My parents live in a country house and they've got a bunch of space heaters of various designs. Some of them are:
- Heating coil and a fan (hot air blower)
- Oil-filled battery
- Flat electric battery (no liquids inside)
- Infrared lamp
Only the infrared type doesn't make the air smell weird (or at least not as much as the other types). Others noticeably make the air smell like it's burnt or something. And they're all not new, so they've had enough time to work through whatever extra factory residue was on them originally.
I've spent some time enjoying the heat from campfires, fireplaces, hot evening breezes near large bodies of water, and a nervous couple minutes near a clearly faulty heater which was about to short out and give off a thick cloud of smoke. Those are all smells distinctly different from that.
Why are (properly functioning) heaters making the air smell weird? What's in that smell?