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Garage Has a Musty Smell: How to Deodorize a Stinky Garage

If the smell of your garage is making it unbearable to spend more than a few minutes at a time in there, something must be done to eliminate the musty smell. A strong and unpleasant odor can make hobbies like carpentry and gardening difficult to pursue because we need our noses free from distractions while working on these tasks! Just a few easy changes will help rid your garage of any unwanted odors and leave your garage smelling fresh for good!

Why does my Garage have a musty smell? Mold and mildew thrive in damp, dark or humid locations. Mold can cause serious health problems if you’re not careful. Most garages typically have poor ventilation. This makes the problem worse because it allows for more intense odors and stronger smells. If you store your garbage in the garage until trash day you could also be dealing with odors from rotten or moldy food.

Garage Has a Musty Smell: How to Deodorize a Stinky Garage

If you want to spend time in your garage but it constantly smells of mold and mildew, you’ll be able to fix that issue and prevent it from ever happening again.

1. Clean Out Your Garage

Start by removing everything from your garage. You may feel that this is an unnecessary step, but this is the ONLY way you’ll be able to clean every surface. Sweep up the garage once your stuff is outside and then get a mop and bucket and give it a deep clean. If you have a pressure washer, use that instead. This will also help to get rid of any unexpected pests that may be hiding out in your garage.

Along with a deep clean, it is also key that you organize your garage properly. As proper storage practices in the garage play a vital role in preventing pests and safeguarding belongings from damage. By organizing items in sealed containers or sturdy cabinets, you create a barrier that keeps pests such as rodents and insects at bay, minimizing the accumulation of dirt and debris. Implementing effective garage storage solutions not only preserves the cleanliness of the space but also ensures the longevity of your belongings, shielding them from potential destruction caused by pests or environmental factors.

“Removing pests will almost certainly have a boosting effect on your home’s value now and in the future,” comments Ruban Selvanayagam of UK ‘We Buy Any Home’ firm Property Solvers.

2. Clean Spills and Grime Off of the Floor and Walls

Most garages are neglected and you’re likely removing years of grime that’s been growing over the years. If you find any mold and mildew, scrub it down with bleach. You’ll be shocked at how fresh your garage can smell after a deep clean

3. Apply Deodorizer to the Problem Areas

After that’s done, you’re going to need to get some white vinegar, baking soda and kitty litter. Put them in containers and leave them sitting around in the corners of your garage. This will soak up any future foul odors, just make sure to replace them every so often!

garage deodorizer garage deodorizer

4. Create Ventilation to Keep your Garage Smelling Fresh

If you want to enjoy your garage during the summer, you’re going to need to figure out a way to cool it down without opening the door. I recommend first identifying if you have any way to exhaust the heat.

If you have a window, then you won’t need to worry about installing an exhaust fan. If you don’t, then an exhaust fan is going to be the best way to start cooling down your garage. You can find DIY exhaust fan kits online or in your local big box store.

A window will allow you to install an air conditioning unit easily. But if you haven’t yet insulated your garage, then it’s a good idea to at least insulate your garage door. Otherwise, all of the cold air will constantly escape causing for an inefficient cooling method.

I also recommend a fan if you don’t want to spend a ton on cooling down your garage. With so many fans out there to choose from these days, you’ll have difficulty going wrong.

5. Low Cost Garage Door Fixes to Help with Circulation

A broken garage door can cause your garage to lack air circulation. If you’re concerned about the cost of repair you may not want to contact the garage door repair man.

Here are a few steps that may save you money and get your garage door working to help create circulation in your garage and eliminate the musty smell.

Check the Limit Switch: If your garage door opens and then closes automatically, you may have to adjust the limit switch on the back. The limit switch is on the back of your garage door opener. Each one is different, so check your manual to make sure you’re changing the right setting.

If it hits the floor and reverses, you’ll need to decrease the down travel limit switch. If it stops above the floor, then you’ll need to increase the limit switch. Learn more about garage tips and tricks here.

Final Thoughts

If you don’t maintain your garage, you’ll likely not want to spend any time in it. But the fact is, a happy garage is a happy home. Don’t forget to do proper maintenance on your garage year round!


Written By

Hi there! My name is Matt and I write for Expert Home Report. I enjoy writing about everything related to home improvement, home tips and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either spending time with my family, doing a DIY project or learning a new skill.