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Sniff Test; What's That Furnace Start Up Smell?

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  • Sniff Test; What's That Furnace Start Up Smell?

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Sniff Test; What's That Furnace Start Up Smell?

As Manitobans, October is a popular month for booting up our furnaces for the first time of the season. In fact, we might bounce and and fourth during sporadic fall temps. When we start up our furnaces after 4 or 5 months off, we usually experience that initial furnace smell - that hint of dust that has settled on your furnace. A few minutes of this is normal, but there may be some other odours to keep a watch for.

Dust or Burning Odour
The smell of burning dust is the most common smell we experience on furnace start up. Usually, this smell is normal as your furnace is likely burning of dust that has settled inside the unit over the summer. This smell should go away in a couple hours. However, if this smell does not go away, there may be some things that you can resolve. The first is to ensure you have a clean furnace filter. If the filter looks dirty, replace it. In fact, during the winter it may be a good idea to replace filters every couple months depending on the type of furnace you have. If a couple hours have passed, and your filter is clean and you are still experiencing a dusty burning smell, you should call us for maintenance. Your heating unit may require a more thorough cleaning, or it could be the symptoms of a more serious issue.

Rotten Egg Odour
If you detect the smell of rotten eggs coming from your furnace, chances are it is a natural gas leak. Natural gas is scented with this odour to let you know of the leak. If you detect this smell, turn your furnace off immediately and leave your home. Manitoba Hydro recommends calling a local emergency service to report this dangerous condition. Once the hazard has been secured, a HVAC technician can service your furnace.

Electrical or Metallic Odour
An electric or metallic smell is very distinct as they don't happen often. These odours coming from your furnace are indicators the unit's electrical components are getting too hot. Usually when these smells are detected your furnace will shut off as a protective measure and it won't continue to run. Another cause of these smells could simply be wear and tear depending on how old your system is. It could be a simple repair that costs little money. If you notice any of the odour described in this section, shut off your furnace and call us for service.

At 4 Seasons Heating, Cooling & Electrical we are experts in the heating industry. We encourage customers to request annual preventative maintenance checks so your furnace will perform at its optimal capabilities. We are also experts in air filtration that will keep your home full of fresh, warm air during those long winter months.

To schedule a furnace maintenance check, call us at (204) 953-5700 or request service online.

Tag: Heating