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How to Clean Dried Urine from a Mattress

Some time ago, someone, human or pet, had an accident on one of your mattresses. You just discovered the evidence of this accident, long after the urine dried up. You don’t have to put up with the stain or odor just because it’s old. Use household cleaners or products made to remove and neutralize urine stains.

Enzyme-Based Cleaners

Browse the pet supply store or cleaning aisle of your grocery store. Look for enzyme-based cleaners. These work by binding with, and destroying the uric acid in urine.

Dry enzyme products mixed with water work by breaking down the uric acid into a gas of water and oxygen that evaporates into the air. Using product directions, mix the powder with fresh water. Pour the solution onto the stain so it soaks as deep as the original urine did. Allow this to dry for eight hours. Vacuum dried residue up.

Look for a plant-based enzyme solution. This digests the uric acids that have crystallized over time. Again, spray enough solution that is equal to the amount of urine on the mattress. It needs to soak in.

If the stain is really difficult or old, “flood” the surface and cover it with plastic wrap for one or two full days. Allow this to air-dry. Repeat until the entire stain is gone. Remove cleaner residue with a small amount of water. Blot this away with several layers of paper towel.

If you need the mattress available quickly, speed the drying process with fans. This allows air to circulate in the room and speed up the drying process.

Household Cleaners

Gather a dry sponge, some water, borax or baking soda, rubber gloves, hydrogen peroxide or vinegar and a portable vacuum cleaner.

Put rubber gloves on both hands. Wetting the sponge, dampen the stained area, but do not soak it. Your aim is to dilute the urine and its odor. Sprinkle borax liberally on the stain, covering every bit.

Work the dry borax into the stain. Try to work it below the surface of the mattress cover.

Leave the stain covered for several hours. Accelerate the drying process by putting the mattress in full sunshine. Again, turn on a fan or open windows for increased ventilation.

With the vacuum cleaner, remove all the powder. If you used a large amount of borax, you’ll have residue to clean away. Borax can be toxic and you don’t want anyone sleeping on the mattress to suffer ill effects.

If you don’t have borax, baking soda is a wonderful stand-in for removing a dried urine stain. Baking soda works to kill odors instead of just covering them up. Use the baking soda in the same way you were instructed to use the borax.

Dilute the hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle with water. Mix one part of hydrogen peroxide with two parts water. Spray the stained area liberally with the peroxide/water mixture until it’s damp. Immediately blot it dry with paper towels, then allow it to air dry.

Vinegar has a unique odor that will make people think they are sleeping in a bottle of salad dressing. If this doesn’t bother you or your family, pour undiluted vinegar into a spray bottle and spray the stain until it is damp. Again, blot it with paper towels and allow it to dry in the open air.

Using Liquid Dish Detergent and Lavender Essential Oil

Liquid dish detergent, added in a small amount, helps with cleaning and removing a dried urine stain from your mattress. While the essential oil won’t aid in the cleaning, it will help to neutralize that musky odor. Lavender essential oil is a particularly good choice because this scent helps the person using the mattress to relax and fall asleep more quickly.

Add one drop of dish detergent and a drop of lavender essential oil to the hydrogen peroxide/water mixture. Use as instructed above and allow the mattress to air-dry.

Don’t use more than one drop of dish detergent or it will be difficult to remove from the mattress’ surface. Use essential oils with caution.


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