Smoking Smelly Open Microwave

10 Clever Ways to Remove Bad Smell From Your Microwave

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Whether you forgot to take out your bag of popcorn in time or accidentally melted a piece of plastic, you now have to deal with a smelly microwave. It’s not a fun experience when a strong odor takes over a commonly used appliance. If you struggle with a case of burnt microwave smell, there are some ingenious methods you can apply. Even the most persistent smells that seem to linger no matter what can be removed if you try the following ways to freshen up the microwave. Check out the best methods to get rid of foul odors coming from your microwave.

1. Baking Soda

Small Bowl of Baking Soda

Before you take out strong cleaners with harsh chemicals, it’s worth considering methods that involve more delicate cleaning agents. Baking soda is a pantry staple that most people already have in their homes. Try using it to eliminate unwanted smells from the microwave. Baking soda has absorbent properties that can be effective against the stubborn burnt odor in a microwave. The best way to use it is to put a sufficient quantity of the powder in a bowl that sits overnight in the cleaned microwave.

2. Vinegar

Vinegar Solution With Clean Cloths

Vinegar is a convenient natural cleaner to use against bad smells. It’s particularly effective when the cause of the microwave smell is caked-on grease or any other tough stain that can’t be removed easily. Clean the rotating plate of the microwave with a solution based on equal parts vinegar and water mixed together. Wipe all surfaces inside the microwave to fight the burnt odors still lingering. If you’re dealing with stuck bits of grime that won’t easily budge, it’s recommended to let the vinegar solution in the microwave for a few minutes before wiping every surface again.

3. Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice With Lemons

If you don’t like the idea of putting vinegar in the microwave, there’s another natural cleaning solution worth trying. Consider deodorizing the appliance with the help of lemon juice. You need just a few teaspoons mixed with a cup of water. Heat up the solution in a bowl in the microwave for 3-4 minutes. Don’t rush to open the door and allow a few extra minutes for the steam to penetrate every nook and cranny of the microwave. In case you don’t have lemon in your house, you can also try this method with juice from any other citrus fruit.

4. Cloves

Cloves Spice

Sometimes it takes a strong smell to cancel out another strong smell. Introducing a pleasant scent to the microwave is considered an effective solution to suppress the current undesirable one. There are many options to try but cloves manage to stand out because the spice has reliable odor-absorbent properties. The best part is that you don’t even need to do anything besides putting a little bowl of cloves inside the microwave. Just allow it to sit there until the next day as the spicy aroma slowly makes its way throughout the microwave.

5. Coffee

Ground Coffee in Small Bowl

Coffee can act as a natural deodorizer making it a good candidate when it comes to destroying bad smells from the microwave. Using coffee for this purpose is recommended, especially if you love its smell. The fragrant aroma of coffee is able to quickly replace whatever unwanted scent that’s found lingering in your microwave. Use a mixture of two tablespoons of ground coffee and half a cup of water. Put it in the microwave for around 3-4 minutes to quickly transform the inside of the appliance from an awful burnt smell to a steaming cup of coffee.

6. Vanilla Extract

Vanilla Extract in Small Bottle

Those who prefer a sweeter smell to replace the bad one currently existing in their microwave should consider vanilla extract. This popular baking ingredient doesn’t have to be microwaved for a long time to release its intense fragrance everywhere throughout the appliance. Similar to the other clever ways shown here, it’s important to mix the vanilla extract with enough water before heating it up. Set the microwave for 3 minutes and let the mixture sit inside after the beep to ensure that steam properly permeates all the internal areas of the unit.

7. Charcoal

Charcoal Pieces

Mitigating smells is one specialty of charcoal given its absorbent properties. With the help of a few pieces of charcoal, you can swiftly get rid of the most persistent microwave odors. No need to heat up the charcoal as it can do its job effectively if it just sits inside the microwave for a while. Times can vary depending on the severity of the offensive smell. It’s recommended to allow the charcoal to sit overnight when the microwave is not in use.

8. Berries

Assortment of Berries

An assortment of berries in a bowl should be capable of tackling those pesky microwave smells. Melting these fragrant fruits for two minutes could be a clever way to cover unwanted odors with more pleasant ones. The fruity aroma of the berries can be surprisingly intense. Take care when microwaving them because heating up small berries for a long time can result in a mess. Cover the bowl of the berries with cling wrap or use a protective plastic cover inside the microwave.

9. Soap and Water

Mixing Soap With Water

Cleaning the microwave can often be enough to remove smells from it. The combination of soap and water works like a charm in those cases where the bad odor is caused by bits of food stuck somewhere inside the microwave. A basic cleanse should make the appliance odorless again. Make sure you wipe the interior of the microwave properly and allow the unit plenty of air for the bad smells to dissipate on their own.

10. Rubbing Alcohol

Cleaning With Rubbing Alcohol

Although rubbing alcohol is primarily used for first aid, you can also make use of the substance to clean the microwave and disperse away any unwanted smell. This method requires a bit of extra work as you need to wipe away every portion of the area inside the microwave. Make sure you’re as thorough as possible to minimize the chances of the odor resurfacing. Rinse away the rubbing alcohol with a clean cloth dipped in soapy water. Allow air to reach inside the microwave for some time because proper drying is important for effective odor removal.


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