Tags: unknown smells at home

6 House Smells to Never Ignore

a couple painting a wall at home
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By    |   Wednesday, 20 November 2019 10:25 AM

Houses are filled with different smells. Some are good, like the smell of muffins baking in the oven, and others are not so great, like that musty whiff you get every now and again.

It is easy to shrug them off, but certain odors may actually be warning signs of home dangers and they should never be ignored. The question is, how can you tell which ones are serious and which ones are just part of your home? To start, here is a list of six smells in your house to address immediately, according to a report by Reader's Digest.

  1. Gas smell. Gas can smell like a rotten egg and it can be a sign of a gas leak, which can put you and your family at risk because of the potential for an explosion or fire. Frank Lesh, executive director of the American Society of Home Inspectors, recommends evacuating the house immediately to call the gas company from your mobile phone. Do not touch the landline, use the car, flick any switches, or turn any appliances on or off.
  2. Musty smell. That oppressive musty smell that fills your nostrils could indicate a broken pipe or a sink leak. This leads to the development of mold, which creates that pungent odor. At issue is that mold can trigger allergies and asthma, says David Dyjack, executive director of the National Environmental Health Association. It is best to address the problem sooner rather than later.
  3. Smoke-like smell. A strong smell of smoke indicates fire, but then there is that occasional whiff you get, which could hint at a much subtler but serious issue. "If you only smell it once in a while, like when using a particular light or appliance, it could be electrical smoke behind a wall or in a ceiling light fixture — and that could be very dangerous," says Lesh. Contact an electrician immediately.
  4. Dirty dog smell. You don't have a dog but still get that "dirty dog" smell, so what gives? It could mean you have rodents or raccoons in your attic, which could pose numerous health hazards. It may be time to call in pest control.
  5. Old cigarette smell. That lingering smell of cigarettes can actually be damaging to your health. This is because thirdhand smoke can harm you in the way that secondhand smoke can. "With thirdhand smoke, the particles associated with the combustion of tobacco have settled onto surfaces, including counters, tabletops, and bed linen, and there are at least 11 carcinogens associated with some of that dust," says Dyjack. Make sure you clean places where people have been smoking.
  6. Fresh paint smell. A new coat of paint may give your home that "new" smell, but the consequences that come with it are not as pleasant. Paint contains volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which pose numerous health risks ranging from headaches to cancer. It is best to buy brands that have no VOCs and to ventilate your house well after painting.

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It is easy to shrug off some smells at your home, but certain odors may actually be warning signs and should never be ignored. Here's a list of six.
unknown smells at home
Wednesday, 20 November 2019 10:25 AM
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