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Slight burning smell with HVAC heating on


Jul 26, 2018
It is starting to get colder here in the PNW. The last couple times leaving work in the evening to come home I've noticed a slight burning smell for the first bit of the trip. I'm assuming this is from the HVAC heating components which maybe I've never had come on before. Turning down the temp seems to make it go away. Has anyone noticed something like this?

I'm not sure if it is just the "new car smell" of the heating HVAC, like turning a furnace on for the first time of the year and it will go away after a few uses. It distinctly smells more like a plastic type smell than dust smell though.


Supporting Member
Jun 7, 2016
Springfield, VA, USA
This is normal. The dash heater is much like a home space heater. Any dust that happens to get stuck in the coils will "burn off" the first time the heater runs after being off for a while.

It should clear up quickly. If it does not then there is likely something wrong.

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