Even if you don't have pets, there's a good chance that a Craigslist purchase at some point in time will come home with ode de feline and could use a little freshening, so don't dismiss these valuable tips!
• First: Obtain a enzymatic cleaner from your local retailer. We are extra-big fans of Bac Out from BioKleen. There are other products on the market: Nature's Miracle is a favorite, but having tried them all, Bac Out is still our treatment of choice. Others might work great for pet waste, but Bac Out can be used on moldy carpets, icky toilets and more. Go multi-purposing!
• Next: Don't blot the stain with another towel or rag. All that accomplishes is having pee on your carpet and on your towel, and unless your washer has a sanitary setting that takes the temperatures up around 170 degrees... well then, you're right back where you started. Simply apply the solution directly to the spot and 1" around the outside of it.
• Then: If you have pets in the home, place a large metal bowl over the spot for 1-2 hours and then remove and allow to dry overnight. It keeps snouts out without pestering them to stay away. (If you don't have pets, just apply and let dry naturally.) That's it!
Enzymatic cleaners release cultures that literally eat the urine, leaving things sanitary and smell free once dry. The same cleaners are also great at mold and mildew stains for the same reason. They just eat them up and call it a day! Since we've started using cleaners of this method we haven't looked back and haven't had a problem since! Although vinegar works well in some cases, it is best for stains as opposed to residual smells. Think of it as picking the head of a dandelion instead of pulling it by the roots!
Note: This post reflects the views of the contributor only and isn't sponsored by any outside products. We just happen to love sharing tricks of the trade that work time and time again, no matter what the product is.
(Image: Sarah Rae Trover)