How to Remove AC Smells in Your Car (Odor Life Hack)

How to Remove AC Smells in Your Car (Odor Life Hack)


one, two, three, four! Rev up your engines! It’s time for the Scotty Kilmer Channel does your car smell when you turn your
air-conditioning on, sometimes it gets as bad as a dirty cat box, but don’t blame
it on your cat, because it’s actually bacteria growing inside your vents
that’s making that smell, deep inside your air-conditioning system it’s dark
and damp, and it’s exactly what bacteria likes to live and breed in,
here’s an old a/c evaporator that I just changed in a car, and as you can
see, there’s all kinds of mold and bacteria growing inside, so when you turn
your air conditioner on full-blast, that air is blowing mold and bacteria
right into your face, but don’t give up and drive down the road wearing a gas
mask, kill that mold and bacteria with a little disinfectant spray, now as a
professional mechanic I have all kinds of machines and tools to flush out an
a/c system, but I found that often a can of Lysol every couple of months
will do just as good of a job, just turn on the air conditioning, and turn off the
recirculation, you want fresh air coming in, then turn the fan speed to full blast, then rolled on all the windows, front and
back, disinfectants are pretty strong, so you
want to roll the windows down, so the older blows out,
then go to the front of the vehicle by the windshield, and if you feel with your
hands, you can feel air being sucked in, that’s the intake, spray about half a can
of Lysol into the intake, and make sure you do both the drivers
and the passengers air intake side, so spray the passenger side too, you want the cleaner to saturate all of
the inside of the air-conditioning duct work, it’ll kill all the mold and
bacteria, so the smell will go away, now as you can see, this stuff is pretty
strong, it says hazardous to humans and domestic animals, and that’s why you want
to leave all the windows open, so it’ll air out, and if you’re really sensitive to
odors, you might leave the windows open overnight in your garage, so the whole
vehicle airs out completely, now if you’re living really hot and humid
place like I do, Houston Texas, you might have to spray the stuff in, four or five
times during the summer, to keep the bacteria from coming back, they multiply
rapidly, so the next time your air-conditioning starts to get stinky,
throw away your gas mask, and clean out that bacteria with a little Lysol, and
your nose will thank you, and remember if you’ve got any car questions, just visit
Scotty Kilmer.com and I’ll answer them as soon as I get back from this ride!

100 comments

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  2. Thank you so much for odder gone bye itโ€™s help a lot put cleaning the Air filter next to the passenger side I replaced it and I put myself inside also and it worked good to be sprayed Lysol on the floor of the car and leave the windows open for 10 minutes

  3. Mr Kilmer. I have a 2014 Toyota Avalon and want to know how to remove cigarette smoke smell for good. This being a 2014 model I want to know where the air intake is because there are no grills on the windshield.

  4. Couple noob questions,
    1. If the smell is worse when you're using regular air and not AC – is it possibly the same issue?
    2. Would it make more sense to lift the hood and spray directly into the ventilation intake?
    3. Should I remove the air filter from the cabin to ensure the Lysol spray isn't being filtered?
    3a. If I don't remove the filter, will Lysol stay inside the filter such that I'd be inhaling Lysol fumes long after a day?

  5. I had a Mercedes that had a bad order when i turned in the AC. I was so embarrased i didn't want anyone riding with me. I no longer have the Mercedes but i wish i saw this video back then. Very helpful.

  6. Is it dangerous for your car for lysol to get on any other parts that arent thr intake? I worry about spraying lysol on the intake and getting it on something else that could mess it up

  7. I have a 2001 corolla le, searched everywhere online where the cabin air filter is located, but it doesn't even have one!! So my stinky ac got to me. I had my friend with me and turned on the ac, stunk like hell. I bought lysol to spray it in the ac intake and forgot to roll the windows down. Now my head hurts and I can't sleep

  8. I like this guy. Explains things really well and is entertaining too. I shall try this on my car. All the best Scotty and keep up the good work.

  9. Had "the smell" ๐Ÿคข in my car (Peugeot 3008 1.6td 2013) so searched YouTube last night and found this video. Went out this morning and bought the equivalent of lysol in the UK which is Dettol spray. Tried it this afternoon (used roughly 1/4 of the can) followed Scotty's instructions to the letter and … WOW … the fusty smell has gone!! update have been a run out in the car tonight and switch between AC on and AC off quite a few times and "the smell" has completely gone. I didn't bother taking out my cabin filter as some have recommended but it will be changed at its next service anyway.. thank you so much Scotty ๐Ÿ‘

  10. I started the car turned on the air conditioner roll the windows down have the blower on high now do I keep the garage door open or closed? Hahaha thanks a lot Scotty too Hotty

  11. Be careful spraying the Lysol, donโ€™t get any on the paint. Lysol has alcohol in it and it will surely ruin your paint job.

  12. I was getting that sour vinegar smell in my Toyota. So I finally used my shopvac to clean up the leaf and tree matter that gets stuck between the air intake and the engine area under the hood. After the vacuum, I cleaned the area with the Lysol and paper towels. Then removed the dirty cabin filter and followed the video instructions. It's been a few days now and all is good.

  13. Only after I take mine to Brakes Plus and the mechanic s donโ€™t shower. Not you Scotty. Lol. My xroommate swore she didnโ€™t use laundry sheets in the dryer. I keep my car in the garage with the washer/dryer. The smell in my car got so bad I had to drive w/air conditioner on w/windows down. She moved out and no more dryer sheets..no more overwhelming smell in my car vents.Those things are made out of fiberglass. Love your videos Scotty.๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ

  14. This was very informative! Thank you! I have a 2011 Toyota Corolla & was told that they would have to take the whole dash out to clean out the evaporator box!

  15. Eyyy Houston! My favorite local mechanic to binge watch while stuck on I-10 for 2 hours between T C Jester and Gessner. ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿผ from Spring Branch.

  16. Whatโ€™s the point of turning the ac on , isnโ€™t it the same air using the same vents with the ac off

  17. Worked like a charm. Had the regular Lysol spray already used that. Strong smell of Lysol in the car afterwards but by the next morning that smell along with the dirty sock stench were gone. May try this version of Lysol on the other car or if it comes back. Thank you!! ๐Ÿ†

  18. My dog crapped in my car and I didnโ€™t realize, I didnโ€™t use the car for two days. Car is just 2 months old. Will the smell ever go away?

  19. Thanks for the tip Scotty, got rid of the smell. I also noticed no condensation draining under my SUV. Been told its a plugged drain hose, that's why the smell built up in the vents.

  20. I'll try it. My friend's daughter pee'd in my car and after getting it cleaned it still smells like old pee.

  21. In the UK, so we use cans of Detol spray which is not harmful to humans. Thanks for great advice the wet dog smell is horrible.

  22. You are a life saver. I coundn't understand why my carbin air stink even I tried to change airfilter already. Thank you very much. God bless you sir.

  23. I have a 2015 Volvo XC70–I don't see where the air intake is in the cowl–seems to be none, it seems to be integrated with air intake to the engine. Where would I spray?

  24. I was under the impression lysol isn't healthy to breath… Is lysol healthy enough to breath in to make this a smart thing to do?

  25. Great informative vid and info. Did this to both my cars after noticing tight feeling in chest after using the Ac. Worked like a charm and dont worry about lung disease cause of my AC Lol!

  26. I find way too many videos that are just full of Common Sense something you really shouldn't eat a video for and I'm not trying to knock this video I really appreciate all your help but I'm looking for that advanced issue where everything seems to smell just fine aside from the AC unit not really working properly right now I might need to actually let it all out because there might be some built up actual compressed air rather than the actual liquid coolant or gas coolant or however you want to put it but I think I may have an issue where there's too much pressure in the unit but it's just air because every time I go to fill it I can't put it much past the low Mark and then the unit wants to cycle over and over and over with no cooling ability at all but if I let some out then all of a sudden it wants to work again it's getting real Annoying but what I need is to figure out why there's this really bad musty smell after I turn the AC off and let the fans blow.. if you're telling me that this trick could help that then forgive my comment I if you're telling me that this trick could help that then forgive my comment I know I sound a bit judgmental but my bad smell comes when you let the AC stop while you're still driving around but you want to turn the fan on like let's say when you roll the windows down there's no point in having the AC on so you just go ahead and kick the fan back on with the AC off that's when the bad smell comes. since I don't know a bunch of advanced stuff about AC systems I'm only going to assume that it's related to why my compressor might not be working perfectly so I can only assume that draining all of the gas out might help as in draining it and then starting over with filling it with a fresh can I kind of have this assumption that overtime some kind of leak or something has caused a whole bunch of compressed air or who knows what else get trapped in this condenser not leaving me room to actually fill it with fluid I'm only assuming though

  27. hey, so if I'm replacing the air filter should I do this before or after I replace the new one? Or does this method not even matter if I'm replacing it?

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