Please Help! Animal Urine Smell in Car!

<p>Ok, my fairly new car has terrible animal urine smell! We have no pets, and the interior of the car did not seem soiled anywhere. We tried air freshener, did not work at all! So we think that the animal probably crawled under the hood and did a job inside the pipes/hoses? When we have air circulation on, the air stinks, but if we run the air-conditioning, then it does not smell, I really don't know how to describe it. My husband looked everywhere, but found no visible trace of any urine stain, had looked under the hood, all seats, the floor etc. We don't know where the smell comes from, except maybe through the vent. Does anyone have any ideas what/where the problem may be. I tried to google, but since I don't know exactly where the problem is, I can't just follow the normal method of vinegar, baking soda etc. </p>

<p>It is very frustrating, the car stinks. I don't usually use this newer car until my college son is home, he needs my other car to go to work. Maybe we should take it to the dealer to check it out, but I want to try cc first for some free ideas :) Can anyone help?</p>

<p>Thanks!</p>

<p>Look at the dog pee thread. Some suggestions of what to use to clean. Then buy a cheap solid moth repellent--can get them in the dollar store and put it in the car. Move the thing around till you get maximum blockage of odor. That will tell you the source. </p>

<p>We had the same problem with son's great bargain car. It was terrific until it rained. The dampness in the air triggered the odors in the car. It was vomit.</p>

<p>Dog urine and cat urine smell completely different. Cat urine has an ammonia smell to it. If it is cat it will be very hard to get rid of. Dog urine has more of a mens bathroom odor...or a college dorm bathroom odor.</p>

<p>The first thing I would do is pour baking soda on the carpets. Brush it in, you will quickly find the urine spot because it will change to a shade of yellow. Then vacuum the carpet. Finally, steam clean the carpets with a vinegar solution. 1 to 3 parts.</p>

<p>If the smell is coming from the vents, it is unlikely that you are smelling animal urine. It is bacteria that settled there in the moist environment that stinks up the air. You might have to go to the dealer to get the vents cleaned.</p>

<p>Are there any mice in your garage? They like to make nests inside those AC systems.</p>

<p>I was going to say that, too. I had that same issue on one of my older cars. I thought it was my flipflops! Recently we were listening to Car Talk on public radio and they told a caller that the bacteria was most likely the problem.</p>

<p>I was also thinking about an animal maybe under the hood. In the winter, animals like the warm cars, and maybe one died there and there are remnants left. Or road kill might be lodges under the car. </p>

<p>I wonder if you tried getting the engine steamed cleaned if that would help, but if the odor is coming from within the lines, that will not help. If your son was using the car previously, might the odor be sweaty gym clothes, or something that stayed in the car longer than it should have? A piece of fruit, shoes, dirty towel, aged beer, vomit, etc.. I would tried cleaning the carpets and seats, and let the car air out with windows opened. </p>

<p>Unless you son left the windows opened and a cat got in to pee, I bet this isn't cat or dog related.</p>

<p>Definitely look at the Car Talk website and see what they mention. There was a call years ago where a guy's dog threw up into the car air vent :eek:</p>