How to Get Rid of a Burnt Rubber Smell in the House

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.
Image Credit: Aleksandr Pykhteev/iStock/GettyImages
See More Photos

The smell of burnt rubber or plastic is a typical smell that can occur when an appliance short circuits or when something gets burned on the stove or a heater. This type of odor can permeate your home quickly and get on surfaces like curtains, walls, and carpets. Getting rid of these smells is important because burnt rubber smells can often host harmful chemicals that are not beneficial to your health long term. Before beginning the cleaning process, make sure that you have located the source of the smell and dealt with it. Do not attempt to rectify the odor without discovering the source of the smell.

Advertisement

Video of the Day

Purifying the Air

You will want to rid the air of the smell right away, and the best way to do this is to ventilate the area. Open any windows or doors and place fans around the room to circulate the air. With the air moving around, it has less time to sit in the room and rest on your furniture or any other surroundings.

Advertisement

You can make the ventilation process even more productive by placing bowls of odor-absorbing products in the rooms with the strongest burnt rubber smell. White vinegar, baking soda, fresh coffee grounds, and activated charcoal are all excellent examples of odor-absorbing products that can be placed in the bowls. Fill the bowls and let them sit in the affected area for a few hours or even overnight if the smell is fairly strong. Replace the absorber as many times as needed until the odor is completely gone or until it is no longer noticeable.

Advertisement

Odor Removal From Curtains and Upholstery

Curtains are likely to retain some of the smell from the burnt rubber or plastic. If your curtains are machine washable, the best thing to remedy the odor is to throw your curtains in the washing machine. Add your regular detergent and to give the cleaning process an extra boost, add 1 cup of vinegar to the cycle. Let the curtains or other fabrics air-dry and repeat a washing cycle if you smell any lingering odors.

Advertisement

The smell may have settled onto other surfaces that cannot be cleaned by a washing machine, such as a sofa. If you want to eliminate the odor from upholstered furniture, dilute 2 teaspoons of white vinegar with 2 cups of water in a spray bottle. Spritz the upholstery and let it air-dry. You can even do this to your curtains if they aren't machine washable. Repeat as many times as needed until the smell is gone.

Advertisement

Removing Burnt Odor From Rugs

Rugs and carpets can also be highly affected by strong smells, such as burnt rubber, but you don't need to clean the carpet to get rid of the odor. If you notice the smell has made its way into your rug or carpet, the best remedy is baking soda. Sprinkle baking soda over the surface of the carpet or rug and let it rest overnight. If the smell was particularly strong, you can let the baking soda rest for a few days before vacuuming up the residue. The smell may need to be corrected with a few applications of baking soda, but it should remove the odor altogether.

Advertisement