View Full Version : Bleach smell!!
08-19-2006, 01:02 PM
We have this strong bleach smell unexplainable. Carrier HVAC cooling unit had electrostatis filter...was replaced and smell still there. Ducts smell really strong the same under the crawl space and 2 isolated areas in house on first floor. Heard it could be a freon burning issue being emitted? Any ideas or understanding?
08-19-2006, 05:46 PM
you should get a duct cleaning company out to clean your duct work.
do you have pet's and are your return vents on the floor or low on the walls that would cause a strong bleach smell?
it is also a good idea to have unit serviced ounce a year get drain line to evap coil cleaned out evap pump, close off humidifier for the summer if you have one and remove that old humidifier filter, also have blower wheel inspected and a number of other things.
08-19-2006, 09:23 PM
You might be smelling the ozone produced by the electrostatic cleaner.
08-19-2006, 11:02 PM
Turn the electostatic filter off and see if the smell goes away. Might be ozone like tecman said.
electrostatic filters do not use power! That would be a electronic!
08-20-2006, 06:43 AM
The electronic filter is gone, we removed it. The smell is still there
08-20-2006, 08:37 AM
Maybe someone cleaned the coil with a bleach-like solvent and did not rinse it well enough?
08-20-2006, 02:01 PM
Vinegar will kill all germs also gets rid of bleach smells
white vinegar is cheap u can buy it in most shopping stores in a gallon container for not more then a dollar or two.
back in the 1970s when i worked in a kitchen we had to wipe down all the stainless steel tables and cutting boards with white vinegar every nite.
08-20-2006, 02:36 PM
is a/c still working? i had a guy who smelled something like that hard to tell but i ended up finding second stage unit lose gas on condensor side, he smelled refrigerant. have no idea how it got into airstream but thats what he smelled. fixed and no more smell.
08-20-2006, 03:38 PM
dont know if it would help but i have a window ac in my room-email me if you wanna know why- and when the compressor is off, it almost has a dirty sock smell to it. i leave the fan on all the time. i know that its the water on the coil evaporating. if you feel the air right after comp kicks off, its muggy.
i might consider having the coil chemically cleaned. please call your local contractor to do this. see if that helps
08-20-2006, 03:59 PM
crawlspace, duct work, equals animal condo. check it.
08-20-2006, 04:21 PM
Hey guys... we did all that. still there. :(
08-20-2006, 04:25 PM
BTW anyone know anything about freon when it burns? There is a sit where it says that if freon gets burned, it exudes a ammonia/bleach smell. If that were the case, how could it get hot enough to do this and not run out of freon? I know freon is otherwise odorless. Carrier unit. Apparently there are chemicals like nitrogen tetroxide and bromine which smells like bleach, but I haven't a clue to how it could be a potential outcome. I heard those 2 chemicals are dangerous in vapor forms but are they possible and/or others? Chemistry 101 helps maybe? yikes just looking for answers
08-20-2006, 04:33 PM
refrig. tech. --- could you explain a little more please? Don't understand but very interested. Bleach smell for him too? This is REALLY bad like straight bleach and lots of it by the front door foyer and under crawl space in ducts. Oddly it isn't that bad (hardly detectable if at all in other areas of the 2 story colonial-like home.
08-20-2006, 04:50 PM
Do you have one of those room air cleaners or small air cleaner that plugs into the wall? Has the washer flooded into the floor vent? Maybe you have a child that has poured tilex etc. into the vent? How strong is it in the crawl space. Is it stronger under the place that you smell it upstairs?
08-20-2006, 05:09 PM
no spills. straight bleach smell at foyer and in ducts (below house) no smell upstairs above foyer. no kids I know about the ozone cleaners.. not that.. aren't any they were replaced anbout 5 days ago without any changes to the smell. There is plastic under house but other than that... there appears that no one can figure it out.
08-20-2006, 05:25 PM
Originally posted by flowers
BTW anyone know anything about freon when it burns?
08-20-2006, 05:38 PM
have a tech check it out see if your blower motor needs oil or that the blower wheel is on tight and motor,
also have them check the uf on the capacitor for that motor and make sure it is not bad and leaking that would smell bad
had one other day insulation got sucked into the blower wheel from blower box was not cooling good and had strange smell
if you call a good tech they will find the problem
if someone cleaned out your pump with bleach for the evap coil and the evap draine line does not have a trap, the smell will go back to the evap.
you really need a tech to come out and inspect it, it is something that only a tech can find
08-20-2006, 08:57 PM
OK so how hot does freon have to get for the phosgene and sicknesses? I know about the flame stuff. But I have been reading similar situations with HVACs with freon. I am not sure about how this smell gets emitted out anyhow if there aren't apparent leaks? The heated freon is in the coil so how is in the world might this occur?
08-20-2006, 10:03 PM
i did not say anything about burning if ya burn freon it become toxic, i said freon will have a smell. not on its own. mixed with oil. the oil sometimes becomes acidy breaking down and when u have it mixed with refrigerant thats when u can smell refrigerant. refrigerant along is oderlous. sounds more if its working could be like said motor burning or capacitor. not really sure what your nose smells but i few people distiguish diffirent smells than others. could just be moldue in the drain pain. see if u can check the drain
08-21-2006, 04:42 PM
Refrigerant breakdown is not going to happen inside the system as there is no open flame, air or moisture, refrigerants can produce phosgene gas, hydrochloric acid, and hydroflouric acid in the presense of air, moisture, and flame. These compounds do not smell like chlorine bleach but are very irritating pungent choking odors. Do you use bleach at all in the home? Many dish machine detergents contain chlorine, could your sewer be backing up into the condensate drain? This could happen if it wasn't installed right. Thus everytime you put something with bleach down the drain it shows up in the air handler? As others have said burning motor insulation or a burning cap can cause an odor similar to bleach. We only have what you are telling us to go by, what you may think smells like bleach may in fact smell different to someone else. Whatever the problem is it's not the refrigerant, hope you get it sorted out soon.
08-21-2006, 08:04 PM
Thanks. Yes it is in the foyer by the front door. Many people have confirmed it to smell like straight bleach in a choking strength when you take a deep whiff. There seems to be no answer except to say that it could be ozone still not vented out from the ducts from the separate electrostatic ozone filter that was put on the hvac and is now removed. Apparently the filter has had some complaints of similar nature. Appreciate your help and insight. thank you all.
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