Removing a potent odor from your house can be as easy as 1-2-3. Unfortunately for most people, they fail to properly treat the source of the odor and wind up trying unsuccessfully to mask the odor. The resulting mix of odor and air freshening leaves an awkward smell that will not go away anytime soon. Follow the 3 steps below to remove odor from your house.
Step – 1 Identify the location and cause of the odor – The first step in removing an extremely potent odor is to identify the location and source of the odor. This may sound simple but it can require some detective work on your part. The most common serious odor producers in your home are:
• Pet messes on carpet or furniture – When your pet relieves him or herself in your home, it causes a smell and a stain. Immediate action is necessary to remove the source of the smell and to treat the area so the action is not duplicated. If you have a pet stain that has sat untreated, the smell can be unbearable but you can get it removed. If you rent your house to a hoarder, and have to cleanup the hoarder mess, quite often terrible odors remain in the house from pet urine which render the home uninhabitable until the odor has been removed. If you encounter this situation, remember that Biotrauma’s hoarding cleanup service cleans up the mess and the odor from hoarders.
• Drains – kitchen or bathroom – Depending on what you put down your garbage disposal, you could be causing that persistent odor in your home. Bathroom sink drains and traps can become full of hair, hygiene product residue, fingernails, and other items that can cause odors. The smell may come up through a drain other than the one with the problem, so treating all your drains periodically is recommended.
• Refrigerator – Do you remember when you last cleaned out your refrigerator? There are many food items that can be extremely odiferous, even if in a plastic container. The cold can mask some of the smell, but when you open the door it sneaks out into your kitchen.
• Pet messes on carpet or furniture – When you have a pet mess, the best thing is to use paper towel with newspaper over the top to absorb as much as possible. For older areas that are really rancid, sprinkle baking soda over the entire carpet area and let it set overnight. First, sweep off the baking soda then vacuum up. If smell persists, try a mix of baking soda, vinegar, and hydrogen peroxide. Be sure to test a small area first to ensure you don’t stain anything, then apply to the area that smells. If you have cats and a litter box, place an open tray of baking soda near the litter box to absorb any odors.
• Drains – kitchen or bathroom – Vinegar down the drains will improve smells and work to remove nasty buildup in your drains. Combine vinegar and baking soda for a powerful freshener, but make sure you keep it runny and wash down with hot water. Try introducing a lemon, lime, or orange peel down the garbage disposal to help keep it smelling fresh.
• Refrigerator – Keep your refrigerator cleaned out! That is the best thing you can do. Have a day of the week that you clean out all old food and wash the drawers and shelves. Empty drawers and ensure you wash them out with whatever regular cleaner you use. Vinegar and hydrogen peroxide make an excellent cleaner and work well on mildew. Place a fresh box of baking soda in your refrigerator and change it out monthly. For persistent smells, place a small open pan of baking soda in for a week then change out every week until smell is absorbed.
Step 3 – Take steps to ensure the cause of the odor is not repeated. The key to ensuring that odors are not repeated in your home is changing the behavior that led to the odor. Pets need to be trained not to relieve themselves in the house unless in the cat box. Refrigerators need to be cleaned out on a regular basis and have a box of baking soda in them at all times. For drains, try to have a time each month where you “treat” your drains with the vinegar baking soda mix and a hint of lemon or vanilla to keep them smelling great! By following 3 simple steps you can remove those difficult odors from your house and keep it smelling fresh! If you are able, try to open your doors and windows when it’s warm and dry enough and get plenty of fresh air into your home that will really freshen things up!
*Biotrauma, Inc. does not recommend these methods in response to any odors stemming from blood, body fluids or other hazardous wastes. Only trained and certified professionals should attempt to remove these sources, and provide commercial-grade response to these elevated safety threatening scenarios.