Removing the Odor From Lacquer on New Furniture

The smell coming from your new furniture may be caused by the lacquer, or by a cocktail of nasty chemicals. As chemicals evaporate from the furniture, they give off a strong, unpleasant odor, known as outgassing. Formaldehyde, used to cure all types of composite wood, is a common suspect, although glues and varnishes may also contain odor-emitting chemicals. Not only do these chemicals stink up the house, but they can cause serious health concerns, as well. Take a few steps to eliminate or reduce the odors emitted from your new furniture.

Store new furniture in the garage for at least a week before bringing it indoors.

Step 1

Place baking soda in a bowl and set the bowl in the drawers or on top of the furniture to absorb and neutralize the odors. Replace the baking soda every few days.

Step 2

Place a bowl of vinegar in the drawers, as well, but don't allow the wood furniture to get wet. Although vinegar has a strong smell of its own, it has been used for many years to neutralize foul odors.

Step 3

Place two to three chunks of activated charcoal in the drawers or in a bowl on top of the furniture. Activated charcoal, available at hardware and aquarium stores, is the big gun when it comes to removing odors. After a few days, the charcoal loses its ability to absorb odors. Place it on a baking sheet and bake it at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour to restore it.

Julie Christensen

Julie Christensen is a food writer, caterer, and mom-chef. She's the creator of, dedicated to family fun and delicious food, and released a book titled "More Than Pot Roast: Fast, Fresh Slow Cooker Recipes."