Stop the Stink!


In a recent newspaper column, Tom and Ray offered a suggestion to Robert, who lost a half gallon of milk down the back seats of his Volvo wagon. Tom and Ray’s solution to mitigate the unholy stink? Yank the carpet. For good. They thought that was the only solution that would, once and for all, solve the olfactory disaster.

But, they also wanted to hear from you – what’s your suggestion for Robert? Certainly others have spilled unsavory goods in their vehicles over the years, right? Share your suggestion for eliminating foul odors… and we’ll try it on Tommy’s beard, the next time we see him!


Rent an Ozone Generator

It works somewhat like a bug zapper.By inducing a high voltage electrical spark,then discharging the spark over and over, it creates Ozone The result after an overnight stint, actually eats odors while leaving the fresh aroma of the aftermath of a spring lightning storm


OK, I’ve had some experience with this. I’ve had to deal with pet odors, which can be nasty! So, my advice is to go to your nearest pet store and get some “NATUREs MIRACLE”. It’s a organice odor eliminator that works! It costs about $7.99/quart. It’s worth every penny. I’d pour Nature’s right onto the carpet and see if it helps. It should neutralize it right away. It shure has helped me with my pet odor and marriage!

Chris H.




My 2 year old son split his milk in the car and it was horrible…we could not get the smell out for anything…my friend has a franchised business called colorglo which restores car interiors and I don’t know what he did or used but the smell was gone forever.


Arm & Hammer Anti-Bacterial Pet Fresh. We tried a lot of things that just made it worse.


Give the area a good shampooing and allow it to dry in the sun with the windows and doors open, the spray the area with pure vinegar and allow it to dry in the same fashion. Two applications of the vinegar should remove the aroma.


whatever you use to clean it… be sure and do it on a bright sunny day so that you can leave all your doors open for several hours.

I had a leak in my trunk that caused my car to smell like mildew. I got the leak fixed then spent all afternoon vaccuming and spraying the whole inside with Frebreeze… then I left all the doors and trunk open for the entire day. Never underestimate the power of a fresh air for a few hours.


We dealt with the exact same problem in my mother’s car. I was the third person to try to clean it up, and I was successful, although it took time (multiple treatments). Nevertheless, I highly recommend that you go to your grocery store or wherever they rent Rug Doctor carpet cleaners. On the Rug Doctor display, you will see small red bottles called Odor Remover. It is sold mostly for pet odors. It can be used without a rug cleaning machine, and it works very well if you follow the directions, which include keeping the area moist for up to 24 hours so the enzymes can work. Buy several bottles; you will need them. (But at about $5 per bottle, it will be much cheaper than replacing the carpet.) Don’t be stingy in how much you use. Give it a good soaking. Good luck!

They now also have a larger spray bottle called something like “urine remover,” and I can’t vouch for that one.


I found that I could remove the smell of cat urine from carpet by adding Odor Ban to the washing fluid in my steam cleaner. I suspect the same would work for milk.


Hi -

Having two small children I haev delt with split milk before. Well, OK, she actually threw the bottle and the milk wnet everywhere. Here is the solution…

Mix 2 cups of white vinegar with 1 gallon of hot water. Saturate the area of the carpet affected, scrub in, and use a dry towel to soak up the excess. Do this a lot. Then allow the carpet to dry with the vinegar solution. Open the car windows of you can - the car will now smell like vinegar instead of milk. When the carpet is completely dry… Take a gallon of hot water and soak the area again. Using a dry towel to soak up the water. Rinse several times until the vinegar smell is gone. Allow to dry.

Good Luck!


go to type in v13286 which is don aslet’s x-o odor neutralizer. you get an 8oz. spray and a 32 ounce refill. there are something 100 reviews from people who have used it. i have seen the demonstration on tv and sour milk is one of the things they show. i have bought many times from qvc and have never had a problem with them misrepresenting anything. good luck memine yours


Tom and Ray are right.
I own a car rental business, and if it can be spilled in a car, I’ve seen (and smelled) it. I mean from milk to Phillipino fish stew to what the dog ate for lunch yesterday! And I won’t gross you out with stories of frat-boys who can’t hold their beer and are too drunk to realize the window isn’t rolled down. I’ve tried the ozone generator and every cleaner/deodarizer you’ve heard of, and a few you haven’t. None have worked on really bad smells. If an organic material was spilled on a permeable surface, probably the only way to get rid of the stink, is to get rid of the permeable surface,… the carpet, and pad, and seat, and door trim panel, and what ever else soaked up what was spilled.


Go to and you will be more than satisfied with the product. It can remove gasoline smells from trunks, so I’m sure it can remove milk smells from inside the car. Notice there is no e in exit, just odorxit.


I have a pal who drives charter buses that haul li’l ol’ blue-haired ladies to casinos so they can blow all the money their husbands left 'em. Every now and then one will imbibe a little too heavily of the libations casinos offer free to people who feed $5 slot machines like there’s no tomorrow. On the way home she’ll toss her cookies into the upholstery. Since the bus owners don’t want to replace the seats every time this happens, there’s a trick they use. My pal carries bottles of Lilac Vegetal & Florida Water–a couple of really-powerful, pre-Lifebuoy toilet waters used by men back in the days of baths on Saturday night. He simply empties one of the bottles into the soiled upholstery. That part of the bus smells like a concentrated florist’s shop for about a week or so, but by the time the odor of the toilet water has faded, so has the stink. He’s been using it for years & it sure does save on having to replace upholstery.


product: Sanox II; manufacturer: Conklin Co., Inc.; source:

view product: > cleaning products (left side/blue) > purchase products (top/green) > multipurpose cleaners > next/p.2 > Sanox II > view specifications file

procedure: Decide container size/amount/# of sprayers; email with proposed order and address for shipping, and phone number; charges will be researched and reported back for approval; mail cashier’s check/teller’s check/money order; and product(s) will be shipped from Shakopee, MN, after check clears.

miscellaneous: viewing email once per day; product used to eliminate rent car smoke smell; 2 ounces in 1 gallon water; after using on kitchen counter, rinse-wife at least twice before using again for food preparation.


I would go to the pet store and buy a gallon of one of the enzymatic solutions formulated to deal with pet vomit, urine, and feces. This stuff works by breaking down and neutralizing these organics and is very effective. Saturate all offending areas as per the directions and just let it sit.


Hey Guys,
I have over 15 yrs of experience in the Chemical Business. Training carpet anduphostery cleaning techniques. Your advice is a little premature. He can go to any home depot and rent a carpet extractor and get an upholstery tool. The carpet needs to be extracted with standard extraction solution. I would do that twice. Then apply any of the general purpose spotters that are not solvent based. Enzyme spotter that is Oxgenated preferably.(Hydrogen Peroxide Based, they react to any organic soils) Apply not as a spotter but take a sprayer and soak it. Extract again with clear water.(tough jobs may require repeating the process) This same techniqe can be used on cloth seats.(I Just completed a 10 yr old Hyundai with 140,000 miles on it. It looks and smells new) If it is leather or vinyl, remove the seat and try to extract from the bottom.That is difficult . However, if the springs make it tough, you can spray the enzyme spotter to the underside and blot it with a terry cloth towel. That is slow. He will need to repeat that several times. Also, the interior and the seat need to have a fans blowing on them. I would leave the seat out and let it dry completely. I suspect the majority of the smell is in the carpet. But just in case let the seat dry. Repeat if necessary. I have done this in cars that had leaky baby diapers run down through the seats and into the carpet, vomit, dog product of the same nature, and have been successful at bringing back the fabrics. Block out a FULL day for extreme cases. It is hard work. But it is cheaper than replacing an interior.Most shops wont touch it, or will charge hundreds of dollars, but it can be done.Remember car fabric and carpet are nylon and polyester blends. You really have to try to hurt them. They are extremely resilient. Much the same as commercial carpets.


Been there, my son spilled a small McDonald’s milk in my Dodge Pickup in the middle of summer. After several useless attempts with the store brand odor eliminators. A good carpet cleaning with my home carpet cleaner attachment, keeping the windows down whenever possible, using Fabreez once a day and keeping a hanging auto odor thingy in the car from Bed, Bath & Beyond got the smell out. It was finally good a month later for all the smell to be gone. Not a bad time frame considering I did it the cheap way. Good Luck, it can be done.


I spilled a gallon of milk on the floor of my 65 Mustang when I was in college and couldn’t get the smell out until my Grandmother told me to use vinegar. I just poured vinegar (no water added) on the area and that did the trick. I had the vinegar smell for about a week, but no more sour milk smell.