How To Get Rid Of Mildew Smell In Bathroom? Comprehensive Guide

Helen Skeates
Helen Skeates
30 min read

Determine where the mildew smell is coming from before trying to get rid of it. As you continue to read the essay, you’ll learn more about this.

How are mold and mildew identified?

There are numerous ways to spot mold growth. Smelling musty, earthy odors when entering the bathroom is a sure sign of mold growth. Mold has been compared as the smell of musty, wet socks by others. Mold emits an odiferous odor regardless of how it grows.

Observing the bathroom for signs of mold is another way to tell if it’s there. Mold can be identified by the abrupt appearance of dark, ugly splotches. Colors range from green to black, depending on the kind of mold growing on the walls or behind the toilet.

Why Your Mobile Home Smells Like Mildew & How To Fix It

Keep in mind, however, that mold can be smelled before it is seen. Behind walls and inside pipes, mold colonies can thrive. When mold thrives in the nooks and crannies of your bathroom, it’s best to bring in a mold removal professional.

Mold and mildew may easily be distinguished. Mosquitoes are tough to eradicate because their spores penetrate deep into porous objects. When it comes to mildew, though, it can be simply scrubbed away with a scouring brush.

Why does mold grow in the bathroom?

Mold spores are drawn to moist, dark, and nutrient-rich environments. Mold thrives in the bathroom because of the persistent moisture from hot showers, the frequent darkness, and the high levels of indoor humidity.

Behind the toilet, within the shower curtain folds, on the bottom of shampoo bottles, and inside the cupboards are frequent places for infestations. It is common for mold to grow near the faucets, bathtub, and fan. Mold can be observed growing on tile grout and paint.

What are effects of mold exposure?

Inhaling musty scents in the bathroom is unpleasant, but breathing in the microscopic mold spores that float in the air is hazardous to one’s health. Inhaling mold can cause a variety of symptoms, such as a runny nose, a headache, and even respiratory issues. Mold can cause asthma symptoms in people who are already asthmatic.

In addition to health hazards, mold can cause structural damage. Porous materials are notoriously attacked by spores, which are microscopic microscopic organisms. It is possible for mold to grow along the drywall or wood and undermine the home’s structural integrity and pose a risk to its occupants’ safety.

How are musty odors prevented?

Preventing the musty odors in the bathroom is as simple as preventing mold from taking hold. To keep the bathroom dry, it’s important to have enough airflow there. Moisture-deficient environments are inhospitable to mold spore growth.

While showering, turn on the bathroom fan and leave it on for 30 minutes to help lower humidity and moisture levels in the bathroom. Open a window instead. Alternatively, you can use a dehumidifier or a tiny fan in the bathroom if neither is accessible.

Towels should be hung to dry rather than put in a hamper after a shower. Mold will thrive in the hamper’s dim corners and on the towel’s moisture. In the bathroom, it’s a good idea to move any permanent wall art so that you can clean the back of the wall.

One of mold’s greatest deterrents is a well-maintained restroom. In addition to being clean, a sanitary environment is likely to have a pleasant odor. Regular cleaning will help keep the bathroom free of mold growth. To prevent the spread of fungus, mold, mildew, and unpleasant odors, disinfecting bathroom cleaning products are essential.

Professional Mold Remediation

Professional mold remediation companies like ServiceMaster EMT can help homeowners who notice excessive mold development in their bathrooms. Large mold colonies require the expertise of educated professionals.

First, ServiceMaster EMT’s mold remediation professionals arrive on the scene to locate the source of the mold. The only way to get rid of mold is to find and fix the source of the moisture. Mold can’t grow without moisture, as previously stated.

Mold remediation specialists from ServiceMaster EMT are careful not to distribute the mold spores to other areas in the house during their work. Using our tools, we were able to keep the mold-infested bathroom contained. Mold spores can be dangerous if inhaled, which is why we require that all of our technicians wear respirators.

Once the mold-damaged items have been replaced or restored, we thoroughly disinfect the entire area. Thermal fogging and nano carbon technology, as well as modern processes like air washing and polluted air treatment, are used by our repair professionals to eradicate the scents.

The Mildew Smell Explained

You may think that your bathroom smells earthy because it doesn’t have enough airflow. That explains a portion of it.

Specifically, the absence of ventilation in your bathroom resulted in an uncontrolled amount of moisture. Because of the lack of moisture control, mildew began to grow.

Your bathroom’s foul odor is caused by mildew. As with mold, mildew gives out a musty odor, which should serve as a warning sign if mold is taking hold in your bathroom.

To answer your query, “what does house mold smell like?” here is an article that compares mildew and mold odors.

Mildew, on the other hand, isn’t as harmful to your home as mold. Although mold development could occur as a result, that’s a whole different scenario.

When you discover about mildew’s unpleasant odor, you might question how it got into your bathroom in the first place. You’ll find the answer to that question in the following paragraphs.

How Does Mildew Grow In Bathrooms?

There are numerous similarities between mold and mildew. It’s important that they have a suitable environment in which they can thrive.

Mold and mildew require moisture, a food source, a specified temperature, and oxygen in order to thrive. Water is the final condition they must meet, and it’s not difficult at all.

Thus, practically every part of your household meets the second requirement. Mold and mildew spores can only grow on a surface if there is a leak or other water damage.

Shower tiles and paint can be stained by mildew, which typically grows on them. However, as previously said, mold development can occur, and this is a more serious problem.

When mold grows on a surface, its roots penetrate that surface, eroding its integrity. It’s possible that mold will destroy your drywall if it gets inside of it.

Mold-infested drywalls are typically replaced. This article on the finest mold-resistant drywall may be of assistance to you in reducing your risk of contracting mold.

To get rid of the musty odor in your bathroom, you’ll need to follow a few simple measures. Investigate the many methods for removing the mildew smell.

8 Best Ways To Get Rid Of Mildew Smell

Prevention is the key

As with shag carpets and beeswax, you may take efforts to prevent mildew from forming in the first place by following a few simple guidelines, just like you can protect your kitchen counters from tarnishing by using beeswax.

Keeping an eye on their home’s humidity might help homeowners and renters catch mildew odors early on before they become a major problem. The ideal humidity range, according to the Mayo Clinic, is 30 to 50 percent. It’s a good idea to turn on the exhaust fan while taking a shower, and to wipe down the bathroom after you’ve finished showering to prevent mold and mildew from building up. Aside from that, they advise opening windows to get fresh air into the house and prevent mildew odours from developing.

Open the windows and improve airflow

The lack of sufficient airflow in your home, as previously discussed, is a major contributing factor to your home’s musty odor. Open the windows in your house at least once a day for up to 20 minutes to have continuous circulation throughout the house with a concentration on a lovely cross breeze, according to Aunt Fannies, a company that makes plant-based cleaning solutions. This is an easy method to do this. All Dry USA, a firm that specializes in emergency restoration in Florida, Illinois, New York, North Carolina, and Texas, recommends installing ceiling fans in rooms where you want increased air flow.

Per Angi, it’s also an excellent idea to check and see if your air ducts have acquired mold. Some of the signs that you may have mold growing are a mildew smell inside your home and issues with your health, including headaches, a runny nose, nausea, and even allergies.

Try a diluted bleach mixture

It’s also a good idea to inspect your air ducts for mold, according to Angi. It is possible that you have mold growing in your home because of a mildew smell and various health problems including a runny nose, nausea and even allergies.

However, if you’re not in the mood to do things yourself, that’s entirely understandable. Mold and mildew can be treated using a variety of treatments on the market, including Concrobium 25326 Mold Control Spray, which can eliminate mold and mildew odors and keep them from returning. If you want to keep your shower free of mold and mildew, consider using RMR-86 Instant Mold and Mildew Stain Remover Spray. Fortunately, there are treatments available online and in stores for treating mildew and mold damage to your clothing and other textiles.

Use white vinegar

Here at House Digest, white vinegar is an essential part of our cleaning arsenal. For one thing, we may use it to get rid of stains in the toilet without having to scrub, and it can also be used to freshen up the laundry. For mildew and mold treatment, vinegar cleaners are effective. According to Today, this includes stains on fabric, carpet, upholstery, or hard surfaces, regardless of whether they are in the kitchen or bathroom. It’s also recommended to use lemon and white vinegar or a professional dry cleaner if bleach isn’t an option for you, depending on the severity of the stain.

For stubborn mold and mildew stains, recommends sprinkling distilled white vinegar over and letting it soak in for up to four hours. This will help break down the stains and begin the process of eradicating the smell in your home for good.

Try baking soda and water

After using white vinegar to break up the stain, The Maids, a countrywide cleaning service, recommends using a mixture of baking soda and water to scrub away any remaining stains, which should eliminate the mildew smell. Baking soda and water, according to the manufacturer, are particularly effective in getting rid of more aggressive molds. Spray the stain with water and 1/4 tsp. baking soda, shake vigorously, then proceed to work your magic!

Mold and mildew can be effectively combated by mixing water and baking soda, according to Treehugger, an environmental news source. If you’re seeking for a mild cleaner to reduce the problem and the scent, vinegar can be added to the mixture. The secret is to let the solution stay for a while before cleaning it away with a sponge or cloth.

Get a dehumidifier

The relative humidity in your home should be kept between 30% and 50% at all times, which is why purchasing a dehumidifier is a wise decision. In the case of mildew in your home, this is especially true. Please explain in detail how the appliance functions. According to Healthline, a dehumidifier removes moisture from the air, preventing the growth of mold and mildew as well as their unpleasant odor. In order to achieve the desired level of humidity, portable dehumidifiers can be purchased at big box stores like The Home Depot or Lowe’s as well as online! When you get to the bottom of the problem, you and your home will both be healthier as a result.

You can prevent mold and mildew from forming in your home by using a dehumidifier, says Bob Vila. Using a fan to circulate fresh air is also recommended, according to the source.

Save silica gels or use other humidity eaters

When you receive certain things, do you ever take note of the silica gel packets that are included in the box? Business Insider recommends saving them rather than throwing them away. Here’s why:. Sucking moisture from the air has never been easier thanks to these handy little packets! Who would have guessed? Also, they’re a cost-free option for you to control regions of your home that are more humid and mildew-smelling. Keeping these little packets in basements or other moist spaces is an excellent method to keep musty odors at bay, even if the source warns that youngsters (and pets!) should not have access to them. Even a sweaty gym bag or a water-damaged phone can benefit from silica gel packets, according to the media site!

If you’re not a regular shopper, you may not have these items on hand. Charcoal can also be used as a humidity-eating product! Hunker proposes using an old coffee can punctured with holes and filled with charcoal to absorb excess moisture and combat mildew odors as a DIY project to combat mildew odors.

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Keep odors at bay

As far as scents go, you’ll want to keep the mildew and musty aromas out of your home. In the hope that after implementing the above suggestions, your musty issues would be a thing of the past. However, in case you’re still looking for more ways to keep your house smelling fantastic, here are a few suggestions. As a leading air purification and filtration provider, Molekule recommends making your own potpourri (exactly like grandma used to do) with organic essential oils like rose or jasmine plants, as well as making your own potpourri (just like grandma used to do). Sage can even be used to purify the air in your home of any lingering bad vibes.

A pot of fresh citrus peels should be simmering on the stove, according to Good Housekeeping. “I learned this from my crafty and obsessive-cleaning mother. Adding citrus slices and herbs like lavender or mint to a small pot of simmering water is a simple way to add flavor to your food, according to interior designer Rhobin DelaCruz. Refresh the space with a new, inviting aroma after the mold has been removed – it’s certain to work!

What Does Mildew Smell Like?

People often use the term “musty” to describe a stench of mildew. A mildewy house can smell like damp socks, decaying wood, or paper when it’s covered with it. If the scent lingers after you’ve aired the area, you have mildew, which is an early stage of mold. Mold is more likely if the odor lingers; mildew is more likely if the odor disappears.

How to Remove Mildew Smell From Towels

First and foremost, you’ll need to determine the source of that foul odor. Your towels, if you’re lucky, may be the source of the smell. If that’s the case, give them a 30 minute soak in all-fabric bleach, then rinse and wash them. It’s best to get your hands dirty if you detect a dismal, discolored mildew patch in the tub.

Methods for Removing the Mildew Smell

Taking care of a bathroom needs time and effort. Maintaining their impeccable condition is crucial because you use them for the most personal of tasks. You can’t control everything, and mildew can creep into your home even if you do everything you can to prevent it. Is there a starting point?


  • Vinegar can be soaked in a sponge or sprayed on the afflicted regions.
  • Let the mildew soak in the solution for a few hours before rinsing it off.
  • Use a gritty sponge to scrub. Do you have an old toothbrush? That’ll do just well, too!

Essential Oils

With essential oils, you may get rid of bad odors while also inhaling delicious aromas! Vinegar can be used as a disinfectant once it has been soaked and washed.

  • Spray grapefruit seed extract with a little water after diluting it.
  • Spray the mildew with the solution to lessen the vinegar’s scent while also enhancing vinegar’s capacity to kill the mildew.

Tea Tree Oil

You can also use tea tree oil, which has antifungal effects, to treat fungal infections. As an alternative to vinegar, you can just add tea tree oil. Even yet, it’s far more pleasant to smell than vinegar.

  • Spray it in a spray bottle with water diluted in it.
  • Apply to the afflicted area.
  • Wait a few minutes before scrubbing it off.

What prevents mold growth and related smells?

Cleanup of mold is necessary to eliminate the bathroom’s musty smell. Mold is readily eradicated by the use of chlorine bleach. Tiles can be cleaned with a solution of one part water and one part bleach. The moldy tiles should be cleaned with a bleach solution and then dried thoroughly before using.

Use the same bleach and water solution to get rid of mold development on wood. For a powerful cleaning solution, combine one part bleach with four parts water. A bleach and water cleaning solution works well on painted surfaces that have become moldy. Once the surfaces have been cleaned, make an effort to completely dry them out, especially any wood or painted surfaces.

To remove mold and mildew from a shower curtain, use a light detergent and a sponge to thoroughly clean it. A mildew-stained shower curtain can also be cleaned by soaking it in a cleaning solution of bleach and water. Replace the shower curtain if the mold and mildew don’t vanish after a soak in bleach and water.

The key to preventing the smell of mildew is to reduce the amount of moisture. The bathroom, laundry room, and air conditioning ducts should be checked for mold.

  • If your bathroom fans aren’t removing the majority of the moisture within five to ten minutes, it’s possible that they aren’t moving enough air. The cfm volume of your fan should be marked on a label under the grille, which you can typically find. Replace it if it’s too tiny for your bathroom’s dimensions. What to do if you find mold on the walls of your bathroom..
  • A humidity-sensitive fan that automatically turns on and off when moisture levels in the ceiling increase and fall is a great investment for your home.
  • Every time you take a shower, be sure to squeegee it.

Best Natural Mold Removers

To begin, here are some of the best natural mold eradication methods. Before looking at some helpful DIY recipes, let’s have a look at some of our favorite natural mold control products. The best answer for your problem will be found by carefully examining the capabilities of each product (because some mold problems require more extensive solutions).

1. Concrobium Mold Control Spray (BEST OVERALL)

Natural mold removal Concrobium Mold Spray is an excellent example. Because it doesn’t employ harsh chemicals, it packs a powerful punch You never know, it could be the ideal solution for your problem.

These scents can be eliminated with the help of this spray. Because it’s a spray-on product, it’s really simple to use. There is no need to scrub or rinsing. Wait for the spray to dry before applying. A layer of mold-killing substance formed as it dries, preventing future growth.

Plus, it’s completely risk-free. Neither bleach nor harsh chemicals are used to clean the surface of this product. Aside from the fact that it’s safe for you, it’s also safe to use on a variety of surfaces.

In addition, it’s a wonderful value. Get 80 to 110 square feet of activity in a 32 oz. bottle

This is our top selection since it works well, is simple to use, and contains no harsh chemicals or bleach! The best of all worlds: value and efficiency.


  • The formula has no harsh chemicals or bleach.
  • Mold and mildew can be effectively treated with this product.
  • It’s a good deal.
  • Each bottle covers up to 110 square feet.


  • Not recommended if you have severe mold issues (best to speak with a professional)


One of our favorite mold elimination products is ZORBX Spray. This is a chemical-free formula that can be used by everyone. Non-toxic, hypoallergenic and safe for everyone—pets, humans, and the planet!—it is. Nontoxic and phthalate-free, as well as free of harsh chemicals and bleach and odor-inducing enzymes.

Regardless, it’s effective, as several customer testimonials show. Carpets, wood, tile, appliances, and more can all benefit from this mold-killing material. A mild, non-abrasive cleaner that removes mold and prevents recurrence is what you’ll need.

It’s also quite user-friendly. Spray and wait for the results. It removes the mold by dissolving it at the molecular level and lifting it up, making cleanup a breeze.

Even though it’s more expensive, keep in mind that this is an extra-strong recipe made in the United States.


  • This product is safe for everyone and environmentally friendly.
  • There will be no noxious scents.
  • Any surface can be used with this product!
  • The product is manufactured in the United States.


  • It’s worth it.
  • It’s not quite as extensive as bleach or other harsh chemicals.

3. Magical Mold Remover Gel

Mold Remover Gel is our next stop. In contrast to the other products we’ve looked at, this gel-based Japanese formula is unique.

Mold in hard-to-reach mold hot spots can be cleaned using this solution. The narrow nozzle is designed for direct application of mold remover to specific locations, for a concentrated blast.

Apply the mold to typical cracks, crevices, and spots where mold commonly grows. There are a number of places that need to be cleaned around sinks and other fixtures. After 3-5 hours, the gel-lined regions are washed with water to remove any remaining mold.

It’s straightforward to use, and it’s a more direct method than the sprays mentioned above.

And the best part is that this formula is chemical-free! Ingredients include organic oils, cinnamon extract, and other non-GMO items.


  • Excellent for removing mold from hard-to-reach places.
  • Many common mold hotspots can be used.
  • All-natural components list with no harsh chemicals.


  • Time-consuming, but good for small cracks and fissures only….
  • Large-scale mold infestations necessitate a different approach.

DIY Solutions

There are only a few natural mold removers on the market. When it comes to mold remediation, strong chemicals and bleach are a must-have.

The good news is that you still have options to choose from. Using common household items, we’ll show you how to produce your own natural mold remedies.

Let us be clear: these are not as effective as bleach or other chemical-based cleaning products. If you have a lesser mold problem, though, these products may be precisely what the doctor ordered.

4. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is our first citric acid weapon! Mold may be removed pretty well using lemon juice. It’s easy to brush off and dispose of mold because to the high concentration of citric acid in the solution. Even little levels of black mold can be treated with it.

Moreover, lemon juice is completely safe and non-toxic for use by humans, animals, or the environment. In addition, it exudes a delightful citrus aroma.

Lemon juice can be diluted with water if you choose, but it works just as well on its own. It’s best to use 100% lemon juice, like the one we’ve referred to above. When the citric acid has worked its magic on the mold, use a moist towel to wipe the area clean. Use it and you’ll be amazed at the results!


  • Ingredients that are as simple as possible while still retaining their natural properties.
  • Citric acid’s incredible strength!
  • Smells of citrus.
  • It’s a great value.
  • Suitable for use on practically any type of material.


  • This isn’t for serious mold issues.

5. Hydrogen Peroxide Mixture

Another safe and effective technique to deal with mold is with hydrogen peroxide. Antibacterial and antifungal characteristics of hydrogen peroxide make it a good mold remover, as well. Walls, appliances, bathroom fixtures, and sinks are all good candidates for this technique because of their hard surfaces. We don’t advocate using hydrogen peroxide on soft surfaces or wood because of its high corrosiveness.

There is no need to dilute it. Spray the moldy area with a solution of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (such as the one linked to above). To remove the mold, first let it sit for 10 minutes to allow the hydrogen peroxide to do its work before vigorously rubbing it away.

Despite its chemical-sounding name, hydrogen peroxide is a naturally occurring substance that poses no health risk. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved. For the present being, it does have a minor odor, but that should fade over time.


  • Application and scrubbing are both simple.
  • Surfaces of all kinds can benefit from this product’s versatility.
  • The most cost-effective option.


  • Avoid over-applying to avoid discoloration or damage to some surfaces.

6. Baking Soda

One of the best things about baking soda is its versatility. It’s completely risk-free and works wonders for a wide range of tasks. It does a great job of breaking up mold, and it’s very simple to use. Baking soda’s safety and nontoxicity should go without saying.

It’s simple to make your own baking soda solution at home. Simply mix one part baking soda with one part water and you’re ready to go! Stir vigorously until a “paste-like” consistency is achieved by keeping the mixture 50/50. Use a hard-bristled brush to remove any mold after applying a paste material to the affected region.

As an added benefit, baking soda can be used to keep mold at bay. Baking soda absorbs moisture from the air, which is a major source of mold growth. It’s a good idea to have baking soda in your kitchen’s cabinets and refrigerator to avoid future mold issues.

Using a DIY spray, you can harness this power of protection. Baking soda and water are all you need to make a paste. Spraying the affected region with this mixture is considerably easier because it is much more diluted. Allowing the baking soda to dry will “protect” the area from further mold growth.


  • For mold removal as well as mold defense.
  • An all-purpose cleaner that is odorless, non-toxic, and safe to use on any surface.
  • Add water and you’re good to go!
  • High return on investment.


  • If you have a tiny mold problem, this is the way to go.

7. Distilled White Vinegar

You may also use vinegar as a mold-killing agent in your home! Mold can be broken up and easily removed with the acidic properties of distilled white vinegar.

Vinegar may be used to clean and deodorize a broad variety of surfaces effectively. In the video below, you can see how successful it is at killing black mold, but it isn’t as powerful as bleach.

If you’re dealing with a lesser mold problem, vinegar is still a great option because it’s non-toxic and safe for everyone. No dilution is required. To use, simply spray it on the affected region. After an hour or so, wipe the area clean.

However, we don’t advocate using it on delicate fabrics or other soft materials.

You can make your own DIY remedy, but be aware of the odor!


  • This method works well for smaller mold issues.
  • The vinegar can be poured directly into a spray bottle without any dilution.
  • This is an extremely budget-friendly solution.


  • A strong vinegar scent pervades the air.
  • Disadvantageous compared to chemicals like bleach, which are more potent.

Buying Guide

Here are a few things to keep in mind as we near the end of our discussion. It is our goal to help you choose the best mold remover for your specific situation. Consider the following before deciding one of the products above to purchase:

Extent of Your Problem

In order to make an informed decision, you must start with this factor. The amount of your mold problem will determine the type of mold removal service you need.

For a range of different types of surfaces, several of the alternatives listed above work well. However, your mold problem may necessitate the use of more powerful chemicals. The effectiveness of these chemicals is undeniable, but there is a clear trade-off when taking into account their toxicity and influence on the ecosystem.

2 Easy Ways On How To Get Rid Of Mildew Smell In Bathroom - Krostrade

It’s possible to avoid this if at all possible. Consider using the products listed above to deal with minor mold problems. If you’re still unsure about the best course of action, talk to a specialist.

Ingredients and Their Effect

For those who have made the decision to use a natural mold removal method, there are still numerous choices accessible. The components of each solution will be a major factor in your decision-making process. If you’re concerned about discoloration or damage, pay attention to the potency of the components (and other factors, such as the smell).

All-natural goods include variable levels of components, each with its own set of advantages for a variety of uses.


Also pay attention to the surfaces that are recommended. Where you may and cannot use the mold removal product is determined by this. Some products have a narrow range of applications, while others can be used on a wide range of surfaces. This is usually due to the fact that they are too powerful for some surfaces and might cause harm.

The targeted surfaces of most store-bought products are clearly marked.


Getting rid of mildew smell in bathroom can be accomplished in a number of different ways, as you’ve learned here. In addition to dealing with mildew, there are a number of other procedures that need to be taken before you can deal with it.

Helen Skeates

Helen Skeates

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