For days now, every time I go into the laundry room, I have been assaulted by this dirty, earthy, smell. It has been getting somewhat stronger as the days go on. At first, I thought it was the dog food (this is where Vader eats), and I cleaned his food mat under his bowl to no effect. I even went as far as to stick my head into the food bag to take a deep whiff. But that wasn't the smell I was smelling.
Of course, when I mentioned it to DH, he doesn't smell anything. He thinks I have a supersonic nose; I'm ALWAYS smelling things he doesn't. But even he has to admit that my over-active sense of smell has come in handy, especially when it comes to car diagnostics.
So my quest continued. I went and got a step stool to stand on and look over the washing machine to look behind it, but all that revealed was my affirmation that I'm a very bad housekeeper (the dust bunnies and lint was unbelievable, but, who needs to see back there anyway?).
I washed every lingering article of clothing and towel that collect on the laundry room floor (how do these get there anyway? - it's like a fungus that keeps growing back, this pile, even after you think you've got it all.) But still, the smell remained.
I smelled inside the washing machine, because sometimes if you don't leave the door open to let the moisture dry up, it starts to stink (I have a front loader). But the washer smelled like detergent.
FINALLY, I think I've figured it out! This smell, this stench. Above the dryer, is the vent for the fan. I've never quite understood what exactly the reason is for putting an exhaust fan in a laundry room, but it has actually come in handy on those days when I've had to lock the wet dog in there. Inside the outside portal for the exhaust vent, lives a family of birds. They nest in there every year, due to the broken flap on the outside of the house. They've recently had babies, as I've seen the mom bringing worms in and heard the little peeps. Cute, I thought. Now I think otherwise.
STINKY!! It must be them, as the smell can't be pinpointed to an exact location (I'm like a hound dog), and seems to be in the general area around the dryer.
So now I can't wait for these guys to grow up and move out, and next year we will definitely be putting up some sort of barricade.
For now, I guess I'll leave the fan on. OH! So that's what they're for! :)