Why Does My Car Air Smell Like Vinegar?

You might have noticed that your car’s vents smell like vinegar. You might not be aware of the source of the stench or why it smells like rotten eggs or body odor. Fortunately, the smells may be easily remedied and won’t endanger your health.

Every time you use the air conditioner to chill the cabin, you might notice that the unpleasant odor becomes more stronger. To start, turn off the air conditioner to see if the odor persists. If the scent disappears, there might be an issue with the AC.

Many motorists believe the smell is caused by vinegar. However, mold that has grown in the cabin’s vents is usually to blame. Mold or mildew can be caused by a variety of things. It frequently happens as a result of dust or leaves that gather in the air vents during the course of the year. Replace the air filter in your automobile to remedy the problem right away.

It’s crucial to get in touch with a mechanic or expert to look into the problem because it could be challenging for the normal individual to find. This will guarantee that the appropriate actions are made to restore the cabin’s fresh scent. To stop the stink from coming back, the mechanic could change the air filter or carry out a more complete inspection. For further information, please contact our service department!

The majority of the time, using a cleaning solution made specifically for air conditioners will address the problem. The enzymes in the product will quickly get rid of the smell. The chemical reactions are accelerated by this procedure, which also stops the scent from returning.

To get rid of the remaining scents, stay away from utilizing household cleaning solutions. Using items like these might seriously harm the interior parts of the car and make the scent come back in the future. When using some chemicals on the air conditioner in your automobile, you should exercise caution because they might be toxic to breathe in.

For additional information on how to get rid of unpleasant odors coming from your car’s vents, get in touch with INFINITI on Camelback today. Due to our extensive knowledge, we were able to remedy this issue and stop it from happening again so that you could enjoy your time driving.

How can I remove the unpleasant odor from the air conditioner in my car?

Find the drain tube in your car and make sure it’s working properly should be your initial course of action. To avoid causing further harm to your car, you might wish to take it to a reputable dealership or repair facility.

If the drain tube seems to be in good functioning order, you may rule out this issue and focus on eliminating the mold that is already present in your car’s AC system and preventing the growth of additional mold in the future.

  • Removing the AC 2 to 5 minutes before you turn off your car, but keep the fan running. Every time you run the AC unit, this will enable a much more thorough drying process.
  • AC filters should be cleaned or changed. Your AC will operate less efficiently and retain moisture if your air filters are dirty. Make careful to change the AC filters as often as your vehicle’s manufacturer advises.
  • Vents on the outside should be treated with an antiseptic (where your car pulls air from outside into the car from). To ensure that the spray enters the ventilation system and can effectively destroy mold and germs, make sure your air conditioner is set to the setting that draws air from the outside in.

unpleasant odor coming from the car’s air conditioning? It might be a good idea to change your air filter because it can gather particles that introduce mold or serve as additional nourishment for it.

What does the smell of vinegar mean?

A person can get diabetic ketoacidosis if they do not manage their diabetes. If the cells are unable to obtain adequate glucose for utilization, the body will then burn fat too quickly for energy.

Ketones are created when the body burns fat, making the blood more acidic as a result. Additionally, metabolites like acetone are released into the perspiration, giving it a potentially vinegar-like odor.


The bacterial Corynebacterium causes trichomycosis, also known as trichobacteriosis or trichomycosis axillaris, which is an infection of the underarm hair or other regions.

According to a 2013 study, 92% of trichomycosis infections had an impact on the underarm hair. Trichomycosis can very rarely affect pubic hair.

Nodules that adhere to the hairs beneath the arms, around the genitals and buttocks, or on the skin may be yellow, black, or red.

According to the 2013 study, odor was a symptom of trichomycosis in 35.7% of cases. Sweat may be black in color or have an acidic smell similar to that of vinegar.


The eccrine glands in a person with hyperhidrosis cause them to sweat excessively. According to a 2016 study, about 5% of Americans suffer hyperhidrosis.

Primary focal hyperhidrosis and secondary hyperhidrosis are the two forms of hyperhidrosis.

A different medical condition or drug does not cause primary focal hyperhidrosis to develop. Focal signifies that different bodily parts are affected by the perspiration. This can apply to the forehead, hands, feet, and underarms.

Secondary hyperhidrosis refers to excessive sweating that is brought on by an underlying medical disease or a pharmaceutical side effect.

It may smell like vinegar when perspiration and germs combine on the skin.


A rare condition is trimethylaminuria. Someone who has trimethylaminuria might realize that their sweat smells bad. This is due to the fact that the chemical trimethylamine, which smells like fish, cannot be broken down by the body.

Why does the air in my car smell bad?

If the smell of vinegar only appears when your car’s air conditioner is running, the issue is likely with the AC rather than another component. Drive about without turning on the air conditioner to make sure-the scent will probably only happen when it’s running.

It’s not necessarily a sign that your automobile has been tampered with if your air conditioner smells like vinegar. Contrarily, there are a number of alternative causes for why something could smell sour that have nothing to do with salad dressings. Instead, your air conditioner or vents most likely have some form of accumulation of natural stuff. Plant matter has the potential to ferment as it decomposes, producing alcohol as well as vinegar or an odor that is similar to vinegar.

So what might be hiding in your car’s AC vents in Everett, Washington? To start, there could be a buildup of mold. Condensation from air conditioners is rather common, and if it doesn’t completely dry, it can eventually develop into mold and mildew.

Additionally, there may be a buildup of leaves or other natural materials inside or around your air conditioner. The air conditioner will circulate the vinegar odor throughout the cabin as it decomposes. Ozone, which can have an unpleasant smell, may also be released by your electric air conditioner motor. This is true especially if any of the other possible causes are present. Finally, it might just be that you need to change the filter on your air conditioner.

Does mold have a vinegar odor?

Yes, mold does have a unique smell, to provide the gist of the response. The words “musty” or “earthy” come to mind when describing the aroma. Some people even liken the smell to that of sweaty socks. You’ve undoubtedly also caught a concentrated odor of mold if you’ve ever had the terrible experience of opening a container of food and finding that your strawberries or young carrots appear to have sprouted a fur coat. Additionally, the intensity of that scent might range from “Ew, that’s awful” to “OPEN A WINDOW; I’M GONNA BE SICK!”

It’s important to note that various people have varying odor preferences (and sensitivity levels). Some people are more sensitive to mold odours than others, just as some people find the aroma of floral perfume pleasant while others find it sickening.

Therefore, don’t assume the other person in your home is lying if they insist that they can sense mold hanging in the air but you can’t smell it unless you put your nose right up against the carpet “just having paranoid thoughts or hallucinating. This leads to our next point.

How can I get rid of the smell of mold? The problem with that query is that mold odors are frequently just one sign of a mold infestation in your house. The good news is that you don’t have to freak out every time you smell something rotting; in some cases, deep-cleaning your bathmat or throwing away objects that were damaged by water the previous time your basement flooded will take care of the problem.

If you can identify the smell’s source and get rid of it, the smell might just go away on its own. Opening a window or using a fan to circulate the air in the room will also speed up the process.

Although I can’t see it, I can smell the mold. Does this imply that I shouldn’t be concerned? Unfortunately, ignoring a mold odor in your house is not a sensible decision. certain molds (such as stachybotrys chartarum, or “Black mold) are known to create mycotoxins, which are compounds that can harm animals and cause other problems.

How long will it take the vinegar smell to fade?

I’ve been researching this and experimenting with several solutions. I initially thought it was a disgusting concept because I couldn’t imagine combining vinegar and oranges together in any way. But after giving it a go, I was pleasantly pleased by the outcomes—it actually works! Consider experimenting with various citrus fruits and including some fresh herbs or spices. Fun with it, please! Many people claim that you must wait two weeks, but I don’t believe that to be the truth. I’ve discovered that giving the vinegar a few days to settle in before using it will give it a fresh scent. Just a quick reminder that citrus fruits contain oils that aid in degreasing throughout the cleaning process.

What you need:

  • a Mason jar
  • The mason jar should be around 3/4 full of citrus peels and fresh herbs of your choice (single measurements: about 3 oranges/2 grapefruits/4 lemons/5 limes/a handful of herbs or any mix thereof).
  • unflavored white vinegar
  • Strainer


  • Citrus peels should be added to the mason jar until it is about 3/4 full. You can also add herbs if you like.
  • 90 percent of the way full, fill the jar with vinegar and add peels.
  • Shake the jar occasionally for 4-5 days.
  • Peels should be removed over a bowl so that the perfumed vinegar is clear of peels, herbs, and floating debris.
  • Refill the Mason jar with vinegar and use as needed for regular cleaning (i.e. glass cleaning, floors, etc).

You will be astounded by how nicely these techniques work and will be delighted. While they won’t entirely get rid of the vinegar smell (that’s moving mountains, people), they will greatly cover it up. When employing the right ingredients, it will also increase vinegar’s cleaning ability, therefore it’s a win-win situation!

How can a stinky air conditioner be fixed?

The air conditioner is self-cleaning. To avoid hurting yourself or causing harm to the AC, you should take basic safety measures. The following steps can assist you in getting rid of the musty odor coming from your air conditioner:

  • Remove the exterior case, which reveals the fans, coil, and compressor, with caution.
  • Place the unit in a location that will keep it safe while being cleaned.
  • To prevent internal components from being harmed, blow compressed air far away.
  • The finer dust particles in the front and back of the unit can be removed using a brush or a smaller piece of cloth.
  • With some cleaning solution, carefully clean the vent and the duct, and then flush the cleaning solution out with water.
  • Apply light pressure when flushing the drip tray to ensure that all dust and particles are removed.
  • After giving the air conditioner a few hours to dry, wipe it down with a fresh cloth.

Can I spray Lysol in the vents of my car?

You’ll see air intake ports on the outside of your car towards the bottom of the windshield. You should be able to feel air being drawn in when the AC fan is operating at full capacity. Spray the whole vent on the driver’s and passenger’s sides with Lysol from the can.

What causes the vinegar-like odor outside?

Bromodosis, as it is medically referred to, is a condition that doesn’t always warrant concern.

When perspiration and bacteria from your feet, shoes, and socks combine, foot odor is frequently the result. This may result in an acid byproduct with a bad smell.

Propionic acid, a byproduct of propionibacteria’s metabolism of amino acids, is found in certain people’s foot perspiration. The same family of acids as acetic acid includes propionic acid (vinegar). This could explain the vinegar-like odor coming from your feet.

Is it harmful if my air conditioner has a vinegary odor?

There are a number of circumstances that could be the source of an odor similar to vinegar or mildew coming from your air conditioner, including: an unclean filter. excessive condensation blocked drain line or condensate pan.

What odor does poisonous mold have?

Eliminating black mold as soon as you notice it is the best approach to lower your chance of breathing in its spores. To figure out how to get rid of it, you must first be able to identify it. Observations like these could indicate a black mold issue:

A Musty Smell

Mold smells strongly. It frequently gets characterized as musty and earthy, and it could even smell like rotting plants or vegetables.

Although you can’t see any mold forming, you may smell musty. In this situation, you ought to search for any water-exposed places. To grow, mold needs moisture. In a normally dry region, the smell of mold may indicate water damage or a leaky pipe.

If you suspect mold but can’t smell it, think about asking a friend to give your home a sniff. Even if your home has unpleasant scents, your nose will probably grow accustomed to them. If you can’t smell the mold because your nose has been accustomed to it, an outsider should be able to.

Growth Spots of Varying Colors

As its name suggests, black mold frequently has a dark color. Search for circular areas that are black, dark green, or dark brown when looking for black mold. Some black mold may also take on orange hues or have white particles.

Black mold typically has a slightly hairy appearance. Greater mold growths may show up as a black stain that runs the length of your wall, floor, or ceiling.

Water Damage Spots

Look for signs of water damage to discover black mold early. Have you just discovered a leak in your roof or had a pipe burst? These can easily develop into a haven for black mold spores.

Mold may grow wherever there are water leaks or other indications of water damage. Water stains may appear as darker rings on your ceiling or walls. Any water rings should be checked quickly away to help prevent the growth of mold.