It’s always yucky to step into a stinky bathroom. Whether you’re there to shower, do number 1 or 2, brush your teeth, or simply wash your hands, nothing could be more arresting than getting a whiff of some nasty pee smell.
It’s a common predicament for households with young boys who haven’t quite mastered the art of aiming. But even big boys — including Daddy — can still miss and cause occasional drips and splashes.
Here’s what you can do to get rid of urine smell in your bathroom — and keep the place smelling immaculate all the time.
Best Ways To Get Rid Of Nasty Pee Smell
Use powerful cleaning agents
There’s a host of cleaning solutions you can use to effectively sanitize the toilet, but those with natural, non-toxic ingredients are best because they’re safe around people and pets and aren’t harmful to the planet, either.
Enzymatic cleaners contain non-pathogenic “good” bacteria that break down organic wastes and all types of human discharge that are causing the stains and stinky smell. Probiotic cleaners work the same way, using beneficial bacteria to consume urine and eradicate odors. Other cleaners add plant-based fragrances like lavender and lime to produce an organic, fresh-smelling scent.
But you can also make our own cleaning solution using common household ingredients like white vinegar, baking soda, Borax, hydrogen peroxide, liquid Castile soap, tea tree, and other essential oils for fragrance. There are lots of recipes online, just choose one based on your preference.
Give the toilet a good scrub
The key to totally getting rid of pee smells is giving your toilet a thorough cleaning. If smells linger even after you’ve scrubbed it, you may have missed a few spots.
Spray all surfaces and crevices with your chosen cleaner. You can use a scrubby sponge, a rag, or a paper towel to wipe and scrub. But for stains, you can opt to use a scouring pad. Look out for problem areas like the underside of the lid and the sides and base of the commode. These are frequently overlooked but they can be landing spots for accidental sprays and drips. The same goes for nooks and crannies under the seat and at the base of the seat, around the hinges. You can use an old toothbrush to access those hard-to-reach areas.
Don’t forget the area under the rim, too, since dirty water swishes there every time the toilet is flushed. Use a bottle or dispenser with an angled nozzle so you can drizzle directly under the rim. Scrub thoroughly with a long-handled toilet brush.
Clean around the toilet, too
So be sure to clean the entire area around the commode: the floor, walls, pipes, baseboard, and any furniture or accessory nearby. The side of a vanity, a cabinet, bathtub, a shower door or enclosure, storage bins, a step stool, laundry basket or trash can — anything within spraying distance from the toilet. Additionally, wash and replace rugs and shower curtains.
Tile grout can be tricky because it is deep-seated, porous, and can be hard to reach with just a rag or paper towel. Use a toothbrush and scrub between tiles.
Use black lights to detect urine
Anytime you smell a whiff of urine but can’t see evidence of it anywhere, use portable black lights to find them. These ultraviolet flashlights will make dry, days-old drops and splashes — otherwise invisible to the naked eye — suddenly become fluorescent. Just darken the room, flash the black lights around, and you’ll spot the nasty stains on tiles and fabrics.
Spot-clean as needed
If you don’t have time for a thorough scrub, just do a quick spot-cleaning with a strong enzyme cleaner or a stain and odor remover. Even those made especially for pet stains and odors will do, as long as they’re made with safe, non-toxic ingredients. Spray when and where necessary.
Flush with the lid down
Each time the toilet is flushed, dirty water swishes and sloshes around the bowl. And depending on how strong your commode’s flushing power is, mist and spray are created. If the lid of the toilet seat is up, that dirty mist drizzles on the toilet seat and the floor. While public toilets normally lack lids – keeping the lid down at home is one way to avoid that nasty pee smell.
Make it a rule for everyone in your home to put the lid down before flushing the toilet. That way, splashing will be limited to just the underside of the lid — which means less mess, and less cleaning for you.
Teach boys to aim
You don’t have to live with pee-stained tiles all the time. As soon as your male toddler is tall enough to reach the toilet, train him to pee standing up and hit the center of the bowl each time. There are many products available that help boys to improve their aim. Having boys train on one of these potty training urinals can help.
Additionally, teach boys to clean after themselves if they happen to miss. Have a tub of baby wipes handy so they can get into the habit of wiping their own urine trail.
Make men sit
Convince all the males in the house to sit down when peeing. This may be hard to do but it pays off in the long run. Sitting not only prevents splashback but also promotes better hygiene by limiting the spread of urine (germs) around. It also shows courtesy to all the other users in the house — and most especially the ones doing the cleaning.
Use natural deodorizers
There are a variety of ways you can eliminate pee smells in the bathroom naturally. Moso bags and gonzo rocks are non-toxic and chemical-free agents that are safe for use around the home, humans, and pets. Gonzo rocks are made with volcanic minerals while Moso bags consist of activated bamboo charcoal. Both absorb airborne bacterial odors, pollutants, and moisture that causes mold and mildew. They are safer alternatives to air fresheners that usually come with chemicals and harsh perfumes.
Another option is Smeleeze granules, which can either be sprinkled directly on the floor or carpet or placed in a small pouch.
Drop fizzy bombs
Toilet fizzy bombs are non-toxic mixtures of baking soda, citric acid, and your favorite essential oil. (Some formulas add dish soap, hydrogen peroxide, or Borax.) They deodorize, disinfect, eliminate stains. You can make them yourself by combining a cup of baking soda, half a cup of citric acid, 2 to 3 teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide and 20 to 30 drops of essential oil.
You can also color bath bombs naturally using these tips.
Lemon, eucalyptus, peppermint, lavender, and/or tea tree are great choices. Scoop and press the fizzy mixture into silicone ice cube molds. Leave them to dry overnight then transfer to an airtight storage container. Plop 1 or 2 of these into the toilet anytime it needs to be freshened up — no scrubbing necessary. These are guaranteed to keep your bathroom smelling fresher in between cleanings.
Read tips on how to make your bathroom smell like a spa here.
Featured Image by Freepik