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How to Eliminate Bad Car Odors

We’ve all been there – it’s a humid, 90 degree day in the middle of August. You gather up your pals or your kids and make a beeline to your favorite ice cream shop for some tasty, frozen relief. You scarf down as much as you can of that mint chocolate chip before it turns into a melted mess, and leave the leftovers on the passenger seat as you head back into the AC.  

The next morning, you go to get in your car and yikes! What’s that smell? Your frozen treat from yesterday is now giving off odors that would make a skunk nauseous. Before you call your friend for a ride or a hazmat team, check out these helpful hints on how to get rid of a bad smell in your car.

Baking Soda

Not just useful for making chocolate chip cookies! Baking soda is great at absorbing smells. Find it in your pantry or in the baking aisle of the grocery store. Rub it directly on any spills, and vacuum it up after a couple hours or so.

Coffee Grinds

If you like your mornings to start with a fresh brewed cup of coffee, you’ll love this car odor hack. Leave a cup of coffee grinds in your car overnight, and it will absorb any unpleasant odors. Your vehicle will smell like a coffee shop instead of a garbage truck.

Dryer Sheets

To get your car smelling more like your favorite sweater just out of the dryer, try opening a package of dryer sheets and leaving it under your seat. For even more of an effect, tape one in front of your air vent and run the air conditioning.

Air Fresheners

Sometimes all you need is a good old fashioned air freshener to get rid of those unwanted odors. If you need something a bit more powerful, try using a spray air freshener.

White Vinegar

Like baking soda, vinegar is a common pantry item that’s great at absorbing odors. Just fill a bowl or jar halfway and leave it your vehicle for a few hours. Goodbye rotten food smell.

Call in the Professionals

Some smells, such as cigarette smoke or skunk odors, are too powerful to be eliminated with at-home hacks. When all else fails, it’s time to call up a professional cleaning service. They can use special cleaning solutions to totally eliminate those rancid odors and have your car smelling brand new.

Hopefully, these odor-eliminating tricks can provide some relief before you totally quit on your poor smelly vehicle.

If it is a lost cause, and you’re in the market for a new car, get a car insurance quote with MAPFRE to see if you could be saving on your insurance in Massachusetts. If you’re located in another state, contact an independent agent near you. 

Please Note:This content is not intended to describe any specific coverage offered by MAPFRE Insurance. No coverage is provided, bound or guaranteed by this article. Available coverages, credits and discounts vary from state to state and are subject to eligibility criteria and policy terms/conditions, which will control in the event of conflict between this article and your insurance policy. For information about your policy, please review your individual policy contract and speak with your insurance representative.

MAPFRE Insurance® is a brand and service mark of MAPFRE U.S.A. Corp. and its affiliates, American Commerce Insurance CompanySM (Cal. COA 4928-8); Citation Insurance CompanySM; The Commerce Insurance CompanySM; Commerce West Insurance CompanySM (Cal. COA 1372-2); and MAPFRE Insurance CompanySM (Cal. COA 3039-5). Not all products available in all states.

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