Is a Burning Smell Normal When I Turn on the Heat? | Air Experts
Burning smell

If you live in New Jersey, the first day that it’s cold enough to turn the heat on can be heart-warming. While the heat can make your home feel cozy, it can also be followed by a strange burning smell. Pay close attention to what type of smell is coming from your heat to determine if your furnace is working as it should, or if you need to get an expert involved.

Types of Smells and What They Mean

Burning Dust
This smoky smell is common and very normal. Your heater has been collecting dust over the months it hasn’t been in use. This smell comes from all the dust and debris burning off and should go away once there’s no dust left to burn.  

Burning Plastic
If you smell burning plastic, that could mean a foreign object has found its way into your HVAC system. Check your ductwork to see if you find anything that shouldn’t be in there. If you can’t find anything, the smell could be coming from the insulation or wires burning. Turn your unit off and contact an expert to check for the source.

Rotten Eggs
Smelling rotten eggs means you probably have a leak in your natural gas line. If this is the case, don’t try to shut off your gas line. Instead, call your gas company immediately and step outside the house to avoid any toxic fumes.

Chemical Smell
If you smell any burning chemicals when you turn your heat on, you should turn off your unit and open windows in your house. This chemical smell is likely caused by a failure of your heat exchanger and should be checked on by a professional.

When to Call a Professional
If you are unsure of the smell coming from your heating unit or the burning smell does not go away on its own, it’s time to call an Air Expert. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Air Experts’ HVAC technicians are here to help you determine what is causing the smell and keep your home warm and safe. Call us at (732) 759-0934 or contact us online to schedule a service appointment today!

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