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Dalton Plumbing, Heating, Cooling, Electric and Fireplaces, Inc. Blog

Does Your Furnace Smell Strange upon Start Up?

Temperatures have finally begun to cool, and while we still aren’t using our furnaces on a daily basis, you may have turned yours on one night this past weekend to get a little bit of chill out of the air indoors. If so, hopefully you didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary. However if you did detect an odd smell coming from your furnace, it’s not something to be ignored.

What’s Causing My Furnace to Smell?

The simplest explanation to a bad odor coming from your furnace is that you have a buildup of dust and debris on your electric heating coils or on the burners in your furnaces. Summer gives this dust and dirt plenty of time to collect on these components since your furnace wasn’t in use. So, you may smell the dust burning off of them when you first start up your furnace for the year. If the smell doesn’t go away after running the furnace for a little while, then you may worry.

If the smell persists, it could be the sign of an electrical issue that is creating too much heat within your wiring. Hot wires can start to burn their plastic coating, creating a foul odor. This kind of electrical problem puts the integrity and condition of your furnace at risk, not to mention it creates a fire hazard.

Another possibility is that a foreign object, such as a pet’s toy, has gotten into your vents on accident. Check for this and if it’s visible, remove it, then wait to see if the smell goas away. If there’s no object immediately visible or you still detect an odor, then it’s time to call our professionals.

Your comfort is our promise here at Dalton PHC. Contact us today for prompt and efficient Waterloo, IA furnace services.

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