I realize there are a certain amount of offending odors that should be associated with the bathroom. It's pretty obvious why sometimes the bathroom smells unpleasant. That's where a good air freshener or at least the lighting of a match can actually help.

Erick Zajac via Unsplash.com
Erick Zajac via Unsplash.com

By the way, what you've heard about matches and their odor elimination all these years is totally wrong. The flame of the match doesn't "burn up the offending gasses" produced by your body. Instead, the accelerant that is used on the match head creates sulphur dioxide which smells a lot better than what you could smell before. So, basically, your match simply covers up the smell.

But we digress, I am speaking of the hard-to-put your finger on musty odor that you'll encounter in a lot of south Louisiana bathrooms. I have had this issue in my guest bathroom at my home for quite a few months now.

Ratikova, ThinkStock

I originally thought the unpleasant smell was emanating from the base of my toilet where it meets the flooring. But that has been checked and resealed and it's not the problem. I also thought that maybe the smell was coming from a laundry hamper in the bathroom closet. No, that wasn't the case either.

However, while perusing some interesting hacks on Tik Tok I came across this helpful hint just last week and lo and behold. the stench in the bathroom is now confined to those times only when people go number two in there.

It turns out my problem and maybe yours is in your toilet too, but it's not in the bowl, it's in the tank. When is the last time you cleaned the upper tank of your toilet? You can count me in that number who answered the question with the word "never". I have never cleaned my toilet tank, but now I am here to tell you it's a game-changer.

If you pull the lid off of your toilet's tank you'll see the inner workings of your commode. Funny how a lot of those parts look as if they haven't been upgraded in decades. Do you see the discoloration in the tank? There's a good possibility the odor you are detecting is coming from there.

The best way to clean your toilet tank is to drain the water from it. Next, you'll let just a little bit of water flow back in to aid in your scrubbing. Take your choice of household or bathroom cleaner and apply liberally to the sides of the tank and scrub. You could also use a mix of vinegar and baking soda too if you're not into harsh chemicals.

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Let your cleaning solution sit on the sides and bottom of the tank for a few minutes then refill and flush as usual. You could also add water-diluted bleach to the tank if the odor persists. But most professional plumbers don't advocate using a strong or undiluted bleach solution because it can damage some of the working parts of the toilet's flushing mechanism.

Who knew the solution to my bathroom smell problem was not in the bowl but in the tank the entire time. The experts say you can clean the tank about once a month just to make sure the stench stays away.

Speaking of cleaning, it won't be too much longer until your car will be gummed up by these sticky little creepy crawlies, so here's how to handle them too.

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