There will be times when you turn on your car’s AC and the interior of your car starts to smell like pee. It does happen and you may have experienced it more than once in your lifetime.
Why does my car ac smell like pee? This can be due to bacteria, lack of draining, or dirty components to name a few. You can use cleaners to try to get rid of the smell. Follow the steps below to see how you can get your car smelling good again.
There are very good reasons why this takes place, and it can happen in more recent models of cars as well. keep reading to find out those reasons and what you can do about it. Take a few minutes to see how this important information can solve your AC odor issues.
The rare event
Even though this can take place, having mice and other small rodents crawl into your air intake system can happen. When it does their feces and urine can build up and create an odor disaster.
Unfortunately, there are not a few easy solutions to this situation. The only real solution is for you to disassemble your air intake system and clean it out. While you are doing that, you should disinfect the whole system as you do not want mold or other bacteria growing in the same spot.
When you clean your air intake system, make sure to wear gloves and a mask. Protect your health while you work.
The most common source
Other than the mice and small rodent scenario, there really is only one other source that creates this problem. Your AC system will have a part called an evaporator. This part’s duty is to remove the excess moisture from the AC system as it runs.
If the drain hole has an obstruction or is plugged or the evaporator is not working that well, then moisture will remain in your system. This moisture build-up will lead to the growth of mold and mildew and other bacteria or germs.
When this growth gets large enough, you end up with that awful pee odor coming from your car’s air conditioning system. These germs also create what are called mycotoxins or byproducts.
Both can be quite hazardous to your health. Taking care of the problem asap is the best choice.
Solutions to the AC pee odor
There is a silver lining in this cloud. You do have a few options that will not be that expensive to get rid of that odor. here are a few of those solutions:
1. Unplug the drain lines
This can easily be done by unhooking the different lines and running a wire through them. The first step is to run your car for 5 minutes and if you do not see any water dripping out of the drain hose, then this is the step to take.
Unplugging the lines will help get rid of excess moisture which is causing the problem.
2. Spray Lysol into the air intake vents
Open your hood if you need to and then turn on your air conditioner. Open all the vents and move the setting of the re-circulation option. You want fresh outside air circulating through the system.
Keep the car and the AC running and go to those air intake vents with a can of Lysol. Spray the disinfectant into those vents on both sides of the car. Spray evenly and make sure to do more than a quick spray.
Let the car run for 10 more minutes before shutting it and the AC unit off.
3. Use HVAC system cleaner
This is a very thorough cleaner as not only will it get rid of the foul odor, it will clean out rust, oil, and any debris in the AC system. When you make your purchase of this product, make sure a clear plastic tube is included in your costs.
Next, leaving the car turned off, locate the drain hose for your AC unit and fit the tube inside the drain hose. After that is connected, spray the entire contents of the can up into your AC system.
Then disconnect the tube and pinch the drain hose shut so none of the solution will drain back out. With the car off, wait 15 minutes before opening the drain hose. let the cleaner drain out before starting your car.
Run the car and the AC unit for a while to make sure the odor has been completely taken care of. If it isn’t working, buy another can of the cleaner and repeat the process.
4. Clean the evaporator
This can be a difficult and time-consuming task. Plus, you have to have some mechanical skills and be able to handle tools well to do this right. In this task, all you have to do is remove the evaporator from your engine and give it a good cleaning.
If you are not up to the task, let a qualified and trusted mechanic handle it for you. While you are cleaning the evaporator, you need to clean the air vents and ducts at the same time.
How to prevent this bad odor from happening
This is a simple solution that anyone can do when they are driving a car. About 5 minutes before your trip is ending, turn off the AC and turn the regular fan on full speed.
This airflow will help dry your ducts and air vents preventing mold and other bacteria from forming inside your AC system. That is all there is to it.
Some final words
Taking care of your AC unit is essential if you do not want to smell pee when you turn it on. Use the above techniques to get rid of that smell and prevent it from happening again.