Does My Clean Laundry Really Smell That Bad?
Imagine living in a home you are convinced smells funky. You spend weeks opening every cupboard and upending every piece of furniture looking for the source of the smell. No luck. Then one day you realize you still smell the bad odor even outside your house. You put your head down to smell your shirt and suddenly it hits you: the funky smell is coming from your clothing.
Believe it or not, it’s fairly common for clean laundry to still smell funky. The thing is that most people do not realize it. They just assume that clothes fresh out of the dryer are truly clean. They may not be. Worse yet, those fabric softener strips may add a bit of fragrance that prevents you from smelling funky clothing straight out of the dryer. The funky smells may not hit you until days later.
Zephyr Fresh, a company that makes and sells HVAC scent diffuser systems, says that masking odors doesn’t really get clothes clean. So wearing funky smelling clothing means carrying those smells around with you wherever you go. The solution is to figure out why your clothes smell that way and then address the problem directly.
Dirty Washing Machine and Dryer
One of the leading causes of funky smelling clothes are dirty washing machines and dryers. Yes, they do get dirty over time. Your washing machine is especially susceptible because mold can easily grow in places you cannot see. This suggests your first step is to go stick your head near the opening of both machines and take a whiff.
If something does not smell right, get yourself down to the store and buy a cleaning product. You can find cleaning products in grocery stores, home improvement stores, and just about anywhere machines and dryers are sold.
Exposure to Moisture
If your washer and dryer seemed to be fine, the next thing to check on is excessive moisture. For example, do you wash your clothes in a basement that is normally damp? And if so, do you ever dry your clothes on a line in the basement rather than putting them in the dryer?
There are all sorts of microbes in the air at all times. If your clothes are exposed to a damp environment, they provide a breeding ground for those microbes. Pulling clean laundry out of the washer and hanging it in a damp area is an open invitation to funky smells. The same goes for letting your clean laundry sit in the dryer for several days before taking it out and folding it.
Detergent That Doesn’t Work
On a typical day, the average person’s clothing gets soiled with sweat, sebum (oil), dead skin cells, and more. What’s more, clothes get soiled even when you’re not working hard enough to break a sweat. Your laundry might smell funky because the detergent you use isn’t really getting your clothes clean.
Sometimes the easiest and most effective solution is just to change up your laundry detergent. If you use your detergent sparingly in an attempt to save money, maybe you are just not using enough. Follow the directions on the package and see what happens.
There are lots of things that could cause funky smells in the home. And unfortunately, uncovering the source of those smells can be more difficult than it seems. If your home smells funky because your clothes smell funky, you now know what to do about it. Get rid of the odors by addressing them at their source. Once they are gone, your whole house will smell fresher and cleaner.