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Arkadelphia Siftings Herald - Arkadelphia, AR
  • Ask Angie: Trouble with room odors

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  • Dear Angie: We have a room that smells like an animal died in it, but weíve checked everywhere and canít find a cause. What do you suggest? - Pamela N., Parkton, N.C.
    Dear Pamela: Putting a finger on whatís causing you to hold your nose will take patience and possibly some professional help.
    You may be correct that an animal, such a mouse, has died within your walls, in the chimney or some other hard-to-access location. If thatís the case, within about two weeks the body should eventually decompose to the point where the smell decreases and disappears.
    But donít overlook other possible causes of foul odor, including mold, pet urine and natural gas. Sometimes, the source is as simple as food decomposing under furniture or between cushions.
    If youíre confident the cause is an animal, seal all holes and gaps around pipes and entrances with caulk to prevent further encroachment. You may want to consult with a pest-control expert or exterminator.
    If an animal doesnít seem the likely cause, and youíve exhausted other possibilities, consider talking to companies that clean up after water and smoke damage. Even if water or smoke isnít the source, damage-restoration experts may be able to point you in the right direction. Also, a reputable remediation company has experience in dealing with odors in ways that cause the least damage to a home.
    Expect to pay at least $150 for someone to find the odor source, and possibly more for any cleanup and prevention measures.
    If you decide to wait and see - or smell - if it goes away, consider applying household cleaners in the room, as well as placing a bowl of vinegar in it.
    Each month, Angieís List collects more than 65,000 consumer reviews covering 720-plus home and health services. We welcome your questions at askangie@angieslist.com. For answers, Angieís List researchers condense the best advice from highly rated service pros.

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