How To Get Rid Of The Mold Smell
Getting rid of the mold smell in a home home can be accomplished by a process known as mold remediation. Mold remediation will get rid of the odor by not only removing the mold damaged materials, but also sanitizing the home through a process called micro-cleaning.
In most cases, this will need to be done by a licensed professional. Here’s a great guide to determine whether you need mold remediation or you can do it yourself.
Once mold remediation completed, the odor should be gone.
If the smell still lingers within the home it could indicate all the mold has not been removed.
Dead mold spores can house itself in your carpets, mattresses and other furnishings which may need to be treated or discarded.
Your clothes in most cases can be put in a traditional laundry machine. Sometimes it may be necessary to put the clothes through two cycles.
Laundry Drains And Front Load Washers
Many front load washers retain a little water at the base of the unit. Over time, this water grows bacteria, leading to musty smells in your laundry area. We had problems with this in our first front loader. The new unit has a small drain hose, and I clear the stale water out every couple weeks.
An improperly installed drain hose may trap water in the line or allow sewer gases to escape into the home. Make sure drain lines are installed correctly.
Products Youll Need In Order To Remove The Mildew Smell
- Rubber gloves: These are necessary for protecting your hands and skin from chemicals.
- Face mask: Wear the face mask to avoid breathing in chemicals while cleaning.
- Bleach: Bleachs active ingredient, sodium hypochlorite, is effective at eliminating mold and mildew and musty smells.
- Toothbrush: If the area affected by a mildew smell or mold is small, you can use a toothbrush to dip into the bleach mixture and get directly at the mildew problem.
- Sponge: If the area affected by mildew is large, a sponge or larger brush may be more effective than a toothbrush.
- Rags: Use these at the end of the cleaning process to completely dry the affected area and remove all wetness or moisture.
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Mold Is Only The Symptom
The only effective way to control biological air contaminants like molds, fungi, bacteria, and dust mites is by tackling the cause. Eliminate the sources of moisture and reduce humidity in your home! Repair any water leaks in the roof, walls or basement. Prevent condensation on walls and windows by maintaining a low relative humidity in your home, ideally 30â50 percent . Humidity levels are measured by hygrometers available in hardware stores.
Cooking and bathing may add 3 gallons of water each day to the indoor air – install exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms.
How To Get Rid Of Musty Smells In Your Home
Okay, so youâve now diagnosed the underlying problem and have got everything in tip-top shape and mold- and mildew-free . Now, itâs time to deal with the lingering smell.
As a general rule of thumb, increasing ventilation, enhancing natural light , and decreasing humidity are your best friends in the fight against musty smells. Depending on how irritatingâand/or persistentâthe smell is, a full-on, deep cleaning of your home could also be on your horizon .
Below is an easy-to-follow guide that should set you on the right path. By completing these steps, you should be well on your way to an odor-free homeâand equipped with the know-how to keep it that way!
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Pro Tips On How To Get Rid Of Musty Smells In Your Home
Identify + remove musty smells with this must-have checklist.
Weâve all been there. Youâre sitting at home click-clacking away at your computer when all of a sudden, you catch a drift of something undeniably musty. Stale, moldy, damp: musty smells can be hard to put your finger on exactly. But when theyâre there, theyâre really there. Somethingâor some combination of thingsâis making your house smell deeply unsavory.
Absorb Moisture With Baking Soda
Baking soda is helpful in many other ways due to its absorbent properties. If you cant remove carpeting without ripping and ruining it, baking soda in the carpets absorbs unwanted moisture and makes them a less likely area to harbor spores.
Walk around the carpeted area, slowly sprinkling baking soda back and forth. Leave it for at least a day, allowing it to soak up most of the moisture in the carpeting. Afterward, use a vacuum to suck it all up and the unwanted dampness with it.
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Hydrogen Peroxide And Baking Soda
Hydrogen peroxide can be found in many homes to clean wounds and cuts. But it also has other helpful uses, including mold-killing properties.
Hydrogen peroxide is an inexpensive, yet efficient method of getting rid of mold . Its also easily found in pharmacies and stores, within the health department.
Acting as a bleaching agent, its specifically potent at cleaning permeable surfaces. Compared to chlorine, it carries the significant advantage that the ingredients water and oxygen arent harmful .
Although hydrogen peroxide can be used alone, its often combined with baking soda. Baking soda is generally known to remove bad odors and decrease moisture. This makes it a great ingredient to add to a natural mold-killing cleaning product .
Mold-Killing Cleaning Spray
How To Get Rid Of A Musty Smell In Your Basement
If musty odors are keeping you from using your basement, its time for that to change. With a bit of effort, you can eliminate funky smells from your below-grade spaces for good.
Pungent, musty odors can make a basement unbearable to spend time in. If strong enough, these awful odors can even work their way up into the rest of the house. Instead of ignoring the problem, learn how to get rid of it.
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How To Get Rid Of Musty Smell In Your Home
A musty smell in your home is frequently a sign of mold or mildew growth. There are many natural solutions that can help you to get rid of musty smell such as baking soda or white vinegar that can help absorb musty smells in the air and trap excess moisture and there are also great commercial products. Your first step in dealing with this type of odor in your home is always to identify the location and source of the water or moisture so you can stop the flow and dry up excess moisture.
Battling Dampness And Mold In Your Vacation Rental Home
Old house or new, waterfront or inland, there arent many homes on Cape Cod or the Islands immune to the ill effects of dampness during the summer. Our brand new appliances seem to rust overnight, unprotected wood appears to rot from one season to the next, and its difficult to keep surfaces of any kind free from mold or mildew. Most of us with homes here are engaged in a constant battle against dampness, required not only in order to maintain our vacation rental properties, but also to ensure the happiness of our tenants, who may not be used to the consequences of seacoast living.
Mustiness/Dampness in your home: Arriving at a rental property and encountering a strong musty smell can be a real turn-off to your tenants. Many folks, including increasing numbers of children, suffer from allergies to molds, and in some cases, cannot even spend a night in a home where theres much mold. Its not easy, but we strongly urge you to do whatever you can to minimize the dampness and prevent mold from growing. Here are a few suggestions:
For more advice about battling dampness and mold, read Adriana Lopezs article from Porch: How to Remove Humidity from Your Furniture and Textiles for Proper Moisture Control .
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How To Get Musty Smell Out Of The Basement
Having a mildew smell in the basement is particularly unpleasant if someone is living in it. The first process shows you where to check for sources of the smell that may require fixing or cleaning.
From there, we have several cleaning recipes and techniques to work toward basement odor elimination. Some work may need to be done to the basement, but we have got you covered.
How To Get Rid Of That Old House Smell
Home » How to Get Rid of That Old House Smell
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Moving into a new house can be an exciting and exhilarating experience, especially if it is your first house. With that being said, many first-time homeowners will soon learn that there are many aspects to moving to a new house that are less than interesting.
For instance, if you are moving into an older, pre-owned home, theres a good chance that you are going to experience that dreaded old house smell.
The smell of an old house is a distinctly musty smell that never seems to quite go away, no matter how many candles and air purifiers you have in every corner and outlet.
Understanding what causes this characteristic smell is going to be key in getting rid of the smell. First things first, there are a few things you should try before resorting to the extremes.
After all, the smell of an old house might simply be caused by thestale air that settled when nobody was living in the house. With that beingsaid, there are a few things you should try if you notice that your home smellsa little bit off when you first move into it.
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How To Get Rid Of Musty Smell In Clothes And Towels
Its easy for clothes that have sat in the laundry basket to pick up the musty smell. Here are some cleaning tips:
- Use white vinegar in the rinse cycle, adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup for front loaders and one cup for top loaders.
- Sprinkle baking soda in the washer with your clothes. Use 1/4 to 1/2 cup per load followed with a white vinegar rinse.
- Bring in the sun! Line dry clothes when weather permits.
- Try one of the commercial laundry odor removers.
What Is The Most Common Cause Of Old House Smell
While the smell of an old house can be caused by a number of things ranging from what the previous homeowner did to the house, to mold and mildew growing in a dark, damp corner, there is one culprit that is more common than any of the others.
More often than not, the reason why traditional methods dont work to get rid of the old house smell is because that scent is caused by mold and mildew.
Mold and mildew grow in dark, damp areas of houses, and because of the way most older houses were constructed, there are plenty of perfect spots for them to grow. Chances are that if the smell isnt going away after some time of airing out the house, then you have a mold or mildew problem.
Because the solution to mold and mildew tends to be more involved than other methods, you should first make sure that you try out other odor-eliminating methods first.
This will help you narrow down what is causing the bad smell in yourhouse.
Now is also a good time to check for hidden toxins in your house.
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How To Remove Musty Smell From Basement
Basements were initially used as cold cellars as places to store perishable goods. The area dug out under the house stayed cool during summer and regulated during the freezing weather.
Now, basements have become part of the home, with rooms and perhaps even a living space under the main square footage. Having mold or mildew problems demands to be dealt with quickly to save the space you have, especially if someone lives down there.
A damp basement smell does not always mean mold growth, but extra moisture that creates the smell functions as an early indicator. Follow these methods to check vulnerable areas and learn how to remove musty smell from basement.
How Mold Affects Your Health And The Health Of Your Home
When left untreated for long periods of time, mold can cause structural damage to your home and the contents of it. Though moldy environments do not always cause health symptoms, the CDC says that exposure to moldy environments may cause nasal stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing and wheezing, or eye and skin irritation. Those with mold allergies may have more severe reactions, and the EPA reports that for people with asthma who are allergic to mold, it can cause asthma attacks.
Keep Flooring And Surfaces Clean
Start off by dusting the surfaces in your home from the top down. For harder surfaces like shelves and cabinets, a damp cloth or duster works better to actually remove the dust instead of just moving it around to a different place. For walls and painted surfaces, a dry sponge will be more effective.
Next, make sure that you vacuum your home thoroughly. Vacuum it again. And again and again. Keep vacuuming. Vacuum until you can vacuum no more. How do you deodorize carpet? You vacuum. This is because carpets are a magnet for pet hair, dander, mold, dirt, and dust, none of which smell particularly rosy.
For hardwood floors, regular sweeping and mopping should be enough to keep them odor-free. If you do notice any particularly strong odors, mopping with one part vinegar and one part water should do the job.
Where Does Mold Come From
Mold is found everywhere in nature. Like mushrooms, its purpose is to break down wood, leaves and other plant material into nutrient-rich dirt. Mold is made up of tiny, generally transparent filaments called hyphae. As these hyphae take in nutrients from the substrate they are growing on they create a fuzzy blanket called mycelium. This is when molds become visible. As the mycelium reaches the next stage of development it is ready to spread. To do this it creates and distributes spores. To correctly classify the genus or species of mold laboratory testing must be done, however, identification is probably unnecessary if you intend to have it cleaned up.
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Keep Your Bathroom Clean
Some hot spots to hit here are toilets, sinks, and showers. Where there’s water residue, there’s always a chance of mold. Keep your toilet clean by cleaning it at least once a week with toilet bowl cleaner. Pouring half a cup of bleach or vinegar into the toilet, then letting it sit for around 30 minutes before flushing is another way to keep your toilet odor-free. You can clean sinks and showers with bleach, or to keep things more natural, you can use a paste made from baking soda, lemon juice, and vinegar.
Around once a month, pour a mixture of half a cup of vinegar and half a cup of baking soda down all drains. This will help to both neutralize odors and reduce clogging.
So how do you keep your home odor-free? Basically clean. Shouldn’t be too hard. That’s what kids are for, right?
Oh, wait. One more thing.
Clean The Flooring And Upholstery
The last two areas that you are going to want to pay attention to are the floor and the upholstery. These are two places where mold and mildew commonly grow. Additionally, the fabric and fibers of both of these locations tends to hold onto smells better than you might expect, which is something that nobody really wants.
Thankfully, cleaning the floor and cleaning the upholstery is going to be pretty straightforward and simple.
When you are cleaning the floor, you are going to want to use a considerable amount of baking soda. Baking soda helps reduce and absorb odors and odor-releasing chemicals, making it perfect for musty houses.
Keep in mind that baking soda works especially well on carpets as well. Once you have poured the baking soda onto the floor and rubbed it in a little bit, you will want to let it sit overnight to let it absorb as much as it can.
After the baking soda has absorbed as much as it can, you will want to either vacuum it up or sweep it up. There will be a noticeable difference in stench when you are able to do this, and it should be one of your go-to solutions for bad smells that originate from the floor.
If you have carpeted floors in particular, you are going to want to keep baking soda in one of your closets for this very reason.
For hard furniture, you are going to want to use vinegar in a spray bottle. Vinegar is easy to obtain and it is usually reasonably priced, making it a wonderful way to reduce odors when you can.
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