How to Kill Odors

Odors get trapped in various materials such as carpets, upholstery and walls.

Certain odors -- such as smoke, cooking, and pet odors -- can last for weeks and even months after the initial incident. Many expensive commercial odor removers simply mask the smell. Fortunately, there are a variety of natural and inexpensive odor eliminators that you can find in many kitchen pantries.

Fill a clean sink with soapy water. Add 1 cup of white vinegar. Wash smelly dishware and cooking utensils in the vinegar solution. Rinse them and wipe dry with a clean towel.

Pour white vinegar into a clean spray bottle. Mist carpets, upholstery, and curtains with the vinegar. As the vinegar dries, it will remove the odors.

Wipe smelly tiles with a sponge dampened in pure lemon juice. The lemon juice will cause the tiles to shine while removing unpleasant odors and living a citrus odor in the air. Let the juice air-dry on the tiles, then buff the tiles with a dry towel to remove stickiness.

Apply a thin layer of baking soda over your carpeting. Scrub the soda into the carpet fibers with a clean brush broom. Let the soda sit overnight, or preferably 12 to 24 hours. Remove the soda with your vacuum.

Place several balls of crumbled newspaper into a stinky drawer or cabinet and let them sit for 24 hours. Replace the newspaper balls with fresh ones until you have removed the odor.

Toss several orange or lemon peels down the garbage disposal and run it for several seconds. The citrus fruit peels will clean and deodorize the disposal. Repeat the process as needed.

Wash walls with a sponge dampened in undiluted white vinegar and let them air-dry. The vinegar will remove odors trapped in the walls.

Sprinkle baking soda in your cat's litter box to remove the odors. Baking soda is natural and will not harm your cat, even if it ingests the baking soda.

Things You Will Need

  • Liquid dish soap
  • White vinegar
  • Cloth
  • Towels
  • Spray bottle
  • Sponge
  • Lemon juice
  • Baking soda
  • Vacuum
  • Newspaper
  • Orange peels
  • Lemon peels
  • Toilet scrubber

About the Author

Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.