As a homeowner, you are probably used to certain smells, and most can be dissipated by fragrance products for the bathroom or a spritz of germ killer in your kitchen trash. However, other more invasive smells can be as disturbing as they are disgusting, especially when you cannot tell where they are coming from. There are a few common odors you might encounter inside your home, and some of them might need immediate attention from a professional service before they can be eliminated.
1. A Gamey or Animal Odor
Dirty dog smell can be problematic, but even more so if you smell this odor and do not own a dog. This includes strong, sharp urine odors and a gamey odor you might associate with a zoo or dirty hamster cage. If the smell is especially strong on your home’s upper floor, you may have rodents in the attic. Raccoons, rats, and squirrels are all capable of leaving this smell behind, so it is a good idea to have an exterminator inspect your home as soon as possible.
2. A Whiff of Fish
If you catch a whiff of something that smells like fish inside your home, you may have a faulty wire or diode in an interior wall. Overheated plastic can often smell fishy, but since this can lead to a fire, you might want to have your home’s wiring checked by a qualified electrician. Outlets that have power strips in them can overheat when multiple items are plugged in at one time, and old wires can burn out or fail. The stronger the smell, the more likely an electrical failure has taken place.
3. Musty Odors
Odors that smell like wet, dirty laundry or a damp basement are most likely from hidden mold growth in your home. Mold does not need sunlight to grow and gets its nutrients from what it eats, such as cardboard, moist drywall, and wood. Once these materials get damp, it can encourage the formation of mold.
Mold is most common under bathroom and kitchen cabinets and might be caused by a leaky pipe or water line. Once it starts to grow, it releases an element called mycotoxin, which causes the unpleasant odor. If the smell grows stronger over time, you might want to call in a mold remediation and sanitation service to get rid of the source and the lingering stench it causes.
4. Dusty Smells
If you notice dusty smells or an odor like burnt hair once you turn on your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system, the ducts and other components may be dirty. Over the course of a season, they can collect hair and other debris that may heat up and give off an odor when the system is turned on. You can prevent this by having it cleaned bi-annually and book your seasonal spring AC or heat pump tune up a few weeks before the weather sets in.
Nasty odors in your home can be frustrating as well as embarrassing. However, when you know what the source may be, you can take steps to eliminate them and keep your home smelling fresh and clean.