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Old 01-19-2012, 04:49 PM   #1
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


There's a bad smell emanating from what I think is underneath the floor tiles in my downstairs bathroom. Has anyone heard of this? Is there any treatment besides ripping up the floor and replacing?

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Old 01-19-2012, 10:25 PM   #2
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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Is there any treatment besides ripping up the floor and replacing?
I'm not an expert, but I think replacing the floor will just postpone the agony. If you get lucky and can find the source of water and THAT is fixable, a new floor may survive. But first: How is the floor getting wet?

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Old 01-19-2012, 10:26 PM   #3
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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I'm not an expert, but I think replacing the floor will just postpone the agony. If you get lucky and can find the source of water and THAT is fixable, a new floor may survive. But first: How is the floor getting wet?
The floor's dry to the touch, so I have no clue. It's obviously moist underneath, but I'm at a loss as to how. Perhaps a pipe under the floor?
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:31 PM   #4
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


I've dealt with the same issue years ago, and it actually didn't turn out to be as big of a nightmare as I thought it would be, but I guess nightmares are all relative. We ended up tearing up the tile in a 3 ft area, and sure enough there was a huge crack in the foundation, with lots of moisture coming up. We had to take out a 2 x 2 area of concrete, add new waterproofed reinforced ultra concrete, and then retile the floor. Total cost about $3k. Total bummer, but thought it could have been worse. The good news is once you fix it, you're pretty much guaranteed it will never happen again (at least in that spot).
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:32 PM   #5
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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I've dealt with the same issue years ago, and it actually didn't turn out to be as big of a nightmare as I thought it would be, but I guess nightmares are all relative. We ended up tearing up the tile in a 3 ft area, and sure enough there was a huge crack in the foundation, with lots of moisture coming up. We had to take out a 2 x 2 area of concrete, add new waterproofed reinforced ultra concrete, and then retile the floor. Total cost about $3k. Total bummer, but thought it could have been worse. The good news is once you fix it, you're pretty much guaranteed it will never happen again (at least in that spot).
Yeah all things considered $3k wouldn't be the end of the world. Is this something that can "wait" (I don't mean to sound sloppy, the smell is kind of gross but at the same time we just moved in and need to buy a crap ton of stuff, I don't have $3k to spend if I don't have to)-- or will this get worse over time?
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:42 PM   #6
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


If it is moldy, you may be risky death, and I am serious. My son got a big wiff of mold several years ago, and almost did not get outside to clear his lungs. His throat was closing in; he never had a problem like that before. Anaphylactic reactions are not fun. Did an inspector sign off on the house? Has the previous owner been contacted? Maybe he/she knows something. Bummer to move in and the projects start already! Oh, sigh.....
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:43 PM   #7
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


Try something simple first. Remove the toilet and replace the wax ring, About a $3.00 fix.
If it's under the tile 99% of the time it's because this seal leaked.
And yes if it's left there's going to be black mold growing and making everone sick.
Make sure the roof is not leaking, check the plumbing for leaks, live in the house a while to see what breaks or leak, add insulation if needed, replace the windows if there old single pane wooden ones, then work on the fofo stuff.

Last edited by joecaption; 01-19-2012 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:44 PM   #8
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If it is moldy, you may be risky death, and I am serious. My son got a big wiff of mold several years ago, and almost did not get outside to clear his lungs. His throat was closing in; he never had a problem like that before. Anaphylactic reactions are not fun. Did an inspector sign off on the house? Has the previous owner been contacted? Maybe he/she knows something. Bummer to move in and the projects start already! Oh, sigh.....
Yeah the previous homeowner had a mold inspection done and our inspection didn't yield anything dealing with dangerous mold. We do run a de-humidifier so I'm not overly worried about toxic molds. I do realize this isn't something that can be ignored, though
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:45 PM   #9
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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Try something simple first. Remove the toilet and replace the wax ring, About a $3.00 fix.
If it's under the tile 99% of the time it's because this seal leaked.
And yes if it's left there's going to be black mold growing and making everone sick.
Any good tutorials on this? I'm a brand spanking new homeowner and I'm doing virtually everything for the very first time. Removing a toilet makes me go
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:49 PM   #10
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


Replacing a wax ring is DIY 101.
http://www.acmehowto.com/howto/homem...t/waxring1.php
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:51 PM   #11
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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you're the man. thanks.
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:06 AM   #12
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


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And yes if it's left there's going to be black mold growing and making everone sick.
Black mold doesn't make "everyone sick" unless you believe the media hype. Only those susceptible because of other existing health issues.

There would be very little in the way of organic food to support mold growth in this location anyway. Bacteria is more likely to produce the odors here. Replace the toilet seal as suggested and use a good cleaning solution, preferably one with some bleach or ammonia. Clean thoroughly right up to the toilet flange before you put the commode back in place. Clean the underside of the commode where it sets against the floor as well.
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:15 AM   #13
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


http://www.cdc.gov/mold/stachy.htm

I'll past that info on to one of my employees that his house he was renting got condemed from black mold and all his kids ended up in the hospital and he and his wife also both got so sick that they could not make it to work for a week.
Not one of them had health isses before the bathroom walls got torn down for a remodel.
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Old 01-20-2012, 04:02 PM   #14
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Moldy smell UNDER the tile floor??


Did you really read the information from the link that you posted? See below.



I heard about "toxic molds" that grow in homes and other buildings. Should I be concerned about a serious health risk to me and my family?

The term "toxic mold" is not accurate. While certain molds are toxigenic, meaning they can produce toxins (specifically mycotoxins), the molds themselves are not toxic, or poisonous. Hazards presented by molds that may produce mycotoxins should be considered the same as other common molds which can grow in your house. There is always a little mold everywhere - in the air and on many surfaces. There are very few reports that toxigenic molds found inside homes can cause unique or rare health conditions such as pulmonary hemorrhage or memory loss. These case reports are rare, and a causal link between the presence of the toxigenic mold and these conditions has not been proven.
In 2004 the Institute of Medicine (IOM) found there was sufficient evidence to link indoor exposure to mold with upper respiratory tract symptoms, cough, and wheeze in otherwise healthy people; with asthma symptoms in people with asthma; and with hypersensitivity pneumonitis in individuals susceptible to that immune-mediated condition. The IOM also found limited or suggestive evidence linking indoor mold exposure and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy children. In 2009, the World Health Organization issued additional guidance, the WHO Guidelines for Indoor Air Quality:

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