The development of stale, musty odors in the basement is a common problem that should be addressed promptly. Odor can be caused from dirt or debris that has been allowed to collect in the basement. Another culprit can be water intrusion leading to the growth of mold and mildew.
Here are several things that can be done to eliminate basement odors:
- Vacuum or sweep the entire basement thoroughly, paying special attention to corners.
- Wash all floors and walls with a borax- or bleach-and-water solution. Bleach will remove stains and sanitize the area, while borax is a natural fungicide and is less likely to irritate respiratory passages. Pay special attention to areas where mildew is visible.
- Place coffee grounds in various spots in the basement to absorb odors. Because it can attract insects, coffee grounds should only be used for a few days at a time before being discarded.
- Place aquarium charcoal in the basement for long-term adsorption of odors.
- Use fans to circulate air in the basement, and open windows to let in fresh air.
Homeowners and property managers will want to investigate carefully to determine if preventive measures are necessary to keep the basement free of unwanted odors.
Here are some ideas to help prevent musty odors in the basement:
- Keep the area as clean as Vacuum often.
- Keep the area well-lighted and well-ventilated. Light and fresh air discourage the growth of mold and mildew.
- Use a humidistat to determine humidity levels in the basement. Be aware that humidity levels above 62% encourage mold growth. Use a dehumidifier to maintain safe levels of humidity.
- Check the yard for adequate water drainage. Be sure that the ground slopes away from the house and that there are no spots close to the house where standing water can collect. Make sure that downspouts drain at least 6 feet away from the house.
- Seal any cracks in the basement walls with hydraulic cement.
- Apply water-proofing sealant to the walls and floor of the basement to keep moisture out.
With a sharp eye and a little elbow grease, homeowners and property managers can keep their basements fresh and odor-free.’
If you discover mold growth at your property and would like a professional opinion, contact Reclaim Services certified mold experts today.