If you have pets, who have been peeing on your artificial grass, or carpet and have been doing so for quite some time, the odors are obviously going to be more difficult to remove than if you treated the area immediately after each occurrence. Treating the areas right away is always going to be the best practice as you already know.
So for all the cases when the pee areas have been neglected and/or untreated for a long period of time for one reason or another, the question becomes… how to get old urine smells out of carpet or artificial turf?
A common belief is that you should increase the concentration of whatever urine smell eliminator product you are using so as to make it more powerful. You will see products that come in 5X, 10X, 15X, 20X concentrate and you may think that if you dilute the formula with less water that it will perform better. Or perhaps you may think that you can increase the amount of product you have by diluting it more.
Both of these assumptions are incorrect. The X in 10X or 20X concentrate is not related to the CFU (colony forming unit or the concentration of microorganisms) it is related to the number of preservatives. For example, 10X means that there are enough preservatives in the 10X so that once you dilute it to 1X, it is ready to use. Again, it has nothing to do with the concentration of the product and you will always use the product with the same exact 1X dilution ratio. So for a 10X concentration, you will dilute it in the following ratio: 1 part product to 9 parts water.
Let’s say you were to over dilute a 10X product because you wanted to create more so you can get more uses out of it. So for a 10X product, you decided to mix 1 part concentrate to 19 parts water as if it was a 20X concentrate. What will happen when you do this is that the product will then become unprotected as the preservative ratio is no longer correct and therefore will not perform as intended.
On the flip side, let’s say you took the same 10X formula and only diluted it with 3 parts water because you think this will make it more powerful and work better. The opposite will happen in this case. The product will now contain too many preservatives and will not perform as it should due to the fact that the microbes will not activate.
There is even a 3rd scenario that people often try. They will dilute the product appropriately, but then they will continue to spray and spray and spray an affected area too much. When you overdose an area at a certain point it won’t make a difference. The microbes would then be competing for the ammonia/odor. All you are doing is wasting the product at this point.
If a Product Has the Same X Rating or Higher Does That Mean the Product Is the Same or Better?
No, as stated above, the number preceding the X is in relation to the preservatives and tells you specifically how to dilute the formula into a shelf-stable, ready to use product. You will want to also understand the microbial concentration, surfactants, etc. as these are important as well, but just because two products state that they are a 10X concentrate does not mean they both contain the same CFU (microbial concentrations), genus, strain count, and/or strain combinations. Also, just because a product says it is a 20X concentrate does not have any bearing on whether it is better or not.
Not all microbial strains are equal and it is very important to ensure that you are using the appropriate strains that will address your urine odor problem. There are in fact specific strains that are scientifically proven to tackle urine odor of which we recommend Urine Zero for all these reasons.
For instance, Urine Zero contains over 3 trillion CFU’s/gallon and other “competitor” products are in millions for a 10X 1-gallon concentrate. That’s a significant difference in microbes. Urine Zero also contains more strains than most of the products on the market as well. This just further proves that 10X has nothing to do with the actual microbes or quality of the product and everything to do with the preservatives which will inform you how to dilute the product properly.
So What’s the Best Way to Remove Old Urine Smells?
For older and/or stubborn odors you will want to first make sure you mix the concentrate prior to diluting and then dilute the formula accordingly:
- 10X = 1 part product to 9 parts water
- 15X = 1 part product to 14 parts water
- 20X = 1 part product to 19 parts water
When you are treating an area outside like artificial grass, you will want to apply the product in the evening time when the sun goes down so as to prevent the product from evaporating. The microbes need moisture and sun/heat will render them inactive. You will then want to thoroughly saturate the affected area(s) so that the product comes in contact with ALL urine odor areas, including the underlayments(i.e. class II base, DG, etc.). Since it is an area that has been left untreated for a long time you will most likely need to apply multiple applications in the same exact fashion: in the evening when the sun goes down making sure to saturate all affected areas completely. We recommend using a 1-gallon pump sprayer for outside use so that you can ensure the proper dilution ratio and you can thoroughly saturate the affected area(s).
If you are treating a carpet, you can treat the area at any time during the day since the sun shouldn’t affect it, assuming the problem area isn’t in an area with direct sunlight. If that is the case, you will want to draw the curtains/shades or wait until the sun is no longer present. You will then make sure to saturate the entire area that has been affected including the carpet backing and padding. Again, the product must come in contact with ALL urine odor areas. Allow the product to remain on the problem area for at least 15 minutes up to 24 hours. You can then blot or vacuum with a wet-vac to remove the residual liquid and then allow the area to dry naturally/completely before use.
What’s the Best Urine Smell Remover Product for Really Old Odors?
There are many factors to look for but the main thing to understand is that you need to be using the correct microbial blend that specifically targets the ammonia in the urine. There a pages and pages of products on Amazon that all claim to rid the urine odor, however, after 100’s of in-house lab tests that simply isn’t the case. Most of them simply contain fragrances + odor counteractants which simply mask the unwanted odors for a short period of time and once the fragrance is gone, the odor is back. Others contain enzymes that do absolutely nothing to solve your odor problem.
In our tests as seen here, we also found that there are top products on Amazon that contain odor counteractants + microbes, however, the particular strains chosen by these companies were not all that effective. Meaning, the microbial strain + combinations used in the products were not correct and therefore they are not able to effectively do their job at ridding the ammonia (urine odor) completely.
Urine Zero is different because it does contain fragrance + counteractant but the magic is contained in the specific microbial strains selected to consume and eliminate pet odors. Meaning, the odor counteractant will immediately subdue the odor while the microbes begin working behind the scenes to eradicate the problem. So the product has immediate as well as long-lasting results.