Have you recently had a new furnace set up and are now noticing a weird smell? You’re not alone, because plenty of other homeowners also have this happen at first. Let’s review what’s causing this smell, and when you can look forward to it to subside, as well as three other furnace smells you shouldn’t ignore.

Why Your New Furnace Smells

There are two explanations why a new furnace might stink.

Protective Finishing

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

When your furnace runs for the first couple of times, the coating may release a burning smell. This is typical and the smell should dissipate the more your furnace operates.

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

Dust

Dust accumulates inside your furnace when it’s off in the summer. That dust will burn off when you switch on your furnace in the fall, producing a burning smell. This smell should go away within a few minutes.

One way you can lessen or prevent this smell is by having furnace maintenance done each year. This is needed to keep your valuable manufacturer’s warranty good, plus it keeps your furnace clean and ensures it will run properly during the upcoming heating season.

3 Other Furnace Smells You Shouldn’t Dismiss

While it’s less common for a new system to need furnace repair, it happens. Here are three other scents 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 problem. Electrical wiring is protected in plastic to protect against shocks, and this smell is a signal that heat is melting this preventive coating. To hinder a fire, turn off your furnace right away and have it checked out by an HVAC technician.
  2. Gas or rotten eggs. Gas companies add sulfur to natural gas to warn you when there’s a leak. If your furnace smells like gas or rotten eggs, shut it off right away, evacuate your home and dial 911. Exposure to natural gas can make you sick, 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 advise having your ductwork inspected and cleaned if required.

Now that you understand which furnace smells are normal and which ones aren’t, you’re well-equipped to take care of your new heater. If you’re worried about a strange odor, our Precision Mechanical HVAC technicians can help you. Call us at 605-206-3766 to schedule your appointment right now. We offer quality, affordable furnace repair in Rapid City and surrounding communities.