Have you recently had a new furnace installed and are now experiencing a weird smell? You’re not alone, because plenty of other homeowners also have this happen at first. Let’s review what’s creating this smell, and when you can expect it to disappear, as well as three other furnace smells you shouldn’t disregard.

Why Your New Furnace Smells

There are two factors why a new furnace might stink.

Protective Finishing

Your furnace has a special coating on some parts to keep them from rusting. This may include the heat exchanger, which safely gets rid of gases like carbon monoxide naturally made during the heating process.

When your furnace starts for the first couple of times, the coating may give off a burning smell. This is normal and the smell should dissipate the more your furnace heats.

To be on the safe side, you’ll want to connect with a heating and cooling company if the smell continues. A burning smell that remains can mean the motor is too hot or there’s an electrical problem, among other issues.

Dust

Dust builds inside your furnace when it’s not running in warm weather. That dust will burn off when you switch on your furnace in the fall, producing a burning smell. This smell should subside within a few minutes.

One way you can reduce or prevent this smell is by having furnace maintenance done every year. This is necessary to keep your valuable manufacturer’s warranty good, plus it keeps your furnace clean and ensures it will run perfectly during the upcoming heating period.

3 Other Furnace Smells You Shouldn’t Dismiss

While it’s less common for a new system to necessitate furnace repair, it happens. Here are three other odors you should look out for and what they might mean.

  1. Burning plastic or rubber. If your furnace smells like burning plastic, you might have an electrical difficulties. Electrical wiring is protected in plastic to avoid shocks, and this smell is an indication that heat is melting this precautionary coating. To prevent a fire, shut off your furnace immediately and have it checked out by an HVAC technician.
  2. Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies add sulfur to natural gas to signal you when there’s a leak. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, shut it off right away, evacuate your home and call 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you ill, plus it’s extremely flammable and explosive.
  3. Musty. If your furnace smells musty, you might have mold and mildew growing in your ductwork. We recommend having your ductwork examined and cleaned if necessary.

Now that you understand which furnace smells are normal and which ones aren’t, you’re ready to take care of your new heating system. If you’re worried about an odd odor, our Kohles & Bach Heating & Cooling HVAC technicians can assist you. Contact us at 515-278-2900 to schedule your appointment now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Des Moines and surrounding communities.