How to Clean Carpet with Baking Soda + DIY Carpet Deodorizer

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Baking soda is a wondrous product, especially when it comes to carpet cleaning. Whether your carpet is dirty from spills, traffic or pet accidents, baking soda is an effective method to remove tough stains. Do you have a stink in the air? Baking soda can handle that too! In this post, I will address how to clean carpet with baking soda to remove not only stains but also stubborn odor. Not only is baking soda cheap, it is also non-toxic and will not harm your rugs and carpets!

Shaker Jar with baking soda shaking over blue carpet.

I have a lot of pets. I have 2 kids and I have a husband who wears work boots that have traveled all over kingdom come all day long. With pet accidents (we have a 16 year old male Yorkie!), occasional spills, cooking smells and that general smell of stale, my rugs need a refresh at least once a month.

I don’t know about you, but I hate having a professional carpet cleaning or renting a carpet cleaner to clean the area rugs. I am so sensitive to even the smell of the harsh chemicals and odor that comes from their cleaning solution.

The good news is I have found a safe and natural way to freshen up smelly carpet as well as clean stubborn stains by using one affordable product!

While having carpet and rugs is more comfortable and quite a bit cozier, rug and carpet fibers tend to hold on to smells. 

Why Does Baking Soda Work?

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate is most commonly used in baking. However, it actually has many other uses. It can be used to whiten teeth, treat heartburn and is a common ingredient in many deodorants. It also is an incredibly effective cleaner and deodorizer.

It is an alkaline substance that is actually present in all living things. It helps us to maintain a proper pH. Because it is alkaline, it can cause stains to dissolve when combined with water. It is deodorizing and helps absorb and neutralize odors since odors are typically acidic. Most “deodorizers” simply cover up smells with a synthetic fragrance but baking soda absorbs odors rather than covering them up.

Also, when mixed with vinegar, a cleaning chemical called carbonic acid is created. This is a common ingredient in household cleaners and helps to kill bacteria and mold and break down stains and dirt particles. Use equal parts of vinegar and water and mix with the desired amount of baking soda.

Baking soda can work on tough carpet stains whether you are dealing with blood stains, red wine or even a grease stain.

How to Clean Carpet w/ Baking Soda:

Below I’m showing you how to spot clean and deodorize. They are two different methods but both are extremely effective. If you are looking for a more overall carpet cleaning, you can sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda over your rug or carpet, spray water over the baking soda, let sit then take a scrub brush and scrub every inch of the carpet. Once you’re done scrubbing, vacuum the baking soda. I’ve not tried this method (it sounds intense) but I will possibly in the future. I learned about it from The Spruce Blog.

Related Post: 25 Uses of Hydrogen Peroxide

What You’ll Need to Spot Clean Your Rug/Carpet:

  • Baking Soda
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Spray bottle
  • Paper towel
  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Scrub brush

How to Remove Carpet Stains w/ Baking Soda:

  1. First, sop up the stain on the affected area of your carpet if it is still wet with a paper towel.
  2. Shake a generous amount of baking soda over the stain.
  3. Fill a spray bottle with 1 part water and 1 part vinegar.
  4. Spray over the baking soda.
  5. For best results, let it sit for 3 hours. More stubborn spots might need to be left overnight.
  6. Once dry, use a scrub brush to loosen the baking soda and underlying residue from the carpet fibers.
  7. Vacuum the baking soda.

If you follow these simple steps, most stains can be effectively removed. This method is your best bet with pet urine because not only does the baking soda remove the bacteria in the pee, it also removes the odor that can tend to stick around after you thought you had cleaned the stain thoroughly.

Hand sopping up wet stain with paper towels

Pouring baking soda over stain.

Spray water and vinegar over the baking soda.

Scrubbing carpet with white scrub brush.

Purple vacuum vacuuming rug.

What You’ll Need to Deodorize Your Rug/Carpet:

  • Baking Soda
  • Sifter Jar (find it HERE)
  • Essential Oils
  • Vacuum Cleaner

Continue to Content

Shaker Jar with baking soda shaking over blue carpet.

DIY Carpet Deodorizer

Yield: 12 ounce jar Prep Time: 2 minutes Total Time: 2 minutes

Do you have a stink in the air? Baking soda actually absorbs smells. This recipe for a capret deodorizer is not only easy and cheap, it's crazy effective!


Homemade Carpet Deodorizer Recipe:

  1. Fill a shaker jar with baking soda.
  2. Add 10 drops of essential oil to the baking soda.
  3. Replace the lid, cover the holes and shake until the essential oil is well mixed.

Hand dripping lavender essential oil into baking soda in a shaker jar.


  1. Thoroughly vacuum the carpet to remove pet hair, dander and dirt.
  2. Sprinkle a layer of baking soda carpet cleaner all over the rug or carpet.
  3. Let sit for at least 15 minutes. The longer the better. If you can let it sit overnight, do it.
  4. Vacuum the carpet to remove the baking soda.
  5. For stubborn odors you can repeat the process. Baking soda does have an odor threshold. It will come to a point that it can not absorb more odor.

Did you make this product?

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© Jennifer Phillips Category: DIY Household Recipes

Shaker jar with baking soda and lavender essential oil on a table.

Purple vacuum vacuuming baking soda.

Hand sprinkling baking soda over carpet.

The baking soda will deodorize your vacuum as well!

I like to use lavender essential oil in my recipe (shocker) but you can use any essential oil you like. Lemon is a nice one to use.

You will not believe how well this homemade carpet deodorizer works. It might seem odd to drop essential oil right into the baking soda but you’ll have to trust me that it works. You will be amazed at how amazing your home will smell when you use this method of deodorizing your floors.

I like to use this carpet deodorizing method once a month but sometimes I do it more often especially if we are having guests. It is safe to do it once a week.

Make sure you have a powerful vacuum if you are going to use it on dark carpets and rugs. It takes quite a bit more vacuuming to get all the baking soda on my darker rugs (and my vacuum is pretty old). 

Where to Get Baking Soda:

Baking soda can be found in any grocery store. For this DIY good ole’ Arm ‘N’ Hammer will do. If you’ve read my post on How to  Make a Clarifying Shampoo or my Bath Bomb Recipe post you might remember I advice to buy an aluminum free baking soda but I only recommend that if you are using baking soda in a beauty recipe. 

Baking Soda Doesn’t Just Clean Carpet!

Baking soda also makes and amazing jewelry cleaner, a fridge deodorizer, a laundry whitener, a garbage odor eliminator and a multipurpose kitchen and bathroom scrub. Make a paste of equal parts of water and baking soda and use to scrub stained coffee cups and blenders, tile grout and even stained marble countertops!

Baking soda, vinegar and hydrogen peroxide are all powerful tools you can use to thoroughly clean your home without worrying about toxic cleaners that are unsafe for you and your family. In my natural journey I often realize that there is always a natural and simple solution to household issues.

I hope you’ve enjoyed learning how to clean carpet with baking soda! Baking soda is a powerful and inexpensive solution and a star when it comes to odor free, clean carpets. I find it so incredible that this powder can actually absorb yucky odors!! Have you tried it?

xx, Jenni


How to clean carpet with baking soda-glass shaker jar and baking soda on rugs.


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