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  1. #1

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    Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Hello all!

    I`m stumped. A few days ago, I spilled about 2oz of coffee with milk on the carpet of my Fiesta. Within fifteen minutes of the spill, I hit it with Oxy Power-Out Carpet Cleaner, followed by some water and another hit of the Oxy Power Out. No dice. Even after a few applications, the cleaning cloths still smelled like coffee and with the wildfires here in Portland this past week I wasn`t going to stay out there too long. Got a little stinky. Went to Home Depot this weekend and rented a wet/dry vac, bought some of the Rug Doctor auto carpet and upholstery cleaner, shampooed the hell out the carpets and upholstery (got a bunch of junk out, based on the color of the water). Smell appeared to be gone so I returned the wet/dry vac. Got in the car this morning... Still stinks. I may have missed a spot, especially since it`s a black carpet with a lot of nooks and crannies, which makes it hard to see what`s dirty and get a vacuum into all the spots. But it was seriously like two ounces of coffee, max.

    What do I do next? I`m going to try to hit it with more of the Oxy Power-Out since that`s always done right by me, especially knowing I may have missed some spots, but I`m stumped after that. Any thoughts? I do have some Ozium kicking around and my local Home Depot carry both Odoban and Gonzo bags. I am hoping for something local so I can treat the stink before it really sets in and before it gets too rainy for me to air out the car (right now it`s in the parking lot at work with the windows and sunroof cracked).

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    bodidly22's Avatar
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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    sorry to hear that my man... you may have done more harm than good with your initial clean. Head to your local commercial cleaning depot. Look for a Protein stain remover. Give that a whirl. I would also suggest you remove the seats if can (it`s not as scary as it sounds.

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  3. #3

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    How would i have done more harm than good, so I know what to avoid next time? Fortunately the rear seats and carpet are super easy to remove. The spill seems to have mostly been on the rear passenger`s side footwell, but some of the stink seems to be on the little vertical bit of carpet between the seat and the footwell and I wouldn`t put it past me to have skipped that spot, not knowing it was dirty, so I`m going to hit that tonight with the Oxy Power-Out, which worked pretty well last time I had something like this happen.

  4. #4

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    You need to have an enzyme cleaner for the milk. Small amount as it may be, changes are it has soaked into the carpet padding and spread through-out the floor pan. My suggestion is to try Poorboy`s World Stain and Enzyme Cleaner and you may need to inject this into the foam padding with a needle-and-syringe, like that you can get a farm/vet supply store.

    Here`s a link to a similar story as yours:
    https://www.autopia.org/forums/car-d...highlight=milk
    GB detailer
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  5. #5
    BudgetPlan1's Avatar
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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Been battling this problem for most of the Summer...stuff is monster-tenacious, has 9 lives...at least

    Missed a half gallon of milk when unloading groceries one day in mid-June. Didn`t notice until the next week when unloading groceries and when I grabbed it, top popped off (jug was actually kinda swollen after sitting in trunk outside for a week in 90 degree weather) and a few ounces spilled out

    Since then I`ve scrubbed with a variety of things, hosed down the trunk area with CarPro SiO2 Pure, Koch Chemie Fresh Up, ozone machine, cleaned all interior panels...and it always returns in a day or 2, consistent Summer heat didn`t help.

    Snatched up some Valugard Odor Terminator and hosed the trunk down with that...so far so good after 10 days. Spoiled milk is unreal...
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  6. #6

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Not been able to test on milk (kids are late teens), but PB Enzyme Cleaner works well on pet urine. Just my 2 cents.
    Learning tips and tricks from fellow board members since 2009
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  7. #7

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    As noted, Protein Stain Remover. Simply gotta use the enzymes once the [stuff] (e.g., milk) has dried there.

    IF (huge "if" IRL...) you can get every last bit of it..like, every microscopic bit...up before it dries then products like the Oxi can work. But that just doesn`t happen very often.

    BUT the good news is that the right Protein Stain Remover, perhaps coupled with an enzymatic Odor Eliminator (I use ValuGard`s most often) can indeed solve even terrible situations like this if you`re thorough enough (that combo worked on a full pint`s worth of Protein Drink in the interior of a brand-new Audi, and it was allowed to stay there for a while too..guy who used to cut my hair).
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  8. #8

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Many years ago a gallon of milk broke in my wifes van . I tried everthing but nothing worked .I then took it to a detail shop that we did busness with . THEY removed the carpet and power washed it, and replaced all the padding,and that took care of it.
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  9. #9
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry A View Post
    Many years ago a gallon of milk broke in my wifes van . I tried everthing but nothing worked .I then took it to a detail shop that we did busness with . THEY removed the carpet and power washed it, and replaced all the padding,and that took care of it.
    This ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    AfroPope -- To remove ANY odor, one has to find the Source of the Odor and Remove it completely...

    If you do not know how much of the spill went -where- the only way to find out, short of following your nose, is to remove the seat/s on that side, pull off the door floor trim plate, expose all the carpeting, then the pad, and see what is on the floor to start..

    You may have to just replace the floor pad if its soaked in the stuff, as sometimes, it is not really strong enough to clean and extract, without coming apart..

    Then, I would look at all the seat Foam and insure this stuff didn`t get sucked up by this foam, and if if it did, you have to remove that seat, turn it upside down, and clean the foam really good to get that stuff out of it.. Just know that some seat foam is very, very, bad about releasing ANY liquid easily, and will take a long time to dry..

    So if the seat foam has absorbed some of that stuff, you will have to be thinking about how much moisture you apply to it to clean and rinse, and then, with a good extractor, hopefully, get all that stuff rinsed and extracted out of the foam..

    Then, let it all dry outside as much as possible.. The sun can be your friend for this.. Then, do the smell test again, before you put it all back together..

    I know this drill from having to do it a few times in expensive German cars that sat out all night, moonroof cracked,windows open, etc., in a rainstorm in the Pacific Northwest.. And a zillion Starbuck`s Venti Latte`s oh-oh`s on the front console, passenger seat, and floor carpet..
    Dan F
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  10. #10

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Well, a happy ending. Turns out I had just spilled some under the seat that I missed the first time. Hit it again with the Oxy Power-Out (which does have an enzyme cleaner built into it) and it`s all gone. I do very much appreciate all the responses and advice and will keep them in mind for the inevitable event that I make this mistake again on a larger scale.
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  11. #11
    William_Wallace's Avatar
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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Poor boys enzyme cleaner is a nice product with a strong pine scent to also mask while it works

  12. #12

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    Re: Stubborn Sour Milk Smell (Fresh)

    Quote Originally Posted by AfroPope View Post
    Well, a happy ending.
    AH, so glad to hear that!

    ....I will keep [the suggestions] in mind for the inevitable event that I make this mistake again on a larger scale.
    No no no...don`t think of it as inevitable! Think of it as something that`s *NEVER* gonna happen again no matter what! Don`t set yourself up for more headaches by programming your subconscious (Yeah, I really do believe that stuff.)
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