What It Really Means When Your Home Smells Fishy

Our homes are host to many potentially unpleasant smells, most centralizing in the kitchen or bathroom. There are some smells, however, that aren't indicative of the trash left too long in the bin or a cat litter box in need of cleaning. Bob Vila outlines certain pungent scents that are typically mistaken for innocent things when, in reality, they are signs of a serious issue within your home. For example, a rotten egg scent may not be coming from a bowl of hard-boiled eggs in your fridge but could be signaling a gas leak that can lead to a deadly explosion. If you have cats, you may think the cat urine smell suddenly permeating the air is coming from an unidentified accident. If you're lucky, this will be the case, but if not, you may have a toxic mold problem that will need to be addressed immediately.

One yucky odor that often gets mistaken for something else is a fishy smell. Believe it or not, this could be a sign that something is off with the electrical wiring in your home. Faulty circuits, frayed wires, and other electrical issues can release this odor when they begin overheating. The result of this is often an electrical fire, which you want to avoid. If the scent of fish continues even after you dispose of any expired leftovers, you will want to give your electrician a call and potentially even alert your nearest emergency firefighting service.

Potential electrical problem areas

Most electrical fires are not caused by the wiring within the walls of your home that you cannot see, according to Rytec Electric. In fact, the most common starting points are electrical outlets and light fixtures. Outlets are used frequently and, over time, begin to break down, potentially leading to frayed wires and damage to the internal components. Since appliances can cause electrical surges, this is often how electrical fires begin. You may also want to keep an eye on any older breaker boxes present in your home, as these can also be the primary location for that fishy smell and resulting fire. If you're buying a new home or live in an older home, you'll want to make sure all electrical wiring is up-to-date with proper insulation. Additionally, before purchasing any new appliances that require a stronger electrical capability, you should inspect your electrical panel.

The best way to avoid electrical issues is to call in an electrician for regular home inspections. However, if you do start to pick up on a fishy odor, don't try to locate the faulty electrical component or fix the problem yourself. Once your electrical equipment gets to the point of emitting this smell, it means overheating is taking place, which can easily lead to a fire if not dealt with immediately by a professional. While you wait for the technician to arrive, make sure to avoid turning on any lights or appliances.