Locating the Source of an Odor in My Home?

Recently there has been an odor in my home. As I get halfway up my staircase I notice it.To the left is the master bedroom and to the right is a linen closet and bathroom. About three weeks ago which is around the time I noticed it, my neighbor text me while I was at work and said there were about 10 turkey buzzards on my roof. I am not sure if this is connected. How can I find out where this smell is coming from? Any suggestions?



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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
June 20, 20180 found this helpful

Ill bet one of those buzzards died and is decomposing somewhere in the house.

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June 21, 20180 found this helpful

The other thing with turkey buzzards is turkey buzzard droppings (AKA poop). It is possible there is a large amount of yuck on the roof and that is what you are smelling.


Is it possible to hose down the roof with a pressure washer (a regular hose most likely won't be useful if it is baked in from sun/weather)? If not, a good rain (or a few good rains) may wash it away on its own. That would be the ideal if you can't get to the roof to clean it. SAFETY FIRST with any roof jobs!!!

Good luck! Bad smells are a stinking nightmare (sorry for the bad pun)!

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June 23, 20180 found this helpful

Turkey buzzards usually eat "fresh" kill but if they dropped any of their food it may take a few days for it to rot and really smell bad.


  • You say you have this smell half-way up your staircase but is it in either of the room on either side or just in the stairway?
  • It is possible one of the buzzards dropped some food and it somehow found its way into one of the vents on your roof.
  • You probably have several vents (especially a bathroom) but if this is the case, the smell will probably get less and less and disappear in a few days/weeks as the rotting food dries up.
  • If that happened, their may be a problem with the vent later or maybe the dried food will turn to chucks of "dust".
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June 27, 20180 found this helpful

Another possible is some type of small animal got in and died in the Wall (we had a squirrel in ours) and the smell got so bad had some one come in to figure where the smell was coming from and found him right near the heating

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June 28, 20180 found this helpful

Well everyone, I finally figured out what the horrible odor was. My dog urinated upstairs in the hallway and it must have gone unnoticed. He is 6 years old and has NEVER done that in the house. I knew it was coming from that area so I went nose to the floor and could see a little marking and sure enough.


Now, does anyone know any tricks to getting the odor out? I used Natures Miracle Enzymatic Formula. I must say Id made a huge improvement but not 100% gone. AND of course Im embarrassed with the odor as contractors are here redoing my bathrooms up there. Ughhhh

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June 29, 20180 found this helpful

Well, everyone will be glad to hear that you found the problem as many times it remains a mystery.

  • I have used this method with removing pet odor from my floors. You do not say if you have hardwood or carpet but since it was difficult to find, I would think carpet.
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  • I feel sure others will offer more solutions to try.
  • Tile or hardwood floor: Mix 1/2 to 1 cup baking soda in 1/2 to 3/4 gallon warm water/ stir till baking soda has mixed. Add 1-3 cups vinegar (small reaction okay) - mop very wet let stand for 10 minutes (if possible) then damp mop with solution add more vinegar repeat if necessary if smell persist.
  • Carpet: Soak the area with the mix for ten minutes then soak it up to a damp dry. Repeat steps until odor is gone. Carpet can be difficult so repeat process 2 to 3 times.
  • Always remove with water when completely done. Use fan to dry carpet.
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June 29, 20180 found this helpful

Thank you all. This really has been a total nightmare. Lol. I think Ill be smelling it in my head forever.

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 107 Posts
July 27, 20180 found this helpful

I am betting that is the smell, and that something died in your roof/attic and that the buzzards are sensing it

no help for it but to go up there and explore...

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