MY ALBUS - HOW I RESOLVED THE MUSTY AC / BLOWER ODOUR!
Every morning when I started My ALBUS noticed some musty smell when I switched on the blower @ the compressor / AC in off mode. Also noted that this stale & unclean smell slowly disappeard after switching on the AC. (I have kept no vent perfume to mask the truth!)
I felt that there is something unhygienic and started exploring engine bay & inside the cabin with a fear whether there is any rodent / vermin menace. Nothing I could find out.
When I told the ASS
guy, he told me that I should disinfect the AC channel every six month and he did it by charging around Rs.600/- during service time. The chemical odour was so strong for few days and disappeared later.
But the ‘musty’ problem not solved. It started coming again.
I was little worried as I had never come across this kind of problem in my earlier cars and why this to my ANHC (FL3G)?
That made me searching @ researching!
I found out the reason and re-solved the issue and I want to share with you all, that’s interesting! REASON:
The musty smell is caused by mold in our AC system, because we shut the engine off while the air conditioner was still running. That allows the natural water present in the air as humidity to condense in the cool AC evaporator and ductwork system. That moisture is a nice warm and dark place for mold to grow. Mold is a fungus like growth what we see in old rotten bread loaf.
It is common in cars used short run, humid areas, never exposed to sun & always parked under shed. PREVENTION:
1. The best way to prevent it is to turn off the AC a minute or so before we arrive at our destination to allow the entire system to reach ambient air temperature and prevent the condensation. No condensation means no water means no mold!
2. Whenever we get a chance make sure to intake air from outside as closed recirculated air favours fungal growth faster than air from outside.
3. Periodical HOT AIR CLEANSE is always good. After driving around 30 minutes, park the car in a safe clean area with engine running in neutral. Set the circulation to outside air and the AC temperature to hottest setting. Windows to roll up, step out outside and allow it to run for 10 - 15 minutes. The hot air passes over the fin and kills the mold / most of the bacteria. HOW TO GET RID OF IT:
Since I could identify in the beginning, I could do it easily. Just I cleaned the CABIN AIR FILTER* & started following the preventive procedures as above.
(*The cleaning procedures adopted are given below.)
But if it’s not making much difference, we should adopt to any of the following methods.
Using an AC - DEODORISER.
Ensure you move your vehicle to a well-ventilated area.
Only few choices are available in India – ABRO, GULF & 3M.
Some are meant for single fumigating application & some can be sprayed or injected. The inject & flush type comes with a long flexible pipe that can penetrate deep into the vents.
We can see the procedures through these videos. C.
If nothing resolves, the only way to really clean it is to remove the evaporator and ductwork from the car, which would be a big job.
GUIDELINES FOR ANHC CABIN AIR FILTER CLEANING
Cabin air filter is used to filter out dust and debris from coming into the passenger compartment to keep the air healthy & several factors determine how often the filter needs to be replaced, such as driving conditions, dusty roads. PROCEDURE ADOPTED. SUMMARY:
Open Glove Box- Remove all the contents -Push In Side Walls- Lower Glove Box To Floor- Note Blower Motor Housing- Push Filter Cover Clips In- Slide Out Cabin Filter Tray- Note White Papery Cabin Air Filter In Tray- Remove Element From Tray- Remember Air Flow Direction Indicator- Vacuum Air Cleaning- Replace Filter Element In Tray - Slide In Cabin Filter Tray- Snap Side Clips Into Place- Glove Box Rubber Stops Pushed In- Test Glove Box Operation- Close Glove Box.
Be sure to make a mental note of how the element was orientated in the tray with the "Air Flow" arrows pointing downwards.
If your current cabin air filter is in good condition we can just tap out the large debris or bugs and remove any dust or pollen by a vacuum cleaner(soft & slowly) before re-installing it.
If the old cabin air filter is dark grey or black with pleats clogged by dust, dirt, hair, and other debris, we should replace it with a brand new filter through the dealer.
I understand that HONDA uses the same for all models of HONDA CITY since 2006 and if anybody can find out the part number and whether available after market with reputed automobile shop like Popular Motors it will save us a lot. FOOT NOTE:
One can’t ignore a smell from the AC. It may be due to: Burning Rubber Smell:
To check the wiring/connectors under the hood. Any shorting or excessive load when the starter is cranked can slowly burn off the insulation on the wire. Pungent Acidic Smell:
Very old / improperly maintained car battery can heat up and cause acidic fumes in the engine bay. Foul smell:
Dead leaves/insects / rodents, rotten food particles and most importantly the mold should be ruled out. So, prevention is better than cure.