What Causes Musty Smells in Homes?

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If you’re like most people, at least once in your life, you’ve washed a load of laundry and forgotten to transfer it to the dryer. If you left it too long, though, you ended up with a musty smell and had to rewash the entire load. While a mildew smell might be easy to get out of your clothes, the same isn’t as true about musty smells in homes.

Have you started to notice a musty smell lingering in your home? It’s easier to pick up on scents after we’ve given our olfactory senses a break, so you may not have noticed the smell at all until leaving the house for the holiday and coming back. But even a slight musty smell can indicate a much bigger problem. Here are a few common causes of musty smells in homes.

Mold & Mildew 

Not only are musty smells unpleasant, but more than likely, it means you have mold in your house. Mold and mildew within the attic, crawlspace, or walls will start to smell. This likely means you have a bigger problem at hand, whether it’s a water leak or damaged roof. If there’s one specific area of your home that has a musty smell, then try and narrow it down to see what is potentially causing the odor. 

Improper Ventilation

Just like laundry can smell after not getting proper ventilation, the same thing can happen with your home. If airflow is blocked and can’t cycle through properly, then your home won’t smell as fresh as it could. Clogged air filters can interfere with airflow and cause musty smells, so be sure to change them on a regular basis. In addition, homes with pets or people with allergies may want to change air filters more frequently. 

Smoking Inside

If you just moved into a home and inherited a musty smell, there’s the possibility that the previous owners smoked inside. Smoking soaks into the walls and carpets, leaving a lasting odor of nicotine that is very hard to eliminate. However, the smell can be improved when deep cleaned in an appropriate manner. 

Old Leaks, Spills, or Accidents 

Occasionally, water gets spilled or there’s a leak that soaks into the carpet. Consistent moisture buildup that goes by unnoticed or unaddressed can cause mildew and mold, which will subsequently start to smell. If deep cleaning and carpet shampooing isn’t able to get the musty smell out, then you may have to seek the help of professional cleaners. 

Remedy Musty Smells with Moisture Control & Air Quality Services 

If you’re dealing with moisture control issues or air quality concerns, we’d love to take a look and see how we can help you resolve the problem. Contact us today to speak to one of our experienced home improvement experts for a free estimate!

Since 2008, Managed Services Group has provided comprehensive moisture control and basement waterproofing services to homeowners throughout the Greater Richmond area. As a licensed and insured Class A contractor, we have the experience and knowledge to back up our passion for home improvement. Give us a call today at (804) 972-3007 (434-299-9382 for Charlottesville) for a free estimate. We’ll schedule an inspection with you, make a recommendation, and, in most cases, give you an estimate right on the spot.