How to Stop Smells From Coming Through Vents: 6 Best Tips

Is there a musty smell lurking around your house with no apparent source, and regardless of how many air fresheners you spray around or how many times you clean the house, it won’t go away? Let us tell you that the culprit is most probably your air vents.

Maybe they’re full of accumulated dirt that’s causing an unpleasant smell to waft around, or maybe your entire HVAC system is working improperly. No matter what the problem is, you’ll find out how to fix it in this article, so keep on reading!

If you need to get your air ducts cleaned right away for a reasonable price, get in touch with us today!

6 Best Tips on How to Stop Smells From Coming Through Vents

Here’s a list of the most effective methods you can try to stop smells from coming through your vents!

1. Clean Your Air Vents

How to Stop Smells From Coming Through Vents - Woman cleaning return air vent with duster

The first and easiest method you should try is cleaning your air vents thoroughly. If there’s a buildup of dirt or mold inside, it can cause unpleasant smells in your house. Luckily, it’s an easy fix.

All you have to do is unscrew the vent covers and vacuum them to get all the trapped dust out. Then, wipe them clean with a sponge dipped in soap and water. Pass the watery sponge over the insides of the ducts, and check to see that there aren’t dead animals or insects inside causing this smell.

You can also put a moisture absorber inside the air ducts to remove any residue odors, like baking soda or charcoal.

2. Install a Charcoal Filter Over Your Vents

If you clean your air vents and the bad smell coming from there still persists, you should install a charcoal filter over your vent covers. Charcoal is one of the best natural odor absorbers known to man, and you can find these filters in any local supermarket around you.

Luckily, installing them is an easy process that doesn’t call for professionals. All you have to do is take off the covers of your vents and stick the filters to them using adhesive tape. However, make sure to buy filters that fit the size of your vents, or you can get cut-to-fit filters.

3. Check Your Air Filter

Accumulated dust inside air filters can affect the flow of fresh air through your house, causing unpleasant smells and tiny dirt particles to hang around. In this case, you’ll need to vacuum the filter and clean it thoroughly using soap and water. Afterward, the musty odors should vanish.

Note that if your air filter looks too far gone to be cleaned properly, you should think about replacing it.

4. Use an Air Purifier

Close up of white air purifier on the floor in living room the background of young Asian woman relaxes.

If you live in a highly polluted area, your ventilation system might not be enough to keep the odd smells at bay. That’s why you should use an air purifier.

These purifiers give you premium-quality air by filtering out dust particles, pet hair, and multiple pollutants. Not only can these cause musty smells, but they can also trigger asthma and allergies.

However, it’s important you choose an appropriately sized air purifier according to the size of your house. If you get a small one, it won’t give you the desired effect.

5. Communicate With Your Neighbor About the Smell

It might seem far-fetched, but getting odd smells from a neighbor’s house is a pretty common occurrence, especially since many buildings now have joint ventilation systems between apartments. Talking to your neighbor about the smell might clear up its source if the problem is at their place, not yours.

6. Hire a Professional Air Duct Cleaning Company

The weird smell inside your house might be the result of a dead animal, a mold buildup, or a pest infestation inside your air ducts. All of these problems call for professional help. Luckily, we can help you with that!

At Clearview Air Duct Cleaning, we send professionals that perform a complete air duct treatment in your house, cleaning the HVAC vents and ducts efficiently and removing any sources of smell. We also do after-inspection visits to ensure the cleaning methods are effective.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Should I Do If I Smell Natural Gas Coming From My Vents?

If you smell natural gas coming through your vents, you could have a faulty burner or leak in your building. As fast as possible, you should switch off all of your appliances, open the windows to ventilate the house and evacuate. Once you’re out, call your utility company or landlord to find the source of the issue.

When Do I Need to Hire a Professional HVAC Technician?

If you suspect your house smells weird because of a malfunction in your HVAC unit, you should hire an expert technician. They’ll check that your unit is working properly and your air vents are delivering clean air inside your house efficiently. 

A malfunction in your ventilation system can drastically lower the quality of air inside your rooms, which makes it more challenging to get rid of smells.

How Often Should I Get My Air Ducts Professionally Cleaned?

According to the NADCA, you should get your air ducts professionally cleaned every three to five years. For more information on the topic, check out this article!

To Wrap Up

Having a weird smell in your house can be irritating, especially if you don’t know where it’s coming from. On the assumption that the culprit is your vents, you should clean the covers and ducts, install charcoal filters, or check your air filters. If the problem still persists, you should contact a professional duct cleaning company to get your vents and ducts thoroughly checked and cleaned.

If you want to get an accurate price quote and reserve a visit, contact us now!