Odor control in the home is used to combat everything from pet odors to tobacco smoke to garbage odors to aromas left behind by cooking. Some odor controls cover odors, some neutralize, and others remove what's causing the odor.
Types of Odor Controls
There are several forms of odor control, including the following:
- Carpet cleaners
- Spray air fresheners
- Scented candles
- Simmering pots
Selecting the right one depends on budget, the kind of odor, if it will be used around children or animals, how environmentally friendly it is, and how often it needs to be used.
Odor Controls for Pet Odors and Tobacco
Pet odors are some the most difficult to eliminate, and finding the most effective kind of odor control is often a process of trial-and-error. Because pets tend to soil the same spot over and over again, getting rid of the odor can be difficult and time-consuming. There are several kinds of pet odor control products sold in stores, which are formulated to not only get rid of the odor, but also to break down the molecules of the substances causing the smell, and thereby eliminate it at its' source.
Tobacco smoke can also be neutralized by using cider vinegar to fill small containers halfway, and then placed around the house and replaced every two to three days.
Products with ammonia should be avoided, as they only worsen the smell. There are also several homemade odor control methods, including a vinegar-water mixture that is poured onto the spot, left, and then blotted up. Baking soda is one of the best-known odor neutralizers, and works well in enclosed spaces such as refrigerators, closets, cabinets, bathrooms, and under sinks. Simmering pots work well for long-term odor control because they can be used continuously. Almost any kind of herb or essential oil can be used, depending on personal preference and the kind of odor being treated. Pre-packaged potpourri, oil, and herb blends are available at most stores, or you can make your own mix. Popular odor-fighting substances used in simmering pots include flavorings such as the following:
- Lime peels
Fresh Air as Odor Control
One of the most effective ways to eliminate any odor is to simply open doors and windows, and place a fan in windows during nice weather; this draws out the inside air, pulls fresh outdoor air into the house, and keeps air circulating throughout the house. Best of all, it's natural and inexpensive.