Vinegar smell coming out of AC

Discussion in 'HVAC' started by dadathepanda, May 16, 2018.

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  1. May 16, 2018 #1

    dadathepanda

    dadathepanda

    dadathepanda

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    I have a Mitsubishi mini split that was installed last fall and we used it for heating over the winter and now when we started using it for cooling I've noticed a vinegar smell coming out of it. We have 5 zones but only one smells.

    Air filters and heat exchanger are clean, Mitsubishi tech support suggested I call the insrltaller and the installer never heard of anything like this. He's coming over to take a look on Friday but if any of you have some idea what's causing it or have experienced this, please let me know.

    Thanks!
     
  2. May 16, 2018 #2

    havasu

    havasu

    havasu

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    Does your unit have a removable filter which needs to be cleaned? I know when my car starts smelling like vinegar (actually closer to the smell of cat piss), it is time to replace the cabin air filter.
     
  3. May 18, 2018 #3

    dadathepanda

    dadathepanda

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    I vacuum cleaned the filters which were not too dirty to begin with....
     
  4. May 24, 2018 #4

    Green8

    Green8

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    When the air coming from your air conditioner smells sour, like vinegar, the problem could be from an electric motor that is emitting ozone. Other possible reasons could be excess condensation on the coils, a malfunctioning filter, a clogged condensate pan, or mold in the ductwork.
     
  5. May 24, 2018 #5

    dadathepanda

    dadathepanda

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    Thanks for the reply. The thing is, the smell isn't present all the time I turn on the unit so I can't call the technician hoping it'll smell on that particular day...

    I wish I could troubleshoot before calling the tech. Filter is clean, unit is about 8 months old so I don't think the condensation is an issue. How can I find out if ozone is the problem?
     
  6. May 25, 2018 #6

    havasu

    havasu

    havasu

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    All units emit condensation. Do you have a condensate pan? Drip tube? If that water sits without draining, it could become smelly. Maybe treat with bleach?
     
  7. May 30, 2018 #7

    Dennis Palmer

    Dennis Palmer

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    The main cause behind smell coming out of AC due to clogged condensate drain line, because trapped water can quickly lead to bacteria growth. Condensate drain line is specially designed to catch and drain condensation that drips off evaporator coils.
     
  8. Jun 15, 2018 #8

    WyrTwister

    WyrTwister

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    Where does the condensate drain to ? My 2 MS's , I ran the condensate drain along with the refrigeration lines . The condensate drips outside , onto the grass .

    If the MS is running ( especially in humid weather ) you should se a fair amount of condensate dripping . Put a pan under it & you may be surprised . No condensate collects , you probably have a problem .

    It is possible the condensate could have been routed to a drain & you may not be able to locate it .

    Wyr
    God bless
     

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