A laundry room should always smell fresh and clean, but you may notice odors occasionally. These odors are typically caused by bacteria that could spread into your home and cause many health issues. Below, we look at the most common reasons for this and what you can do to rectify it.

A Dirty Washer or Dryer

Soap scum can build up inside a washer, thereby providing the environment bacteria need to thrive, which leads to foul odors. The dryer can also be a source of the problem, especially if you have an issue with the thermostat that leads to the machine being less efficient than it should be.

Such bacteria can grow on the washer’s lip, the basin, or the door aperture. The best way to eliminate this bacteria is to thoroughly wash the washer and dryer. Once done, clean the floor and the area around the dryer, checking whether there are any leaks that could provide the environment that bacteria and mold need to thrive and lead to this issue again.

The Drains Are Not Well Vented

Once a washing machine is installed, most homeowners do not pay any more attention to the drainpipe until they notice a problem. The first thing many notice when there is an issue is an odor, after which they discover flooding on the laundry room floor.

Since the drainpipe is often connected to the sewer line, not venting it properly could lead to the p-trap installed in the drainpipe to prevent water and gases from getting back into the home being ineffective. Additionally, there may be a water buildup in the pipe due to a siphoning effect, leading to flooding in your laundry room.

Every drainpipe in your laundry room has to be vented properly by a qualified and experienced plumber to avoid these issues. You can read on here to learn more about venting a laundry drain and hiring the right plumber.

Sewer Line Issues

A common sewer problem that causes odors in the laundry room is backup, which happens when wastewater flows backward or sits in the pipes instead of flowing away from the house. If you have a cracked or broken sewer line, it could be leaking and thus causing dirty water to seep underneath your floors and into the laundry room.

Additionally, gases can escape through the crack and directly into the laundry room. A sign that you have issues in your sewer lines or a sewer problem is cracked or broken grouting near and around the drain.

Improper Ventilation

Every room that has significant moisture in the home must be ventilated properly. These include the kitchen, bathroom, basement, and laundry room. Rooms like the bathroom and laundry rooms can easily trap odors due to their small size and infrequent use.

If you have this issue in either, install an exhaust fan. The fan will remove all the humid air and odors from the room, thereby eliminating the problem.

Odors in your laundry room can mean a lot of things, from lack of ventilation to serious issues that require the services of a plumber. If you cannot fix the issue yourself, it is best to avoid making it worse and instead have a qualified and experienced plumber take care of it for you.


Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.

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