Foul odors in the basement, cellar or garage? Eliminate these unpleasant smells effectively using coffee grounds

by Mark Bennett

May 17, 2024


Basements, cellars and garages are very useful for storing stuff and helping to keep our homes neat, tidy and uncluttered.

That said, these areas are prone to high levels of humidity building up in them, which, in addition to possibly causing structural damage, can lead to foul odors developing.

So, how can we prevent these unpleasant odors developing? Well, coffee grounds can help out here:

The causes of foul odors developing in basements and possible intervention strategies


There are numerous causes for foul odors developing in a basement (or garage/cellar) but the main cause is high humidity (in turn, probably caused by structural issues and/or a lack of ventilation).

Additionally, the unpleasant odors can be caused by the decomposition of the organics in stains and spills, requiring these to be cleaned up as soon as detected.

Whatever the cause, you can buy odor-absorbing products readily in shops - these will not only remove foul odors from the environment, but some will also leave a pleasant scent.

And whilst there are many commercial odor-fighting products you can purchase, there are numerous "odor-eaters" you can make yourself using salt, baking soda or vinegar.


How coffee grounds eliminate bad odors

Glass bowl containing coffee grounds

Derk29/Wikimedia Commons

Another, perhaps surprising, resource you can use to fight foul odors are used coffee grounds. Once dried out (so the grounds do not get moldy) the grounds can be put into small, glass bowls and placed in basements, cellars and garages to eliminate unpleasant smells.

The anti-odor action of the grounds is mainly due to their ability to absorb excess humidity, thus preventing it from encouraging the formation of pungent mold and mildew. Furthermore, the grounds will diffuse a pleasant aroma into the air, replacing the molecules of the foul odors. The nitrogen content of coffee grounds is also useful, as it will transform any (spilled) organic matter into an odorless compound.

Are you now ready to start saving your used coffee grounds?