Asked on Jan 19, 2020

How can I clean out odors in the basement from flooding?

VimarhonorDeb KLindsay Aratari


Hi so my basement just recently flooded via sub pump and now the whole house smells of musty cat pee. what could that be from?

12 answers
  • Dwp7470b
    on Jan 19, 2020

    Baking Soda and Lemon Juice in a Cup will assist with the scent and Humidity a little, but you are really best advised to give the entire a good Pro Cleaning with a Pressure (Soap) Washer and with something good like: Ajax Liquid or Any Laundry Detergent.

  • Michelle Leslie
    on Jan 19, 2020

    Oh dear, not sure why it smells like cat pee, but this article should help you get rid of the smell -

  • Hi Rachael - So sorry to hear about your basement! I don't have an answer to the smell, but make sure you check for and address any mold issues. There are several ways to get rid of mold, but most importantly, you need to address the root cause to keep it from returning. This article focuses on the bathroom, but is an overall great article that covers methods of how to remove mold, if bleach is safe to use, and how to prevent it from coming back. Hope this helps! Hugs, Holly

    PS - We have a FREE eBook with recipes for all of my homemade and all-natural cleaners. You can download it here -->

  • Vimarhonor
    on Jan 19, 2020

    Hello! Basement flooding can be horrifying situation. Anything inside that had contact with the water has potential to leave an odor in the construction components like drywall wood carpet and cinderblock. When our basement flooded we had to cut all the drywall rugs and baseboard out and disinfect, seal and replace it. We had a septic in front of the house....likely flood waters were contaminated.

    Are your sump pumps functional?

    We had to put into your French drains in a prior basement residence that had two new sump pumps. The threat of flooding again was serious enough that we even had a back up portable generator in case of lost of power. Fortunately that never happened.

  • Johnavallance82
    on Jan 19, 2020

    Hello there,

    Did you have Insurance? If so, maybe they can help! If not maybe a dehumidifier will remove any lingering damp!! You may find you have to TANK the basement . Wishing you well...................

  • Rosalie Rogers
    on Jan 19, 2020

    You answered your own question, didn’t you? What else can water from a sump pump smell like?

  • Sharon
    on Jan 19, 2020

    If you have a basement window or vent, in addition to a dehumidifer you could use a small clip fan or mini box fan in the window to exhaust stale musty air out of the basement. You can also buy Room Shocker that will remove the odor found at home depot, lowes etc.

    on Jan 20, 2020

    Here's what worked for us to get rid of those musty smells:

  • Lindsay Aratari
    on Jan 27, 2020

    When our basement has flooded in the past, I use a humidifier and diffuse citrus oils to purify the air

  • Deb K
    on Feb 9, 2020

    Hi Rachael, you may have to try this in piece work, For a DIY solution: Scrub the area throroughly with club soda, and let dry. Then sprinkle with ARM & HAMMER™ Baking Soda. Let it sit so the baking soda can soak up any lingering odors, and then vacuum.

    Hope this helps you out

  • Vimarhonor
    24 minutes ago

    Hello. We had a plumbing leak in our basement caused by some construction above when nail went through the molding into our plumbing pipe. This was covered by our builder - they used Servicemaster to mitigate the problem. They used an air scrubber and humidifier removed all the damaged areas -primed and sealed other areas.

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