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Air Duct Smells: What They Mean and Why You Should Get Them Cleaned

Updated: Aug 14

One thing most people don't really think about is their air ducts, especially if they're working as intended. But if they're not, then you can quickly get some unpleasant smells. So, what do air duct smells mean? And why is duct cleaning important? Read on to find out!


a woman holding her nose in the kitchen due to a bad smell

What Different Air Duct Smells Mean

Smell is a complicated thing, considering there are 500 different types of odour receptors in the human nose. So it might be hard to pinpoint exactly what you're smelling, as well as what it means.

Here are some of the common smells you'll find in your air duct and what they indicate:


Musty Smell

Your air conditioner unit can get excess moisture in the vents. This is because air conditioners dehumidify the air. The excess water then promotes mould growth, which produces a musty smell. Usually, swapping the filter should get rid of the mustiness.


Rotten Egg/Rotting Garbage Smell

Should any small creatures get into your ducts, they can end up dying in there. When the body starts decomposing, you'll get a rotten egg smell.

A rotten egg smell can also result from a gas leak. So if you notice this smell, it's best to turn off your AC right away and call us right away so we can get to the bottom of the root cause.


Exhaust Smell

Air Conditioner units run on electricity, not gas. However, it's still possible for it to emit a smell like exhaust fumes. This usually means there are fluids leaking.


Burning Smell

A burning smell is serious, as it can mean there's a mechanical issue with your AC. Like with the rotten egg smell, it's best to shut off your system and call a professional.


Gunpowder Smell

A smell of gunpowder can indicate that something's shorted out. Turn off your air conditioning so you don't further damage it.



Why Duct Cleaning Is So Important

Duct cleaning is important for several reasons. For one, it can get rid of obstructions, such as dust and cobwebs, to give your ducts better airflow. As a result, you'll save money on your utility bills, plus you'll get rid of whatever smells are coming from the ducts.

In addition, it can help keep your heating and cooling systems in better condition. This can then prolong its lifespan and prevent it from dying out on you prematurely.

And most importantly, it'll give you better air quality. Considering how much time we spend indoors, this is essential to good living.


Call Modern Air & Water for Your Next Duct Cleaning!

Now that you know what different air duct smells mean and why duct cleaning is important, the best course of action is to get a heating and cooling expert to perform duct cleaning for you ASAP! You’re in the right place. Look no further. Get a free quote from Modern Air & Water today!


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