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Rotten Egg Smell: How to Get Skunk Smell out of Car

How to Get Skunk Smell out of Car

Rotten Egg Smell: How to Get Skunk Smell out of Car

There is no mistaking a rotten egg smell in car, especially if a skunk is the culprit. People often liken a skunk smell to rotten eggs. It’s an intensely strong and unpleasant odor. So, understandably, you’ll want to address the problem immediately. No doubt, this is a difficult smell to eliminate, but with the proper steps and our car interior detailing tips, you can learn how get skunk smell out of car.

If you’re interested in environmentally friendly car care and odor removal, download our Eco Wash Benefit Guide

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How to Remove Skunk Smell from Car

The potency of skunk spray is due to its sulfur-containing compounds, particularly thiols, which are responsible for the foul rotten egg smell. This eye-watering odor is a defensive mechanism for skunks, warding off potential predators with its noxious scent.

Why Does My Car Smell Like Rotten Eggs?

If a skunk sprays near your car, airborne particles may find a way into your vehicle through open windows, vents, or the sunroof. And when these particles settle into the fibers of your car seats and carpets, your car interior will soon smell like rotten eggs.

Furthermore, if you or your pet accidentally come into contact with skunk spray outside the car, it’s easily transferred to the car’s interior through clothing, shoes, or pet fur.

Car problems could be another reason why your car smells like rotten eggs. For example, if your vehicle has catalytic converter issues or is burning oil, you might notice a bad smell. In such cases, routine maintenance including tune-ups and oil changes can help prevent bad smells in your car.

If you’re unlucky and end up with a skunk smell in car, you can do something about it! Grab your car interior detailing kit and let’s get to work.

Remove Mats and Personal Belongings from Car

Open all the doors and windows while you work. Start by removing any floor mats, clothing, or personal belongings. If there is skunk spray on these items, clean and disinfect them separately to remove the odor.

Apply Cleaning Solution

There are no shortcuts on how to get rid of skunk smell in car. You’ll have to deep clean car interior to remove the stink. Use suitable car interior detailing products to thoroughly clean car seats and carpets and disinfect surfaces. Alternatively, use a white vinegar mix to remove skunk odor in an eco-friendly way:

  • Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
  • Do a spot test first to be on the safe side.
  • Spray the cleaning solution onto car seats, carpets, and upholstery.
  • Let it sit for five minutes.
  • Use a microfiber car cloth to blot and wipe away residue.
  • Leave to dry.

White vinegar has odor-neutralizing properties and can help to break down the skunk odor molecules. It also eliminates other odors when you want to know how to get bad smell out of car. For specific odors, the following guides are helpful:

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Target Stains

If you’re still getting a bad smell from a skunk spray stain, try an enzyme-based cleaner designed to eliminate foul odors caused by pet accidents. For example, try Simple Solution Pet Stain & Odor Remover. For more tips on stubborn marks, see how to remove stains from car seats.

Use Natural Odor Absorbers

Using a natural odor neutralizer like baking soda can be a good idea for how to remove skunk smell from car interior. Do as follows:

  • Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda where there is skunk odor. Focus on seats, carpets, floor mats, and upholstery.
  • Allow the baking soda to sit on the surfaces for several hours or overnight. You can also do this when you want to know how to get smoke smell out of car.
  • Another DIY detailing tip is to place activated charcoal bags or sachets in various areas of your car, such as the seats, floorboards, and trunk, to help absorb and neutralize lingering skunk odors.

Vacuum Car Interior

If you’ve used baking soda or other odor-removal products, use your car vacuum to remove any powder or particles left behind on surfaces. This step ensures that your car’s interior looks clean and fresh. Vacuuming can also help restore the texture and appearance of fabric surfaces in your car by fluffing up the fibers of carpets and upholstery.

Freshen Car Interior with Odor-Eliminating Products

After you’ve eliminated the foul odor, you can prolong the freshness with odor-eliminating products. For example, Chemical Guys has a range of sprays and hanging car air fresheners. Also, see our tips on how to get new car smell.

Additional Steps: Steam Cleaning or Professional Detailing

Finally, if the skunk odor persists despite your efforts, you can steam clean car interior to neutralize skunk spray molecules. Steam can also sanitize hard-to-reach places – good if you need to know how to get skunk smell out of car vents. Alternatively, you can enlist the help of a car interior detailing service to deep clean your vehicle.


You can remove a rotten egg smell in car using deep-cleaning methods, odor-removal products and eco-friendly home remedies. Equally important, leave the windows open to ventilate the car while you work. Depending on the severity of the skunk odor, you may need to repeat the above steps a few times to get rid of the smell completely. Be patient and thorough in your efforts because skunk odor can be stubborn to remove.

Overall, skunk odor removal is an unpleasant and time-consuming job. However, steam cleaning is an efficient way to tackle the problem. This green method uses minimal water and is quick drying. Our trained team specialize in deep cleaning, sanitization, and odor removal without harsh chemicals. Say goodbye to the skunk smells with our expert help.

For more details on our greener clean, download our Eco Wash Benefit Guide:

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