Must smell from a/c vents

My daughter has my 2001 Camry in Florida (I am in New Jersey). She has been complaining of a musty smell coming from the a/c when she turns on the
car. She says eventually it gets better. She has tried spraying Fabrize in the vents. I asked her if after she uses the car if she see water draining and she says no. I am thinking the hose to let the condinsation drain is clogged and that is why the smell. Does this sound right. I want to have her take it in to a repair shop but don't want to have them sell her repairs she does not need. Any ideas? Costs?
TIA
Barry
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On Tue, 24 Apr 2007 20:20:16 -0400, Barry wrote:

You're on the right track. Look for the evaporator. It should be behind or very close to the glove box. Look for the hose, and try to run a piece of wire or a coat hanger down it to see if there is a clog.
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I get that musk smell too when my cars AC is just turned off and I put my vents in fresh air and not in recirculate. What happens is that the evaporator is still cold and fresh air is blown from the outside making the evap moist and you get that musky odor. Ask her to switch to recirculate and not on fresh.
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You defintiely can have a clogged drain and this will make problems worse. But even with an open drain, you can have problems with the musty odor - particualrly in humid climates. Here are a few things I'd rcommend -
1 - Make sure the evaporator drain line is open
2- Make sure the air intake vents ae clear of debris (leaves, pine needles etc.). If you let this stuff collect, it will rot and contribute to the musty smell
3 - Avoid running the A/C on recirculate. When you run on recirculate humidity will build up in the car and this will contribute to mold growth.
4 - If your daughter is the patient sort, she could turn off the A/C compressor for a minute or so before actually turning off the car and air conditioner blower. This will help dry out the evaporator. I don't have the patience for this.
5 - With the A/C blower running and the A/C on outside air, you can spray a deodorizer into the air intake (the grille in front of the A/C). Some people use Lysol. Wurth makes a product that supposedly works wonders (see http://www.wurthusa.com/project/en/leftnavi/catalog/product.php?path .0291.jpg or http://tinyurl.com/2fyczs ).
Ed
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Barry wrote: She has

==Naver had this problem because I try to turn off the A/C and let the fan clean out dampness for the last few blocks nearing home, but have heard that if you open all the windows and turn the heat on full hot and then let it run that way for ten minutes any residual mold or grunge in the vents will be sanitized.
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This is actually a good practice, not only does it dry the evap but also saves you on fuel. The air will still be cool but the compressor is no longer running. I also have this belief that all things must be switched off when starting. A friend of mine keeps his A/C always on even when turning off or starting his engine. And then his compressor failed (after so many years) I think, that the sudden flow of current to the devices, may it be the radio, or A/C or lights will reduce their life. And of course your battery will need the load for the starter and not on the other devices. well its just my theory and not yet proven.
Nonetheless molds and a clogged evap drain and is a problem and should be addressed, this may lead to premature failure of the evap. They are made of aluminum and easily corrodes.

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Not yet proven is correct, So every Nissan/ Honda /Hyundai/ Whatever else EVER made ,with factory air comp start should be modified so the compressor is not powered up when the car is in reverse??? To stop a compressor(and condenser fan) failing, the FIRST rule is to make sure it cycles EVERY time the vehicle is started.Having electrical(auto) and post trade electronic quallifications I am absolutly BAFFELED by the statement that a sudden current flow can contribute to component failure. So every time you start the vehicle ,you have to replace the ECU??? a device made up soley of electronic components, and an a/c compressor, a single mag clutch will suffer????? BE REAL. What is a battery?> A storage device first , but also a massive spike sink.VERY ocasionaly you will see a failed voltage reg that will spike high , but ive NEVER ,IN 20 YEARS see one damage a stereo.
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whenever I start a car most of the power is directed to the starter motor. The lights dim and the radio switches off, the a/c fan blows slower, (on some cars they have gps, cellphone charger, video screen) whenever I start a car. When the engine runs the power is restored instantly, those kind of fluctuation is not so recommended in every electronic devices. Of course I am just being cautious. I just don't want to keep doing that to my devices every day for 10 years. Now I just turn them off and switch on when the car is started not such of a big deal to me it just how I got used to. Thanks though for reminding me that I don't need to worry about it, But I'll stick to my unproven theory.
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While running the AC on high with fresh air being pulled from outside, spray an entire can of Lysol into the vents underneath teh windshield wipers / back part of the hood, etc. This is where fresh air comes from and any mold inside the system will be killed by the Lysol.
It's an old trick we used to use when I did auto detailing (cleaning, not boogieizing) for a living.
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Joe in Northern, NJ - V#8013-R

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Joe wrote:

Or, if you don't want chemical burns in your lungs, try vodka mixed with apple cider vinegar and water. Try to keep it off the paint and any soft plastic.
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LOL. I didn't say sit in the car while someone did this. :)
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Joe in Northern, NJ - V#8013-R

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The evaporator water drain hose is in the rear of the passengers wheel wheel. It is most likeley cloughed up. Compressed air even from a can (coputer store) can clear it --- or air compressor or even a water hose. Electrical wire or coat hanger (last resort as it can easily rip the hose or damage the small evaporator radiator).

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