A burning smell coming from the furnace in your Roxana, IL home is not always a cause for alarm. However, finding the source of the smell is extremely important.  Once you know the cause of it, you can pinpoint whether you need to take further steps. The main two sources that will require your attention are burning plastic and an overheated blower motor. However, we have included a list of other things that can cause this burning smell to occur with your home’s furnace.

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Burning Dust

There is a good chance that you noticed the smell coming from the furnace when you turned it on for the first time in a while. Furnaces are known to accumulate dust when they are not being used. This dust then settles on everything from the burners to the heat exchanger.

When you first turn on the heat, this dust then burns off of the heater and produces a burning smell. The vents that are connected to your home’s heating system will then emit this smell throughout the entire home. However, there is no need to be alarmed. The smell usually goes away within a few minutes. If it does not dissipate, then you should contact a local Roxana, IL HVAC specialist to determine the problem.

Clogged Air Filter

A trick that can help prevent your heater from emitting that burning smell is by changing out the air filter. The blower motor works harder when the air filter is clogged, which can cause it to overheat. This can happen in an attempt to keep pushing air through a classed filter. Besides overheating the burner, having a clogged filter can cause a high level of dust and dirt to accumulate in the furnace. This also can then burn off and produce a burning odor that spreads throughout your home.

Burning Plastic

If you begin to smell plastic burning this could mean that a foreign object has made its way into your heating unit. This could range from a plastic bottle cap to a children’s plastic toy. As the plastic burns from the heat of the furnace, it can start to radiate fumes that can be harmful to those who are in your home. If you notice that your furnace is giving off the smell of burning plastic, make sure to turn off your system and contact an HVAC professional right away.

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The smell of burning dust when you first turn on the furnace each year probably isn’t a reason to be fully concerned. However, if the smell begins to last for more than a few minutes, or if it begins to smell like burning plastic, then there is cause to investigate. Make sure you turn your system off right away to prevent any further damage from occurring. If you are in need of a furnace technician, give us at B & W Heating & Cooling a call today!