How to Quickly Get Rid of Mothball Smell from the House

Mothballs are great for protecting your clothing against moths and other insects. Unfortunately, they have a pungent odor that can be hard to get out of your house. Here are some tips for getting rid of that distinctive mothball scent from your home, clothing, and furniture.

MOSO Air Purifying Bags

Charcoal is one of the best ways to get a pervasive odor out of a room, once and for all. Due to its chemical structure and ample surface area (it’s quite porous), it pulls moisture and smells out of the airs, making it a great way to get rid of that nasty mothball smell.

These air purifying bags are filled with eco-friendly bamboo charcoal, and can be placed or hung around your home to discreetly deodorize your indoor air. Unlike many other kinds of air fresheners, charcoal actually neutralizes odors, rather than just masking them.

Hamilton Beach Room Odor Eliminator

The Hamilton Beach Room Odor Eliminator contains three carbon filters, which pull the chemicals responsible for unpleasant odors out of the air when it’s moved through filters by the fans. It’s available in three different styles: a small wall plug mount, the plug mount with a built in nightlight, and a larger Whole Room Odor Eliminator.

This device is quite small, at just eight inches tall, and the fans are surprisingly quiet. Plus, it’s very energy efficient, consuming less electricity than a meager 15 watt light bulb. It’s one of the most effective products out there for thoroughly and reliably getting bad odors out of your house.

How to Get Rid of Mothball Smell from the House

The chemicals in mothballs – traditionally naphthalene, but nowadays often other compounds like 1,4-dichlorobenzene – are designed to slowly sublimate from a solid ball into a toxic gas, which acts as an effective insecticide.

While the chemicals aren’t really harmful to humans in the amount you’d be exposed to from regular household mothballs, the pungent odor can get into the air in your home, as well as getting on your hands and clothes.

Here are some methods for getting rid of the smell around your house.

How to Get Rid of Mothball Smell from Clothes

Mothballs are a go-to solution for keeping clothes moths from damaging clothes in your closet, but the smell often seeps into the fabric. Here are some ways that you can get it out.

What causes a house to smell like mothballs?

Mothballs are basically a solid chunk of naphthalene or another chemical pesticide, most of which will sublimate directly into a gas and diffuse through the air. The noxious smell will keep moths and other insects away, and may even deter larger animals like mice and rats.

Because naphthalene and other mothball chemicals sublimate quickly and smell strongly, the odor can stay behind for quite some time after the mothball itself is long gone.

There are also a few other things that can cause a very similar smell. Tobacco smoke contains some naphthalene, as does the air outside sometimes in areas with heavy industrial pollution.