How to Get Vomit Smell Out of Couch: Simple Steps for a Fresher Sofa

Last updated on April 4, 2024

This comprehensive guide gives you effective steps to eliminate vomit smell from your couch, restoring its fresh and clean state.

Key takeaways:

  • Scrape off solid particles with a dull knife or spatula.
  • Use warm water and mild dish soap or enzyme-based cleaner.
  • Gently blot the affected area with a soft cloth.
  • Rinse with a clean, damp cloth to remove soap residue.
  • Air dry and avoid using heat to prevent setting the odor.

Table of Contents

Steps For Removing Vomit Smell From Your Fabric Sofa

Removing vomit smell from a fabric sofa requires patience and the right approach to ensure the odor is thoroughly eradicated:

1. Firstly, it’s important to scrape off any solid particles with a dull knife or spatula, taking care not to push the residue deeper into the fabric fibers.

2. Prepare a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap or use an enzyme-based cleaner designed to break down organic matter.

3. Blot the affected area gently with a soft cloth dampened in the cleaning solution, working from the outside in to prevent spreading the stain.

4. Rinse the area by blotting with a clean, damp cloth to remove any soap residue, which can attract more dirt if not rinsed properly.

5. Allow the fabric to air dry, avoiding the use of heat as it can set any remaining odor into the fibers.

6. For stubborn smells, reapply a fresh batch of cleaning solution and repeat the process until the odor is no longer present.

Step 1: Remove the Solid Matter

Begin by donning disposable gloves to protect your hands. Gently scoop up any solids using a flat object, such as a dustpan or a spatula, taking care not to press the matter deeper into the couch fibers. Discard the waste in a plastic bag, seal it tightly, and remove it from the area to minimize the odor.

Blot any residual liquid with paper towels, but avoid rubbing, as this can spread the stain. If the vomit has dried, use a soft-bristled brush to loosen and vacuum up the particles. Once as much of the solid matter as possible has been removed, you can proceed to treat the area with a cleaning solution.

Remember, the faster you act, the better your results will be in eradicating both the stain and the smell.

Step 2: Apply a Cleaning Solution and Rinse

Begin by blotting the affected area with paper towels to soak up any remaining moisture. Do not rub the surface, as this can spread the stain or push it deeper into the fabric.

Next, mix a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar, which acts as a natural disinfectant. You can also use a mixture of dish soap with water for a gentle but effective clean. If the couch’s fabric is delicate, test the cleaning solution on an inconspicuous spot to ensure it doesn’t cause damage.

Using a clean cloth, gently apply the mixture to the sofa, focusing on the soiled area. Blot the solution onto the stain rather than scrubbing, which can damage the fibers of the upholstery.

After applying the cleaning solution, rinse the area with a damp cloth to remove any soap or vinegar. This will prevent any residue from attracting more dirt and will help in eliminating the odor.

Follow up with blotting the area with a dry towel to absorb the excess moisture. Allow the fabric to air dry completely; using a fan can speed up the process.

Step 3: Deodorize the Sofa Using Natural Deodorizers

After cleaning your couch, residual odor from vomit can linger. Natural deodorizers are excellent for neutralizing these unwanted scents.

Baking soda: It’s a natural odor absorber. Liberally sprinkle it over the affected area and let it sit for a few hours or overnight. Vacuum it up afterward to leave your couch smelling fresh.

Vinegar solution: Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Spritz lightly over the surface of the couch, being careful not to saturate it. The vinegar smell will dissipate, taking the vomit odor with it.

Essential oils: Combine a few drops of your favorite essential oil with water in a spray bottle. Lightly mist the fabric for a pleasant scent. Opt for oils with antibacterial properties, like tea tree or lavender, for added benefits.

Coffee grounds: Place a bowl of fresh, unused coffee grounds near the couch. They’ll absorb and neutralize odors over the course of a day or two.

These natural options are not only effective but also safe for use around children and pets. They can be used multiple times to ensure all traces of odor are removed.

When to Call Professional Cleaning Services

If the vomit smell persists despite your best cleaning efforts, it may be time to seek professional help. Additionally, if your couch is made of delicate or non-water-safe fabrics like silk or certain types of velvet, attempting to clean it yourself can cause damage.

Professionals have specialized tools and solutions that can effectively remove odors without harming the upholstery. Consider scheduling a professional cleaning when:

  • The odor remains after several DIY treatments.
  • The upholstery fabric is delicate or has a ‘dry-clean only’ label.
  • You encounter stubborn stains that are not coming out.
  • There is a risk of mold or mildew development due to inadequate drying.
  • You prefer not to use strong chemicals or simply lack the time to do it yourself.

Trusting experts can not only save your couch but also ensure a hygienic, fresh-smelling living space.


How do you get vomit smell out of a fabric couch?

To eliminate vomit smell from a fabric couch, prepare a solution with 2 cups of hydrogen peroxide, 2 tablespoons of baking soda, and 2 drops of liquid dish soap, spray it on the affected areas, and let it air dry.

What neutralizes the smell of vomit?

To neutralize the smell of vomit, cover the affected area with baking soda, let it sit overnight and vacuum it up the next day, repeating the process if necessary, and utilize odor-neutralizing sprays such as Febreze for immediate relief.

How do you get a bad smell out of a fabric couch?

To remove a bad smell from a fabric couch, sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda over the entire sofa and let it sit overnight or throughout the day, then vacuum it until all traces of the baking soda are removed.

Will vomit smell eventually go away?

Vomit smell, if untreated, may linger for an extended period ranging from hours to days, or even weeks.

What homemade remedies can you use to eliminate vomit odor from a leather sofa?

To eliminate vomit odor from a leather sofa, mix one part vinegar with four parts water, lightly spray the solution on the affected area, and then air-dry; if odor persists, sprinkle baking soda, let it sit overnight, and vacuum the following day.

How does professional furniture cleaning deal with vomit smell on upholstery?

Professional furniture cleaning deals with vomit smell on upholstery by utilizing enzyme cleaners that break down proteins and eradicate the odor at its source.

Can fabric freshener sprays permanently remove vomit odor from a couch?

Fabric freshener sprays can help to mask vomit odors temporarily, but they cannot permanently remove the smell; deep cleaning or professional treatment may be necessary for a complete odor removal.

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