The furniture in storage is beginning to smell

Removing Musty Smells from Furniture

TDS Reader Solutions

How to Conquer Debt eBook

Oh, the Musty Odor

I have a storage unit with the contents of a house in it (divorced, sold house, and moved into tiny apartment!). My problem is I have a couch with matching chair which are in perfect condition, but I recently noticed that items I have been removing from storage have an awful musty smell. I can only guess how badly my furniture will smell once removed from storage, who knows when! Any suggestions to help remedy this would be greatly appreciated. I don't want my furniture ruined by odor. Thanks so much!
D.D. in NH

Vinegar Helps with Smell

Put dishes of vinegar in your storage area. At first the air may smell strongly of the vinegar, but after a day there will be no more musty smells at all. You can put little dishes in drawers also to get the musty smell out of them. I did this in my basement, which is old and damp and there are no more musty smells.

Kitty Litter is Helpful

Try putting kitty litter in open containers in basements, closets, etc. Change as needed. It will help rid the area of musty smells. This also works in vacant, closed up houses.

Removing Musty Smells from Furniture

Charcoal Helps Keep Air Sweet

When my friend put her house contents into storage, the woman in charge of the unit told her to put an opened 5-lb. bag of charcoal near her furniture. She also told her to change it every six months. Apparently, the charcoal absorbs the odors and also the dampness in the air. Her furniture still smelled sweet after three years in storage. Hope this helps.

Clear the Air with Vanilla

Use vanilla on a rag, fully soaked and throw it in the storage unit. It will draw the entire musty odor away. When you no longer smell the vanilla, do it again.

Coffee Grounds Takes Away Odors

My brother used to work for a tannery and they used fresh coffee grounds to eradicate smells in the trucks that hauled hides. They would open the truck doors and pour out a fresh can of coffee, and then lock the doors and in a day or so they would sweep out the grounds and no smell would remain.

We began using that idea as a military family moving frequently, and having our household goods periodically put in storage. After cleaning out our refrigerators and freezers prior to a move, and going into storage, we would be sure each was thoroughly dried inside. Then I would take about 1-2 cups of fresh coffee grounds and place them in a brown paper bag (lunch size) and staple shut. This would be put on a refrigerator shelf and another in the freezer compartment. Our things were often in storage for a month, and when delivered, we would always be able to open the appliance doors, take out the coffee grounds bags, and then close doors and plug appliances in to the power. There was never that stale "refrigerator" musty smell, but always a clean, fresh smell.

This would probably work as well in a storage unit, though you might have to place several sacks around the unit to get full coverage. It impressed me when I first heard of it, since it had been proven to remove the smell of hides from animals. We have shared this with many friends through the years, and all have had the same positive reaction we did.

Damp Rid Removes Dampness

For the musty smell, the best thing I have ever found is Damp Rid. It is in granule form put in a container that fits in the top of a larger container. It gets moisture from the air and water drains into the bottom of the larger container. You can also buy a refill when the granules are about gone. You can find it sometimes at Wal-Mart or a hardware store that handles cleaning supplies.

Reviewed January 2018

Take the Next Step:

Stay Connected with TDS

Little Luxuries

to the Dollar Stretcher newsletter and get a copy
of our ebook
Little Luxuries:
130 Ways to Live Better...For Less
for FREE!

Your Email:

View the TDS Privacy Policy.

Debt Book