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The Utility Room, Basements & Storage areas

The Utility Room, Basements & Storage areas using essential oils to control odors

Usually in everyone's home or apartment there is one or more of "these" rooms.  If you are a typical homeowner or apartment dweller, like most of us, these rooms tend to become the 'catch all' room.

You know exactly what I’m talking about, the room you have to dump everything into when unexpected company is coming. So you run around like a – you know what type of chicken to hurry and pickup before company comes.  You throw everything in a box or laundry basket and stick it in this room.   And, as with the best of us you are forgetful and realize weeks later that you tucked it away in there.  

Of course, some of these utility rooms are actually a room where your furnace or cooling units are found.  Or your hot water heater, water softener etc.  The utility room may or may not be where your laundry facilities are located.  If it is, you may still have a problem.

Some of these rooms even have shelving and storage. Maybe you keep your mop bucket and cleaning supplies in here. Sometimes these rooms can become very smelly.

You know from that damp towel that was thrown in there or maybe the mop bucket didn't get thoroughly cleaned or worse yet the cat or dog decides that it might be the perfect bathroom site if no one is around!

In any case, you get my drift, this room is often neglected and the door kept closed for a reason - it is just not a fun room to enter.   It may smell like mildew or moldy or worse yet some other unidentifiable odor.

With all the rain and or hot humid weather during the past several months, some of these rooms take on unwelcome wetness.  In some homes that have basements this may be the room for the floor drain. Again, another haven for bacteria and mold to grow and of course become an odor producer!

This room can be made to be a little bit more pleasant by doing a few simple things.

First things first

Try to keep things picked up off the floor and organized!  Sometimes this is easier said than done but start there. If the floor is made from concrete it will have a tendency to draw moisture.  This can be a big problem if damp clothing is dropped on the floor.  It may take weeks to dry and in the meantime mold and bacteria can grow – PEYEW!

If your washing machine and dryer are here. Simply use some essential oils whenever you do your laundry.  A few drops in the rinse cycle or a few drops on a damp cloth and tossed in the dryer.  This might be all it takes to give this room a more welcome smell.

Something we just found out and did not know is if you have a ‘front loading’ washer the drawer you put the laundry soap, bleach and softener in needs to be opened after you are done washing a load until you get ready to wash the next?   We didn’t know this, and boy, were we surprised when the water softener maintenance man told us about it.

In fact, he showed us where the mold can grow.  Lucky for us we didn’t have much ‘nastiness’ in our drawer.  Maybe that is because we use a lot of essential oils when cleaning and doing laundry.  

In any case, we do suggest to help minimize odors caused by your washing machine you should clean the interior and leave the door and drawer open when not in use.  If you do have odor, or see mold, clean them with our All Purpose Cleaner with your choice of essential oils added or you can use the All Purpose Cleaner with Four robbers that is ready to use.

What If this room is not the laundry area, but has a floor drain?  Mix up your mop water, swab the deck and let the water run down into the drain.

What to add to the mop bucket?

 Girl with mopIf you have a mold or mildew smell, you might want to mix tea tree in the water.  Other oils include Cinnamon, Thyme and Oregano when you have a mold problem.  Of course the last two might not smell as good as the Cinnamon, but they do a good job at getting fungus under control.

You might want to add Four Robbers blend to your cleaning bucket. Make up a cleaning solution base by adding several milliliters of Four Robbers or other blend to an 8 oz bottle of unscented Dish Soap.   Mix well then add a squirt or two to your cleaning bucket.  Fill the bucket with water and mop away!

Please, don’t think you only have to use these expensive blends, there are a lot of other nice smelling oils to use like the Citrus ones - orange and Lemon are very commonly used, as is found in many commercial cleaning products.

You might prefer Lime, Mandarin or Bergamot, or the evergreen scents of Pine needle, Spruce and Douglas Fir or Siberian Fir needles, Juniper and Cypress.  A personal favorite of ours is Fragonia, a light floral yet we know it has quite a good history for disinfecting the air and more.
Lavender is a nice and simple floral smell. You might want something exotic such as Ylang Ylang or other floral smell like Geranium, Rosewood or Palmarosa.

I probably wouldn't recommend using the expensive essential oils but if you want Rose, Neroli, and Jasmine could be used.  I think most people would prefer to save these beautiful florals for other rooms other than the utility rooms!

How about just using a diffuser?

Besides cleaning, some of the easiest diffusers to use in this room are the "passive" type. You simply apply several drops of essential oils of your choice to the surface of these and let them set.  The Aroma pod is great for this or you can use a Terra Cotta disc inside of an Organza bag. 
They will give off the aroma for several days to weeks depending on the essential oils used. Some passive type diffusers have a hanging string - simply add the essential oils and hang on a rod or other hanger.

Next time you walk into your utility room, it shouldn't make you back off, that is if you put a few essential oils to work for you!



A Recipe for you to add to your mop bucket.

Lemongrass - 20 drops
Spruce - 10 drops
Pine needle - 10 drops
Cedarwood - 5 drops
Patchouli - 5 drops
Blend these together then add to your mop bucket. This blend is great at getting rid of foul odors. When finished mopping, don't forget to let this run into your floor drain!

For a Printable Version 

The information provided in this Website article is for informational and educational purposes only.
You should not use this information to replace medical advice given by a licensed medical practitioner. Anyone considering alternative therapies should remember to consult with their licensed medical professional before using any alternative or complementary method. 
We do not give nor is any opinion on our web site medical advice, they are merely suggested uses.

©2017 Penny Keay All rights reserved Worldwide.
Please do not use my information without my permission.