Feces smell in an apartment can be difficult to remove. Even after you’ve cleaned up your pet’s or child’s mess, the odor can still linger, making it uncomfortable to entertain or even just relax at home yourself. The sooner you address the problem, the better.
Identify the Source of the Feces Smell
First, you’ll need to identify the source of the feces smell that’s plaguing your apartment. If you recently cleaned up a mess, that may be the source, but there may be another source. Pets who defecate where they’re not supposed to may attempt to hide the mess so they won’t get in trouble. Follow the odor into closets, under piles of clothing or clutter or in dark corners of the apartment.
Your apartment may also be plagued by a feces smell from a cat litter box or the toilet. How you approach this problem is different than how you’d approach getting the odor out of carpeting, rugs and flooring.
Clean Again—with Attention to the Odor
Once you’ve traced the feces smell to a section of the apartment, you should clean the area, even if you’ve already cleaned away the mess. This time as you clean, you’ll need to pay particular attention to the odor.
- Put on disposable gloves and remove the feces (if you haven’t already). Use a paper towel to grab as much of the large clumps as you can and dispose of them in a bag to put in the dumpster.
- Pour a little cold water over the stained or odorous area and blot with a paper towel.
- Use an enzyme cleaner over the stained area as directed on the bottle and work it into the floor or carpet with a hand towel you use in circular motions. If you don’t have a specialized feces stain cleaner on hand, you can try a mixture of equal parts distilled white vinegar and warm water. However, try the solution on a small area of the carpet or flooring first to make sure it doesn’t stain. Allow the area to dry or use a hair dryer to speed up the process.
- Sprinkle baking soda over the entire area—the more you use, the better. Use a scrub brush or an old bristle hair brush to work it into the flooring or fibers in circular motions. Allow the baking soda to sit at least ten minutes. If the feces odor is too strong, allow the soda to sit overnight.
- Vacuum the baking soda away.
Making Litter or the Toilet Smell Better
You may not be able to stop the feces smell in your apartment entirely if the source of the smell if a cat litter box or the toilet, but you can improve the smell of both by cleaning them regularly. Scoop the cat box every day, or even twice a day, if the odor is a problem. Dispose of the feces in a odor-blocking litter disposal system or immediately bring the bag outside to the dumpster. You can also put a cat-safe air freshener on the cat box.
Clean the toilet every day and make sure that everyone in the apartment flushes after each visit. If you keep the toilet clean and there’s still a feces smell, there may be a problem with the sewage line and you should contact your landlord.