Bad Smell From AC

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Thread: Bad Smell From AC

  1. #1
    Lurking Member dae0311's Avatar
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    Default Bad Smell From AC

    I have an 08 Limited Sequoia with 32,500 mile on it, this is the second time that I am getting a bad smell from the AC. It's like a mildew/ dirty sock smell. Does anybody know what causes it? I have changed the cabin air filter 3 times already. The last time I took it 2 the dealer, they said it was just a dirty cabin air filter. Anybody have the same problem? Any solutions for this problem?

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Maybe there's a dead animal in there.

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    Back from the dead! Gutz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Dead mouse/rat could be it. Did you see the air filters from before?
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    I'm also experiencing the same problem. '08 Limited with 32,000 miles. My musty smell seems to come after giving it a good hand washing, which leads me to believe that it is moisture related.

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    I have a 2008 Tundra Crewmax and I have the same smell coming from my A/C. It is a mildew/musty smell and I don't know why. I too have changed the cabin filter and the problem has not gone away. I had a friend suggest that maybe the condensor was not draining properly and that mildew may be growing on the fins. I'm still checking into that. Whatever it is it sure does SUCK!!!

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    Veteran Member JMSinMD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    I suggest turning off your AC and letting 'normal' air run through the system before shutting off the vehicle.
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Same "problem" here on my '08. I've found that if you don't run in "Auto" mode (which I usually don't), every time you restart the recirculate button goes on, cutting off your outside air (mine does anyway). I always hated this, and the dealer said he would reprogram it, for a fee of course, so I just live with it.

    This same smell happens to me once in a while, and my solution is to turn off the AC, turn off recirculate, and turn the fan on full high for a while (maybe 5-10-15 minutes). Somewhere in the plumbing, there's water sitting somewhere that gets musty/mildewy, most likely from no fresh air coming in from the recirculate button being on a lot. Running the fan on full blast for a while in this "mode" dries things up and clears out the water, wherever it may be, and the smell disappears. Works for me.

    I don't think the cabin filter has anything to do with it.

    Good luck!

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    I had the same problem last year on my 08 Sequoia and the dealer said that I could have them run it through their machine for $90, or he suggested to get a couple cans of Lysol. With the truck running and the vents open spray the Lysol in the vent located under the passenger side windshield. A couple of those treatments did the trick. I now make sure the re-circulate light is on for the vents while going thru the car wash and have not had any problems since.

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    My '09 does that.
    I'll blow out the condenser drain, (you know where it drips water when A/C runs...) I think it is just like your home A/C drain. You need to poor a little bleach in the one at home sometimes. In the car, we can't easily get to it to do that, so gunk-funk builds up and stops the drain up - maybe not even all the way. Water stands and viola` - ya gotta musty smell - tis what I think... So I blow it out with me trusty air gun - just a little bit of air!!!!!

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    Veteran Member G-TEK's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Condensation + dust = musty smell. They make duct spray or you can take it to the dealer to have the ducts cleaned. If you have the patience you can clean them yourself.

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Its from mildew forming on the A/C condensor. What you need is this stuff:

    1Z Einszett Klima-Cleaner Air Conditioner Treatment

    You shoot it into the A/C center vent (use the whole can in a single treatment). It foams up and kills all the mildew. I used it in my Audi S4 and it took care of the problem. I would also replaced the cabin filter at the same time to be sure the problem did not originate there.

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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    I got the same problem, but we only had the Seqouia 2012 for 2 weeks before the smell happened...
    I had the same problem with my Toyota Fortuner in Thailand and always blamed it on my sonīs athletes feet, because he always took off his shoes as soon as he got into the carīs front seat. Changed filters or deep cleaing the A/C helped for a few weeks, then the smell returned.

    In Thailand I ALWAYS used recirculated air....to keep the car cleaner....after 6 year, vents were look as new....no dust or grim.

    But a new car should not have this problem....unless it is my sonīs feet!!!

    Will try the suggestion of shutting off AUTO and fanning out the problem.....

    Thanks for the suggestions

  14. 05-16-2012, 11:47 PM

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    Junior Member xraytekca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Same problem here too. Gonna try the Lysol trick.





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    Default Re: Bad Smell From AC

    Haven't had any issues yet, but only 3000 miles on my puppy.
    Musty smell = mold = leak Never a good thing. Hope you get your issue solved quickly.

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    Default

    I'm having same issues. I steam cleaned my my carpets and seats (shampoo) and dried, but smell returned. What is the "lysol" trick?

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