Help! Bathroom Smells like Urine.

Updated on September 01, 2009
S.H. asks from Bremen, IN
25 answers

I am so fed up! I am a clean freak but for the last month, no matter what I do, my bathroom smells like urine. I thought at first it was the potty training (even though we clean the potty out each time) so I moved it out of the bathroom for a week. Nope, not that. We normally clean the toilet inside and out (and surrounding floor) about once a week...lately we've been doing it two or three times. Nope, not helping either. It lasts for about a day before the smell starts again. My guess is that my 9 year old has bad aim...lol. I don't know b/c I don't stand in there with him but I can't see any other reason why it would smell so bad. Whatever the case, I am running out of ideas. Other than banning everyone from the bathroom (lol), I am perplexed about how to keep this from occuring? Any ideas?

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N.F.

answers from Cincinnati on

my only suggestion is to take off the toilet seat and clean the bolts/screws that hold the seat and the lid to the toilet. They're usually covered with a flap for looks, so they don't ever get clean. It can get really gross, even after a short period of time.

K.V.

answers from Columbus on

If its seeped under the flooring, tile or whatever into the subsfloor the only way to get rid of the smell is to tear everything out.

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C.B.

answers from Columbus on

Have you tried to clean the walls around the toilet. I have 3 boys and a husband, so I struggle with this as well. I also have a promise from them (especially the littlest ones) that they will tell me right a way if they "miss" and show me where, so I can clean it right a way. I remain completely calm and appreciative so they are not afraid to tell me. It has definitely gotten better!

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M.S.

answers from Bloomington on

kids and pets is great stuff-- breaks down the urine... i think they sell it at wal mart

also white vinegar--kills germs and is harmless (i use it for cleaning everything!!!)

wash the floors and walls and shower curtain and garbage...

we have that problem too. i finally figured out the smell at our house usually comes from diapers in the trash can (we still wet at night) so i take those out every few days.

1 mom found this helpful
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K.Z.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi S.,

Get the walls too, when you are cleaning.

Also try Nature's Miracle which is a pet stain/odor remover, it has enzymes in it which supposedly break down the urine so it can't cause odor anymore. It is a little pricey so if you see another enzyme type cleaner, you could try it first.

good luck!

K. Z.

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J.W.

answers from Columbus on

Hi S.,

We had the same problem, but in our clinic bathroom. We finally had a plumber look at it and he pulled the toilet off and the seals or rings were all cracked and urine water was leaking into the floor. We replaced everything and it took a few months to dry out and get rid of the smell. Good luck.

J.F.

answers from Toledo on

This is going to sound really gross, but it could also be your husband who has bad aim...mine does, lol. I would often go to sit down on the toilet and realize that my feet were wet...not soaked or anything, but enough to make me wonder what the heck it was. Well, I happened to be standing at the sink one day while hubby peed and low and behold, when he "shook" he was dripping all over the floor! I was horrified to say the least. So anyway, make sure you're cleaning the floor around the toilet with a disinfectant. I even use the toilet bowl cleaner occasionally to make sure it is really clean.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

N.F.

answers from Cincinnati on

my only suggestion is to take off the toilet seat and clean the bolts/screws that hold the seat and the lid to the toilet. They're usually covered with a flap for looks, so they don't ever get clean. It can get really gross, even after a short period of time.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

N.N.

answers from Columbus on

A clean bathroom that continuously smells like urine probably has a leaky toilet seal. The seal leaks under the floor, so you never see it, you just smell it. Until one day, you sit down and the toilet falls! You probably ought to have it checked out. We had the same problem. It's not that hard to fix, you may have to replace some subfloor depending on how long it's been leaking, but that's all that will get the smell to go away. Good luck.

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J.R.

answers from Columbus on

I would have it checked to see if there is a leak at the bottom that you cannot see and needs fixed. You may need to replace some flooring - if that is the problem while it is being fixed I would put some odoban there before they seal it back up. It is all natural can get at sams club. Also - if it is not leaking I would get some Odoban mix up a spray bottle and spray the bathroom and clean the floor with it. It eats odors and keeps them away for awhile. I remember when I was little - little boys missed....

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C.T.

answers from Atlanta on

Vinegar, wipe walls, base of tiolet, floor, etc...
Also try essential oils instead of "fragrances" (artificial smells, toxic and only mask smells.) Buy a small bottle of oil (expensive but worth the cost) and place in the bathroom with the lid off (tape behind the toilet lid) www.mountainroseherbs.com
citra-solv.com for air fresheners and cleaners
citrusmagic.com
greatcleaners.com
mrsmeyers.com

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C.K.

answers from Cleveland on

I just read the suggestions; all great, especially the one about pulling the carpet up around the toilet. I put a small bathroom carpet that is very washable around the toilet, and wash that often. The other thing noone mentioned is the hinges to the toilet seat--soak those and wipe and see if that might be your problem.

C.R.

answers from Cleveland on

LOL! I have the same problem with my husband :) We have a small bathroom, and the toilet is right next to the sink/vanity. The cabinet is wooden...well guess who was soaking it with urine in the middle of the night? I have scrubbed and scrubbed - never bleach, and it's finally coming out. Good luck to you!

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R.R.

answers from Cincinnati on

i wanted to ask you if you have any rugs around your toilet or do you have covers on your toilet? if so the smell may be in the rugs or on the covers. having boys of my own i might add that sometimes their aim is off. you just have to eliminate one thing at a time until you find the source.

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C.B.

answers from Columbus on

Have you tried to clean the walls around the toilet. I have 3 boys and a husband, so I struggle with this as well. I also have a promise from them (especially the littlest ones) that they will tell me right a way if they "miss" and show me where, so I can clean it right a way. I remain completely calm and appreciative so they are not afraid to tell me. It has definitely gotten better!

K.V.

answers from Columbus on

If its seeped under the flooring, tile or whatever into the subsfloor the only way to get rid of the smell is to tear everything out.

Smallavatar-fefd015f3e6a23a79637b7ec8e9ddaa6

A.J.

answers from Indianapolis on

Hi S.! I had a similar situation, where I could not figure out from where the urine smell was coming and my entire upstairs smelled like it. Well, come to find out, my 5 year old son, thought it would be "cool" to urinate in the trash can. So, since you have a boy, check a weird remote place where urine could be absorbed and you might miss it, just in case he wanted to be "cool" too. :-) Good luck! Also a great cleaner to get rid of the urine smell (child, adult, pet) is Bio-Kleen. It is all natural and really kills it. It killed cat spray smell in my van--and it has never returned.

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L.M.

answers from Terre Haute on

I bave twin boys with bad aim, and let me tell you they can make a mess. They always have to go at the same time and instead of waiting on each other they will stand on each side, and though I have never heard them complain about peeing on each other (which surprises me) they do tend to make it over the toilet more times than not. I was like you would clean EVERYTHING (walls, floor, toilet and anything that might me in range) and the smell would still be there and I soon realized the smell was getting under the toilet into the floor, so I pour straight vinegar right up against the base of the toilet so that is seeped into a bit and gave it a day or so and had my husband caulk around the toilet so that it couldnt get under again. Now when I clean, I dont notice the smell sticking around.

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E.

answers from Dayton on

I have nothing to add, except my empathy. I have the same problem, and it drives me crazy! I was thinking about getting one of those blue lights that light up urine to see if I can find out if I am missing something. It just grosses me out, and makes me worry about company using the bathroom. So I will be watching this thread too!

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K.S.

answers from Cincinnati on

I have found a steam cleaner works best - it's natural and it gets the steam into all the little crevices around the toilet seat and the base of the toilet. Don't forget to get the ENTIRE toilet and the walls/baseboards around the toilet. Believe me, I know, I have three boys plus my hubs, and it is GROSS!

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L.

answers from Cleveland on

boys cannot hit the bowl. I've been mopping up urine in both bathrooms since my son started standing up to pee. I tore up the carpeting and put in tile, then I replace the rugs in the bathroom about every month because they can only take so many washings.

Someone once suggested to me that I put decals in the toilet bowl for the boy to aim at. I never tried it but it might work.

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C.F.

answers from Columbus on

I have the same problem in my boys bathroom sometimes. Try washing the walls around the toilet. Lets just say boys can be messy.

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A.B.

answers from Fort Wayne on

Unfortunately your problem is likely in the flooring under your toilet! Use a lot of bleach at the base of your toilet... it might be necessary to replace flooring to remove odor!

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K.B.

answers from Cincinnati on

Clorox wipes! My son is 6, and doesn't have bad aim but like many momma's know it's definilty not perfect. It's his job each morning after he brushes his teeth to wipe out the sink, wipe off the toliet handle, the seat and around the base of the toliet. This does not replace my weekly cleaning but does keep that stinky smell away, and encourages my son to not miss!!

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A.H.

answers from Indianapolis on

I have 5 boys and my husband in the house. I had this problem several years ago and I was also fed up. I wanted to ban everyone from the bathroom. My solution: EVERYONE has to sit down to go potty. No more standing up. My aunt told me this and I have enforced it for years. No more smelly bathroom. If you have boys at home they need to sit down. I don't encourage that at public places. They think that they have good aim but even my husband was not as good as he thougth. Your boys are still young and you can train them. I told them unless they wanted to clean the bathroom they had to sit down.

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M.K.

answers from Columbus on

Hi S.:

I have a very similar problem except with my cat! We have his litter box in the corner of the bathroom and he sometimes pees outside the box. It will run under the baseboards if I don't catch it soon enough and it has a VERY strong odor. I use Windex to clean the whole area and it does the trick. Not sure if you want to use chemicals, but my bathroom smells nice and clean now! I've also used other cleaners but Windex seems to give me the best results.

Good Luck!!

M.N.

answers from Bloomington on

I am eager to see what you find out. My bathroom, around the toilet, smells like urine too and I don't know why. I have a 7 year old daughter so I really don't think that aim is an issue. I clean the floor and the toilet and it is okay for day or so and then it comes back. I will definitely be watching this thread to see if you get any good information...I am sure that you will.

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A.R.

answers from Cincinnati on

I have had the exact same problem. It got so bad that I would clean daily. I would clean the toilet, walls, and floor but nothing seemed to help. Finally I had a plumber look at my toilet and he said that the wax ring was broken and it was leaking urine water into the floor. We had to replace the flooring in our bathroom and the wax ring and the smell was immediately gone.

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