The Surefire Way To Remove Urine Smells From Clothing After An Accident

Accidents happen, and when they do, the last thing you want is the lingering scent of urine. There are several tricks to removing the scent of urine from clothing and other materials, and trying a couple of them may help. One of the best hacks is to use a combination of baking soda and warm water, allowing the clothing item to soak for a short time before washing it with traditional laundry detergent. Even if you've already laundered the item and there's a lingering smell, you can use this method to help remove it. 

Urine is hard to clean away because it contains organic proteins, which have the ability to bind to the individual fibers of some clothing. Instead of just sitting on the surface, they get deep into those small fibers, making it difficult to simply wash them away. This is also why clothing that's light-colored, especially white, may have a yellowish tint to it. The proteins create that type of discoloration, and once that happens, it can take a lot of work to clean it away. Still, you don't have to toss out your clothing, bed sheets, blankets, or other items just yet. It's typically possible to use a bit more of a scientific approach to removing those proteins and doing so can create a refreshed level of cleanliness.

Use this baking soda hack to remove urine smells

If your baby wakes up wet from an overnight accident, the last thing you'll want to do is toss those items into the corner and forget them. The sooner you act, the more likely it is that you'll be able to remove the urine fully. Pre-treating the clothing is perhaps the simplest way to get rid of urine's binding power. 

Fill a laundry tub or a sink with warm water. It doesn't have to be hot as you don't want to shrink the clothing. Then, add 4 to 5 tablespoons of baking soda to the water. Use your hand to swish it around, encouraging the baking soda to dissolve fully. Then, place the urine-soaked clothing into the tub. Ensure it fully submerges to ensure every component of the clothing item is covered. You only need to soak for 15 to 30 minutes to get results.

Once that time passes, drain the water and rinse the clothing in cool water. You'll want to remove as much of the baking soda as possible before laundering the item as you typically would. Follow the same process for washing clothes as you normally do. Be sure to stick to the laundry instructions on the clothing. One key step to remember here is not to toss that item into the dryer just yet. Allow it to air dry to ensure the scent is gone. If not, try another urine Odor removal method.

Additional urine removal strategies for clothing

In some cases, urine odors can be more intense, especially if a person has a urinary tract infection or is taking some types of medication. There are a few additional tricks to try to remove more of the smell from clothing, especially if they have been soiled numerous times or they've gone through the dryer before being fully clean (that can often set the stain, making it much more difficult).

Create a solution of three parts warm water to one part vinegar. You can add this to a spray bottle to apply to the clothing or make up a batch in a sink to soak a clothing item in for 30 minutes or so. For the worst stains, add a couple of tablespoons of baking soda to this. The baking soda and vinegar will create a chemical reaction that helps to pull those proteins off the clothing fibers.

Also, consider switching up the laundry detergent you use. An enzyme-based soap will be able to counteract the proteins in urine to help flush them away. For white clothing, you can also use oxygenated bleach (some products are available for all colors). This type of product can also strip away some of that intense scent. With these cleaning agents, be sure to follow the specific usage guidelines set by the manufacturer.