What That Weird Smell in Your House Really Is – And How to Get Rid of It

woman sitting on the bed using room spray in her bedroom

Do you know what that smell is? Probably not, because according to a study by the National Academy of Sciences, humans can distinguish between about 10,000 different smells. But don’t worry – we’re not going to test your sense ofsmell today. We’re going to talk about 14 common odors and stains in your home and what they mean. We’ll also give you tips on how to get rid of them!

That Musty Smell in Your Basement

Most likely, it’s mold. Mold loves dark, damp places, so if you have a basement that’s prone to flooding or leaks, you’re at risk for mold growth. The best way to get rid of mold is to find the source of the moisture and fix it. Then, clean the affected area with a bleach solution (1 cup of bleach per gallon of water).

The Sewage Smell in Your Bathroom

This one is pretty easy to diagnose – it means there’s a problem with your plumbing. If you have a septic system, it could be that the tank needs to be pumped. If you’re on city sewer, there could be a break in the main line. In either case, you’ll need to call a plumber to fix the problem.

The Rotten Egg Smell in Your Kitchen

If you have a gas stove, this smell could mean there’s a gas leak. Turn off the gas immediately and call your utility company. If you don’t have a gas stove, the egg smell could be coming from your garbage disposal. Drop an egg into the disposal and turn it on – if the egg smells bad when it comes out, you need to clean your disposal. Here’s how:

The Burning Plastic Smell

This one is tricky because it could mean different things, depending on where you smell it. If you smell it near an electrical outlet, there could be a problem with the wiring. If you smell it near a heating vent, it could be that the ductwork is overheating. In either case, you’ll need to call an electrician or HVAC technician to take a look.

The Petrol Smell in Your Garage

If you have a petrol-powered car, this one is easy to explain – you probably just spilled some fuel. However, if you don’t have a petrol-powered car, this smell could be coming from your furnace. Check the pilot light to make sure it’s lit – if it’s not, that could be the source of the problem. If the pilot light is lit but you’re still smelling petrol, call a professional to take a look at your furnace.

The Stale Cigarette Smell in Your House

If you don’t smoke and you smell cigarette smoke, it could be coming from your fireplace. When wood burns, it produces a chemical called creosote. Over time, creosote can build up in the chimney and create a fire hazard. To clean it out, you’ll need to hire a professional chimney sweep.

The “Dead Animal” Smell

This one is pretty self-explanatory – there’s probably a dead animal somewhere in your house. The best way to find it is to follow your nose. Once you’ve found the source of the smell, open all the windows and doors to air out the area. Then, you can either remove the carcass yourself or call a professional to do it for you.

The “Gym Locker” Smell in Your Child’s Room

If your child’s room smells like a gym locker, it’s probably because of the way they’re storing their clothes. Dirty clothes that are left in a pile will start to smell – it’s best to wash them as soon as possible. If your child has a hamper, make sure they’re using it!

The Mildew Smell in Your Bathroom

Mildew is a type of mold that thrives in warm, humid environments – like your bathroom! To get rid of mildew, you’ll need to clean the affected area with a bleach solution (1 cup of bleach per gallon of water).

The “Dirty Sock” Smell in Your Child’s Room

This one is easy to explain – your child probably needs to do their laundry! Encourage them to wash their clothes on a regular basis, and make sure they’re using a hamper to store their dirty clothes.

The Musty Smell in Your Closet

If your closet smells musty, it’s probably because it’s not getting enough air circulation. To fix the problem, invest in some storage containers that are breathable (like canvas bins or baskets). You should also consider adding a small fan to circulate the air.

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The “Skunk” Smell Outside Your House

If you smell skunk outside your house, there’s a good chance there’s a skunk living under your porch or deck. To get rid of the skunk, you’ll need to call a professional wildlife control company.

The “Fishy” Smell in Your Kitchen

If your kitchen smells like fish, it’s probably because of the way you’re storing your food. Fish should always be stored in the fridge – if it’s not, it will start to smell. You should also make sure you’re cooking fish on a regular basis – otherwise, it will just stink up your kitchen!

The “Paint Thinner” Smell in Your House

If you smell paint thinner in your house, it’s probably because you have a gas leak. Gas leaks are dangerous and should be fixed as soon as possible. If you think you have a gas leak, call your gas company or the fire department immediately.

Top 5 Professionals to Call for Home Odors and Stains

There are a few different professionals that can help you with home odors and stains. These include:

  • Chimney sweep: If you have a fireplace, it’s important to hire a professional chimney sweep to clean out the creosote from your chimney. This will help prevent fires and eliminate any unpleasant smells.
  • HVAC technician: If you have an HVAC system in your home, it’s a good idea to have a technician come and take a look at it every few years. They can clean the ductwork and make sure everything is working properly.
  • Plumber: If you have bad odors coming from your drains, it’s likely due to a build-up of grease or hair. A plumber can clean out your drains and get rid of the problem for good. Some of the most common plumbing services include drain cleaning, septic tank pumping, and sewer line cleaning.
  • Electrician: If you have any electrical problems in your home, it’s best to call a professional electrician. They can diagnose the problem and make any necessary repairs.
  • Water damage restoration company: If you have water damage in your home, it’s important to hire a professional water damage restoration company to clean up the mess. Otherwise, you’ll be at risk for mold growth and other serious issues.
Photo by Emmanuel Ikwuegbu on Unsplash

Home odors and stains can be caused by a variety of things. To get rid of them, you’ll need to identify the source of the problem and take appropriate action. In some cases, you may be able to fix the problem yourself. However, in other cases, it’s best to call a professional. Either way, getting rid of home odors and stains is important for maintaining a healthy and pleasant living environment.

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