Any disaster has an aftereffect, especially when it involves water damage. It is almost impossible to avoid since it is one of the most common causes of property damage. Excess moisture can cause issues such as a musty odor that lingers in your home, as well as mold and mildew growth. Every material inside your home is vulnerable to have this musty smell. Furthermore, the musty odor left behind by water damage will linger for days, weeks, or even months after the initial event. In this article, we will teach you how to get rid of musty smells from water damage.
Why Does My Home Smell Musty After Water Damage?
The most common reason for a musty-smelling home is the excess moisture left after a water damage event. For instance, water damage occurred and affected porous materials like carpet fibers, fabrics, walls, and ceiling. When these materials are exposed to water and are left unattended for a long time, they can develop mold and mildew growth, which leaves your home with musty odors.
On the other hand, musty smells from water damage can be prevented when the source of damage is attended to immediately or when the cleanup process is done professionally.
Superior Restoration is the leading restoration company that offers both water damage restoration and mold removal and mold remediation services. We are your one-stop shop for all your water damage-related problems.
How To Get Rid of Musty Smells From Water Damage
It’s always safer to have professionals take care of your water-damaged property. However, you can try these tips to remove the musty smells that linger inside your property.
1. Determine the source of the musty odors.
To locate the initial source of the musty odor, you have to be articulate and observant. Look for the area where the smells are strong and areas prone to moisture and mold growth. If you don’t know where the odor is coming from, it’s hard to get rid of it.
Moreover, try checking all the corners inside your property, including the clothes, fabrics, and carpets, as they are prone to develop moisture from water damage. Try using these tips to detect the mold inside your home and help you find the sources.
2. Let in the fresh air.
Open all the doors and windows to let the fresh air cover up the musty smell. It’s the simplest way to eliminate odor while allowing air circulation into your house. To extend the removal of the musty smell, open the cabinets, cupboards, and drawers to let the moist air dry out from the fresh air and some sunshine. Poor ventilation and enclosed spaces are other sources of musty odors.
3. Place a dehumidifier.
Musty odors are most common in areas with poor ventilation and enclosed spaces. You can improve the conditions of your property by placing ventilation fans and dehumidifiers to remove excess moisture and encourage airflow. A humid home attracts mold that causes a musty odor inside your household.
4. Regularly clean your house.
Sometimes messy, dirty, and dusty houses can generate musty smells/odors. So, one of the first things you should do is deep clean the house from top to bottom, including corners and spaces behind the furniture, electronics, and stairs. Use a dust feather, or a clean cloth with cleaning agents to remove the dust and the smell. Also, use a vacuum for carpets or close-fitting areas.
5. Use natural remedy.
Boiling a peeled lemon can help remove musty odors immediately. Bring the peeled lemon in the pot to boil and after that, safely place the pot in a small space to let the steam and fragrance spread inside your property. Use an odor eliminator like vinegar and baking soda to neutralize the smell in the area. Simply place baking soda solution in the affected area and leave it for 24 hours.
Alternatively, use charcoal to absorb the musty odor when baking soda is not available in your pantry.
6. Fix potential water leaks.
Water damage is one of the initial causes why your house smells musty. You must check the kitchen, bathroom, behind the appliance, near the vents, and basement to repair any potential water leaks.
Clean the affected areas thoroughly
If the sources you found are from moisture development and mold growth, start deep cleaning the area using a bleach solution to get rid of mold. Wear appropriate protective equipment, such as gloves, at all times when performing the procedure. Also, ensure that there is enough ventilation inside to prevent endangering your health while removing the musty odor.
In case you didn’t want to use chemical cleaning agents. Try the following procedure for removing the mold;
- Use an empty spray bottle and fill it with distilled white vinegar.
- Spray the vinegar in the area and let it sit for several hours.
- Soak an abrasive sponge in hot water, then dip it in baking soda.
- Scrub the sponge in the mildew area with gloves on to remove the musty smell, or you may sprinkle the baking soda on the affected areas.
If you encounter these situations, call for mold remediation experts like Superior Restore;
- Mold growth is in the wall, the floor ceiling, and the moldy area is 10 square feet.
- You have health issues that could trigger by mold exposure.
- The mold growth is in your HVAC system.
Furthermore, any solution can help in removing the musty odor from water damage, whether it’s a natural or chemical remedy. Firm scrub will remove the visible mold, while the chemicals remove the mold spores.
8. Know when to call for help.
DIY cleanup is risky especially if you don’t know how to identify the enemies. Restoration professionals have the right tools and equipment to permanently get rid of the musty smells in your home.
What You’ll Need to Get Rid Of the Musty Smells
- Protective gears and equipment (such as gloves, mask, etc.)
- Cleaning materials like dust feathers, cleaning agents, rag, and vacuum.
- Ingredients for natural odor neutralizers like lemon, distilled white vinegar, hot water, charcoal, and baking soda.
- Equipment to improve airflow such as dehumidifier, ventilation fans, mini fans for areas in dark and enclosed spaces.
- Abrasive sponge, spray bottle, and a garbage bag for DIY cleaning.
- Chemical cleaning agents such as bleach solution, hydrogen peroxide, or boric acid.
If the Musty Smells Persist, Seek Professional Assistance.
Although musty odors do occur from time to time, the best thing you need to do is follow the tips above to make your home clean and fresh. However, dealing with these awful smells may consume your concentration, time, and health, so the quickest way to end this suffering is to call for mold remediation professionals like Superior Restoration.
Superior Restoration offers 24/7 quality water damage restoration, mold remediation, and cleanup services. These include experienced restoration professionals and quality equipment that can permanently get rid of musty smells. Contact our local office, Water Damage Lake Elsinore, for inquiries.