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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I ran some errands and made several stops around town using the dash vents for cool outside air. I turned on the A/C after several stops when it started getting warm and there was a very strong "musty" odor comimg out of the vents. I can only discribe it as wet gym socks. The car still has less than 5,000 miles so I can't believe the cabin filter needs replaced.
Have any of you with more miles on your Equinoxes noticed this smell after the A/C was turned on? Does replacing the cabin filter eliminate the odor?
Thanks!
 

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Sounds like the A/C drain hose is plugged. After you run your A/C you should see drips of water under the engine. If not, look for a plugged dain hose.
 

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I have noticed this on some of my vehicles in the past including my nox. It is bacteria or mould growing in the ductwork. For me the smell has been only momentary. You can spray Lysol into air intake while fan is running to kill what's in there I have read. There may be other remedies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: Update On Musty odor from A/C

Thanks for the suggestions.

Just wanted to post an update to the problem.

My wife is the primary driver so we took a longer drive yesterday to see if the drain hose would drip under the car after using the A/C and then parking. The A/C was on blowing out cold air and the "AUTO" button light was NOT lit. It was fine for awhile then started blowing the musty smell in the car. I noticed the air wasn't as cold coming out of the vents.

To make a long story short: The A/C WAS on AUTO even though the AUTO button light was not lit and when the temperature that was set was reached, the A/C would shut off and air would continue blowing out the vents picking up the moisture on the coils producing the musty smell. When the temperarture would raise the A/C would kick in automatically and the smell would go away. We took it off of AUTO and left the A/C on so it wouldn't smell.
 

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I ran some errands and made several stops around town using the dash vents for cool outside air. I turned on the A/C after several stops when it started getting warm and there was a very strong "musty" odor comimg out of the vents. I can only discribe it as wet gym socks. The car still has less than 5,000 miles so I can't believe the cabin filter needs replaced.
Have any of you with more miles on your Equinoxes noticed this smell after the A/C was turned on? Does replacing the cabin filter eliminate the odor?
Thanks!
I am having the same problem with my 2016 Equinox. Only 10K miles on it. Horrible smell coming through vents. Some days it smells moldy/mildew/musty; some days it smells like a dead animal. Changed the cabin filter and that did not help. Took to Chevy dealer and they sprayed deodorizer in the vents and that helped a tiny bit. Still getting smells though.
 

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Go to Costco and buy a 3 pack? or Lysol.

Turn on your fan---so that it sucks in air from outside..... and go to the base of windshield where air gets sucked in-- and spray that lysol in there.............

theres videos on youtube of folks using lysol to kill mold/mildew in car AC ducts.
 

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search this topic , been discussed in great detail , including turning afterblow on .
Afterblow makes a huge difference. I had the mildew smell and as soon as it was turned on it worked great.
 

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What is Afterblow?

If we have a After Burner, I want to find that switch :)
Ha!


This is my very basic understanding if it :


Its an option that has to be turned on by a GM tech with their special computer (cant remember what the device is called). Basically what it does is after running the AC and stopping the car it will run the fan for a certain amount of time after the car has stopped. What's happening is the moisture is sitting in the system and turns sour so when you start the car the next day and fire up the fans it blows the stanky air into the cabin. With the car doing this afterblow when it has been parked it clears the system so it smells like roses the next time you drive.


We had a very hot summer so I had the AC cranked all the time so I started noticing the nasty smell when I drove the car the next day. I actually found out about the after blow searching the forums here so I took the car to the dealership and they did it in minutes. They also put an air freshener/deodorizer through the system just to freshen it up too.


Im not sure why this isn't just automatically turned on at the factory.
 
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it is a feature (which last I knew--) had to be turned ON by dealer.
When you arrive at destination--- and leave the vehicle parked---- the fan will run for a certain amount of time--- to dry out the ducts/ac related parts.


Though I do know that on the Acadia, Traverse, Enclave.... some people had this feature turned on...
Then GM recommended that it be turned off on some customers vehicles...
reason?

some folks had this feature--- and they didnt drive enough. The driving they did was short drives. Very random.
Some folks started to get dead batteries. No problems were found with batt or charging system. All modules went to sleep.
No cause could be found.

Then it was determined that some folks short drives were random enough- and add in the afterblow, the multiple engine starts, running fans, etc.
the battery was not being charged fully-- because of the short drives.

For people with this randomness--- it was recommended that it be turned off.
 
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some folks had this feature--- and they didnt drive enough. The driving they did was short drives. Very random.
Some folks started to get dead batteries. No problems were found with batt or charging system. All modules went to sleep.
No cause could be found.

.
This may be a problem for me. I live in a small town that's only about 2 miles across.
Most of my trips are less than a mile.
 

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A suggestion I saw and what might work in your case is a couple blocks away from home turn off the ac and that would help dry it out a bit before you parked
 

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thats what I do.... if Ive been using AC.
Turn off AC and turn up fan- and sometimes turn up heat- to blow for a few blocks.
 

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A suggestion I saw and what might work in your case is a couple blocks away from home turn off the ac and that would help dry it out a bit before you parked
Thanks
Now if I can just remember that in 6 months when I start using the air again :)
 
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Thanks
Now if I can just remember that in 6 months when I start using the air again :)
Isnt that the truth!! I'm glad the heater works really good, its full blown winter here now.
 

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I had the "afterblow" turned on for my last Equinox. The parts description from GM simple listed it as an AC Drier. They also did a proper deodorizing. I'm sure Lysol works, but I would really hate to make my car smell like that. Auto part stores sell proper sanitizer sprays that don't really have scents. Well, they smell like "chemicals" but it's not as distinct as Lysol.

If you are under warranty, they should do the AC Drier to clean up the smell. My 2017 is starting to smell too. It's always right after the AC is shut off. I've never had this issue on other cars or trucks, but only my two Equinoxes. Take it to the dealer a few times for the smell. That's their problem to fix. Once they've cleaned it a couple of times and it still smells, make them do the right thing and install the drier "afterblow" option.

Also, for $100 you can get an ozone machine. Those are great on smells. I'd like to get one and use it in my car and truck once in a while to freshen it up. Ozone would also kill bacteria in the AC coil.
 

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the other day I was out on my daily jog--- and came upon a small spray can....
prob 3/4 full... it was an auto parts store AC duct sanitizer...

I took it home and put in in the garage..... ill use it someday.
 

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Also, for $100 you can get an ozone machine. Those are great on smells. I'd like to get one and use it in my car and truck once in a while to freshen it up. Ozone would also kill bacteria in the AC coil.
Humm - why don't "they" run a bunch of these, and patch up that hole in the ozone layer ? They will have to run them on a renewable resource, or Nuclear though.
 
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