Effectively Dealing With Musty Odor In Your Home

eliminating musty odorMusty Odors Disturbing Your Home Environment 

It can be difficult to effectively eliminate musty odors that have stem from mold issues or water damage. Musty odors in the home are not only unpleasant, but they can also cause issues for your home. 

Depending on the source that the odor is emanating from, airborne particles known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can pose a potential health risk. However, it is important to note that not everyone will have the same reaction to VOCs. For example, while one person may be okay, another may experience severe allergies due to the VOCs. Each person’s experience is unique. Whether the mold in your home is causing health issues or not, mold is a problem that needs to be actively removed. Potential health implications aside, indoor mold growth can cause severe property damage, compromise the structural integrity of the building structure, and diminish property value. Mold contaminated and water damaged building materials cannot perform as effectively which can lead to additional problems.  

There are numerous sources that the odor could be emanating from. Mold, water damage, and other biohazards that your home may have experienced could be what is producing the musty odor. It is important to be extremely thorough when searching for the source of the odor.

air freshener will only temporarily get rid of musty odorDetermining the Source of the Odor 

Generally speaking, a bad odor in the home is not a cause for great concern. If there is an odor bothering you in your home, your first instinct would be to simply spray some air freshener and do a quick clean. However, musty odors that are emanating from a potential mold problem in your home will not be eliminated that easily. When it comes to eliminating a musty odor, the key is SOURCE REMOVAL. You cannot mask the odor or try to cycle it out with some open windows. As long as the source of the odor exists, it will be a an endless battle. 

Pinpointing the source of a musty odor in the home can be tricky. Just because it smells in a certain area doesn’t necessarily mean that the source is also in that area. It is important to be extremely thorough when you are searching for the source of your odor problem. Even if you don’t think that a certain area could be the source, check there anyway. It’s better to be safe than sorry, airborne particulates can travel virtually anywhere and leave behind odors in any indoor space.  In the event that you detect musty odors with an unknown source, you might want to consider contacting a certified mold inspector to assess the indoor environment for mold growth and get to the bottom of the issue. 

musty odor may stem from attic moldMold Growth Hotspots – The Potential Source 

Some areas of a building structure are often more vulnerable to mold growth than others. If you detect a an unexplained musty odor, it might be a good idea to check these mold hotspots first.

Basement and/or crawlspace: Basements are known to be cold, damp and dark. They harbor a lot of excess moisture. This makes basements a prime suspect when on the hunt for the source of a musty odor. 

Attic: Much like basements and crawlspaces, attics tend to be rather dark and damp. The poor air circulation in an attic ensures that excess moisture has no way to be ventilated out of the attic. This excess moisture can seep into the building materials of the attic causing mold.  

Kitchen/Bathroom: While kitchens and bathrooms generally do have good ventilation and air circulation, they are a breeding ground for heat and moisture. When you are cooking, running the dishwasher, or showering, that heat and moisture create a lot of steam and condensation. If you are not aware, this can cause mold issues in the kitchen or bathroom. If you find the mold, you find the source of the odor.  

musty odor may be stemming from moldy basement Unknown Mold Issues Leading To Musty Odor 

Mold often emanates an organic, musty odor. It smells damp and dank, and it can be very difficult to mask the odor. Mold can be both visible and hidden, and it may be difficult for one to know if their home is experiencing mold issues. A dank, musty odor is indicative of potential mold growth in the home. If you’ve begun noticing an odor in your home that you may believe to be stemming from mold growth, it is best to get a mold inspection. A professional mold inspection company near you will be happy to inspect the issue for you, and may even be able to provide knowledge about the source of the musty odor. 

Eliminating The Musty Odor 

As previously mentioned, simply spraying some air freshener to disguise the musty odor will not do the trick. You can’t get rid of an odor without taking it down from the source. You can spray as much air freshener as you want, the odor will come back when it wears off. Airing the home out by opening your windows to try to circulate the odor out is also a temporary fix. As long as a the source exists, as soon as you close the windows, the odor will buildup again. Only source removal will truly rid your home of the unpleasant musty odor. Once you’ve determined the source of the odor, you can move forward with eliminating it. A professional mold removal company will be able to rid your home of mold, and any undesirable odors that have come along with it.


  • Thomas Duff

    Thomas Duff, the visionary founder of MasterTech Environmental, brings a wealth of expertise and passion to the forefront of our mold remediation and biohazard cleanup mission. With a profound commitment to setting new industry standards, Thomas leverages his hands-on experience and innovative spirit to lead MasterTech Environmental to unparalleled success. Overseeing not only the original Blackwood, NJ location but also the thriving MasterTech Franchise Systems, Thomas champions a tight-knit family of professionals dedicated to serving communities, cultivating honorable trades, and ensuring customer satisfaction. Recognized for our presence on HGTV and DIY Network, Thomas Duff's dedication to excellence has driven our company's exceptional client ratings on Google and other review platforms. With a clear vision, unmatched passion, and a commitment to continuous improvement, Thomas Duff continues to lead MasterTech Environmental into a successful future in the restoration industry.

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