A musty smell in your home can be both unpleasant and concerning. Not only can it make your living space uninviting, but it may also be an indication of potential health hazards. Many homeowners may brush off a musty odor as a temporary inconvenience, but it is important to address the root cause of the issue before it becomes a bigger problem.

Here, we will discuss house smell musty and what causes musty smells in your home, whether they are a sign of danger and the best ways to eliminate them. We have compiled a list of the top 10 methods to get rid of a musty smell in your house, including using baking soda. Steam cleaning upholstery and carpeting and running a dehumidifier. Additionally, we will provide tips on how to prevent these odors from recurring and what to do if the smell persists despite your efforts.

House Smell Musty

The Cause Of Musty Smells In Your House

The Cause Of Musty Smells In Your House

Excess moisture and high humidity levels are common culprits behind musty smells in your house. When there’s too much moisture in the air, it creates the perfect environment for mold and mildew growth. Which thrive in damp and poorly ventilated areas.

Water leaks, condensation, and stagnant air can contribute to the lingering odor. Additionally, upholstered furniture, carpets, and curtains can absorb and retain the musty smell, making it harder to eliminate.

Household appliances like dishwashers and washing machines may also generate musty odors if not cleaned properly. Understanding the cause is the first step towards getting rid of the unpleasant smell. By addressing excess moisture, improving ventilation, and keeping your living spaces clean and dry. You can effectively eliminate musty smells from your house.

What Does Musty Smell Like?

A musty smell is often described as a damp, stale, or moldy odor. It can be difficult to pinpoint the exact source of the smell, but it is typically associated with moisture or mold growth. Musty smells can occur in various areas of the house, such as basements, bathrooms, or areas with poor ventilation. If you notice a musty smell in your home, it is important to investigate and address the underlying cause to prevent further damage or potential health issues.

Top 10 Ways To Get Rid Of A House Smell Musty

Top 10 Ways To Get Rid Of A House Smell Musty

If your house has a musty smell, there are several ways to get rid of it and freshen up your space. If your house smells musty, it may be due to excess moisture and mold growth. Musty odors are often a sign of dampness or water damage. Which can lead to the growth of mold and mildew.

To address this issue, it is important to identify and eliminate the source of the moisture. This may involve fixing leaky pipes or roofs, improving ventilation, or using dehumidifiers in areas prone to dampness. Here are the top 10 tips to house smell musty:

1. Run The Ceiling Fan.

Increase the airflow and reduce stagnant air in the room by running the ceiling fan. This simple step can help dissipate the musty smell throughout the space. It’s important to regularly clean and dust the ceiling fan to prevent the spread of dust and allergens.  By doing so, you can ensure that the circulating air remains fresh and free from any potential triggers for itchy eyes or nasal congestion.

Running the ceiling fan is one of the best ways to improve ventilation in the room and eliminate the musty scent. Remember to keep the fan operating for a significant amount of time to allow it to circulate the air effectively. This will help in removing any lingering odors and creating a more pleasant environment.

2. Open Your Doors And Windows

Open Your Doors And Windows

Allowing fresh air to enter your home by opening doors and windows is an effective way to combat a musty smell. By doing so, you can let in fresh outdoor air, which helps to remove stale air and odors. It’s important to be mindful of outdoor humidity levels, as high humidity can worsen the musty smell.

Opening the doors and windows for a period of time each day can help improve ventilation and reduce moisture buildup. This simple step can make a significant difference in eliminating or reducing the musty scent in your house. So, don’t hesitate to let the fresh air in and let the musty smells out.

3.Absorb Odor With Baking Soda

Absorb Odor With Baking Soda

To combat the musty odor in your house, consider using baking soda. This natural deodorizer has the ability to absorb unpleasant smells and neutralize them effectively. Place bowls filled with baking soda in the affected areas to tackle the musty scent.  The baking soda will work its magic by absorbing the odors and freshening up the space.

Remember to replace the baking soda regularly to maintain its effectiveness in combating the musty smell. By utilizing this simple and affordable solution, you can eliminate the lingering musty odor and enjoy a fresher living environment. So, give it a try and experience the sweet pea scent of a home free from musty smells.

4.Use A Dehumidifier.

To tackle a musty smell in your house, one effective solution is to use a dehumidifier. By extracting excess moisture from the air, a dehumidifier helps lower the humidity levels and creates unfavorable conditions for musty smells to thrive. Regularly emptying and cleaning the dehumidifier is crucial to prevent mold growth and ensure its efficiency.

By incorporating a dehumidifier into your home, you can effectively combat the musty scent that may be lingering in various areas. Whether it’s the basement, attic, or crawl space, a dehumidifier works wonders in eliminating excess moisture that often leads to unpleasant smells. It’s especially beneficial if you live in an old house with poor ventilation or experience long periods of high humidity.

5.Buy An Air Purifier

Buy An Air Purifier

Investing in an air purifier with a HEPA filter can be an effective solution to eliminate the musty smell in your house. By using a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, the air purifier can effectively remove airborne particles and odors, improving the overall indoor air quality.

When choosing an air purifier, make sure to consider the size of the room and opt for a model suitable for the space you intend to use it in. Additionally, look for features such as activated carbon filters, which are specifically designed to combat odors. The good news is that an air purifier not only helps in eliminating the musty smell but also provides other benefits.

It reduces allergens like pet hair and dander, dust mites, and pollen that may cause nasal congestion, itchy eyes, and other respiratory issues. Furthermore, if you live in an area with high humidity or have leaks, an air purifier can help reduce the growth of mold and fungi, preventing the musty scent from lingering in your home.

6.Steam Upholstery And Carpeting.

One effective way to eliminate the musty odor from upholstery and carpeting is by using a steam cleaner. By utilizing a steam cleaner, you can effectively remove the musty smells that may be lingering in your furniture and carpets. The steam’s high temperature helps to kill mold and bacteria, which are often the source of these unpleasant odors.

It’s important to regularly steam clean your upholstery and carpets to keep them smelling fresh and free from musty scents. Don’t forget to extend this cleaning process to other fabric items in your home, such as curtains, as they can also harbor musty odors. By incorporating steam cleaning into your regular cleaning routine, you can ensure that your home maintains a fresh and inviting atmosphere.

7.Wash Your Pet’s Bedding

Wash Your Pet's Bedding

Regularly washing your pet’s bedding is essential for getting rid of musty smells in your house. Pet bedding can easily trap odors, leading to a lingering musty scent that can permeate your home. To combat this, use a pet-safe detergent and hot water to wash your pet’s bedding thoroughly. This will help remove any odors and ensure that your pet’s bedding is clean and fresh.

After washing, make sure to dry the bedding completely to prevent any mildew growth. Mildew smells can exacerbate the musty odor in your house, so it’s important to ensure that the bedding is completely dry before putting it back in your pet’s sleeping area. Additionally, consider using white vinegar as a natural deodorizer. Add half a cup of vinegar to the wash cycle along with the detergent to help eliminate any lingering odors.

8.Fix Any Cracked Or Broken Pipes

One of the main causes of a musty smell in your house can be cracked or broken pipes. These plumbing issues not only lead to water leaks but can also contribute to the unpleasant odor. It is essential to hire a professional plumber who can fix any plumbing problems you may have.

By repairing the cracked or broken pipes, you can prevent further water damage and eliminate the musty odors that are lingering in your home. Don’t forget to check for hidden leaks behind walls or under sinks as these could be the source of the musty smell. Taking care of any plumbing issues is crucial for maintaining a fresh-smelling home.

9.Clean Mildewed Areas With Bleach

Clean Mildewed Areas With Bleach

To tackle the problem of musty smells in your house, one effective method is to clean mildewed areas with bleach. This powerful disinfectant can help remove the musty smell and prevent it from lingering. To do so, mix bleach with water according to the instructions provided on the packaging, ensuring the right concentration.

Wear gloves and work in a well-ventilated area when using bleach to protect your skin and respiratory system. Apply the bleach solution to the affected areas and let it sit for a few minutes to allow it to penetrate and kill any mold or mildew. Afterward, scrub the area clean using a brush or sponge. Regularly cleaning mildewed areas with bleach will not only eliminate musty odors but also prevent them from coming back.

10.Call A Pro If There’s A Lot Of Mold And Mild

If you have identified a persistent musty odor in your house and suspect the presence of mold and mildew, it is crucial to take appropriate action. While there are several steps you can take to eliminate musty smells, calling a professional may be necessary if there is a significant amount of mold and mildew present.

A qualified expert will have the knowledge and experience to assess the extent of the problem and provide effective solutions. Before calling a pro, it is essential to identify the source of the musty odor to prevent it from returning. This could involve inspecting areas prone to moisture buildup, such as basements, crawl spaces, or areas with leaky pipes or a leaky air conditioner.

Opening windows and doors can also help increase ventilation and airflow, reducing the conditions that favor mold and mildew growth. Using a dehumidifier is another effective approach to reducing moisture in the air and creating an inhospitable environment for mold and mildew. Additionally, cleaning or replacing air filters in your HVAC systems can help improve air quality and minimize odors.

Natural odor absorbers, such as activated charcoal or baking soda, can be used to absorb and neutralize musty smells. If you prefer, you can also use essential oils or other fragrances to mask the odor temporarily. Remember, if you are dealing with a significant amount of mold and mildew or are unsure of how to address the issue effectively, it is best to call a professional.

They will have the expertise and tools necessary to assess, mitigate, and eliminate mold and mildew safely. Seeking professional help ensures that the problem is properly addressed, reducing the risk of health issues associated with prolonged exposure to mold and mildew.

Ways To Prevent Musty Smells From Recurring

Ways To Prevent Musty Smells From Recurring

To prevent musty smells from recurring in your home, there are several effective ways you can take action. First and foremost, it’s essential to keep your home well-ventilated to prevent moisture buildup. This can be achieved by opening windows and using fans to circulate the air.

Additionally, be sure to fix any water leaks or sources of excessive humidity, such as leaky pipes or a malfunctioning air conditioner. Using a dehumidifier is another great way to control moisture levels and prevent musty odors. Regularly cleaning and drying areas in your home that are prone to mold and mildew growth, like bathrooms and laundry rooms, is also crucial.

Ensure proper ventilation in these areas by using exhaust fans or opening windows when possible. By implementing these preventative measures, you can effectively eliminate musty smells and create a fresh, clean environment in your home.

What If Musty Smells Persist Despite Efforts?

What If Musty Smells Persist Despite Efforts

If musty smells persist despite your efforts, conduct a thorough inspection to identify the source. Consider hiring a professional for deep cleaning and mold remediation. Check for hidden sources of moisture like a leaky roof or plumbing. Use air fresheners or natural remedies temporarily, and consult with an HVAC specialist for proper airflow and ventilation.


To eliminate musty smells from your house, it’s important to identify and address the root cause of the odor. Whether it’s due to excess moisture, stale air, or mold growth, there are several effective remedies available. From improving ventilation to using natural absorbents like baking soda, these simple solutions can make a significant difference in eliminating musty odors.

Additionally, taking proactive measures such as fixing any plumbing issues and regularly cleaning damp-prone areas can help prevent the recurrence of these smells. However, if the musty odor persists despite your efforts, it may indicate a more serious problem, such as hidden mold or mildew. In such cases, it’s advisable to consult a professional for thorough inspection and remediation. We hope you know house smell musty.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.Why Does My House Smell Musty?

Ans: A musty smell in your house can be caused by mold or mildew growth, poor ventilation, high humidity, water leaks, or dirty carpets and upholstery. Regular cleaning, proper ventilation, and addressing any moisture issues can help eliminate the musty smell.

2.Why Does My House Smell Musty, You May Ask?

Ans: A musty smell in your house can be caused by moisture or mold. Factors like humidity, leaks, and poor ventilation contribute to this unpleasant odor. Additionally, old furniture, carpets, and fabrics can hold onto musty smells. To prevent a musty smell, regularly clean, dehumidify, and air out your home.

3.What Is Causing The Musty Smell?

Ans: Musty smells in your house can be caused by mold, mildew, dampness, or even pets, food waste, and tobacco smoke. It’s important to identify the source of the odor to effectively eliminate it. Proper ventilation, cleaning, and dehumidifiers can help prevent and remove musty smells.

4.What Causes A Musty Smell In A Room?

Ans: A musty smell in a room can occur due to excess moisture or humidity, leading to mold and mildew growth. Poor ventilation and lack of air circulation can worsen the odor, while stagnant water or damp fabrics can also contribute to the musty smell.

5.What Do You Do If The Musty Smell Persists?

Ans: If the musty smell lingers despite your efforts, consider hiring a professional mold remediation service. Check for any leaks or moisture sources that may be causing the odor. Improve air quality by using an air purifier or dehumidifier. Try natural odor absorbers like baking soda or activated charcoal to eliminate the smell.