How to Fix a Stuffy Room

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A stuffy room is so discouraging for a homeowner, renter, or business person. When a room is messy, you clean it. When the space feels too hot or too cold, you look around for a solution. But how do you fix a stuffy room, exactly? This situation isn’t always as apparent as it seems.

Let’s dive into the reasons for a stuffy room and how to fix it with standard methods like vacuuming, disinfecting, and washing. One highly effective way that I’d like to talk about, and you might not have considered before, is a PTAC unit (the kind of A/C often found in hotels).

Reasons for a Stuffy Room  

Lack of airflow combined with the potential of unhealthy mildew—or even more dangerous mould—are the biggest culprits for a stuffy room. Often, you “feel” the discomfort from a stuffy room right away, and it can smell so musty that you don’t want to stick around to breathe the smell.

So, what is causing that musty smell? What makes the room so stuffy?

Here are a few possibilities:

  • Mildew and mould are both fungus that grows on warm, wet, often dark, and not adequately ventilated surfaces. They come in various colours and have a pungent smell. Mildew is often “fluffy” or looks like a powder substance.
  • A stuffy room with truly poor airflow allows typical household or workplace odours and dust to accumulate in the space, basically clogging it up and creating a stuffy room.

Cleaning a Stuffy Room

There are different methods to fix a stuffy room and attack that musty smell with cleaning. You’ll get varying degrees of success, depending on what is causing stuffiness in the room.

  • Wash items: If you are cleaning a bedroom, strip all the bedding and wash it often (at least once a month). Wash clothes, pillows, and even stuffed toys that are safe for the laundry.
  • Sweep, Vacuum (or both): Sweep hard floors and vacuum often. Don’t neglect “hidden” spaces under beds and furniture where dust bunnies can accumulate rapidly.
  • Clean carpets and walls: In a living space with area rugs, or an office with wall-to-wall carpeting, get the carpets steam cleaned periodically. If possible, spray dirt marks or fingerprints on walls with a mild disinfectant cleaner and scrub them off with a soft-bristled brush.
  • Air it out: Don’t rely on artificial air fresheners to mask that musty smell. Whenever possible, crack a window or a door (preferably to get a cross-breeze) and allow outside air to ventilate through the room.
  • Cleaning doors and windows: “Fresh” air is great, but allergy and dirt sensitivities can be aggravated by air flowing in from the outdoors. Wash the windows periodically and gently vacuum the screens. Clean doors too, and don’t forget the sills and cracks in doors and windows where dirt can build up.
  • Attacking mildew: Of the two possible fungi that cause a musty odour, mildew is the easiest to tackle. Mildew is destroyed with a good scrub using a soft-bristled brush and a quality antibacterial disinfectant (make sure you get products that won’t harm your surfaces).
  • Get pro advice for mould: Please be aware—mildew and mould both pose health risks, particularly respiratory problems. But mildew is often less harmful than mould. If you find spores spreading on a surface and you’re worried that it’s mould, don’t try to handle this without contacting a professional. 

Once you’ve cleaned up a messy room and made sure it’s adequately ventilated, what’s next to make sure the stuffiness won’t return? Check out our most cost-effective and customizable solution for weather and climate conditions throughout the year—a PTAC unit.

What is a PTAC Unit?

PTAC stands for “Packaged Terminal Air Conditioner,” a self-contained HVAC system typically built into hotel rooms, giving the occupant full control over room temperature and fan speed. Please be aware that a PTAC unit is not a dehumidifier.

But PTAC units aren’t merely air conditioners. They’re meant for all-season use, not just in the summertime. PTAC units also aren’t just for hotel rooms. Increasingly, homeowners, apartment dwellers, and businesspeople have discovered how a PTAC unit can fix a stuffy room.

Here’s a quick, informative primer on PTACs, and you can also read our guide to selecting the best PTAC for you.

You Get Year-Round Use Out of a PTAC

A quality PTAC unit is exceptionally efficient in cost, climate control, and ventilation to fix a stuffy room. In the heat of summer, a PTAC unit provides adjustable air conditioning and ventilation that acts as a shield against unhealthy outdoor allergens.

In wintertime, a PTAC unit serves as an effective heating system to keep cold, drafty air outside while still maintaining proper ventilation to fix a stuffy room.

PTAC Units Offer Easy Maintenance 

A properly maintained PTAC unit offers the owner a long service life. A PTAC unit can be purchased new or refurbished to a nearly brand-new condition for maximum cost-effectiveness.

Maintaining a PTAC unit is not complicated, and there’s no need to cut corners for a great PTAC unit that will fix a stuffy room for years. Clean dusty and dirt from outside the PTAC and learn how to remove debris from inside the unit—it’s not hard!

You need to clean the filter according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Generally, you only need to vacuum a filter or clean it with mild soap and water – check the instructions to see what’s right for your unit. Keeping the PTAC unclogged keeps the unit from suffering major compressor failure issues.

Check your PTAC unit periodically to ensure that all heating and cooling functions are in good operation. This is more good news for PTAC unit owners—switches, power cords, and other parts are generally quick and inexpensive to replace.

Thanks for reading our tips on how to fix a stuffy room! Follow our tips and you should be on your way to a healthier, climate-controlled home or workspace—banishing a stuffy room for good.


Ref number: THSI-2317

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