Reasons Your Furnace Has a Burning Smell

Most homeowners get concerned when there is any sort of burning smell on their property. If you’ve smelled something burning and traced the scent back to the furnace, we suggest you turn it off immediately. Then, consider if it could be one of these seven reasons there is a burning smell coming from your furnace.

1. The Dust Is Burning Off 

Those who didn’t maintain their furnace before turning it on for the year will probably notice that it is covered in dust. Typically, your HVAC technician would clean off that dust during maintenance. However, when it is left on, it may burn up from the sheer heat of the furnace. This should happen only the first time the furnace is on and should stop within minutes. 

2. Something Plastic is On or In It 

Does your furnace smell like burning plastic? Trust your nose. If you smell plastic, plastic is probably the issue. Perhaps you have left something plastic leaning against the unit. A child or pet could have placed a toy there. Or, a plastic piece may have fallen inside. If the latter is the case, contact your HVAC professionals for help.  

3. The Filter is too Full 

The furnace filter is vital for protecting its internal parts from things like dust, pet hair, and other contaminants. Eventually, it collects these things and becomes full. Not only can this over-stuffed filter restrict airflow and harm the furnace, but it can also start to burn. The simple solution is to replace the filter. 

4. There is an Electrical Problem 

Electrical burning is dangerous and could result from a broken safety mechanism on the furnace. As a result, it could start a fire. This potential problem is one of the main reasons you should turn your furnace off when you notice a burning smell, to reduce the risks from this issue. Be sure to get professional help with this one. 

Are you looking for a professional to ensure your furnace maintenance is up to par? Contact the team at Advantage Airtech ClimateCare today.  

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5. Overheating Issues 

If you find yourself asking, “how often should a furnace turn on?” because yours turned on and has now been off for a while, overheating may be the issue. When a furnace overheats, the circuit board can get damaged and start to smell like gunpowder. Then the furnace will turn off and won’t turn back on until a professional fixes the issue and resets it. 

6. Oil Fuel Source 

Furnaces that have oil as a fuel source may have a more distinct smell than you are used to compared to gas or electric furnaces. If it is a more intense smell than usual, it may be that you need to change the oil filter and prevent build-up and burning. An HVAC technician can help with this. 

7. Something Nearby is Burning 

It may not always be the furnace. Be sure to investigate other things nearby, mainly if the furnace seems fine. 

You shouldn’t ignore a burning smell from your furnace. Call the professionals at Advantage Airtech ClimateCare today to get to the bottom of your furnace issues! 

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