How To Get Rid Of a Humid (Mildew) Smell From The Interior Of Your Car [Step-by-Step Tutorial]

How To Get Rid Of a Humid (Mildew) Smell From The Interior Of Your Car [Step-by-Step Tutorial]

Did you accidentally leave your car window open during rain? And does your car now have a funky and musty smell?

smell in car.jpg

In this step-by-step tutorial, you’ll learn why you want to address this right away (and no, it’s not because it’s unpleasant), and how to get rid of the smell in just a few simple steps.

Let’s get right into it.

Because of the water getting in during the rain, the interior of your car is now damp. What you’re smelling is bacteria colonies starting to form.

If you don’t do anything about it, pretty soon mold is going to grow.

mold in car 1 MOD.jpg

(Your car can end up like this, no joke)

Aside from ruining the interior of your car, mold is really dangerous to be around. Breathing in mold spores can quickly send someone to the hospital, with serious health consequences.

You need to address this right away, before mold gets a chance to form (if it hasn’t already).

Here’s what you need to do…

First step is to thoroughly clean the interior of your car. (For detailed instructions on how to do it, check out this Interior Car Cleaning Guide.)

If you’re not willing or able to do it yourself, hire someone to do it for you. Do not delay.

Next, you need to get a hold of a floor air mover, like the one below.


Most tool rental places would have one, and they’re inexpensive to rent out.

Place that in your car, and turn it on. Try as you can to have it facing the floor or the seats, because those areas need to dry first.

Move it around in the car every couple of hours or so.

It shouldn’t take more a full day for this machine to dry your whole interior. This way you eliminate any chances for the mold to develop.

If the car still has a funny smell, it’s time for step #3: an Ozone Treatment.

An Ozone Generator machine looks like this below…


Again, your best bet is a tool rental place, perhaps one specialized in flood or disaster remediation.

The Ozone Generator will get rid of remaining bacteria, which gives out the bad smell in the car.

Place the Ozone Generator in the car. Turn it on and seal the doors. Let it run for a couple of hours.

Once you’re done, leave the car doors open for a few minutes to air out. Do not get in the car to drive right away.

Ozone (O3) kills living organisms, and is also harmful to humans.

For maximum effectiveness, while running the Ozone machine in the car, turn the A/C on with the recirculating function on. This will also kill bacteria in the air ducts and vents.

If you do all this, you have done everything humanly possible to solve the problem.