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Musty Odors

No one wants their home to smell unpleasant to guests or during everyday life. Unfortunately, certain crawl space problems can cause musty odors in your home.

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What Causes Musty Odors?

You’ve just returned from a weekend away. When you open your front door, you’re met with an unpleasant smell. If you’ve experienced something like this, it might have to do with problems in your crawl space. Don’t worry, Basement Authority of West Virginia has the solutions and knowledge to prevent musty odors from entering your home.

Musty odors often arise due to decaying matter in your crawl space, which can show up for a number of reasons. Let’s explore the causes of musty odors in this section.


We’ve all seen mold at one point or another. Usually, it has to do with food that’s gone bad. When we catch these problematic foods, we throw them away, and with good reason. Mold is dangerous to the human body and can cause respiratory issues. However, mold can also emit an unpleasant odor which travels into your home. Whenever large amounts of moisture are present, mold is soon to follow, and your crawl space is no exception. Musty smells can certainly be a sign of mold.

Wood Rot

This is another form of fungus that arises when moisture permeates wood. Since many crawl spaces are built with wood materials, this issue is quite common. As the wood rot breaks down wooden beams, it can emit a musty smell that travels into your home. Mix this with mold growth, and you have an unpleasant mixture of smells emanating from your crawl space.


Due to the dank nature of crawl spaces, many pests are attracted to the area below your home. This includes rats, possums, spiders, raccoons, and cockroaches. With animals comes the risk for disease and waste. If an animal defecates in your crawl space, the smell can enter the air in your home and bring about an unpleasant smell. Moreover, animals could become deceased below your home and leave behind their decaying carcass. This is an unpleasant thought on its own, and it leaves behind an even more unpleasant smell.


It all depends on where they are coming from. Musty smells from wood rot don’t pose any risk to the human body. However, musty odors from mold can indicate the spores have entered your home and contaminated your air. Mold has the potential to aggravate allergies or cause respiratory issues. Furthermore, smells from a decaying animal could become unhealthy if the animal is not removed quickly. As a rule of thumb, remove the source of the odor quickly to avoid health issues.

First, you should contact professional pest control to remove animals from your property. However, Foundation Systems of West Virginia does offer a solution that discourages animals from entering your crawl space. Encapsulation makes your crawl space much harder to penetrate. With a vapor barrier and vent covers, animals are no longer attracted to the humid environment. It also becomes nearly impossible for them to break through the 20-mil plastic barrier and airtight vent covers. Keep in mind, encapsulation is not a full-proof pest control solution. Remember, you should still contact pest control services.

Sometimes, an odor can arise in your home without you even realizing it. Human noses become habituated to the smells in their home after a short period of time. While a smell grows gradually, you might not be able to tell anything is wrong since you’re used to the air in your home. However, guests in your home might notice the smell when they come over since they don’t live in your space. If friends or visiting relatives keep telling you your home has a musty smell, you should take note –even if you don’t smell it. This is a sign that something may be wrong in your crawl space.

Call Us for a Free Crawl Space Inspection

Moisture in your crawl space can lead to musty odors arising in your crawl space and home. Our crawl space solutions can mitigate these unpleasant smells from arising by preventing excess moisture in your crawl space. For nearly two decades, we’ve been helping homeowners in West Virginia with their crawl space problems. Contact us today to learn even more about crawl space repair and to schedule a free inspection with one of our specialists. We’ll come up with a plan that meets your individual needs!

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Charleston, WV

132 Rocky Step Rd.,
Scott Depot, WV 25560