How to Get Pee Out of the Mattress (+Remove any Stain Or Smell)

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Accidents happen, especially with kids or pets. If you have a mattress that’s been peed on, it’s essential to act fast to prevent any lasting damage or stains. 

Fresh urine is much easier to remove than old, dried urine, so it’s important to act fast. Another point to remember is not to overwet the mattress while cleaning as it can lead to other associated issues like mould or mildew formation if not adequately dried. Lastly, it is wise to check your mattress manufacturer’s cleaning instructions.

Understanding the Pee-chemistry

Pee has the highest pH among the body fluids, usually ranging from 4.6 to 8, with an average of 6 (acidic). Besides 95% water, the urine also contains urea, creatinine, Ammonia (NH3), and uric acid. The smell in the urine comes primarily from the ammonia, while the staining is due to the yellowish pigment urochrome that reacts with the fibres leaving a permanent mark if not removed on time.

Treating pee smell and stain requires specific cleaning solutions that properly break down these chemicals.

The good thing is we have done all the research for you and picked what we feel is the most effective way to get clean pee out of the mattress.
how to get pee out of mattress

Cleaning Fresh Urine From The Mattress (less than 12 hours old)

What You’ll Need:

  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Cold water
  • Cloth or paper towels
  • Gloves [Precautionary/Optional]
  • Fan [To dry the mattress/Optional]
  • Vacuum [To remove baking soda/Optional]

If the urine is still wet, soak up and remove as much of the liquid as possible. Use paper towels or a cloth to do so. Fresh urine will be much easier to remove than dried and settled spots, so it’s great that you’re taking care of this now! 

Dip a cloth in a solution of half white vinegar and half cold water. Dab the entire area with this, continuing to soak up any extra liquid with a dry paper towel or cloth. Keep repeating the process until you’re confident the urine has been removed. 

Then, you can sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda on the area to soak up any remaining moisture. Let the whole mattress air out for at least 18 hours before vacuuming up the baking soda. Then, enjoy a fresh, clean mattress! 

clean fresh pee off mattress
Half-half baking soda and vinegar.

How To Get Dried Urine Out Of The Mattress & Remove Stains

What You’ll Need:

  • Hydrogen Peroxide (3%)
  • Baking soda
  • Any enzyme-based cleaner or dish liquid.
  • A heavy-duty quality spray bottle.
  • Essential Oil [To camouflage pungent pee smell/Optional].
  • Cloth or paper towels
  • Gloves [Precautionary/Optional]
  • Fan [To dry the mattress/Optional]
  • Vacuum [To remove baking soda/Optional]

You’ll want a heavier-duty concoction of stain-fighting power for dried urine than fresh urine.

Mix 5 parts Hydrogen peroxide, 1 part baking soda and a couple of drops of dish liquid. A typical spray bottle is 250 ml. So to fill the bottle, you need about 200 ml of Hydrogen Peroxide and three tablespoons of baking soda. You can also add drops of your favourite essential oil (I prefer the lemon ones) to effectively cut down the pee smell.

Mix the mixture well and put it into a spray bottle. The baking soda clumps may clog the pipe of the sprayer, so it’s a good idea to choose a spray bottle with larger tubing. Also, be sure to remove any filters within the bottle.

Generously spray the entire affected area of the mattress. Let it sit and completely dry out. Turn on a fan and open your windows. After it has completely dried, you’ll be left with white residue that can be vacuumed off. Now, most likely, your mattress should look and smell great!

Supplies For Cleaning Dried Pee

The science behind the cleaning solution?

Baking soda or sodium bicarbonate is a base with a pH above 7. When sodium bicarbonate is mixed with water (pH 7), it creates a basic solution with a pH close to 8.3.

On the other hand, hydrogen peroxide is a weak acid with a pH of 4.6. When a basic and acidic solution is mixed, they react with one another to neutralize their properties while producing a salt. During this reaction, the cleaning properties are activated, breaking down the pee stains and odours on your mattress.

How To Get The Pee Smell Out Of a Mattress

Materials needed: 

  • Essential oil of your choice
  • Laundry detergent
  • Vinegar

To cut down the smell of urine from a mattress, essential oils are your best bet. Lemon is great at neutralizing pungent smell, or eucalyptus is a popular choice if you are looking for a fresher scent. Dilute 5-10 drops of your essential oil of choice in water and put the mixture into a spray bottle. Spritz a light layer over the area where the urine soaked the mattress. Be sure not to soak the mattress as this can damage it and lead to dangerous mould or mildew growth. Let the area dry completely before putting any bedding back on. Then, you’ll have a lovely smelling mattress.

Laundry detergent is another great odour-fighting tool. Dilute a couple of teaspoons of detergent in some cold water. Then pour or spray this onto the area.

As a last resort, you can consider using a half and half solution of water and vinegar. If you can stand the smell for a while until it eventually fades, vinegar is very effective in neutralizing odours.

How To Get Cat Or Dog Urine Out Of a Mattress

Cleaning Pet Pee

Materials needed:

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Liquid dishwashing soap
  • Baking soda
  • Any essential oil [Optional]

Pet urine, such as that from a dog or cat, can be a bit more concentrated and smellier. You can use the same ingredients as the one used for the dried urine method but in different concentrations

You’ll need 5 parts hydrogen peroxide, 2 parts baking soda, a few squirts of liquid dishwashing soap, and a couple of drops of essential oil. Mix well and add this to a spray bottle. Make sure you get all of the affected areas with the solution. Then, let it sit. You may need to vacuum up the leftover dry residue from the baking soda.

Cat and dog urine stains can take a few rounds of applying this DIY solution before the stain and smell are entirely gone off the mattress. Be patient, and make sure you continue to air out the room the mattress is located in. Also, wait until the mattress is completely dry before doing another round.

How To Get Urine Out Of a Memory Foam or Latex Mattress

The same cleaning methods listed above work great for memory foam or latex mattresses. However, it is always great to be safe and check your manufacturer’s cleaning instructions

Mattresses with cotton coverings may require a more diluted hydrogen peroxide and baking soda solution. It’s a good idea to do a patch test of the solution on the side or corners to make sure it doesn’t damage or discolour the fabric.

Also, as I already mentioned, don’t overwet the mattress as this can cause mould or mildew.

Closing Thoughts

No one likes dealing with a smelly or stained mattress. Urine accidents happen. Not to worry, though – with a little effort, you can get rid of that stink for good. However, if there’s already been a urine accident on your mattress, it likely could happen again! 

So, it makes sense to invest in a waterproof mattress protector so that you do not have to spend any more time removing pesky stains and smells. We also have a handy guide to help you pick the right mattress protector for your needs. 

We hope this guide was helpful. If you have any other tips or tricks for getting rid of urine stains and smells, please share them in the comments below.

Emma Bethany

Emma Bethany

Emma is a wellness writer who has shared her knowledge for over three years. Her Masters in Creative Writing for Therapeutic Purposes means Emma approaches each topic with compassion and gentle curiosity. She wants everyone to be as passionate about taking care of their body as she is. That’s why Emma believes investing in your sleep is an investment in yourself. She wants to create a loving space to learn self-care and build a beautiful bedtime routine to soothe the soul. She loves to discover new ways to enhance sleep and embraces a holistic lifestyle. She enjoys settling down in the evening with a good book and a cup of chamomile tea.

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