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Bad Smell From A/c / Heating


naminator
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I know this may sound a bit ridiculous, but it is worth a try unless you have already pursued this avenue. In your glove compartment are two (one on each side) bolts. They are parallel to the floor and can be taken out with a pair of pliers. But use some cloth with the pliers so you don't damage these bolts. You grab the bolts with the pliers and pull the bolt inward towards the center of the glove compartment. Anyway, once the bolts come out, the glove compartment will drop down. Once that happens, there is an air conditioner air filter. When I removed mine, it was filled with leaves. Possibly some wet leaves got stuck in yours and that is why it smells when you put the heat or a/c on. Your owners handbook should shed some light on the subject of removing the air filter. Filters are relatively inexpensive. I even saw some on ebay for around 10-15 dollars. If this isn't the cause, then I am sorry but I do not have a clue. Good luck.

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Thanks for all the advices. I actually brought my car into a Lexus dealershop (for another service also), before doing further research. They recommended changing the A/C filter just like Gary wrote. They would charge $98 for that. And that was a message they left on my voice mailbox. After looking through the Users Manual, I found out how easy it was to replace that filter. But Lexus dealership already went ahead and replaced the A/C filter without my acknowledgment. When I picked up the car, they agreed to drop it down to $50 which they claimed the cost of the part.

Anyway, replacing the A/C filter didn't seem to fix the problem. Well, it was very cold here, so i turned on the A/C really briefly. So perhaps it was the remain of the bad smell from the old filter. I hope so. I'll try it out again. If it still smells bad, I'll try what 93LSOwner suggested. Thanks again everyone.

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If your dealer replaced the filter he probably cleaned out any debris that existed so the smell must be coming from another source. I have had this problem on other cars, the problem on those vehicles turned out to be mold in the evaporator unit.

On both cases, the evaporator had to be removed and cleaned.

Now, I have heard of people who have contacted people that do "Environmental Cleaning" for houses that have mold. Supposedly there is some chemical that can be sprayed right into the AC vents that will kill ALL mold. I have never tried it and it sounds scary but it would be nice if it worked!

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If your dealer replaced the filter he probably cleaned out any debris that existed so the smell must be coming from another source. I have had this problem on other cars, the problem on those vehicles turned out to be mold in the evaporator unit.

On both cases, the evaporator had to be removed and cleaned.

Now, I have heard of people who have contacted people that do "Environmental Cleaning" for houses that have mold. Supposedly there is some chemical that can be sprayed right into the AC vents that will kill ALL mold. I have never tried it and it sounds scary but it would be nice if it worked!

Hi

I had the same problem. You need to service the A/C: I am astonished that the lexus dealer just changed the filter. Toyota has a special A/C cleaning spray to be sprayed into the A/C vents that will eliminate all mold and germs...then the odor will be gone. This is a common problem with all A/Cs due to weather conditions, humidity etc.

ma$e

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