Design & DIY

Weekly Hack: de-stink with kitty litter

By Andrey_Kuzmin/Shutterstock

Kitty litter is great for cats. But, as an odour neutralizer, it’s also great for de-stinking musty, mothballed items like an old piece of furniture, or a coat or suitcase that’s been stashed in your attic. Activated charcoal does this too, but it’s more expensive and harder to source. And other decent odour removers—coffee grounds, lemon juice, baking soda, vinegar, vodka—aren’t as reliable at getting rid of the smell of mothballs. (Plus, who wants to waste vodka?) Be very patient—this trick can take a long time.

A) Seal small items—including dresser drawers and clothing—in heavy-duty bags or plastic bins, along with a pillowcase of unused, unscented kitty litter. Replace the litter every few days.

B) For upholstered furniture, sprinkle litter over the fabric, let it sit, then vacuum it up. Repeat.

C) To treat a musty closet, leave a shallow container of kitty litter in one corner. Just don’t let your cat get at it.


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