5 Steps to Deodorise A Smelly Sofa

Published on Jun 1, 2020

how to deodorise a lounge

Is your sofa a bit on the nose lately?

That pong in your favourite lounge could be from an array of sources including pets, food and drink spills or body oils, just to name a few. Fabric sofas are more prone to odours, so we’ve compiled these tips to help you de-pong your favourite lounge.

If you’ve tried a fabric deodoriser and it has just masked the smell for a little while, you’ll be pleased to know these solutions are much easier – and more natural – than you may think.



1. Let the sunshine in

living room with sunshine streaming through window

Let your stinky sofa do a little sun-baking.

Sunshine (natural UV light) is great at killing a range of odour causing bacteria that typical cause a musty smell in your favourite lounge. Sunlight is also very effective at killing dust-mites that could be colonising in your lounge by the millions.



2. Treat spills and stains as soon as they happen

cleaning up stain on sofa

Tackling stains as soon as they happen will minimise the chance of your lounge adopting the smell of whatever has been spilled. Food spills create a food source for odours causing bacteria, so a clean lounge is a healthy lounge.

If it is a solid stain, make sure you remove any of the excess with a tool like a spatula before cleaning. When cleaning, remember to gently blot at it, as rubbing the stain may push it further into the lounge fabric.



3. Utilise your vacuum cleaner attachments

cleaning couch with a handheld vacuum cleaner

Most vacuum cleaners come with handy little attachments, perfect for cleaning your upholstery. Make sure you are vacuuming your lounge once a week, using your attachments to reach into crevices where food, dust and pet hair love to hide and start to smell over time.

Have a stinky couch? Give it a good vacuum to remove any loose debris before following the steps below.



4. Absorb the odour with bi-carb soda

deodorising fabric couch with bi-carb soda

Sprinkle a thin layer of Bi-Carb Soda over the affected area and leave it for at least half an hour (the longer the better, however) before vacuuming it up.

Make sure you test beforehand that your vacuum has enough suction power to remove a smaller amount of the Bi-Carb Soda.

Bi-Carb Soda is an alkaline so it breaks down grime well but is also a gentle abrasive that absorbs odours. Perfect for stains and stinky odours!

You may need to do this process more than once if it is a particularly pungent odour.



5. Bring in the vinegar

deodorising lounge with vinegar solution

As an alternative to Bi-Carb Soda, you may want to try white vinegar. Test it on a hidden section of your lounge first.

Put some vinegar and water (1:1 mix ratio) in a spray bottle, mist it lightly on the sofa and simply let it air dry. Open a window if need be. It is worth noting that even though it may smell like vinegar when you spray (sudden craving for fish and chips, anyone?), it will dry odourless.

Vinegar is a mild acid that dissolves grime and neutralises odours, which is why it works so well.


Have a leather lounge? Check out our article on how to clean and condition your leather lounge in under an hour.

A deodorised couch isn’t always necessarily a clean couch. If the smell or stain is stubborn, you may need to call a professional. Electrodry’s Upholstery Cleaning Service technicians can safely and effectively clean most fabrics and use specialised treatments to effectively remove most stains.

Our service now includes Electro-Shield, our long-lasting sanitiser that protects against germs, bacteria and other nasties.

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