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How to Get Rid of a Musty Smell in The Basement

How to Get Rid of a Musty Smell in The Basement

You take care of your basement, you clean regularly, and you don’t leave stuff just lying everywhere. But still, there is a persistent musty smell no matter what you do.

Don’t relax thinking that smell is a normal part of your basement. It could be a sign of a serious problem, and you must locate the odor and remove it.

So today, let’s talk about basements and see how you can get yours smelling fresh and like-new!

Sources Of Musty Basement Odors

Underground areas of your home are naturally cooler than above ground. So when warm air enters your basement, that reaction produces condensation that can quickly soak your walls and floor.

Unchecked wet areas mean only one thing — mold and mildew. This fungus is easily spotted by its distinctive musty wet dog aroma. Basements are known to be prime breeding grounds for mold and the most likely cause for that dank smell down below.

The mold fungus eats cellulose as its food, which means any organic material in your home is at risk once exposed to water. Basements with drywall, carpets, and wood are all spots mold loves to propagate from.

If you keep smelling the signs of mold but are not seeing anything, you may have to remove your carpet or look behind walls until you find the problem areas. Remember, just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there.

Mold can start to form in as little as 24-hours after exposure to moisture, so even if you clean often, mold can be a tough visitor to kick out. And if it overstays its welcome, the consequences have the potential to be severe.

Read more: Is your basement dry but still smells musty?

Musty Odors & Your Health

Luckily, most strains of mold are not harmful, just inconvenient and gross. But if Aspergillus niger, or the infamous black mold creeps into your house, that’s where the problems can start.

Breathing in the spores produced by black mold can put you and your family’s health at risk. In already healthy people this fungus can make you sneeze, break out in hives, or give you a sore throat. In those with seasonal allergies or other pre-existing conditions, the symptoms can be much worse, including fever, shortness of breath, infections, and general inflammation.

If mold and mildew are taking over your basement it is past the time to do something about it. Here are a few solutions to keep your family safe.

Read more: How to determine if you have mold in your basement

Short-Term Solutions

The first thing you should do each year as Spring comes and the weather warms up is to install a dehumidifier. These machines suck out moisture and keep your basement dry to prevent mold growth.

While dehumidifiers can stop the root issue, you are probably also after some fast tips to get that smell out of your basement as fast as possible:

Vinegar and Water

Mix a solution of one part vinegar to three parts water and deep clean all surfaces. The strong vinegar smell will neutralize any other odors.

Person In Protective Equipment Cleaning Table

Throw Out Damp Items

Any toys or books that look fuzzy or slimy are already infected with mold and need to be thrown out. No keepsake is worth the consequences of mold.

Open A Charcoal Bag

Charcoal has natural cleansing properties and can filter out bad smells in the air while also absorbing moisture.

Wash Furniture and Covers

Wash any furniture and pillow covers in your basement on your laundry’s hottest setting with a powerful detergent to kill anything that might be growing on them.

These quick fixes will remove the smell but will not remove mold, so do not practice these tips without your end goal being total mold removal and remediation.

Long-Term Solutions & Prevention

When you are ready to get serious about revamping your basement, it is time to call in the professionals. There are a few tactics the experts have to protect your home and prevent future mold growth.

Pump It Out

If there is any standing water in your basement, you’ll need professional-grade equipment to safely pump everything out. Standing water is home to disease and mold, which cannot be mopped up on your own.

Get A Better HVAC

You will need a HEPA-certified filter on your HVAC to keep your air clean and circulating. Without proper filters or a clean HVAC, the air in your home could become polluted. In extreme cases the only solution to replace your HVAC with a state-of-the-art system built to handle excess moisture.

Refinish Your Basement

The ultimate solution to that musty smell in your basement is to refinish it from the ground up with mold prevention in mind. Not only will you be protected from mold and mildew, but you will have a great new addition to your house.

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With over a decade of water damage repair and mold remediation expertise, our professionals here at All Dry USA know how to fix basements.

Our general contractors can offer you everything from mold remediation to basement remodeling and anything in between. All Dry USA is waiting, all you have to do is pick up the phone.

Call (888) 714-9234 today and get a free quote!


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