How to Tackle Smelly Carpet


Nothing can capture and stack up odours quite like rugs and carpets. Bad smells can really ruin the whole feel of your home, but sometimes they are just inevitable. Luckily, you can battle the unpleasant odours with a little persistence and the right cleaning products. The time and effort you will invest largely depends on the type and the intensity of the smell. For strong odours you may need to try different applications until you find the right one and then repeat it several times. Below are several methods that can help you effectively remove the odours from your flooring.

Basic Tips

The first step is to find the source of the smell. This is usually some kind of stain or spillage. When you remove the spot, the odour will also disappear. Maybe the rugs or carpets were exposed to smoke or indoor pollutions which caused the dreadful smell. In this case a bit of fresh air will do the job.

When attempting to clean your rugs and carpets, you need to keep in mind a couple of things. Before using any detergents, especially strong ones, always test the cleaners beforehand. They may damage or discolour the gentle fabrics. Never rub, always blot the stain. Check what type of cleaning solution is suitable for your carpet. Generally, the eco-friendly options are safer.

What You Will Need:

  • white vinegar
  • baking soda
  • water
  • spray bottle
  • soft cloths
  • vacuum cleaner
  • broom
  • dustpan


Using Baking Soda

  1. Baking soda is a popular eco-friendly cleaning product for removing pesky stains and odours. You can safely use it on your carpeting without any risk of damage. Just sprinkle the affected area with the ingredient and gently brush with a broom to work the baking soda into the fibres.
  2. Let it sit overnight or for a couple of days.
  3. Sweep the top layer of the baking soda and then vacuum. Avoid using vacuum cleaner for the top layer, because it may damage the appliance.
  4. Check if there is an improvement. If the method works, but the smell is not completely removed, repeat as much as needed.


Using Vinegar

  1. If the baking soda didn’t work, you can proceed by applying vinegar. Spray it on the surface and blot with clean soft cloth.
  2. If the odour is from a liquid, absorbed by the carpet or rug, you may need to apply more vinegar to reach the source of the smell. However, you should not saturate the carpeting.
  3. Let the vinegar sit for around 15 minutes. The acid in the solution will eliminate the odour-causing bacteria.
  4. Blot with clean white cloth to remove the vinegar. Rinse by spraying the area with clean water and then blot.
  5. Absorb the remaining liquid and allow drying.
  6. Repeat as necessary until the odour is removed.

Other Cleaning Alternatives

  • Use hydrogen peroxide to get rid of the pet urine stains.
  • Put small rugs in the washing machine and add a cup of vinegar.
  • Rent steam cleaners or hire professional cleaning services.

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