How to Eliminate Kitchen Sink Odor

a silver kitchen sink and faucet
  • 1 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-50
What You'll Need
1 lemon cut into 8 wedges
baking soda
white vinegar
Boiling water
2 cups rock salt
Old toothbrush

Kitchen sink odors begin to occur due to the heavy abuse the sink in the kitchen undergoes. With dishes, garbage disposals, peelings, and standing water, it is no wonder odors begin to develop. Luckily, cleaning a kitchen sink and removing odors can be done naturally and easily. By using natural ingredients you do not need to worry about children, pets, or contact with food being at risk.

Step 1 - Initial Cleaning

Use white vinegar to wipe down and clean the outer surfaces of the sink. Pay special attention to the ring around the drain, the contact between the faucet and the sink, and contact between the sink and the counter-top. Using an old toothbrush to get deep into the smaller cracks can greatly improve success. For tricky or mildew stains, make a paste of baking soda and water and allow the paste to sit for 15 minutes before removing with vinegar. The vinegar will cause bubbling and remove many penetrating stains.

Step 2 - Unclog the Drain

using a plunger in the sink

Often odors in the kitchen sink come from build up within the garbage disposal or the drain itself. Food and debris attach to the walls of the drain and create ideal breeding grounds for mold, mildew, and bacteria. Even if the drain does not appear clogged, the walls of the drain or garbage disposal receptacle can have build-up causing stench. To unclog the drain, pour 1/2 cup of baking soda down the drain followed by 1/2 cup of white vinegar. The foaming action will churn up any gunk and often flush food debris. Follow with hot water.

Step 3 - Salt Water the Drain

Grease is another culprit of smells. Grease attached to the walls of the drain can incubate odor. Heat a teapot or other pot with two liters (1/2 gallon) of water until boiling. Add two cups of salt and stir until dissolved. Pour the boiling salt water down the drain. The salty brine will dissolve and flush greasy residue from the drain creating better water flow, greater flushing capacity, and discourage grease from forming in the future.

Step 4 - Garbage Disposal

several types of cut citrus

The blades of the garbage disposal often miss the corners of the receptacle allowing food particles to linger before rinsing. Cut one lemon into eight wedges and dump them into the disposal. Grind them up allowing the water to run an extra 30 seconds before and after the grinding has finished. The lemon will freshen the disposal and disinfect any lingering bacteria.

Step 5 - Deodorize the Room

To eliminate lingering kitchen odors caused from a stinky drain, mix 1/4 cup of white vinegar with one quart of water. Allow the mixture to boil in a pot on the stove for 15 to 20 minutes, unless the water evaporates sooner. Do not use the kitchen hood or blower to exhaust fumes. As the vinegar evaporates, it will remove odors with it. When the vapors contact kitchen surfaces, they will neutralize any standing odors leaving the kitchen smelling fresh.