Your home can be the location of unpleasant and lingering smells. Many unpleasant odors can be quickly dealt with. You may need to clean the bathroom or take out the trash. However, some smells can indicate a problem with your home. To help you identify and eliminate odors in your home, we have listed common causes of foul smells below.

Sulfurous Odors in Your Home

Many homes use natural gas for heating, hot water, cooking, and drying clothes. Natural gas is odorless, but gas companies add a chemical with a sulfurous smell to indicate a leak. If your home has appliances powered by gas and you smell rotten eggs, the odor could be a sign of a gas leak. Natural gas leaks can cause a deadly explosion or fire. Open the windows, leave your home immediately, and call the gas company from a safe location.

Burning Smell

If your home smells like melting plastic, this could indicate an electrical component overheating or burning. Electrical issues in your home may lead to a fire. Call a professional electrician immediately if you notice a strange odor from an outlet, light switch, or fixture and suspect an electrical problem.

Sewage Odors in Your Home

If your home or bathroom smells of sewage, it could signify a severe drainage problem. Such smells can be due to clogged or broken sewer pipes, a blocked vent pipe, or a dry P-trap. Clogged pipes could force sewage to back up into your home or plumbing lines to burst and cause flooding. Call a plumber as soon as you can.

Rotten Food

Various things can cause your home to smell like rotten food. The smell could be old food in the refrigerator, or the trash might need to go out. It could be a rat, mouse, or another animal that has died in the walls, ductwork, attic, crawl space, or chimney. A rotting odor may be coming from the garbage disposal in the kitchen sink. Food can get stuck and decompose right in the drain, causing an unpleasant odor.

Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew can form in your home. Air ducts, cabinets under your sink, showers, and the laundry room are just a few common locations you might discover an issue. There are a variety of smells to be aware of that could indicate mold growth. Some people describe it as an odor like wet laundry or dirty socks. The musty, damp smell of mold can be difficult to pinpoint, but it’s essential to find the mold and remove it. Family members may have allergic reactions to mold growth, which can trigger sneezing, itchy eyes, and headaches in some people.

Randall’s Home Inspections offers inspections to customers in the Greater Madison, WI area. If you’re buying or selling a home, contact us to schedule an appointment.