Basement smells w/three or more possibilities as to why.
Posted by Robert on February 04, 2004 at 14:20:40:
I live in a Ranch-style home built in 1956. I�ve had a smell coming from the basement in the laundry room. It is a gassy odor. Not totally the kind that comes from sewage, but kinda like a heavy laundry or ala wet dog smell. It is particularly strong near the clothes washer/dryer/furnace area. This is not a issue with dry drains as I've poured lots of water and bleach in the drains.

Possibility #1: Could it be that the sanitary sewer stack on the roof is plugged? I've heard of hardware stores (haven't started looking yet) selling for ten bucks or so a bladder (appropriately enough :-) attachment that you can put on a garden hose; when you run water it puffs up to form a seal against the vent pipe and then creates a high-pressure pulsing jet of water to attempt to clear clogs. Also, read that 12 ounces of this copper sulfate crystals mixed with 1 gallon of hot water, and then pour it down the drain slowly. Let it stand two hours, then flush with 5 gallons of cold water. The smell will be gone for good. Do I call Mr. Rooter or another drain-cleaning company and tell them to have the sanitary sewer stack snaked out?

Possibility #2: I've been reading a lot (http://www.masterhandyman.com/columndetails.cfm?pubdate=20021123) about these fresh-air exchanges for the furnace Skuttle model 216, and the Equaliz-Air by Xavier. My house doesn't have fresh air intake or exhaust pipe on the furnance allowing it to breath properly.

Or, Possibility #3: The whole notion of not enough sunlight / natural light and being an older home it just has smells to it.

Or, Possibility #4: Other.

Any thoughts or insights would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!