There are probably few smells worse than that of a decomposing rodent. After a rat dies, the body begins to break down, releasing a combination of methane, sulfur dioxide, hydrocarbons and benzene derivatives into the air that creates the unpleasant smell. Sometimes the carcass is difficult to locate, or in an area where it cannot be removed by the homeowner. Even if it is removable, the odor can linger for weeks. However, with a bit of persistence, there are several methods for getting rid of the unpleasant stench.
Things You'll Need
- Rubber gloves
- Plastic bag
- White vinegar or bleach
- Scrub brush
- Liquid masking agent, odor neutralizer or disinfectant with movable spray tip
- Hole filler
- Misting or fogging machine (available online or in home improvement stores)
- Air purifier
Find and remove the carcass of the dead rat, as it will continue to smell until it has completely dried out. Use rubber gloves to place the body into a plastic bag, sealing tightly before placing the carcass in the garbage. Scrub or spray the area where the carcass was found with vinegar or bleach.
Drill a hole into the wall approximately 12 inches above the floor, if the carcass is in a wall. Using a spray tip that can moved in all directions, spray the chosen disinfectant, masking solution or odor neutralizer into the hole. Reseal the hole in the wall with the hole filler.
Ventilate the affected area immediately, using one or several fans to force fresh air into the area.
Spray the masking agent or odor neutralizer into the air with a misting or fogging machine, if the rat carcass cannot be located. This will immediately neutralize the odor, but will require repeat applications until the carcass has completely decomposed.
Run an air purifier that uses an absorbent filter with either silica gel or charcoal. As air circles through the filter, it will trap odor-causing particles.