Homes harbor all sorts of smells, some unpleasant while others are downright nasty. Similarly, while some odors may be harmless, others point to a potentially dangerous situation that may harm your health. Fortunately, tracing it might be as easy as following the odor and finding the source. If your home smells funny, check this list of reasons:
Most Common Reasons a Home Smells Funny
Home Smells Funny: Gas Lines
A gas leak is one of the most dangerous problems a home can have. It can ignite easily and cause extensive damage and injury. While natural gas is odorless and colorless, manufacturers take extra precautions to make it easy to detect gas leaks.
Typically, they add a stinky odorant that smells like rotten eggs. So, if your house smells funny and you get a whiff of a rotten egg smell, it might signify a gas leak. If you smell any potential gas leaks, avoid switching on electrical appliances, including lights, or using a phone close to the area.
Get out of the house and call emergency service from a safe distance where you can no longer smell the leak. Additionally, inform the gas company so they can shut off your supply line or send a technician over for inspections and repairs.
Most electrical faults start with overheating, which often causes electrical components to burn. The plastic ignites and melts under the heat, producing a fishy smell.
If you detect an unexplainable fishy smell, turn off your main power breaker and call an electrician to inspect the panel and wiring. Generally, electrical faults will result from defective outlets, circuit overloads, and frayed wires and cords.
Plumbing and Roofing Leaks
Another reason a home could smell funny is water damage. Leaks can lead to extensive structural and foundation damage if left in disrepair. Watch for signs that may point to water damage and leaks.
The most common sign of water damage is mold. Specific molds, such as the highly toxic black mold, give off a cat urine smell, while others produce a musty or dusty smell. So, if you catch a whiff of cat urine and don’t have a feline pet, you may have water damage somewhere within your home. The best fix for this problem is to contact a plumber to trace and fix the leaks.
These are a few good places to start for common causes of strange smells in the home, but this list isn’t exhaustive. Other problems to look out for include:
- Rotting wood: damp, swampy, musty, and earthy smells
- Bacteria growth on your HVAC coils: dirty sock smell
- Rat, mouse, squirrel, or raccoon infestation: wet dog smell
Eagle 1 Home Inspection Services offers services to customers in San Bernardino, Riverside County, and surrounding areas. If you’re buying or selling a home, contact us to schedule an appointment.