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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm having a problem with an intermittent moldy/musty smell coming from the driver side vent when the car is in recirculation mode. I have been fighting this battle with the dealership and they have tried to fix it but it never happens when they are in the car. Anyone having this problem or know what I can do to rectify. I have asthma and this has been affecting my health.
 

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Hi, I'm having a problem with an intermittent moldy/musty smell coming from the driver side vent when the car is in recirculation mode. I have been fighting this battle with the dealership and they have tried to fix it but it never happens when they are in the car. Anyone having this problem or know what I can do to rectify. I have asthma and this has been affecting my health.
You did not specify your year of CRV.. which would be helpful.... and.... where do you live?

High Humidity locations means you can and will sometimes collect moisture in the air ducting, and it then sits there often in a warm vehicle.... percolating with who knows what spores or microbes.

When I lived in Florida, this was a constant problem.. regardless of vehicle make or model. The best solution was to turn off the air conditioning and set the air fans to maxium for about one minute prior to shutting off the vehicle.. as this will flush most residual moisture collected within the air system. Living in California.. I had this occasionally in my old 2008 CRV.. but have never had the issue in my newer 2017 CRV.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You did not specify your year of CRV.. which would be helpful.... and.... where do you live?

High Humidity locations means you can and will sometimes collect moisture in the air ducting, and it then sits there often in a warm vehicle.... percolating with who knows what spores or microbes.

When I lived in Florida, this was a constant problem.. regardless of vehicle make or model. The best solution was to turn off the air conditioning and set the air fans to maxium for about one minute prior to shutting off the vehicle.. as this will flush most residual moisture collected within the air system. Living in California.. I had this occasionally in my old 2008 CRV.. but have never had the issue in my newer 2017 CRV.
Thank you for your response. My CRV is a 2017. IK live in Pennsylvania/New Jersey. It wasn't a problem when I first got the car but it is more apparent the more miles I put on the car.
 

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Are you using "auto" mode hvac setting? I've noticed our V in "auto" will seldom switch to "fresh" from "recirculate". Might try "manual" mode a few days, making sure the green "fresh" air light is on. I've read continuous use of re-circ is not advisable.
 

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Try cleaning the evap coil. The dealer spraying anything in the vents is pretty much useless. This Youtube vid shows you how to do this. While the vid is not a 2017 crv the procedure is exactly the same. The condensate drain line on the 2017 is located on the passenger side about 12 inches inside the front wheel. It's a rubber tube just hanging down from the firewall.


 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The other simple idea, which the dealership should have checked, is your air filter. If one of your Pennsylvania Chipmunks is storing acorns there, there could also be urine or even a dead animal. You would probably notice it in all vents, but still.

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Thank you. They actually did a complete cleaning with some stinky stuff down the ducts and replaced the filters and it was better for a while but still there and getting worse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Try cleaning the evap coil. The dealer spraying anything in the vents is pretty much useless. This Youtube vid shows you how to do this. While the vid is not a 2017 crv the procedure is exactly the same. The condensate drain line on the 2017 is located on the passenger side about 12 inches inside the front wheel. It's a rubber tube just hanging down from the firewall.


Thank you. I will mention it to them. The biggest problem is that it never seems to happen when I am at the dealership.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Are you using "auto" mode hvac setting? I've noticed our V in "auto" will seldom switch to "fresh" from "recirculate". Might try "manual" mode a few days, making sure the green "fresh" air light is on. I've read continuous use of re-circ is not advisable.
Thank you, I'll try that but it didn't;t happen when the car was new. I almost never use the auto because it's too loud for me.
 

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Thank you for your response. My CRV is a 2017. IK live in Pennsylvania/New Jersey. It wasn't a problem when I first got the car but it is more apparent the more miles I put on the car.
Given the dealer has already checked and cleaned everything....my suggestion then remains... when you are ready to park and turn off your vehicle.. simply shift to outside air and run the fan on high for 30-60 seconds and see if that addresses the issue. If you run your climate control on "auto" you might consider taking manual control and keep external air circulation on and see if that helps as well.

The problem you describe is classic residual condensation in the air ducts.. which when you next start the car has all condensed somewhere and so the air blowers will start turning it to vapor and pushing it out into your cabin. I am surprised though.. because while I had to deal with this in my 2008 CRV.. my 2017 has been without issue on this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Given the dealer has already checked and cleaned everything....my suggestion then remains... when you are ready to park and turn off your vehicle.. simply shift to outside air and run the fan on high for 30-60 seconds and see if that addresses the issue. If you run your climate control on "auto" you might consider taking manual control and keep external air circulation on and see if that helps as well.

The problem you describe is classic residual condensation in the air ducts.. which when you next start the car has all condensed somewhere and so the air blowers will start turning it to vapor and pushing it out into your cabin. I am surprised though.. because while I had to deal with this in my 2008 CRV.. my 2017 has been without issue on this.
Thank you. The puzzling thing is that it is intermittent for hours while I am driving on long trips and such. Shouldn't this rid itself after the first 10 miles or so?
 

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Thank you. The puzzling thing is that it is intermittent for hours while I am driving on long trips and such. Shouldn't this rid itself after the first 10 miles or so?
If I understand you correctly... it comes and goes while driving? As opposed to when you start your car after it has been parked for a while? If so.. that is not normal in my view.. so I'm not sure what is going on there.

That said... if the system is on auto and not actually activating the AC compressor often.. and there is residual mositure somewhere.. I could maybe see that effect happening. In which case I would run an experiement of keeping the AC on manual and set to a fairly low temperature and see if that affects it in any way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
If I understand you correctly... it comes and goes while driving? As opposed to when you start your car after it has been parked for a while? If so.. that is not normal in my view.. so I'm not sure what is going on there.

That said... if the system is on auto and not actually activating the AC compressor often.. and there is residual mositure somewhere.. I could maybe see that effect happening. In which case I would run an experiement of keeping the AC on manual and set to a fairly low temperature and see if that affects it in any way.
Thank you. I'm willing to try anything but in my heart of hearts, I don't think that this should be something I should have to worry about every time I use my vehicle.
 

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Thank you, I'll try that but it didn't;t happen when the car was new. I almost never use the auto because it's too loud for me.
When the car was new, moisture/mold, etc hadn鈥檛 collected in the duct work.....as williamsji suggested. Try 鈥渇resh鈥 air ever so often.
 

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Thank you. I'm willing to try anything but in my heart of hearts, I don't think that this should be something I should have to worry about every time I use my vehicle.
One other question.. what temperature to you have your temperature controls set to? And do you have them synced between driver and passenger sides?

I ask because if you keep your setting fairly high.. say mid to high 70s... then the system is more prone to moisture accumulation in my view. I keep mine set to 70 and sync on.
 

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I took out my air filter, cleaned everything within my reach, sprayed anti-fungal in the ducts, put a new filter in and had no problems since.
 
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Hi, I'm having a problem with an intermittent moldy/musty smell coming from the driver side vent when the car is in recirculation mode. I have been fighting this battle with the dealership and they have tried to fix it but it never happens when they are in the car. Anyone having this problem or know what I can do to rectify. I have asthma and this has been affecting my health.
I didn't realize just how much cars are one of the worst things to produce mold via the A/C until I was testing for mold, heavy metals and Lyme. I had high levels of mold, but fortunately after three month on a supplement was retested and it was gone. On youtube,
, it describes an easy way to clean the system. I use this product: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CTRBK9X/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1.
 
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