Q: AC is not blowing cold and a plastic-like smell when AC is on.

asked by on November 04, 2016

Drove truck on Wednesday and AC was blowing cold. Thursday morning there was an odor it wasn't a mildew odor it was more like a plastic smell. Can still smell it when turn AC on.
My car has an automatic transmission.

There are different possibilities that could contribute to the plastic smell. The smell could be caused by a coolant leak, an electrical issue, the A/C compressor overheating, or simply an outside smell.

Sometimes, plastic bags tend to get stuck to the exhaust system and melt. If you had the vent on for outside air, you probably smelt a bag burning, or some ambient smell. If you had the recirculate button on when you experience this smell, then it is time to change your cabin filter. The dust on the cabin filter will make a burning smell as air is passed through it. Plus, if the filter is dirty, then the evaporator will not function correctly and also causes the a/c to not blow as cold as usual. If the filter is good and clean, then it is possible that the a/c system has sprung a leak and you are smelling the refrigerant.

If you need further assistance, then seek out a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, to help you diagnose the cause of the warm a/c and plastic smell from the vents and replace the air filter, if needed.

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