My husband and I live in a 40 plus yr old brick home on a slab. For a couple of years we have had a problem with a musty smell in one of our bedrooms. Since Hurricane Ike the smell is also in our Master Bedroom which is next to the other bedroom. The windows in the rooms face south. (We were not a victim of rising water.) You can not see any visual signs of water damage or mold. Someone suggested that the water came in around the windows and drained down to the slab. There is a crack in the brick at the corner of the Master Bedroom window.
The smell seems to have a life of its' own as it waxes and wanes. The smell might be so strong it would knock you over, then later in the day you can hardly smell it. The smell seems to come from the left hand corner of each room which is to the left of the window. But it never totally goes away.
Does anyone have any suggestions as to what might be causing this and where to go for help to solve this mystery.
I was sure I posted an answer to you the other day but I don't see it here so I'm not sure what happened. I would call in the pros and have them check things out, it sounds like water probably got in somewhere and mold is growing and that's not something you want to mess with. Just because you don't see anything doesn't mean there's not mold growing behind the walls, etc.
State Farm is going to send out a claim adjuster. We definately are going to call in a pro whether or not it is covered, but what type of pro do we need? Because of the situtiaon with the hurrincane I am concerned about getting someone who is less than honest.
The odd thing is that the musty ordor comes and goes; all in the same day. Go figure!
I'd look for someone who repairs water damage or does mold remediation, that's probably your best bet. Just make sure you check with the BBB or get references from someone you know. Your insurance adjuster can probably recommend someone, they most likely have people they've dealt with in the past. Or if you've got Angie's List in your area that's a good source to find reviews on contractors.
As far as why the smell varies, it could be due to differences in temperature, humidity, or airflow in the house at different times of the day, or if you're in that area for a while your nose tends to get used to smells and you don't notice them as much anymore, but if you go out for a while you may notice it more when you come back in.
I think I may have came up with the cause. We have laminated wood floors that have a pad underneath them to reduce the noise. At the corner were the smell is coming from I noticed a slight bulge in the laminate at the wall. The pad under the laminate must have gotten wet some how and has mildewed.
I agree with you as why the smell comes and goes is due to heat or humidity. When we go to bed there usually isn't too much of a smell. Around 5:30 a.m. or so the smell comes back. During the day we do not spend much time in the bedrooms. Sometimes one room smells and not the other. It is strange.
I bet that's it, is there an easy way to pull up the flooring and replace the pad? That could save you money if you could do it yourself. I'd still have someone come out and inspect the area though, water could have gotten other places too and you wouldn't want to miss an area where mold is growing.