!

Dec 06, 2010 | Air Conditioners

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The unit works as of right now...but there is a smell of something burning


Quite often, if you smell like a plastic burning smell, one of the capacitors is faulty, and should be checked immediately. Quite often the compressor start capacitor, will get hot and start to melt. Have it checked by qualified technician or electrician, as they are dangerous and can give a fatal shock if not experienced with handling them, even when power is shut off. $20-$30 part, and 1/2hr. labor should take care of it. The cover on roof unit, has to be removed to access the capacitors, so watch for bees, wasps, when you do so. Make sure power is off at breaker panel.

Aug 01, 2010 | Coleman Air Conditioners

1 Answer

Cool air, but no fan, electrical smell inside house


most like it the motor windings are burn and you need to replace the blower motor

Sep 27, 2009 | Ruud UBHC Air Conditioner

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I would have a tech come out and check the voltage going into the fan relay and fan itself. The smell being as how it is coming through the vents in the house tells me that the problem has got to be at the blower or in the area at the blower fan which leads me to the possibilty that the smell could be the windings on the motor. This could be because the voltage may be to high. Good luck on repairs

Dave

Sep 01, 2009 | Air Conditioners

2 Answers

Burning smell from AC Unit


http://www.hannabery.com/faq14.shtml

"Odor problems can be as serious as a gas leak or as simple as a dirty air filter. But remember, a good mechanic doesn't just use his hands. He uses his ears and nose. Unusual odors could indicate a serious problem and should not be ignored. 

We will go through each of the five categories and list the possible causes and things to check.


1. Electrical odor - Electrical odors are usually caused by parts overheating. Indoor blower motors are a common example. If there is a mechanical failure such as the bearings seizing up, the motor over-heats and the insulation on the wires and the motor windings themselves start to melt, causing the odor. 
Sometimes loose electrical connections cause wires or plastic relays to overheat causing electrical odors. 

It is possible for a very dirty air filter to cause the odor. If the airflow is restricted enough, it could cause electric resistance heaters to overheat, even burn-out. 

If you smell an electrical odor, check your air filter. If it is not blocked, shut off equipment at the breaker if possible and call for service. 


2. Burning odor - This is similar to an electrical odor only worse. It is also sometimes accompanied by smoke. Once again, this can be caused by parts or wiring burning-up. 

It can also be debri such as plastic getting into the ductwork and melting on the electric resistance heaters or heat exchanger. 

If you smell a burning odor, check your air filter. If it is not blocked, shut off equipment at the breaker if possible and call for service.



3. Gas odor - First of all, if you really smell gas and suspect a gas leak, you should open the windows, get out of the house, then call the gas company. 

Now excluding that "worse-case" scenario, if you notice an odor that smells like gas and it seems to be coming out of the supply vents, it usually isn't gas. Sometimes dust that settles on the heat exchanger during the summer months burns off at the beginning of each heating season and it smell just like gas. 

If the odor doesn't seem to be coming from the vents, try to pinpoint where the smell is coming from. Use your nose. If it is gas, it usually would be from a leak in a pipe fitting or at the equipment itself. 

Gas odor is the one that causes the most fear. People think of gas explosions or carbon-monoxide poisoning. Well, gas explosions are very rare and carbon-monoxide for the most part is odorless. 

Having said that though, don't take a gas odor lightly. If you can't locate the source of the odor and you are worried you have a gas leak, remember, open the windows, get out of the house, then call the gas company. 


4. Oil odor - Oil odors are usually caused by one of two things. An oil leak/drip or an oil burner that is not working properly. 

The oil leak is usually easy to spot. Just look for oil. Check the burner itself, the oil tank, filter and oil line. Sometimes it is just a matter of tightening a fitting. If there are no signs of an oil leak then it is most likely a burner problem. 

This can be caused by many things, too many to list. It could be a minor adjustment to the burner to a faulty or blocked chimney. From a bad fuel pump to a plugged oil nozzle. Listen for any unusual rumbling or banging sounds or smoke or soot while the burner is running. If you notice any of these things and/or you have an oil odor, you should call for service immediately. 

One other common problem today is that new houses are insulated so well and are built so tight that they run out of combustion air, causing odor problems. In this case it is just a matter of bringing in a fresh air for the burner. Call your local Heating Company to assist in a proper diagnosis. 


5. Damp and musty odor - This is more common in the air conditioning mode. Sometimes attic units or very damp basements have this problem. Check for air leaks in the return ducts. Check for water damage to the ducts or air handler itself. Possibly consider having your ducts cleaned. Run a dehumidifier and see if the odor goes away. 

But this odor problem is almost never due to a problem with your equipment. 

 


Final Tips:

Keep in mind that almost all heating systems cause an odor the first time they are fired-up. And the first few times at the beginning of each heating season. Brand new furnaces are coated with oil to keep the heat exchangers from rusting. This burns off, creating a bad odor - even smoke. But it usually only lasts for about 20 minutes. Opening the windows usually solves the problem. And the first few times the backup heat on a heat pump kicks on, it smells like an electrical smell. This might last for a few days but isn't that bad. If you are worried, call for service. 

Remember to check for a clean air filter and that your vents are opened. Check to see if the fan is working which mean your motor hasn't burned-up. 

Check for air leaks in damp areas, oil stains or rumbling sounds, strong gas odors - these all indicate problems. Do not ignore them. 

Hope this helps, remember - these are just rough guidelines and not all possible situations are covered."

Jul 28, 2008 | Sharp CV-P09FX Air Conditioner

2 Answers

Heater problem model PHK 080-1


THE BURNING SMELL IS NORMAL. BEFORE HEATING SEASON OPEN ALL DOORS AND TURN THE HEAT UP AND LET RUN TILL ALL DUST IS BURNT OFF. IF BLOWER IS NOT COMMING ON NOW. THERE ARE 2 TIME DELAY RELAYS, AND ANOTHER RELAY FOR "FAN ONLY OPERATION". ALWAYS MAKE SURE THEY ARE NOT THE PROBLEM BEFORE REPLACING AN EXPENSIVE MOTOR.

Feb 07, 2007 | Goodman PHKJ060-1 Air Conditioner

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