San Mateo HVAC – Dirty Sock Syndrome And Your Heat Pump

san mateo hvac

Many homeowners in the San Francisco and Peninsula areas have heat pumps that work to cool their homes in summer months and provide heat in winter months. If you’ve noticed a musty smell that brings to mind dirty socks, it could be caused by the growth of mold or mildew in ducts or other areas of your system. The smell isn’t only horrendous (and embarrassing), it could actually be detrimental to your health, particularly for family members who have allergies, asthma, or other respiratory conditions.

The cause? In areas where there is excess moisture, mold or mildew can form. If you’ve noticed this horrible odor often referred to as ‘dirty sock’ syndrome, here’s what you can do.

Use a mold cleaning solution or fungicide approved for use in HVAC systems. You will need to:

  • Turn off your heating/cooling system
  • Perform a thorough check for standing water or areas that are moist
  • Clean the evaporator coils using an approved cleaning solution
  • Clean pumps and condensate pans using the same solution, as stagnant or standing old water is a primary source of that musty or “dirty sock” smell
  • Replace insulation, filters, or other porous materials/components that have become wet or moist
  • Clean registers and ducts using the fungicide or mold cleaning solution

Be sure you only use cleaners that are designed to control mildew and mold, and that are approved for your HVAC system. There are also products available today designed to work with your system to kill surface mold continuously so that you don’t have to worry about your heat pump producing musty odors. If you need assistance cleaning the ducts, our San Mateo HVAC contractors are happy to help.

Ortiz Heating & A/C understands you want a comfortable home and the lowest possible energy bills. However, we also realize the importance of a clean system and how dangerous mold can be to your health. Good indoor air quality is highly important for your family’s health! For all of your San Mateo HVAC installation, maintenance, or service needs, count on Ortiz.