How to Remove Odor from Concrete Floor

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The concrete floor in our homes is known to be sturdy and strong but not known for it’s ability to withstand irritating odors. It can be exposed to different elements that may penetrate into the pores of the concrete and cause staining or even odors. This is not unusual because water damage, which can then lead to mildew and mold, and other types of liquid spills such as pet urine, grease and even ash can all easily affect your concrete flooring. If this has already occurred, here are the steps on how to remove those offensive odor from concrete floor.

Over time, concrete floors can acquire a strong odor which is difficult to remove and may require more effort than a simple mop and water bucket. You need to employ special chemical cleansers and methods that are meant for concrete.

This is no simple task. In fact, it requires the utmost care and the right steps to ensure your concrete floor does not get damaged as you remove odor-causing elements from its pores.

Also read: How To Clean Garage Floor

Normal Cleaning Will Not Be Enough To Remove Pet Urine Odor And Stain

First of all, the most common, annoying and stubborn odor that can affect the surface of your concrete floor is that from pet urine. The acidity in urine leaves a strong uric salt residue that becomes impossible to remove with just an ordinary mopping and detergent solution. 

You need to use a chemical cleanser specially made for concrete, since some may ruin it or cause discoloration on its surface. It is best advised never to use acid-based chemical cleaners on your concrete floors, as they will eat away at the surface and damage it. A similar situation occurs when using alkaline cleansers. You also need to be careful when using bleach, as it may make the situation worse by causing discoloration on your floor.

The problem is, worst case scenario, there are times when pet urine gets trapped inside the pores in your concrete floors giving you an incredibly challenging task in trying to get rid of that stubborn smell and stain without damaging your flooring. This is why you need to know the proper method, how to remove odor from concrete floor. 

How to Spot Urine Odor In Concrete

Now this task is a lot easier said then done since not everyone knows how to spot urine that has seeped into concrete. But never fear, we have a method to help you identify the existence of pet urine on your flooring. 

Urine when dries, leaves a yellow/amber stain on your concrete floor that is usually easy to spot. If you can see wet looking areas, it’s likely urine, so use protective gear and materials before cleaning the area. 

However, when the urine has seeped into the pores of the concrete, it may be a bit more challenging to find. You will have to employ another method to find out if there is urine residue below your concrete floor. In this case use a UV or Black Light

Most pet supply stores carry black lights which help detect urine and bodily fluids that are not normally visible to the naked eye. This will be helpful in finding those tough spots where the urine has seeped through from under your floor. Simply turn off all other sources of light in the room and switch on your black light, directing it at each potential area of concern. Urine will glow brightly under this UV light so you know exactly where to clean with chemical cleansers specific for concrete floors. Mark those areas with chalk or tape so you don’t miss any spot. 

How To Remove Odor From Concrete Floor

The following are the steps needed to remove pet urine and floors stains.

Step 1. Clean The Pet Urine Stains With TSP

Now that you know the signs and have located a urine stained area, you should try to remove as much of the stain and odor causing materials from your concrete flooring. Start by mixing a strong solution of TSP diluted in warm water. It is important not to use too strong a concentration, so be sure to calculate the ratio correctly before applying onto your concrete surface.

After scrubbing with a brush leave it to dry for about 10 minutes. If the stain is still visible, reapply the solution and scrub again with a stiff brush. Then clean with hot water and mop. Repeat process until you’re satisfied with the results.

Step 2. Apply Pet Urine Enzymatic Cleaner To Concrete

After the TSP solution has dried, use a pet enzyme cleaner with natural bacterial enzymes. 

Apply the enzymatic cleaner to affected areas with a brush or mop and scrub with a stiff bristled brush. Let sit for 15 minutes before cleaning with water and mop. Repeat until satisfied.

The enzyme works by breaking down the urine crystals into carbon dioxide and water. The bacteria in the enzyme cleanser will then digest the urea, which is responsible for the smell of urine, similar to how the human body works when breaking down proteins.

Step 3. Sealing Concrete From Pet Urine Odors

Now that you have removed the urine stains and odor causing materials it’s time to seal them from future damage.

Concrete can be damaged by other cleaning chemicals, so you should use a natural concrete cleaner, free of any harsh chemicals or petroleum distillates. Apply this solution with a sponge mop instead of mopping your floor with water to prevent diluting the sealer too much. This should dry within an hour.

After that, apply a coat of solvent-based sealer using either a brush or roller for larger areas and let dry overnight before applying the 2nd coat if necessary. Some brands require no reapplication down the road, so check with your brand for instructions.

Also Read: 6 Steps On How to Apply Epoxy To Garage Floor

Frequently Asked Questions:

Will Vinegar Remove Urine Smell From Concrete? 

Vinegar is a good cleaning solution. It may help to remove urine smells from your concrete. However, it will not fully remove the odor since vinegar doesn’t have enzymes in it. The vinegar itself may also leave a smell behind.

Does urine soak into concrete?

Yes, urine seeps into concrete over time. This is one of the reasons why it’s so hard to remove pet smell from concrete. The urine can soak under the concrete and create a smell even with cleaning efforts on top of the flooring. If you don’t remove it all, the smell will come back after a short time.

How do you deodorize concrete?

One of the best ways to deodorize concrete floors is to use an enzyme based cleaner with natural bacteria enzymes. This type of cleaner is usually available in most places that sell pet supplies. These cleaners are meant to break down the uric crystals which are causing the urine odors on your flooring surface.


Pet urine and concrete stains go hand in hand. Even if you use a cleaner specifically for concrete, it may not remove the smell of pet urine from your flooring. A better solution is to use TSP and enzymatic cleaners with natural bacteria enzymes which will break down the uric crystals and deodorize the concrete. Sealing can then help prevent further damage from occurring since future cleaning efforts won’t be able to penetrate into the surface of the concrete.

We hope you have found this information helpful.

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