Probable Reasons Why Your Ducted Heating System Is Emitting Foul Odours

If you're concerned about the effect of your HVAC system on the environment, you're not alone. Learn more about how regular maintenance helps here.

About Me
Green Comfort: How HVAC Contractors Help With Energy Efficiency

Good day. My name is Darryl and I work as a government researcher for the energy sector. I prepare reports which suggest ways that energy can be conserved and made cheaper. One area that is particularly under the spotlight is the effect of heating, ventilation and cooling systems on the environment. Whilst preparing my latest research report, I have been amazed by the energy efficiency that can be gained by installing the right HVAC systems. I even contacted professional HVAC contractors to upgrade, maintain and repair the systems in my own home because I learnt that older systems can use more energy without regular checks. I'm sure that there are others like me who aren't aware of the importance of choosing the right HVAC system. I hope to share a little of what I have learnt in my blog and help spread awareness. Thank you for your time.


Probable Reasons Why Your Ducted Heating System Is Emitting Foul Odours

28 May 2021
, Blog

While most Aussie homeowners are heavily reliant on their cooling system for a majority of the year, not many think of their heating until the winter months roll around and this is not surprising considering how hot the weather can get. However, this neglect of the heating system leaves room for issues to stay undiscovered until you finally need to keep warm. One of these issues is strange smells once you turn on your heating system.

Although a stale odour may simply crop up due to long term disuse, smells that do not go away should prompt you to seek HVAC services as soon as possible so the underlying problem can be addressed. Keep reading for some probable reasons why your ducted heating system is emitting foul odours.

Fungal growths

HVAC systems are outfitted with a drain line that directs condensate into a drain pan. The drain pan is then tasked with eliminating this moisture out of the home. When your heating system is not in use for a prolonged period, detritus such as dirt and fungal spores can collect in this drain pan. With time, the fungal spores mature and this creates mould that will travel into the heating system's ductwork.

Thus, the moment you turn on the heating when the temperature drops, fungal spores are circulated through your home and this causes a distinctive mouldy odour. It is also important to note that the fungi can make their way to the filter so all warm air passing through this filter will be contaminated. It is vital to enlist the services of an HVAC contractor who will come and clean out the ductwork, the drainage system and the air filter.

Pest infestations

Another possible reason why your ducted heating system will start to produce foul smells is when pests have invaded it. Much like humans, animals tend to seek shelter away from the extreme climatic conditions outside. Therefore, when you leave your heating system unused for the majority of the year, the ducts become a haven for rodents, birds, and a myriad of other critters that would want a reprieve from the scorching heat and safety from predators.

Not only will these pests contaminate the ductwork with urine and faecal matter but there is also a chance that some will die and their bodies will decompose in place. Consequently, when you turn on your heating system for the first time all year, the smell from the waste and rotting carcasses will pervade your home. It is obligatory to have an HVAC contractor come clean and disinfect the ductwork before your household can utilise the heating system.