How To Make Your Car Smell Good: The 7 Easy Tips

The experience of traveling by car will become “horrible” when your car has an unpleasant smell. Find out the cause and understand how to make your car smell good to help drivers and passengers have a comfortable trip.

Bad odors are the fear of many drivers and passengers, especially driving long journeys. Understanding the causes and the “top” tips on how to deodorize the car below:

Reasons Make Unpleasant Odors In Your Car

First, you need to find out why the car has a bad smell. There are many reasons from subjective to objective.

how to make car air freshener
There are many reasons causing a bad smell in your car. How to make a car air freshener? (Photo:

Objective causes

  • The first cause of the bad smell in the car is the weather. In areas with humid climates and rainy weather, it is easy to create opportunities for bacteria and mold to grow, thereby creating a musty smell in the car. In addition, the interior of the car is mainly made of leather and synthetic plastic materials. These materials are very easy to smell.
  • Bad odors in your car can come from dirt accumulated over time. Every time you open the window, dirt from the outside will creep in and stick to the car. If not cleaned properly, they will cause a strange smell.
  • For newly purchased cars, you will often find an unpleasant smell in the car compartment. The cause is due to the mixture of organic compounds released from the materials inside the car, and organic impurities in the exhaust system. Any details with components made of flexible plastic, or vinyl such as panels, steering wheels, leather seat covers, or mats … are the cause of bad odors for new cars. Because they all contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This is the source of the strong, unpleasant odors inside new cars. These volatile compounds, when released into the air, will bind together or can combine with other molecules to form new compounds.

Subjective causes

  • The habit of smoking, eating, and drinking in your vehicle combined with the lack of periodic cleaning are the causes of unpleasant odors in the car. It will be a mistake for drivers to think that opening the window while smoking, eating, or using an air purifier can help the interior of the car to completely deodorize.

Keeping your car smelling fresh and clean is an essential thing. The pleasant scent in the car helps you relax and fully enjoy the journey. For service cars, the smell in the car is an important factor. A clean compartment will make a good impression and create comfort for passengers.

>> Related post: Why Your Car Has Smelly Exhaust Fumes & How To Fix

How To Make Your Car Smell Good?

To deodorize the car, the driver first needs to locate the position of the smell in the car.

Parts easily stick odors in your car

For new cars, when there is an odor, the driver can remove the plastic film covering the parts and use a towel to clean the entire interior. Then let it dry completely before continuing to use it. In contrast, with cars that have been used for a while, the driver can look for parts that cause odors such as seats, floor, gaps between seats, trunk, drawers,… places where food and drink are stored. There are many ways to deodorize cars that can thoroughly deal with these odors.

How to make my car smell good?

Use tea or coffee

remove smell from car
Tea and coffee can also help eliminate unpleasant odors in the car. (Photo:

In addition to keeping the driver awake, tea and coffee can also help eliminate unpleasant odors in the car. Coffee beans have hygroscopic properties, effectively deodorize cars, and have a pleasant aroma, so many drivers choose to put them in the car to create a comfortable space. To remove the smell from the car, hang a bag of dried tea leaves or coffee beans in places such as air conditioning. At that time, the aroma will radiate and dispel the unpleasant smell in your car.

Deodorize with baking soda or vinegar

Not only does it have a cleaning effect, but baking soda also removes odors very well, especially the leather smell of the interior that almost all new cars have. The method is simple as follows: sprinkle baking soda powder evenly on the surface of the leather to be deodorized, then use a dry towel to clean the powder after 30 minutes – 1 hour, finally use a towel to wipe the entire leather interior and allow the vehicle to dry before using it.

White vinegar is great for cleaning and disinfecting cars. Drivers can completely mix white vinegar and water in a ratio of 2:1, adding essential oils to create a fragrance (if any). Then use a spray bottle containing the mixture to spray the inside of the car.

Try essential oil

how to remove car odors
Essential oils extracted from nature will be very beneficial to health to help drivers stay awake (Photo:

This is probably the most popular way to make your car smell better. Essential oil is extremely convenient and absolutely safe for people in your car. Essential oils extracted from nature will be very beneficial to health to help drivers stay awake, comfortable, and focused on driving, especially to purify the air, kill bacteria, and remove some odors in the car. You can use essential oils hanging on the car, essential oils spray, or essential oil diffuser depending on your own preferences.

Deodorize with activated charcoal 

Just like baking soda, activated charcoal has the ability to absorb odors extremely effectively. This natural ingredient not only helps to deodorize, but it can also remove allergens, pollutants, and excess moisture from the air. A bag of activated carbon placed under the seat or near the vents will eliminate unpleasant odors and kill the mold caused by the effects of the weather.

Orange peels

One more method of natural fragrance for your car is to use orange peels. Orange peel contains a lot of natural essential oils that are not only pleasant to the sense of smell but also remove many different odors left in the car. The method is very simple, just put the peels in front of the aircon or passenger compartment, these orange peels will work very quickly and remove the maximum odor in the car. However, drivers also need to pay attention to change regularly, avoiding spoiled things will have the opposite effect, causing more odors to the car.

Clean your car interior

how to make car smell better
Drivers should periodically clean and sanitize the interior of the car to keep the car space fresh and airy. (Photo:

To get rid of the smell completely, it is necessary to remove all odor-causing agents and clean them. Drivers should periodically clean and sanitize the interior of the car to keep the car space fresh and airy. In particular, the vacuum cleaner will be an effective support tool in the cleaning process, helping to clean the foot mats and the small unreachable slots in the seat position.

Clean the air filter and air conditioner door

The air conditioner door and air filter can be the cause of odors after a period of use, so cleaning these parts is an important job. While the air filter can be cleaned by exposing it to the open air for a few hours, with the air conditioner door, an effective way to clean is to wipe the dust and then spray the door with deodorant.

>> Read more: How to Unclog Air Vents in Car: From Removing Smell to Cleaning Fungi

Sum Up

In this article, we shared with you 7 effective and simple ways to make a car smell better. So that drivers can save for use when needed. Depending on each case you can apply one or combine many ways together. However, “prevention is better than cure”, to prevent the smell in your car, you should periodically clean the interior of the car, and limit bad habits like eating or smoking in your car…