After thoroughly cleaning your house because you noticed a foul odor, you may have discovered that the smell is coming from the vents. When the air coming from the central air conditioner smells bad, the first thing that you should do is change the air filter in case the odors are trapped in its dust and dirt.
However, if you have already changed the air filter and still smell the foul odor, there may be an issue inside the system itself. Below are a couple of the possible causes of the bad smell coming from your home's central air conditioner that should be addressed by a professional repair technician.
1. Refrigerant Is Leaking Somewhere Within the Air Conditioning Unit
One possible cause of the foul odor coming from your central air conditioner's vents is that there is a refrigerant leak somewhere within the system. While your A/C is blowing air into your house, try to determine whether or not it has a chemical odor to it.
If so, this smell means that refrigerant is present outside of the evaporator coils due to a leak. You may also find that the air is not as cool as it should be. Since the leak will need to be fixed and the refrigerant refilled by a professional, you will need to have a certified repair technician make repairs to the system.
2. Problem with the Condensate Line Is Encouraging Mold and Mildew Growth
Another possible reason that the air coming from your home's air conditioning system has a bad odor is that there is a problem with the condensate line, which is encouraging mold and mildew growth. While the system is working, condensation builds up and is drained out of the unit through the condensate line.
If the line becomes clogged or cracked, the water will backflow into the system and create an excessively moist environment that leads to fungal growth. A professional will be able to find the problem with the condensate line to get it working properly.
If you know your home's central A/C system has a clean filter, the foul-smelling air coming from your vents could be caused by a refrigerant leak. There could also be a problem with the condensate line, such as being clogged or cracked, causing water to back up or leak out into the system, which encourages mold and mildew growth. Since either of these issues needs to be addressed by a professional, contact an air conditioning repair service in your area to schedule a service call to have your system examined so they can find and fix the source of the foul odor.
Reach out to an air conditioning repair service near you to learn more.