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On cleaning up spilled milk and how to get rid of bad smells

Question

How do I get rid of the stench of sour milk? I spilled chocolate milk on my floor and bed yesterday. I got rid of the stains, but the smell is gross. What can I do?

 

Answer

You have been exposed to the wonders of fermentation. Unless you clean up all of the spilled milk, the remainder will begin to ferment, giving the area that wonderfully sour aroma we all recognize even from a distance.

You can address this problem in several ways. I’ll provide two in my answer.

For the floor, make a paste from water and baking soda. Clean the floor with detergent and cold water, then rinse. After that, scrub the offending areas with the baking-soda paste. Rinse with cold water, and leave either a half a slice of onion or fresh coffee grounds on the floor for a day to help eliminate the smell.

Mattresses require a bit more work. Launder the linens as you normally would. Then wash the dirty portion of the mattress with cold water and detergent. After you clean, cover the spot with a thick layer of baking soda before the surface dries. Leave the baking soda on the spot for 24 hours, then repeat both steps – washing and applying baking soda. Continue repeating the steps until the odor goes away.

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