6 Steps to Getting Rid of 'That Pee Smell' in Your Bathroom

toilet brush cleaning

Ever walk into your powder room and feel like you've been transported to the men's room of a football stadium, minus the additional aroma of urinal cake? There are certain places you expect to encounter that gag-inducing "pee smell," but your home bathroom isn't one of them.


So, just how do you tackle that persistent odor? Cleaning expert Melissa Maker of Clean My Space and Sarah Dee, mom of four boys and blogger at Frugal Fun 4 Boys, shared their strategies for getting your bathroom super-clean and smelling fresh again.

1. Get your supplies ready. While this has to be one of the nastiest household chores out there, having the right tools will make the job easier. Maker recommends you have a toilet brush, a toothbrush dedicated to just this task, paper towels -- because who wants to think about cross-contamination that could occur with a rag? -- and some all-purpose cleaner handy. Now you're ready to get to work!

2. Spray the toilet completely with all-purpose cleaner. Have a favorite product? Go for it. If you're more of a DIY-er, you can whip up a solution with a tablespoon of dish detergent and six ounces of water, Maker says. Spray your toilet -- tank and all -- from top to bottom. Do not forget the toilet base. (And maybe a clothespin for your nose!) 

3. Squirt bowl cleaner under the rim. You're going to want to let this sit for a few moments to break down lime scale, dirt, and bacteria, Maker says. When you're done with the rest of the steps, use your toilet brush to scrub the bowl.

More from CafeMom: 6 Ways to Cook Seafood Without That Fishy Smell Taking Over Your Home

dirty toilet

4. Wipe down the toilet with paper towels. It's a good idea to replace towels frequently and wipe in a steady and constant manner.

"Pay particular attention to points of contact like the toilet handle and the lids," Maker says. "Again, don't forget the base, and use your toothbrush for those hard-to-reach places like the hinges."

5. Remove the seat completely.  Speaking of the hinges, Dee recommends removing the toilet seat completely once in a while if you've cleaned your toilet and still find yourself with that unpleasant pee smell.

"This toilet seat looked clean! But all this ick was hiding," she says, referring to the photo above. Enough said!

6. Don't neglect the floor. Let's be honest: Moms of boys know all too well that not all the pee gets in the bowl every time. Some (okay, lots) may land just outside the toilet. If you've got a tile floor, that means it's in the grout, which explains why, despite having a sparkling toilet, you find that your bathroom still smells like a Johnny-on-the-Spot. Gross, right? But don't worry -- you've got everything you need to clean it and get that funk out. Make a paste out of water and baking soda and place it in the cracks of the grout. Next, spray it with vinegar and scrub away. I learned this cleaning method from the contractor who installed the tile floor in my bathroom -- a dad of boys -- and it really helps!

No one wants their bathroom to smell like one at a dive bar just before closing time. These steps will help keep your powder room fresh and pee smell–free!

get rid of pee smell bathroom

Read More >