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7 Easy Peasy Ways to Remove Odor from Plastic Containers

Ways to Remove Odor from Plastic Containers
We normally use plastic containers or Tupperware to store a lot of things, and many times these containers are left with a typical odor of the food such as garlic or onion. To get rid of this smell, this HomeQuicks post gives you some simple tips to follow, to have a fresh-smelling container.
Niharika Arya
Last Updated: Mar 26, 2018
Useful Tip
Place a lemon in the plastic container and close the lid. Keep it for at least one day. The odor will be replaced with a slight lemony smell.
Plastic containers are very commonly used to store food. Many times, the food leaves an unpleasant or strong odor which does not go even after washing and drying the container. This is because plastic has a tendency to absorb the odor which then becomes very difficult to get rid of. If you have such containers, then do not worry. It may take some extra effort, but you can certainly remove the odor with the help of some commonly found things at home.
How to Remove Odor from Plastic Containers
Washing a plastic container in a dishwasher helps remove odor, but if your container isn't dishwasher-safe, and needs to be washed manually, the following are some methods that work well in getting rid of the odor from the container.

Before starting the cleaning process, you should always read the instructions or recommendations that come with the container. These instructions may inform you about chemicals which can harm the container.
☛ Newspapers
Newspapers in container
Newspapers are one of the most convenient and effective ways of removing bad odor. First of all, wash the container properly with soap water. Dry the lid and the container properly. Now, crumple some black and white newspapers and place it in the container. Close the lid properly and keep it like that for two to three days. When you will open the container, the smell will be gone, as the carbon in the newspaper absorbs the bad odor.
☛ Bleach
Bottle of bleach
Bleach is a chemical which removes color, stains, and even kills microorganisms. Wash the plastic container with soap and water. Prepare a half-water half-bleach solution and allow the container to soak in it for about 3 to 4 hours. Later, wash the plastic with normal water, and you will observe that the odor is gone.
☛ Sunlight
Container on dry earth
Just keeping a properly washed container directly in sunlight to dry will solve your problem. Place the container in sunlight for 1 to 2 hours, and get rid of the odor naturally.
☛ Coffee Powder
Coffee powder in white spoon with coffee beans
Many people use coffee powder to fix foul smells in their cars and trucks. This method is effective in case of plastics as well. Wash the container and dry it properly. Then, put a teaspoon of coffee powder in the container and close the lid for a day or two. The unpleasant odor will be replaced with fresh coffee fragrance.
☛ Baking Soda
Baking Soda in jar with glass of water
Once you are done cleaning and drying the container, cover the base of the container with a thin layer of baking soda. Then, fill the rest of the container with warm water. Close the lid and leave it overnight. In the morning, rinse the plastic with fresh water, and the smell will be gone.
☛ Vanilla Extract
Bottle of vanilla
After cleaning the plastic, fill it with cold water. Now add 5-6 drops of vanilla extract and mix it. Leave it overnight. You can also take few drops of vanilla extract on a cotton swab and just wipe the container. The odor will go in sometime.
☛ Charcoal
Charcoal is very commonly used in the purification process in industries because of its ability to absorb odor and toxins in gases. This makes it one of the best things to be used in removing odors from Tupperware. Just place a piece of charcoal inside a properly washed and dried plastic container, and close the lid. Leave it overnight, and the next day you will get an odor-free container.
If you are unable to get rid of the odor from the container using all the above methods, consider discarding it. Use ceramic or glass containers, as they do not retain odor. Do not close the container immediately after washing. Let it dry completely and then close the lid. This will automatically reduce the chances of bad odor.