Ideas on burning smell

Old 05-14-06, 11:12 AM
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Ideas on burning smell

I'm new to the forum but wanted to see if anyone may have some thoughts on the following.

My wife and I recently (6 months ago) purchased a home that is about 18 years old. Now and then, but more in recent days, there is a faint burning smell - to me in smells like burning metal - in our kitchen, near the kitchen sink. We've had the gas company out (we have gas heat) as well as an electrician, and both said it was not a gas and/or electric problem. So now I'm wondering if it is plumbing/pipe related. Does anyone have any thoughts or experiences that they'd be willing to share?


Old 05-14-06, 11:25 AM
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rjp75, Welcome to the DIY Forums.
This is not something I have heard of or encountered before. You may want to try mixing up a 1 part bleach to 4 parts water solution and pouring it down the drain. It may be bacteria growing in the drop pipe from the sink(s). Good luck.
Old 05-14-06, 06:12 PM
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What did the electrician check? Do you know that you have copper wiring and not aluminum? (I can't remember if aluminum wiring of houses ended in 73-74 or 78 off hand.) Aluminum wires can start melting outlets and definitely cause a burning smell. It can happen to some degree with copper but is more rare.

Have you called in any friends or relatives to give their 2 cents as to what they think they smell?

Smell real good around the refrigerator as you could have a fallen objest that got into the warm-hot coils behind it (from fallign off the top of the refrigerator) or onto the compressor. Or you could have some foul smells coming from your refrigerator drip pan underneath it (unless it is the kind that sits ontop the compressor at the back), and it wouldn't be a bad idea to clean it anyway, while you are at it.

You need to go outside and take in deep breaths. Then go immediately to something like the back of the refrigerator before inhaling, to get an idea where the smell is coming from. And do this test to wherever you try to smell. If say the kitchen is through the living room...the time you simply walk in the house, you are semi getting aclamated to the smell before reaching the source. That is why you need to hold your breath. If you are out of shape and can't do it, get some other people to do this.
Old 05-14-06, 08:06 PM
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If the electrician did not take out each duplex outlet in the wall and inspect them, this may be the problem.

I had one in my bedroom years ago when I lived at home and every now and then you could smell a burning smell. Turned out to be a defective duplex outlet that was slowly melting from the heat caused by being defective.

Thank goodness it was in a metal box and caught in time.

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