How to Get Rid Of New Car Smell

car freshener

Buying a new car is often the one of the best dreams of many people and they even work hard to achieve the same.  However, after getting a new car, a new problem crops up in the form of the peculiar smell that comes from the interior of news cars.  The smell is pleasant, but it is toxic in nature and hence not at all good for the health. In fact, inhaling that new car smell can lead to respiratory diseases.

The smell of a new car is intoxicating and all the excitement about getting a new car may also quickly disappear when it becomes impossible to stand the smell of a new car. This is why people look for ways to get rid of the peculiar smell coming from a brand new car. Before looking for ways to remove the smell, it is essential to have some idea about the reasons behind that smell.

In This Article:


Some of the leading causes behind new car smell

The peculiar smell coming from the interiors of a new car is caused by different factors. Basically the smell comes from different chemicals used for cleaning and enhancing the look of the new car. Here are some of the items that cause the peculiar smell.

Plastic Covers: The plastic covers used for keeping the seats and other interior components safe from outside dust and dirt often lead to a peculiar smell from the car interior. The plastic covers are laced with chemicals that have a strong scent and when the scent mixes with other scents it causes a strong odor.

Car Polish: To enhance the look of a brand new car, polish is used. Most of the car polishes have a strong odor due to the various chemicals used for making the substance. For a new car, high amount of car polish is used for making the car appear more attractive while on display at a shop.

Leather: Leather has got a distinct smell and when the car interior is designed with leather based components then there is a high chance that the car interior will have a strong smell. The distinct smell of leather is not good for the health as it can cause nausea and headaches.

Glass Cleaners: Car manufactures often use glass cleaners to make the windows and other glass based components gleam. The problem is the glass cleaners are made of carbon-based chemicals. Prolonged inhalation of these substances can cause sore throats, drowsiness and other health problems.

Adhesives and Sealers: The various adhesives and sealers used during the manufacturing process of new cars have a strong of carbon-based chemicals. Inhalation of these chemicals for a longer period of time can cause various health problems.

Lubricants and Gasoline: Often in a new car you can notice the smell of lubricants and gasoline which can cause different types of health problems. Most of the care manufacturing companies try to reduce the smell of lubricants and gasoline with the help of internal emissions.

Irrespective of which factor is causing the strong smell from the interior of a new car, it is important to bear in mind that the smell can cause serious health hazards. Most of the car manufacturing companies make serious effort to keep the smell at a safe level, but you should still make an effort to get rid of the odor.

Products to remove new car smell

There are certain products available in the market that you can use to remove the smell that comes from a new car.

Deodorizing Spray: You can use a deodorizing spray designed for cars to effectively mask the harmful odor coming from the interior of a new car. Buy a deodorizing spray depending upon your budget and spray it generously inside your car. Within some times, the car odor will either vanish or get reduced to a great extent.

Ionizer: To remove the smell of a new car you can also use an ionizer, a kind of device that releases ions to mask strong odors. Buy an ionizer and turn it on inside your car for several minutes. Soon the strong odor will get reduced.

Cigarette: It may sound strange, but cigarette can also be used to repel new car smell. This is due to the fact that the smell of cigarette smoke is much stronger than that of carbon-based chemicals. After smoking inside the car, keep the windows of the car open.

Car Freshener: The aroma of a car freshener can also reduce car odors. For better result, use a car freshener having the aroma of lemon. A car freshener will not totally cover the smell of a new car, but it will definitely make the smell more tolerable.

Preventive tips to remove new car smell

There are also many preventive tips that can help to reduce the new car smell to a great extent. Some of those tips are:

  1. Remove all the plastic coverings used inside the car interior. This will help in emitting out the foul smell from inside your car.
  2. While driving the new car, roll down the windows from time to time. When buying a new car, go for one that has been manufactured recently.
  3. You can speed up process of removing smell from a new car by leaving the car in hot sun, with windows open an inch or two, or leave heat on for a number of hours.
  4. Also place containers of non-toxic absorbent materials, such as baking soda in the car to absorb some of the chemical odors.
  5. Instead of keeping the car in a garage, it is also recommend parking the car in an open area.
  6. Also keep the vent in your car set to ‘fresh air’ rather than‘re-circulate’. This is another way to get rid of that smell.
  7. You can even try putting vinegar, diluted with water, in a container and keeping it inside the car, to put off that bad smell. Make sure that the container has a few holes at the top.
  8. Put barbecue charcoal under the front seats. It works great in reducing the interior smell.
  9. Cut lemon or pineapple pieces and place them inside the car, as they will provide a good fruity fragrance and fend off the smell inside the car.

Final Words

With the help of above mentioned tips, you can easily remove the new car smell within a few days. Without the peculiar smell, you will love to drive your new car.


  1. Julie

    August 31, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Thank you, great tips….the smell of the Toyota Camry is really bad. Blowing it out w/the heat on now. Hope this works! Cleaned dash and seats and interior w/Borax, will use charcoal under seats and try a botanical dryer sheet.

    • Carla

      November 7, 2013 at 10:47 pm

      Where you able to remove the toxic smell? We just purchased a 2014 Nissan Versa and the smell is making us sick! literally sick, headache, nauseous. We took it back to the dealer and they did some type of treatment. Now it smells like chlorine. They said to give it a few days…..

  2. MannyHM

    December 1, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    Just got a new Prius V. It’s a wonderful car but I have to face the reality of having to face with the new car smell. I will continue to park it outside with window open to hasten evaporation of whatever volatile chemicals are present causing that smell. I’ll use my electric leaf blower and blow away those smelly stuff while the engine is on and the fans are in full blast. I think some baking soda in a paper plate or two would be helpful. I spray it with a little bit of lemon scent to mask it for my sanity.

  3. Lyn H

    December 6, 2013 at 11:52 am

    Just bought a new X Trail today and had a slight headache within 20 k’s . I am trying the old remedy tonight – a bowl of cut up onion. We’ll see how we go!

  4. Prakash

    February 13, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    After a long drive in my Toyota, I used to felt sick! Yet I was unknown that this was because of poisonous chemical smell from the dashboard. Nausea reduced my weight.. better than late, Now I have come to know the reason. I will try them. Thank you!

  5. ben

    June 20, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    I just bought a new Honda Fit about a month ago. I drove it for one week. I started to develop a terrible headache, like something is pulling your entire head off your neck. Starting to feel weak on my left hand & both toes. Had to go to Emergency twice, can’t stand the pain. I thought I am having heart attack. All tests clear. MRI, CT scan, EKG, heart monitor, overnight observation. Talk to Honda dealer in Vallejo, CA. They said they have never heard of such experience. Talk to Honda Int’l. Customer Service (Antonio)said he cannot help me. Sent me back to dealer. Now I have the car at my parking lot, under the sun for 3 weeks now. Every so often I open all doors. Just the smell of the interior alone makes me immediately sick. Don’t know what to do. I’m paying the car monthly & full insurance. It is killing me. Any body pls. advise.

  6. E Hellenga

    March 14, 2017 at 4:19 am

    Some really bad advice here for everyone — air fresheners?? The bad smell of new car is toxic offgassing and air fresheners will destroy your health even more.


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