Does your AC have “Dirty Sock Syndrome”?

Summer is right around the corner and temperatures are definitely warming up in Waterloo Region! That means it’s time for air conditioning (AC) season! Before the sweltering heat comes and you’re running your unit constantly, don’t forget to call Afterglow to complete your annual AC maintenance — especially if you turn your system on and it emits a foul smell.

The Afterglow team has had quite a few clients share their stinky stories, so we’ve put together some information to help explain those awful AC’s smells and how to combat them.

What causes AC’s to smell?

Mold and mildew on the indoor AC coil 

stinky ACIn most situations, bad AC smells are caused by mold and mildew growing on a dirty indoor coil — gross, right? The smell is caused by the moisture/humidity being removed from the house with the indoor coil — that’s what an AC does! This moisture mixes with the dust and dirt on the coil to create the smell and then that smell is circulated throughout your home. The dirt and dust have had plenty of time to accumulate and settle in your system over the winter, which is why the smell is so pungent when you first turn on your AC.

Dirty air filter

Stinky AC smells can also be caused by a dirty air filter. Your system’s filter works hard to pull odor-causing contaminants out of your home’s air, and if you haven’t been changing your air filter regularly, these captured smells could be recirculating back into your home when the AC is turned on. Nobody wants that!

Air filters are a vital part of your home’s air quality, which means that they require regular tender loving care. Keep in mind that if you avoid replacing your AC’s filters, it can not only lead to unwanted smells but unwanted mechanical issues and repair costs too! Learn more here.

How do you combat a smelly AC unit?

Annual AC maintenance

An AC requires regular maintenance for the unit to function effectively and efficiently throughout its lifetime. Neglecting necessary maintenance ensures a steady decline in AC performance — bad smells will be the least of your worries.

Contact Afterglow and book your summer 2016 AC maintenance appointment.

Change your air filter

It’s time for a new routine! If you haven’t been changing your air filter, it’s time to step up. Regular filter changes will remove fungi and contaminants from your system so they cannot be recirculated back into the home. The frequency that you should change your air filter depends on the type of filter you have, as well as other factors like if you have pets in the home.

If you find that your AC is emitting a foul smell, give us a call for our maintenance team to identify and amend the odour-causing problem.

Afterglow. Water, warmth, well-being.

Lower Your Energy Bill Without Turning Off Your Air Conditioner

Canadian BillsThe sizzling summer heat continues!

It’s no secret that when your air conditioner (AC) is on, your energy bill goes up. Most of us expect to have a higher electricity costs over the summer, but what happens when the heat continues into September and October?

With temperatures averaging around 30 degrees this week, Waterloo Region homeowners are forced to keep their ACs on into September. Fortunately, there are a few ways residents can keep their electricity bills in check.

Utilize these strategies to lower your costs and stay comfortable:

Don’t let the light in. Blocking sunlight is a great way to keep the heat out of your home. Make sure all of your windows are covered with blinds or shades to avoid the direct light and heat from creeping in.

Heat free meals. Ovens not only produce high temperatures to cook your food, they also add heat to your home. To keep your cooling load down, use low-heat methods to cook foods, such as a crockpot or microwave.

Or, take your cooking outdoors to the grill!

Use a fan. If you thought fans are just for blowing hot air around, think again! Point your fan out the window so it can push hot air out, and adjust your ceiling fan’s setting so the blades run counter-clockwise, pulling hot air up and out.

You’ll be amazed at how effectively this works.

Replace your air filter. Air filters need to be checked and changed more frequently in periods of heavy use. Clean air filters improve airflow throughout the home so your AC doesn’t have to work as hard to keep your home cool.

If you avoid replacing or cleaning your AC’s filters, it can lead to unwanted mechanical issues and repair costs! Don’t believe us? Read this.

Keep your dehumidifier running. Keeping the moisture level low in your home will increase your comfort and reduce the need of the AC.

If you have questions about your AC, please don’t hesitate to contact your trusted HVAC professionals at Afterglow. Also, remember that your AC needs professional maintenance each season as well, so don’t forget to schedule your tune-up!


Afterglow. Water, warmth, well-being.