How do you clean a musty mildew odor out of wooden drawers?

by Val

Thanks everyone for all you advice I'm going to try them until the stink is gone!

  8 answers
  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Jan 15, 2020

    There are several things to try. It depends on how bad it is.

    Wipe down with white cleaning vinegar, this kill any spores that might exist.

    Air out by removing and letting sit.

    Place newspaper and activated charcoal in the drawers.

    Place small containers of damp rid type product in each drawer.

    All that said, I had one that just would not get rid of the smell. I never identified what the smell was, but it wasn't mildew. I ended up painting the inside of the drawers with a primer and then a light colored beige paint. That fixed it.

  • Pony Pony on Jan 15, 2020

    Activated charcoal is the BEST odor eater! I'd put some in an old panty hose leg, tie a knot and keep it in the drawers for a while.. see if that takes the smell out!

  • Pony Pony on Jan 15, 2020

    you can buy it in Walmart in the pet dept for the fish/ aquariums...

    • See 1 previous
    • Pony Pony on Jan 15, 2020

      Have you tried using it to eliminate odors? Someone told me that years ago and it really does work! Somebody left my car window down in the seats in the carpet got soaked and had a musty smell and I filled a pantyhose 12 inch leg with charcoal ,stuck it under the seat and it helped tremendously!

  • William William on Jan 15, 2020

    People use baking soda, charcoal, bleach, vinegar etc. Some work and some don't. If all else fails you can seal the odor in.

    How to Eliminate Odors in Wood

    Your best hope for sealing in any odors is shellac. It makes an excellent barrier coat over all wood species, and it sticks to almost anything. Zinsser makes a great product for this purpose, called Bullseye SealCoat. It’s a clear dewaxed shellac that you can apply to those drawer interiors easily with a brush. It dries quickly and should help to diminish mice, mildew, musty, smoke, urine smell. And since it doesn’t contain wax, you can apply other finishes like lacquer or varnish over it — they’ll stick just fine. SealCoat is also handy to have around the shop as a general purpose wood finish and sanding sealer. So, I’m sure you’ll find other uses for what’s left of the quart you buy.eople have used baking soda, charcoal

  • Peggy L Burnette Peggy L Burnette on Jan 15, 2020

    Hi Val, sorry you are dealing with stinky wooden drawers. hope this information helps you get it smelling fresh. The sun and outdoors are our friends to help get rid of musty smells. Take your drawers outside and sit in the sun if possible. Good luck How to Get Musty Smells Out of Wooden Furniture | Hunker

    1. › ... › Housekeeping › House Cleaning

    How to Get Musty Smells Out of Wooden Furniture. Fill a bucket with white vinegar. Wet a clean cloth with the vinegar and wipe down your wooden furniture. Sprinkle baking soda onto a damp sponge. Rinse your sponge with warm water and wipe off the furniture to remove the baking soda. Bring your wood furniture outside, ...

  • Maura White Maura White on Jan 16, 2020

    Put activated charcoal in a pouch and let it sit. Then add some pleasant essential oils like lavender inside the drawers.

  • TheHoneycombHome TheHoneycombHome on Jan 17, 2020

    These work really well!