Most homeowners have dealt with their share of odors. The wax ring on the toilet splits. Or they buy a house from a smoker. The puppy is hard to toilet train. Things like this are normal and, on a small scale, are often within the scope of a homeowner’s skills if they are dealt with promptly and in an effective manner.
But, sometimes the problem is exponentially worse than a simple clean-up. Maybe the wax ring split and leaked all night, the smoker’s sofa caught on fire, or the puppy turned into two hundred pound animal who still has accidents. All things being equal, these kinds of jobs are really out the realm of the homeowner’s abilities, since major sources of odor can easily encompass far more than the original site of the odor. If this is the case, it may be time to call in a professional who has a greater capacity to deal with odor sources in terms of training, tools, and products.
Professionals are a reasonable option because they have the training and means to take care of the biggest odor jobs. Whether it’s smoke, mold, pet odors, or something else, a professional’s first mission is to find and eradicate the source of the odor. If that isn’t done, no amount of additional cleaning will remedy the situation.
Once the original source of the odor is detected, it can be cleaned properly. This will involve various methods and products depending on the source material, as different surfaces respond to cleaning in their own way. One thing is for certain; if the original odor site is not cleaned thoroughly, the odor will not go away.
Once the original source has been decontaminated then secondary surfaces, which may have been affected by the odor, can be successfully treated. Secondary odor removal may be necessary for clothing, drywall, furniture, carpeting and other surfaces.
Particularly in the case of pet odors, if animals can still detect the scent, or if the location has become a habitual stopping place, it can be much harder to train them or other pets away from revisiting it unless it’s cleaned properly. In the case of carpeting or wood flooring, the pad or underlayment can be soaked, necessitating replacement if it isn’t dealt with appropriately, This type of situation quickly becomes an economic adversity.
As with any clean-up situation, the earlier the situation is handled, the more likely the outcome for success at the lowest level. If a homeowner feels a bit overwhelmed, it’s a good indication that the job is out of his range, and the most reasonable thing to do is to call in a professional right away. Many of us have been trained to believe that ‘typical’ soiling is within the range of a homeowner’s abilities, but nothing could be further from the truth. Many of us have that one friend who has an ongoing odor problem which never truly seems to be resolved, and it’s no wonder: once an odor source has hunkered in, it’s difficult to eradicate without professional tools, products, and expertise.