Skip to content

Van Build

Close this search box.

How to Get Rid of New RV Smell?

    Updated December 12, 2022

    The scent of brand-new RVs is simply not pleasant. New RVs may not only smell bad, but they may also have an unsightly appearance! You’ve come to the right site if you’re wondering how to get rid of the new RV smell.

    How do I get rid of new RV smell?

    Your RV can be ventilated, heated to the point where the chemicals burn off, freshen the air, and more. But one of the easiest ways to get rid of the new RV scent is just to give it time; after a few weeks (or even just days), the smell will naturally fade away.

    In this post, we’ll talk about the reasons behind the smell of new RVs, whether it could harm your trips, and even offer some advice on how to get rid of the scent. You can get rid of the new RV smell and transform your trailer or motorhome into a space you actually want to spend time in, regardless of your financial situation or degree of expertise.

    Clear the air

    The first thing you should do after bringing your new RV home to a comfortable temperature is to let everything air out.

    Open every window on your RV, run the fans, and allow some fresh air in. Now is the perfect moment to turn on any vent fans in your vehicle that remove air from the interior. Use fresh air instead of your air conditioner for the time being; don’t worry about it.

    For as long as you can, leave all the doors and windows open in your RV. It’s ideal to spend a full morning and afternoon when the weather is nice. To get rid of any unwanted chemical odors that are developing in your RV, combine sunlight and fresh air!

    Never let the weather force you to open your windows and ceiling vents. Your RV can suffer severe damage from even a modest amount of water damage. The last thing you want to do is damage your brand-new RV or travel trailer!

    Before you notice any significant modifications to the chemical smell, it can take a few airing out sessions in your camper. The most effective thing you can do, though, is to do this if you have enough time before your next camping vacation.
    Warm Up Your RV

    When it comes to getting rid of the new RV smell, many RV owners swear by the heat method. This simply means that after you first bring your RV home, you should use the heater for a few hours.

    The theory behind this method is that any offensive chemical odors are burned away by the heat. Scents employed by RV manufacturers to mask the initial formaldehyde smell are also included in this category.

    But it’s vital to understand that during this procedure, formaldehyde smells won’t just disappear. However, warming up every fixture in your RV could aid in the early offgassing process. One of your greatest options might be dry heat from an RV wood burner.

    If you can, take the time to adjust your furnace to the highest setting. Whatever the weather, keep everything locked up in your RV. Everything being enclosed makes it much easier for the chemicals to burn off than if it were completely closed up.

    Allow your equipment to operate the furnace for at least 12 hours. If your RV is in a secure and noticeable place, you can stay there for a full 24 hours. Then, shut off your furnace and turn on your vent fan to completely expel any unwanted odors that may have accumulated during this time.

    After this point, opening the windows in your RV can hasten the process. A less offensive fragrance may result from the heat of a pleasant summer day, although this isn’t always the case. However, a smart place to start is by simulating a hot day inside your vehicle!

    Try cooking

    Sometimes using your RV is all that is necessary to get rid of the new RV scent. And what better way to celebrate the arrival of your new camper than with a delicious meal? It’s alright; you don’t have to set up your RV kitchen only to prepare food. However, you might only need to cook something delicious and aromatic on your RV stovetop or oven to get rid of some of the more unsettling odors that are present there.

    If your RV has an oven, you might want to bake a tray of cinnamon and brown sugar. It might also be sufficient to bake some cookies or to boil some mulled wine spices in a saucepan.

    Alternately, you could choose a more flavorful path. When used as a snack to mask other scents, bacon is a fantastic option. Try cooking some bacon in your RV if you enjoy the scent of it in your house!

    Roasts, soups, and sautees are just a few other savory meals that come in handy in this circumstance. If you want to premiere your new RV as soon as possible, this might be one of your finest options, even though it might just be another attempt to mask an unpleasant smell rather than getting rid of it.

    Use ammonia

    Did you know that many new RV odors, including formaldehyde, can be eliminated using ammonia? It may seem illogical to use one chemical to combat another, yet this is one of the most effective ways to deal with formaldehyde.

    It takes more effort to use ammonia to remove formaldehyde from your RV, but it can be worthwhile for your family’s safety. Ammonia can be bought from a variety of well-known merchants, and your neighborhood hardware store should also be able to assist you with this purchase.

    Remove anything from the RV that could potentially contact skin to start. This applies to textiles, pillows, tableware, plants, and more. If you have already utilized your new RV, you should also shut off the gas and empty the water tanks now. Depending on the size of your RV, gather 1-4 big, shallow bowls after everything has been cleaned out and emptied. You’ll need more shallow bowls the bigger the RV is! Spread them out and pour a half gallon or more of ammonia into each bowl.

    Formaldehyde and other disagreeable odors or compounds are absorbed by ammonia, leaving just water behind. For novice RV owners, this explains why it is such a complex and well-respected technique. However, the procedure isn’t completely complete… You must shut down your RV, including each window and entrance, after assembling your ammonia dishes. Like a few other procedures on this list, you should let the ammonia stay inside your RV for between 24 and 72 hours.

    Ventilate your RV once this period of time has elapsed by opening all windows and turning on your fan. Since the ammonia is now mostly water, you can safely pour it down any drain at this point. When compared to other methods, this one takes the longest, but it is the most effective at battling formaldehyde in particular.

    Baking Soda And Vinegar

    It’s no secret that vinegar and baking soda are an RVer’s best friends. Baking soda and vinegar are affordable and useful cleaning agents that can also be used to unclog an RV toilet.

    Even vinegar and baking soda can help with the stench in your new RV. A baking soda solution or either of these two solutions has been successful for many RVers. Many people still keep an open box of baking soda in their fridges because it is effective in absorbing odors.

    On all of your soft RV finishes, including the carpet and furnishings, you can sprinkle baking soda. Before you can easily vacuum it up, let it sit and absorb some of this aroma.

    If your RV has hardwood or vinyl flooring instead of carpeting, you can also make a vinegar and baking soda floor cleaning solution. Any baking soda and vinegar cleaning solution will foam up when the two ingredients are combined, so use caution when using it.

    How Do I Get Rid Of Formaldehyde Smell In A RV?

    Although there are a number of things you can do to get rid of the formaldehyde smell in your RV, the process will eventually take some time. Within a few weeks, you can get rid of the odor by keeping your windows open, utilizing circulating fans, and keeping the coach hot.

    If you own an RV, unpleasant odors and pollutants in your motor coach are probably nothing new to you. Keep in mind that the scent you may have detected could really be coming from your black or gray water tank and not formaldehyde. Since the scent of black water will probably stay in your bathroom or shower area, it is simple to distinguish between the two smells. But formaldehyde frequently permeates the entire RV. Additionally, formaldehyde has a unique chemical smell, but the smell of black water is extremely similar to that of sewer gases.

    Formaldehyde is a dangerous chemical that might smell like it’s coming from everywhere in your RV, especially if it’s spanking new. The most frequent sources of formaldehyde would be from flooring and upholstery, but even recently painted walls might spread the scent throughout your RV. There are many other things that may be done, as was previously said, to attempt and get rid of this odor. But bear in mind that it can take weeks or months, despite your best efforts, before you can get rid of your camper. Before deciding to live in the RV or transfer any of your belongings inside, it is crucial to check sure the camper is free of any formaldehyde scents. Particularly harmful to people with allergies or compromised immune systems is formaldehyde.

    The first step in solving this issue is to identify the source of the formaldehyde that is causing the majority of the problem. Anywhere there is wood would be a common source, as wood is frequently joined using formaldehyde-based glue. Your floors or furniture could be additional locations. You must start airing everything out as best you can once you have determined where it is coming from. Even opening cupboards, doors, and drawers is required here.

    The ideal technique to circulate air throughout the motor coach would be to open all of your windows and turn on all of the available fans. It would be a fantastic idea to use the ceiling fans and other window fans in your RV to speed up the procedure. You should make sure that you clean everything that can trap scents, including pillows and tapestries, in addition to airing out your RV. If you are unsure of how to get rid of the smell in your RV because formaldehyde can be a toxic chemical, you should speak with local experts.

    It’s crucial to keep in mind that even while formaldehyde is a chemical to which you might eventually develop accustomed, it still has negative effects. Anytime you are inside the RV, you should take every safety measure imaginable. Given that formaldehyde can remain in fabric or other soft surfaces, wearing masks and even covering your clothing may be judged required. Although toxic, formaldehyde can be handled on your own. But if you believe you can’t, don’t be scared to seek out expert assistance and guidance on how to get rid of the smell in your motor coach.

    Why is Formaldehyde Used in New RVs?

    You might be wondering why formaldehyde is utilized in the production of new RVs given that it can have harmful effects on humans. Discuss the reasons why. A typical preservative used in a wide range of industries is formaldehyde. It is frequently utilized in the production of plywood and engineered wood, which means that RV construction frequently involves it.

    Since the 1950s, formaldehyde has been a common ingredient in RVs. Although many people are more sensitive to this chemical than others, there aren’t many negative health problems when it’s present in smaller amounts.

    Historically, the use of several formaldehyde-containing products in RVs was prohibited, but this is no longer the case. The majority of raw materials used in RV production are bought at budget or wholesale prices. And the majority of low-cost building materials contain formaldehyde.

    You can always buy an RV that uses fewer wood-based items, and some building materials don’t use formaldehyde. Along with fiberglass rigs, aluminum trailers are a strong option. It is crucial to keep this in mind when purchasing because formaldehyde has been known to adversely affect those who live in manufactured houses and recreational vehicles. However, when buying any recently produced object, it is frequently an inevitable process.

    Why Do New RVs Smell?

    As they contain things that were recently made, new RVs smell worse than secondhand RVs. They are created using a variety of adhesives, dyes, and preservatives that frequently negatively impact your sense of smell. Any new RV purchase will have some possible unpleasant odours, regardless of the building materials used or the RV manufacturer. It is a typical step in the production process.

    Offgassing, a process that releases these offensive odors, is what causes them. The release of chemical odors from manufactured materials occurs naturally, albeit typically over a long period of time. Before releasing their vehicles to the public, many RV manufacturers will attempt to address this problem, however the offgassing procedure usually takes much longer than anticipated. Typically, this results in one of two outcomes.

    Through a few different measures, an RV builder can speed up this unpleasant process, but the majority of them don’t. Most RV manufacturers decide to mask the odors with different chemical odors. It goes without saying that it’s not a good idea to mask chemical odors with additional chemical odors. This is why fixing a brand-new RV is frequently the responsibility of the buyer. But have you ever paused to think about what molecules are creating these offensive odors? Now is the time to go into further detail on this.