Why Does The Air In My House Smell Musty?

When operating efficiently, HVAC systems are barely perceptible. The gentle hum of the unit kicking on or the soft breeze flowing across your face should be the only indications of its presence.

If you have a strong musty smell permeating through your house then, something's definitely wrong. Four possible reasons for this type of smell are listed below, any one of which should warrant a call to schedule an HVAC repair.

Too Much AC

Is it possible for you to have too much air conditioning in your home? Typically, we think the bigger the better, but if your AC unit is too big for your home, then the air will be pumped too quickly throughout your home and not have a chance to dehumidify. This should account for the musty smell in your house, but it's worth noting that an AC unit that is rated too high for your size of home will also deteriorate quicker due to increased shutting on and off.

Drain Pan That's Full

In order to protect your home from unnecessary water damage, the water that is removed from the air during the air conditioning process usually collects inside of a drip pan in or near the AC unit. Dumping this is usually a part of any HVAC repair services that you could hire, but if it's full, it'll not only collect mold over time but also create an odor. You can dump it yourself, or have an HVAC company replace it completely.

Dirty Evaporator Coils

Your evaporator coils are the parts of the AC unit most responsible for converting the warm air into cold air. In order to do this, it needs to have free-flowing air; if it's frozen over or covered in a thick layer of dust, it can either breed mold or stop working altogether. While you can prevent mold from growing completely by using a UV lamp, it's easier to just have it cleaned as part of your yearly maintenance and changing the air filters regularly.

Clogged Drain Line

During the air conditioning process, the water that forms on the outside of the condenser coils usually drips into a drain pan located directly underneath it. This protects your home from water damage but also funnels the water droplets through a drain line that deposits the water outside. If that drain line is clogged due to dust or debris, it can cause the water to back up and spill over the drip pan and cause, at the very least, mold growth and slightly musty smell. This is nothing that standard HVAC repair services call can't solve, so make sure you contact them to have it taken care of as soon as possible.