Mildew is a furry fungus that sprouts in humid summer weather. It has a flat growth that is either fluffy or powdery. A damp shower can be the perfect spot for mildew to multiply quickly.
If left unattended, it produces a strong musty smell. Some mildew contains mycotoxins that cause allergic reactions like irritation of eyes, headaches, and coughing. So if there’s a musty odor lingering in your house, you should track it down and get rid of it.
Will a dehumidifier get rid of mildew smell? A dehumidifier does not only remove humidity in your home but also filter the odor particles. It sucks the musty smell and replaces it with a clean one. After a few days, you’ll notice your home is smelling clean and fresh.
You should place your unit where you want to remove the smell. Make sure, it’s at least 6 inches from the furniture, walls, and curtains. Next, shut the windows and the doors. Open the closets and dresser drawers to remove the odor. Turn on the dehumidifier and let it run for a couple of hours. For best results, repeat the process every day for 1-2 weeks.
Your goal should be to keep the humidity levels down. If the source of dampness is a leakage in the water system or condensation of moisture, you should address the problem before running the unit.
Using a Dehumidifier in the Basement To Get Rid of Mildew Smell
No matter how much mopping or sweeping you’ll do in your basement, the musty odor won’t go away. But you should not give up so fast. Since the basement in your home is prone to musty smells, you should use a dehumidifier to remove the odors.
Before you run your unit, identify where the odor is coming from. During the cold months, the warm air sweeps into your basement and ends up on the walls. This is where mildew begins to form leading to the unpleasant odors.
There could be a crack on the foundation wall, a broken window seal, clogged rain gutters, etc. You should also check the laundry dryer vent, leaky pipes, and sewer backups.
Once you address the root cause of the problem, the second step is to learn how to get rid of the smell. Run your dehumidifier for a couple of days until the smell is gone.
Make sure you empty the collection tank twice a day. If you maintain a low level of humidity in the basement, mildew cannot grow. The best dehumidifier for basements should cover up to 4500 square feet. It should also have an auto-defrost feature in case the air gets too cold.
Removing Mildew Smell In The Closets With a Dehumidifier
No one wants to store clean clothes in the wardrobe, only to find out they have a mildew smell. When the closets are not well ventilated, the moisture gets trapped leading to mildew growth. Since closets are often in the bedrooms, a dehumidifier can prevent humidity from building up. When used well, these units will keep the garments in a pristine condition.
Mildew will grow on cotton, silk, wool, and linen. When choosing a dehumidifier to get rid of the smell, there are several factors to take into account. The most impact one is the size.
Your dehumidifier should be compact to fit in tight spaces and powerful enough to process all the air. Find the perfect position in your wardrobe that enables air to circulate freely. Some units are designed to be mounted while others rest on the floor.
Secondly, you should consider the capacity. The most convenient unit should remove up to 500ml of water per day. And finally, you should check the noise level. If the closet is in your bedroom, you want a unit that will not interfere with your sleep. A dehumidifier that uses ultra-quiet technology will keep the noise levels below 35 decibels.
Still, you can use hanging dehumidifiers. You simply hang them in the wardrobe rail to keep the mildew smell away. The best unit lasts for 3-4 weeks before it’s replaced. And because these dehumidifiers are compact, you can carry them on your trip.
Getting Rid of Mildew Smell in the Bathroom With a Dehumidifier
If your bathroom is not well ventilated, you may notice a foul smell. Sometimes, it’s difficult to keep it away even after making some changes in your cleaning routine.
This is where a dehumidifier comes in. Bathrooms are naturally moist places. The bathwater may splash on hot shower steams or on the floor and trigger mildew growth. First, you must address the root cause of the problem. Check for burst pipes or a leaky roof.
When selecting s dehumidifier to get rid of the odors, you should consider the size and how damp the area is. Since most bathroom units are compact, you may need to empty them once a week.
Also, use a unit with an automatic shut off feature to prevent the overflow of the water collection tank. For optimal results, buy a unit with a capacity of at least 500ml.
Using a Dehumidifier To Get Rid Of Mildew Smell in Crawl Spaces
A musty smell is a red flag that mold is growing inside. Ideally, high humidity sneaks through the opening in your crawl space. Thankfully, a dehumidifier can help curb the musty odor in these areas.
These versatile units will maintain the humidity levels below 60% but above 30%. But the first step is to ventilate the area to allow in the fresh air. The unit you buy should be rated for use in crawl spaces. Other than that, it should be self-draining and of low maintenance.
To get rid of the mildew odor, you should buy a dehumidifier that gives up to 7000 square feet of coverage. In terms of capacity, it should pump out 70-80 pints of water per day. Also, check the operating temperature.
Some models can operate in areas with as low as 30 degrees F. If you want the unit to run optimally, you should keep it 6 inches from the wall. The great feature about crawl space dehumidifiers is that they need very little maintenance.
The bottom line
There’s nothing more frustrating than a musty smell coming from your home. Generally, mildew is responsible for these odors because it likes to thrive in moist places.
The smell can be found in the basement, bathrooms, closets, crawl spaces, and other damp areas. If you don’t take the right measures, it can penetrate into the walls, carpet, and furniture.
To reduce the annoying musty smell in your home, you should consider installing a dehumidifier.