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Potatoes are a staple in just about every kitchen. And, most of the time we store them in the basement or in cool pantries to help them last longer.
However, if those areas are carpeted, your potatoes can go off and leave a nasty smell and ugly marks on your carpeting.
The good news is you can get rid of the smell and the stains of rotting potatoes with a simple homemade remedy. All you’ll need is a little bit of warm water, distilled white vinegar, and dish soap.
How to Remove the Smell and Stain of Rotten Potatoes
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Getting rid of the marks and smell of rotting potatoes is a relatively simple process. All you need to do is follow the steps below to start cleaning the stench out of your carpets.
Step One: Throw Out Old Potatoes
This may sound obvious, but the first step to getting rid of the stench of rotting potatoes is to find the source of the smell. Sometimes the smell is coming from spilled trash or food on the floor.
More often than not, however, it’s coming from potatoes that are rotten or close to rotten and still sitting in your cabinet.
Regardless of where the scent is coming from, you need to throw them away in an outdoor receptacle. That’s because the fumes from rotting potatoes can be toxic.
The problem is, once the smell is gone, that’s not to say that the stains aren’t still there! The next steps will help get any lingering odors out of your carpet as well as rid your home of nasty stains.
Step Two: Whip Up Some Dish Soap and Warm Water
After you’ve got rid of your rotting potatoes, clear the patch of carpet that’s giving off the fumes. Now, mix together a cup of warm water with a few drops of dish soap.
This mixture is designed to work on the stains that are haunting your carpet.
Take a clean rag and soak the rag in the dish soap mixture. Gently dab it onto the part of the carpet that’s stained.
You can wipe up any residue left from the rotting potatoes using your rag. Then, dab the carpet gently to lift out any residue that may be lingering in the fibers.
Pro Tip: If you’ve got a section of carpet that’s struggling with especially stubborn stains, you can sprinkle baking soda over the stained patch. Let the baking soda sit on the carpet for about an hour.
Once the time is up, vacuum up the baking soda. You should notice that the odor and the stains are gone from your carpet.
Step Three: Add a Hint of Distilled White Vinegar
Once you’ve cleaned up any potato residue, it’s time to get to work tackling the odors in the carpet. While the dish soap should have got rid of your stains, it won’t necessarily get rid of the smells lingering in your carpet.
That’s what the vinegar is for!
For this step, mix one cup of distilled white vinegar and one cup of warm water together in a spray bottle.
Spray the mixture onto the carpet and allow it to sit for about fifteen minutes. Then, blot the carpet with your dish soap and water mixture once again to get up the vinegar.
Step Five: Steam Clean
Finally, steam clean your carpet according to the machine’s manufacturer’s instructions. You can either use a handheld steamer if you’re dealing with a small patch of carpet, or you can steam clean the entire room.
Steam cleaning is important for getting the last of the potato stains from your carpet. It helps deep clean the fibers of your floor and leaves them sparkling clean.
How to Prevent Future Smells and Stains from Getting Into Your Carpet
Once you’ve got the smell and stains of rotting potato out of your carpet you need to prevent it from happening again. After all, that’s a lot of work to get these stains and stenches out of your flooring!
The easiest way to prevent this issue is to store your potatoes properly. The best places to store them are in cool, dark areas that have wood or cement flooring.
Not only does this method help your potatoes last longer, but it also preserves the natural vitamins found in the veggies.
You should also consider storing your potatoes in a paper bag or a plastic bowl away from other vegetables. This lets the potatoes breathe and makes them less likely to go rotten.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Does My House Smell Like Rotting Potatoes?
If your home smells like rotting potatoes you’ve likely got some vegetables lurking somewhere. Check the back corners of where you usually store your potatoes. And, look through your bag of potatoes to see if one of them has gone rotten that’s less visible.
How Do I Clean Rotting Potatoes Out of a Cabinet?
You can use the dish soap and vinegar to remove the smell of rotting potatoes from cabinets that aren’t carpeted, too. Instead of steam cleaning, just use rags soaked in hot water to get the last of the smells out of your cabinet.