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unidentifiable smell

Posted by jdog (My Page) on
Mon, Jun 24, 02 at 12:35

I live in a house that had an addition built on many years ago. It's in pretty shabby shape, but we repainted part, put a new floor in, and now it's livable--it's now our bedroom. Problem is, there's a weird smell in that part of the house, which happens to contain the laundry room and a bathroom that we don't really use. Both these rooms are in great need of work: they have plywood walls where the paint is peeling, and the wood looks like it's been wet at some point. .. probably moldy? The smell is kind of old and musty, a little gassy, a little bit like rot, but not a dead animal. Ideas? Solutions? It's not a hugely strong smell, but it bothers me, and it's noticeable. The shower isn't being used, but we've run water in the drain a couple times to stop sewer gasses from coming up, and it hasn't seemed to help--does one need to do that a lot to take care of sewer gasses? Could it be rotting plywood?

Thanks for any help

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: unidentifiable smell

You got mildew growing on the inside of your walls. Somehow you must spray bleach between the walls to kill it. You might check under your flooring, also. Hopefully you have a crawlspace or basement.

RE: unidentifiable smell

Keep water in the traps in the bathroom to prevent sewer gas. If you have peeling paint on the walls, that may well be a sign of moisture inside the walls and wet insulation. Remove the plywood and investigate. If you see signs of mold and mildew, you will need to remove the insulation and disinfect wall cavities and let them dry out. Gutters and downspouts should be clear and carrying water away from the foundation. Inspect the crawl space for standing water. Soil around the home should be sloped away from the foundation to carry water away. You should have adequate foundation ventilation with no dead air spaces and a polyethylene moisture barrier covering the soil. If you have moisture problems, you probably also have termites and/or wood boring insects. You might want to consider getting an exterminator to inspect your home. Most give a free inspection. Mold/mildew can be detrimental to your health, resulting in allergies, headaches, respiratory and other health problems.

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