How to Use Coffee Grounds to Eliminate Household Odors


Things You Will Need

Many of the items you need to get rid of smoke smell are regular household items. Other agents used to clean surfaces are tailored to the job of getting smells out of your vehicle. You will use a vacuum, and if available, other professional equipment, such as a steam cleaner. A steam cleaner is a key part of a car cleaning system. We listed many items below for you to consider. They all offer solutions for getting the smell of smoke out of your car.

If you prefer a home remedy verses a commercial car cleaning agent, for hard surfaces, you can use a 50/50 mixture of white vinegar and water. This will work most anytime in the process.


4. Vacuum the Floor and Surrounding Areas

To ensure you get the smoke smell removed from all areas, use a vacuum to remove odor-holding dirt and debris from this area. Sprinkle baking soda on the carpeting and let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes. The next step in the process, is simply to vacuum the baking soda up from the carpet. As a natural absorbent, it will remove the cigarette smell.

3.    Eliminate Undesirable Odors

In contrast to commercial products that merely mask unwanted smells, coffee grounds can actually counteract unpleasant odors. This is because the grounds absorb the odors of anything they’re near, which can be both a benefit and a drawback. In coffee shop settings, baristas must be careful that the perfumes they wear or any smells on their fingers don’t infiltrate open bags of beans. At home, however, you can use this characteristic to your advantage.

When left in an open-air container, the grounds will release nitrogen into the air. These molecules then bind with carbon and sulfur, which gives off that “rotten egg” smell. As a result, any unwanted odors will be reduced and neutralized. Coffee grounds continue to absorb odors even after they’re brewed, so you can use your leftovers to counteract unpleasant scents in your home. Simply leave an open container of used grounds near your garbage, under your sink, or in your garage for effective odor elimination. Additionally, for a portable solution, you can fill a sock or pair of tights with used coffee grounds, tie them, and place them wherever you need to eliminate smells. This is a great option for gym bags, drawers, shoes, and cars.

Why use perfectly good coffee?

You might wonder, why do you choose to use perfect

You might wonder, why do you choose to use perfectly good coffee grounds when there are products to specifically combat bad odors? Like Baking Soda or charcoal?

For one thing, it’s much cheaper to use coffee than to buy a cleaning product. In this case, coffee has dual purposes: a repellent for drink and odor. Why go out and buy something, if you can just take coffee. It can save you money and the trouble of using a product which may not work as you would like it to.

The best part is that they will do any type of coffee grounds. From Folgers to Maxwell House, all of them should do the trick to remove leftover unpleasant odors. You may hate breaking into a bag of your Starbucks coffee to get rid of a smell, but leaving a bag open for odor absorption shouldn’t hurt the flavor of the coffee grounds unless you spread it over a dryer sheet. You can also use coffee ground from your fridge and microwave to neutralize bad odors.

What Does it Mean if Your Garbage Disposal Smells Like:

The way your garbage disposal smells can be an indicator of whether or not the problem is simply food that has not been properly disposed and drained or if a more serious problem is to blame.

Rotten Food

When your disposal smells like rotten food, then it’s likely because rotten food is to blame. When you don’t run your disposal for long enough, or when warm water is not running while the disposal is running to help move waste through your plumbing system, food and leftovers can accumulate in just beneath your sink or in your pipes, leading to clogged drains and unpleasant smells. Regularly cleaning your disposal should eliminate the foul odors.


If your garbage disposal smells like sewage, it’s time to call the plumber. While temporary fixes may mask the smell, if your disposal smells like sewage, then there’s a good chance there’s a leak that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.

Mold or Mildew

If your garbage disposal smells like mold or mildew, it’s likely caused by mold or mildew accumulating in your sink and drain. This is most often caused by placing food in the drain and not running the disposal or not running the disposal long enough to properly dispose of waste. Using a mixture of vinegar, warm water, and baking soda can eliminate the mold.

Crafts with Used Coffee Grounds

I can’t say that I was much of an upcycled crafter before children, but my craft-obsessed 4-year-old has me looking at ordinary household items in a new light.  If used toilet paper rolls can become a spaceship, what can you make with used coffee grounds?!?!

Dying Textiles With Coffee

Anyone who’s ever spilled coffee down the front of a white shirt knows that coffee makes an incredibly effective natural dye.  It can be nearly impossible to get a set coffee stain out of cloth, which means it’s a great way to dye fabrics in shades from tan to brown.

Start with used coffee grounds and bring them to a boil in a pot of water.  The flavor of twice brewed coffee may be horrible, but it stains just as well the second time it’s brewed.  Adding a few tablespoons of vinegar will help set the dye.

Wring out the fabric and then hang it to dry completely.  To help set the dye further, run an iron over the cloth or place it in the dryer on high (when it’s already dry).

Wondering what coffee dye looks like?  Apartment Therapy has some great examples.

Antiquing Paper Using Coffee Grounds

Similar to the process of dying fabric with coffee grounds, you can do the same thing with paper.  But why on earth would you do that?

The process is called antiquing, and it takes a regular piece of paper and makes it look like it’s hundreds of years old.  It’s a fun project if you’re teaching kids about the constitution and you want to create something realistic (and tangible to study).  Or you can use it to create some really unique party invites.

In my case, I’m a huge nerd into the society for creative anachronism.  (Think renaissance fairs, but without spectators.)  There’s always a market for a paper that looks like it’s historical, and you might even make a pretty penny selling antique craft paper so the Vikings can write out their mead recipes in style.

Here’s a detailed tutorial on how to antique paper with coffee grounds.

Coffee Candles

Homemade candles are easier than you think, and adding in a bit of dried spent coffee grounds will make them smell amazing.

Where Can Coffee Beans Absorb Smell?

Leave coffee beans in any corner of the room or kitchen, and the strong coffee scent kicks in the area. 

Any unpleasant smell that was bothering you will b

Any unpleasant smell that was bothering you will be absorbed. 

You can also place the coffee beans in a cabinet, bathroom shelf, fridge or pet litter box, and let the magic happen. 

The used coffee beans or grounds can also be used as a compost for your garden post using them to absorb smell as they also fertilise your soil.

You can use coffee beans either as a whole bean or in its ground form, as well as used coffee grounds post drying in an open jar. 

Reminds of us a simpler time

Using coffee to help with odors is that it’s an old school method that really resonates with those who like a homemade recipe versus an item purchased in the store. It takes you back to how they used to do things; making it from scratch using household items of everyday use.

If you want to try other notable household items that have also proven to be instrumental in facing repellent odors, check the following items in your cabinets: vinegar, lemon juice, baking soda, and oats. All these items were highly spoken of when confronted with terrible lingering odors.


Body odors caused by too much coffee are unpleasant. One of the easiest ways to clear them up is to drink less coffee. But, you can mitigate the smells with other solutions, like drinking water and using natural deodorants. Do whatever it takes to keep drinking your favorite brew!

If you’re interested in learning more about the chemistry of coffee, we’ve written other articles on the subject that we think you’ll enjoy! 

How to Clean the Garbage Disposal

There are a couple of simple ways to keep your garbage disposal in tip top shape. Whether your disposal is older and functioning less efficiently or brand new and not exhibiting signs of wear and tear at all, it’s always a good idea to periodically “clean” your disposal system with the following methods at least once per month.

Garbage Disposal Cleaning Pods

Many grocery stores and large retailers sell garbage disposal cleaning pods that both mask unpleasant odors and help unclog your drain to help prevent the backup of food waste that can lead to strong smells and broken disposal systems. Simply drop a pod or two down the sink, turn on the water, and turn on the disposal, and the cleaning pods will go to work. A package of 5-10 pods typically retails for less than $5.

Ice Cubes for Garbage Disposal Systems

You may have heard ice can help clean your garbage disposal, and it’s true. Ice can help sharpen the blades on your garbage disposal system to help make food disposal more efficient. The problem with both cleaning pods and ice is that while providing a temporary solution to help maintain the life of your disposal system, they won’t fix serious problems, so if you’re noticing frequent odors, or if your system has become less efficient at disposing of waste, call a professional home service today.

Baking Soda and Vinegar Cleaning Solution

A mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and warm water is a natural, non-toxic cleaner that can help eliminate odors and break down leftover food particles in your garbage disposal and drains. Simply allow the mixture to sit for at least ten minutes, and then run both the garbage disposal and warm water to drain the remnants.

Citrus Peels for Odor Elimination

Running lemon and orange peels through your disposal can freshen up your drain and help control stinky smells. A small amount of citrus-scented dish soap placed in the drain while the disposal is running along with warm water can also do the trick.

A Final Word

You bought a French Press because you wanted a convenient and quick way to make your favorite coffee brew every day. The last thing you want are hassles and disposing of coffee grounds could turn into a problem. But with some improvisation and creativity, you can dispose of used coffee grounds and put them to further good use.