How to Remove Air Freshener Spots


Air fresheners are a lifesaver for those with hockey equipment, wet dogs, or strong cooking smells. They remove odor from a room and add a pleasant scent. However, purchasing these little smell emitters can be costly and many opt for refilling the fresheners themselves. Drops of scented oil, unfortunately, can spill when this process occurs, or if the freshener breaks. With a little elbow grease and a few household items, these spots can be removed from almost any surface and the stained area can look, and smell, brand new.

Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda or cornstarch
  • Vacuum
  • Rubber gloves
  • Dry cleaning solution
  • 1 tbsp. liquid dishwashing detergent
  • 1 tbsp. white vinegar
  • 2 cups warm water
  • Small bowl
  • Sponge
  • Dry and clean cloths
  • Wire brush
  • Sand paper
  • Sander
  • Original wood finish


  • Sprinkle on dry powder, either baking soda or cornstarch, and let it sit for at least 10 minutes to absorb as much of the oil as possible.

  • Vacuum up all of the dry powder.

  • Place the rubber gloves on your hands. Pour the dry cleaning solution onto a clean, dry cloth and pat it all over the stain.

  • Rub the cloth over the stain until it is completely gone.

  • Mix together the vinegar, warm water, and dishwashing detergent in the small bowl. Sponge it gently onto the remaining stain.

  • Run a clean cloth under cold water and blot over the stain to remove the remaining solution.

Wood Surfaces

Tips & Warnings

  • With linoleum, the oil can often just be wiped off with clean rags, and will not stain.
  • When using dry cleaning solvent, always wear gloves and ensure you are in a well ventilated room.

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  • Photo Credit three sorts of oil image by Tomo Jesenicnik from
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