How to Remove Bad Smells from a Central Air System

How to Remove Bad Smells from a Central Air System. It's a hot summer day. You flip the switch to the air conditioner to enjoy your cool home. Some time later, you notice something doesn't smell quite right. It could be your central air system introducing foul, and possibly harmful, air into your indoor environment.

Step 1

Check to see that your air conditioner's air filter is clean. Replace it at least monthly or more frequently to see if it affects the smell in the house.

Step 2

Pour a cup of regular household bleach once a month into the drain that holds the air conditioner's condensation drippings. The bleach will help keep this drain clean and clear and kill any algae or molds harboring there.

Step 3

Look at the outside unit to make sure it's as clear as possible of any surrounding vegetation or dirt build-up. Make sure the fan is turned off before you do any work around it.

Step 4

Think about your home's humidity. Comfortable relative humidity is between 35 and 50 percent in a home. Does your home feel damp or clammy? Run exhaust fans that vent to the outside when showering or cooking so the damp air can leave the house rather than recirculate.

Step 5

Consider having a dehumidifer installed in your central air system. A whole-house dehumidifier not only can work to rid your home of excess dampness, which is good for your health and your home, but also add ventilation of fresh air. Consult a professional.

Step 6

Ask your heating and cooling professional about a heat recovery ventilator, also known as an air-to-air heat exchanger to help with the indoor air quality and ventilation in your home.

Step 7

Install an ultraviolet air treatment system in your heating and cooling system. These systems "zap" a high percentage of any bacteria that might be circulating through the system. Consult a heating and cooling specialist for installation.