If you notice a strange or unpleasant smell, it could be the trash can, damp clothing, or time to clean the refrigerator. However, foul odors can indicate a more serious concern with your home. It’s essential to determine the cause of the smell and make any needed repairs. Here are a few tips for identifying odors in the house.
Strange Odors in the Home
Your sense of smell allows you to appreciate scents and taste food. It can also help you protect your family and your home. Here are five odors that may be alerting you to a problem within your house.
A Lingering Smell of Melting Plastic
If your home smells like melting plastic or rubber and there’s no apparent reason, call an electrician because it could be a sign of a burning or overheating electrical component. The smell may be caused by electrical insulation getting too hot and melting. Electrical problems might result from fitting the wrong fuses or circuit breakers, frayed cords or wires, malfunctioning power outlets, or overloaded circuits.
Natural gas is odorless and colorless. Because a gas leak could cause an explosion or fire, gas companies add an odorant to make a gas leak obvious. This chemical smells sulfurous, like rotten eggs. If you notice the smell of bad eggs in your home, leave immediately. Don’t turn on the lights or operate the stove. Call the gas company and don’t re-enter the house until conditions are safe.
Fireplace Smells Smoky When Not in Use
When it comes to strange odors in the home, this is one of the least threatening (although it is still bothersome). Check that the damper is closed correctly if the fireplace smells like smoke while not in use.
If the damper is open, the wind could blow the chimney’s soot back into the house. Pests and rain will also be able to get into the chimney. If the smell persists when the damper is closed, the firebox is probably dirty and should be cleaned.
Odors in the Home: Sewer Gas
The smell of sewer gas could be nothing more than a dry p-trap. Usually, the water in the p-trap prevents odors from escaping into your house. But if the trap dries out, you may detect an unpleasant odor. All that’s usually needed is to run the water for a few seconds. If that doesn’t solve the problem, you might be looking at a broken sewer line or vent stack. These are significant issues a professional plumber should handle.
Musty Odors in the Home
A musty or damp odor could harm your family and home, mainly if caused by mildew or mold. You may notice this odor in areas prone to moisture, such as the kitchen, basement, bathroom, and laundry room.
Since mildew and mold may cause respiratory issues and worsen asthma and allergies, attend to this issue as soon as possible. Remove small spots of mildew or mold with a mixture of water and bleach. Call a professional if the affected area exceeds a square meter.