Nothing is more frustrating than a terrible smell in your residence that just won’t go away, despite your best efforts to mop and spray. A musty odor in the basement is among the worst offenders. You’ve come to accept that there is absolutely nothing you can do about it because of how persistent it is.
Finding the source of the musty odor in your home is the first step to solving the problem. Cleaning is insufficient since the musty odor is not at all caused by a buildup of dust or dirt.
It’s essential to figure out whether moisture is getting into your basement through other channels as well. You could have identified the source of the musty smell if you see a cracked foundation wall or a damaged seal on a window.
Additionally, as these issues can all result in a musty basement, you should check to see if you have blocked rain gutters, French drains, sewage backups, leaky pipes, or even a damaged seal on your dryer vent.
Determine the source
Finding the source of musty odours in your basement is the first step in eliminating them. Most of the time, the scent is just a sign of the real problem, which is moisture-induced mould or mildew.
Here are some places to look for leaks or cracks that might be the source of the odour:
- Cellar windows
- External entrances to basements
- Windows on the second story
- Doors leading outside from the first floor
- Plumbing from the floor above serves the bathroom and kitchen.
Fix the Repairs
Even if you can temporarily get rid of the musty smell in your basement, if you don’t fix the problem, it will return. When it rains, problematic windows and doors may leak, and unless you fix broken or leaking pipes, issues will persist. You may use pipe wrap to insulate your cold-water pipes if they perspire.
A waterproofing membrane may need to be applied and excavated outside if there are significant foundation leaks. If not, you can apply a waterproofing coating to the foundation’s inside.
Pay attention to any damp materials as well. Mould may be removed from moist concrete, wood, and drywall, but it is simpler to remove than to fix wet drywall or insulation.
Alter the Humidity
After making your repairs, your basement has to be dried. Use of a dehumidifier is the simplest method for removing moisture. These gadgets draw moisture out of the air and condense it into an empty, detachable tank. It may be possible to avoid emptying the tank by routing a drain hose to a floor or sink drain. Basement environments are ideal for dehumidifiers.
Aim for a humidity level of around 50% to keep the area pleasant without promoting the formation of mould (which occurs at over 60 percent). To increase ventilation and air flow for quicker drying, you can also utilize a box fan or window fan.
Eliminate the Odour
Now that the moisture is under control, you can address the musty smell. The procedure is simple, and you could already have the necessary items on hand.
Place baking soda dishes all throughout the basement. Over the course of a few days, the baking soda should significantly reduce the scents as it starts to absorb them. Both clean kitty litter and bowls of white vinegar work well for absorbing scents. You may also use a product made to absorb moisture and musty scents, such as DampRid, for particularly offensive-smelling areas.
Avoid having that Musty Basement Odours Recur
Prevent the smell and wetness from returning after going to all that trouble to remove the mould and dry out your basement.
- Keep your basement tidy.
- To control the humidity in your basement, get a dehumidifier.
- To stop the formation of mould and mildew, use a hygrometer to measure the humidity level and maintain it between 45% and 55%.
- The quantity of water vapour in a specific atmosphere is measured using hygrometers. Hygrometers that are frequently seen in homes include mechanical and digital.
- Now that the moisture is under control, you can address the musty smell. The procedure is simple, and you could already have the necessary items on hand.
- Place baking soda dishes all throughout the basement. Over the course of a few days, the baking soda should significantly reduce the scents as it starts to absorb them.
- Both clean kitty litter and bowls of white vinegar work well for absorbing scents. You may also use a product made to absorb moisture and musty scents, such as DampRid, for particularly offensive-smelling areas.