cat of the sort maine coon lying on sofa

How to Get Rid of Stubborn Household Odors

From pet odors to the smell of cigarette smoke, rotten food, burned popcorn and all manner of other stinky stuff, there’s no getting around the fact that we live in a smelly world. And when stubborn odors invade our living space we need to know how to take care of them quickly and efficiently. 

cat of the sort maine coon lying on sofa

Odor elimination is not the same as room deodorizing. One takes it away, the other covers it up. Perhaps you’ve experienced this. There’s just nothing like a terrible odor mixed with the artificial smell of flowers or soft Polynesian breezes. 

It’s been many years since a terrific product called Nok-Out and I found one another. Our friendship has deepened to the point that I can’t imagine living without it. There’s just nothing like Nok-Out.

Related: It’s a Smelly World Out There

Our big household trash can doesn’t smell anymore because I routinely wash it out and then spray it down with a dilution of Nok-Out (one cup Nok-Out to one-gallon water).

I didn’t have to send a fairly new upholstered chair to the landfill due to an unfortunate accident involving a sick grandchild, thanks to Nok-Out.

The horrible stench of a large bag of disgustingly rotten potatoes hiding behind a storage rack in our basement (how did that happen!?) made me gag when the source of that odor was finally discovered. But not a problem. Nok-Out completely eliminated all traces within only a few hours. Amazing. 

And I’m not the only one in love with Nok-Out. Every week I hear from readers who have experienced a Nok-Out rescue. 

Dear Mary: We moved into a condo where the previous occupant had smoked cigarettes in the guest bathroom. We could barely step foot into that room—it was so terrible. We removed the wallpaper and then we used Nok-Out on every surface—the ceiling, walls, and vents. We had to spray a couple of times but that got rid of 95% of that smell. The rest dissipated in a short time. We recommended Nok-Out to a friend who has kids who play ice hockey. As soon as they come in the door, the super smelly gear goes in a pile and they spray it down. He loves it. Thought you would enjoy hearing these stories. Thanks for introducing us to Nok-Out. Marilyn

Dear Mary: A $38 gallon of Nok-Out saved my antique dresser. I won’t get into the details but the tragedy involved a very large, much-loved, elderly cat who was inadvertently closed up in a bedroom without a litter box. Apparently, a slightly opened drawer in a family heirloom dresser (recently appraised at $3,400) was the closest thing she could find to resemble her box. Need I go on? 

I tried everything I could think to get rid of the stench. I scrubbed the drawer with vinegar but that didn’t do a thing. This despicable odor seemed to permeate every square millimeter of the dresser. And the odor was not confined only to that piece of furniture. The whole house smelled like a zoo! We had no other choice but to move the beautiful piece out of the house. I was heartbroken. About that time I read about the wonders of Nok-Out in your Everyday Cheapskate posts. I didn’t believe anything would work to save the dresser but figured it was worth one last attempt.

Following the suggested protocol, (see The Simple Science of Eliminating Bad Odors) I sprayed every surface, crack and crevice with Nok-Out and left it open to air dry. Exactly what you describe happened: After a day or two the smell got even worse—a stale chlorine, stinky swimming pool like odor. But we hung in, hoping against hope that Nok-Out would work as described.

After a week, it was amazing that the odor was nearly undetectable. Just for good measure, I treated the specific drawer the cat used again with Nok-Out and left it out to dry completely. 

I’m so happy to share the good news that the dresser is back in the house—odor-free and more beautiful than ever. I’m thrilled and forever grateful. Norah 

If you’ve got a stinky situation or just want to be prepared, Nok-Out Odor Eliminator is available online. All prices include shipping.

  • 4 oz. Nok-Out spray bottle – $13.95
  • 16 oz Nok-Out spray bottle – $19.95
  • 32 oz. Nok-Out spray bottle – $24.00
  • Gallon Nok-Out – $38.00

Update: Some Nok-Out products will see a price increase over those state above, effective July 4, 2018.


As our way of sharing the Nok-Out love, Everyday Cheapskate is giving away One Gallon of Nok-Out Odor Eliminator and YOU could be the lucky winner! To enter this GIVEAWAY, use the comment area below to briefly share an experience with Nok-Out if you have one, OR why you should be chosen to win. That’s it! We’ll select a winner at noon MT on Mon., Jun 18 and notify that lucky person via email to arrange for delivery. 

Good Luck!

UPDATE 6-19-18

And we have a WINNER!!! 😄 Congratulations, dvivster. 👏 Your gallon of Nok-Out will be on its way to your front door as soon as you email mary with your mailing address! 🎉🎈We look forward to reports of amazing results because that’s what Nok-Out is all about. Super results!

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  1. cathy
    cathy says:

    My Nok Out experience involves a one week old BRAND NEW Hyundai and a 75 pound golden retriever. Unfortunately it was his first road trip and I had no idea he was prone to motion sickness, resulting in emptying himself of everything, from both ends! I parked and left him in the vehicle for about 15 minutes. When I came out, he greeted me with a very embarrassed, humiliated look that only a Golden can display. My first thought was “NOK OUT take me away!!!” Thank you Mary Hunt!!

    Unbelievably, my husband NEVER learned about the accident!

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