Whether the culprit is smoke, pets, food odors, mildew, or something else, the best carpet deodorizers actually eliminate unwanted smells rather than just covering them up — and when selecting, make sure they have a scent that's pleasant to you. Also consider the cleaning method that's easiest for your and your home.
Carpet deodorizers typically come in three different forms, the most common of which is a powder. Powders sprinkle over your rugs, absorb or tackle the odors in question, and are then vacuumed up; reviewers tend to love them because they're quick, easy, and effective. You can also opt for a spray (specifically an enzyme-based one), which is ideal for spot-cleaning because it breaks down both stains and odors at their source, fully removing every trace — even to an animal's sensitive nose. Last but not least, you can purchase a concentrated rug shampoo, which will efficiently deep-clean the carpets in your home when used with a carpet cleaner.
The five carpet deodorizers listed below are designed to eliminate unwanted odors and come in a wide range of scents; you'll find at least one in every consistency. They're also broken down into price per ounce so you can get an idea of the value. With the total size, you can also make sure you have enough product to get the job done.
1. The Best Value
With more than 4,000 reviews and a 4.6-star rating, it's clear that Glade's carpet deodorizer works for most people — but it's the price that's truly worth writing home about. Since you get a six-pack of 32-ounce bottles for less than $20, each ounce costs you about a dime. Simply sprinkle the powder evenly over your carpet; after a few minutes, it'll eliminate odors from all different types of sources (pets, mildew, and smoke), and then you can just vacuum it all up.
- Scent: Clean Linen or Radiant Berries
- Price per ounce: $0.10
- Consistency: Powder
One reviewer wrote: "This is the best stuff ever. I couldn't believe you got 6 bottles for that price. I sprinkle before I vacuum my floors and the smell just lingers through the house. I lovelovelove this stuff."
2. A Popular Powder Carpet Deodorizer For Pets
If you have pets, Arm & Hammer's Pet Fresh odor eliminator is specifically designed to safely and thoroughly remove unwanted odors from your carpets. With the help of OxiClean, this baking-soda based deodorizer breaks down dirt, debris, and smells so you can just vacuum it all up. It then leaves behind a fresh scent that "smells wonderful" and "lasts for weeks," according to one reviewer. No wonder it's a best-seller in the household carpet deodorizers category.
- Scent: Pet Fresh
- Price per ounce: $0.22
- Consistency: Powder
One reviewer wrote: "I have tried everything to get the urine smell out of my carpet, I have even resorted to putting a dog diaper on my dog because he can't help himself. I used this today, left on my carpet for 15 minutes, vacuumed [...] This is the first time since we have gotten our dogs that our carpet actually smells nice!"
3. A Deodorizing Spray That's Great For Spot-Cleaning
Angry Orange's odor eliminator removes both stains and odors from your carpet by breaking them down at their source, and while it's designed for pet messes, reviewers note that it works for other things as well. "Also works great in the bathroom on the tile and grout," one customer wrote. It also has an uplifting citrus scent because it's made from real oranges. (While it's definitely safe for carpets, you can also use it on wood, tile, concrete, grass, and pet items without issue as well.) It's not the cheapest option, but for smelly stains on which nothing else works, many reviewers swear by this spray.
- Scent: Citrus
- Price per ounce: $0.87
- Consistency: Spray
One reviewer wrote: "I've tried probably close to $300 worth of urine sprays that smell SO bad it's like cat urine plus chemical. [...] This knocked the smell right out!!! It smells like delicious fresh peeled oranges. We have a horrendous, old, thick carpet (that I just don't [have] the money to replace). I really didn't think this little spray would work. It did!!!"
4. A Natural Powder Option
For those who are concerned about the ingredients in their deodorizer, Good Natured Brand's Saving Grace is the way to go. This powder is made using all-natural, nontoxic, eco-friendly ingredients (namely baking soda and essential oils) that are safe to use around pets and children. Still, despite it being especially gentle, even reviewers who have "tried every carpet powder/deodorizer" report than "this stuff is AMAZING!" Just sprinkle it on your carpet, let it sit for five minutes, and then vacuum it up. It also works on soft furniture.
- Scent: Eucalyptus & Lemon
- Price per ounce: $0.50
- Consistency: Powder
One reviewer wrote: "Smell is heavenly and deodorizes the rug so well! [...] My pup has [tons of] skin allergies and licks his paws a lot when irritated, but no paw licking with this one! I highly recommend."
5. The Best Carpet Shampoo & Deodorizer In One
Finally, for all-permeating odors like smoke or mildew, you'll likely want to try a full-carpet shampoo. This one from Hoover can be used in most full-size deep-cleaning machines. In addition to removing stains and grime so that your carpet, it also removes odors and leaves behind a fresh linen scent — all while remaining free from phosphates, toxins, and septic-damaging ingredients. Since it's concentrated, reviewers say a little goes a very long way, too.
- Scent: Linen
- Price per ounce: $0.27
- Consistency: Concentrated shampoo
One reviewer wrote: "Clean and fresh. LOVE IT! Just moved into my new house and wanted to freshen everything up. My carpets feel and look so much better!"