How to Remove Common Car Smells

One of the best scents ever is the smell of a new car; but what do you do when your car, well, doesn’t smell so new anymore? There are ways you can get rid of the most common car smells.

This post is sponsored by Wyatt Johnson Kia.

Check for Hidden Odors.
Most parents already know how to do this – but you have to play a little bit of detective. Check around for what could be causing the smell – pockets, under seats, on the floor mats, the glove compartment, lost baby bottles, moldy fruit forgotten in a bag, weird blobs of ick that you have no idea where it comes from, etc. Be sure to remove the source immediately and open the doors and windows so you the odor can dissipate. Also keep in mind that sometimes a funky smell can be something in the car itself, like being in need of an oil change.

Clean Carpet and Upholstery.
If you can’t find a source – vacuum. Sometimes carpet or fabric can trap odors. Be sure to sweep everywhere, even the crevices. If that doesn’t work, you may need to deep clean them. Replace floor mats (that may help) and buy plastic covers for the floor mats to prevent issues in the future.

Removing Cigarette Smell.
If you are a smoker – or has a passenger who is – empty ashtrays on a regular basis. Smoke gets everywhere – including in the vents! Get a spray deodorizer and spray it into the vents as well into the intake valve under the hood. . and always air out! Open the doors and windows! Smoke does leave behind tar, which is sticky. Wipe down the interior with a water/vinegar solution and maybe add some dish soap as well, then wipe dry.

So sometimes kids or pets get car sick – and that can definitely leave a icky smell behind. Even if you cleaned it up right away, you probably need to do a deeper clean. Use a water/vinegar solution  on the area and use a wet/dry vac to get it up. You can also spread kitty litter on the area or baking soda, to help absorb the odors.

Mildew is an awful odor to deal with! A rainstorm with a partially opened window or a small leak can cause mildew. Removing mildew smells in cars is pretty easily taken care of. A wet/dry vac will help remove water from carpets and upholstery, but you could use a hair dryer as well if needed. Be sure to check all areas such as under the mats and in the trunk for condensation and even where the spare tire is stored!

After finding the source of the odors and cleaning them and treating them, your car should be as fresh and almost as good as new, if not, go ahead and get a air freshner or some air freshener – can get you there. the source of car odors and treating them, your car should smell great.


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