Your basement may serve as a guest room, storage, or living room. Regardless of its function, it could be hard to stay there if it has a musty smell. In addition, if the odor is too strong, it could reach the rest of the house, which can even be more frustrating. Using an air freshener may not be enough as it would only mask the smell temporarily, but it will return until you find the source and resolve it. If you have this issue, read on to learn how to eliminate the foul odor effectively and make your basement smell fresh.
Determine the source
The first step in taking care of this issue is determining its source. There are various causes why the basement could smell musty, and we listed some below.
- Mold and mildew. These are common in dark and humid areas. So, if your basement has high humidity and is inadequately lit, there’s a high chance you have these. Besides the musty smell, these can also cause health problems.
- Sewer line damage. Any cracks or damage to your sewage lines could cause foul odors that could reach the basement.
- Untidy basement. If it’s dirty, then it could also cause a foul odor. There may be rat feces or garbage that may have been there for a long time. Droppings and urine could also add to the problem if you have pets.
- Leaks. It could cause the basement to be damp, causing a nasty odor.
Fix the problem
Once you pinpoint the cause of the problem, it’s time to fix it to keep the odor from returning. Get the help of a professional to remove mold and mildew. The same is true with fixing leaks and sewer damage. A plumber can help you in this area. But you can take care of the untidy basement yourself. Prepare your materials for a thorough clean, such as a sponge, multipurpose cleaner, broom, and mop. For the dustpan, get one made of rubber, with a long handle, so it would be easier to use. Some come with a brush, which you may want to get if you don’t have one yet. Remove everything in the basement to thoroughly clean the place. It’s also an excellent opportunity to organize it. Clean the items, like furniture and appliances, before returning them. Also, get rid of the things you don’t need to have more space. Then, deodorize to make the basement smell good.
Prevent odor from coming back
The work doesn’t stop after fixing the problem. Maintenance is vital to keep the odor from returning. Have a regular cleaning schedule, especially if it’s the part of the house you don’t often visit or use. It could easily slip your mind, so make it a routine to clean it. Use a dehumidifier to control humidity, and always be on the lookout for any leaks or plumbing problems so that you can take care of them immediately.
Make your basement functional again by removing the musty smell. You could spend more time there if it doesn’t have a nasty odor.