BVS Home Experts

Why Your Heater Smells Like It’s Burning

With the temperature starting to cool down here in Texas, you may try and turn on your heater for the first time in what feels like a while. Immediately, you smell this strong burning scent that sets off alarms in your head that something must be on fire! Try not to immediately panic, here are some reasons why this might be happening.

Dusty Furnace

One of the most common reasons for a burning smell is that dust has built up on your furnace. This is often seen when you live in warmer places where the furnace is off for months on end, like in Texas. When you turn on your furnace for the first time in months, the dust that has accumulated will start to burn off, causing that dreaded burning smell. The vents will send the smell throughout your home, but there is no need for alarm in this case. After a short period, the smell will go away. If it lingers, turn off the heater and be sure to contact an HVAC professional so they can assess the situation.

Debris/Object in Furnace

If you smell burning plastic or rubber, a foreign object (such as a kid’s toy) may have made its way into your heating unit. First, try and isolate which vent the smell is coming from. If there is something obstructing the vent, try moving it and see if that helps with the smell. If it does not fix the smell, be sure to contact your local HVAC professional to find the source, and be sure to turn off your system!

Dirty Filter

It can be easy to forget to change out your air filter, although it is recommended you change your filter every 1-2 months. If you wait too long to change it out, your air filter can get clogged. This will then cause your furnace to over-work in order to push more air through it. A combination of the furnace overheating and the extra dust burning from the filter can be the cause of the smell.

Damaged Electrical Wiring

If there is a burning electrical smell coming from your heater, that could be an indication you have a serious electrical issue. Instead of waiting on this, be sure to have an experienced technician check out your heater and address the problem. If you wait, this can put your whole system at risk of further damage and increase your risk of an electrical fire. If you are not having regular maintenance on your system, this increases the risk of an HVAC dysfunction. Be sure to schedule today to prevent any breakdown or malfunction in your system.


Still not sure what might be the cause of the burning? Simply call today and we can help with the answers you need.

No matter what happens, we are here for you at BVS Home Experts. We have experienced technicians
standing by 24/7 (yes, even on holidays!) so that we can help you when a problem arises. Make sure
your home is comfortable all year long. Contact BVS Home Experts today to restore your comfort.

Author Bio:

Ronald Via

Ronald is one of the key contributors to BVS Home Experts, a family-owned and operated full-service air conditioning and heating company serving the Katy and West Houston areas. With a deep understanding of air conditioning and heating concerns, Ronald brings a wealth of knowledge to our readers.


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