How To Get Mothball Smell Out Of A Camper | 9 Effective Tips

How to Get Mothball Smell Out of a Camper

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It’s the middle of summer, and you’re all set for a fun weekend camping trip with your family. But when you open up your camper, that smell of mothballs hits you right in the face. How can you eliminate that smell and make your trailer feel like home again?

To eliminate the mothball smell in your camper, try increasing the ventilation, remove all fabric with moth odors, use vinegar and water to wipe hard surfaces, or use odor absorbers. You can also use Febreze and baking soda, and remember to ensure all mothballs are gone.

In this blog post, I will discuss 9 practical tips for getting the mothball smell out of a camper.

9 Effective Tips to Get Mothball Smell Out of a Camper

Mothball smells can be difficult to eliminate, but with these 10 tips, you’ll have your camper smelling fresh and clean in no time.

Increase Ventilation

One of the best ways to eliminate mothball smells is to increase ventilation. Open all the windows and doors to let fresh air circulate. If it’s a nice day outside, set up a fan to help spread the air. If you have an air conditioner, use that as well. The more air circulation you can create, the better.

Remove All Fabric with Moth Odors

Mothballs are often used to protect clothing and other fabrics from moths, so it’s no surprise these items can hold onto the smell. If you have any clothing or other fabric items that smell of mothballs, remove them from the camper. Wash them in hot water with regular detergent, and then dry them outside if possible.

Use Vinegar and Water to Wipe Hard Surfaces

Vinegar is a natural odor eliminator, so it’s excellent for removing mothball smells. Mix equal vinegar and water in a bowl, and then use a clean cloth to wipe down your camper’s hard surfaces. Wipe down counters, tables, floors, cabinets, and other hard surfaces.

Use Odor Absorbers

Odor absorbers are another great way to get rid of mothball smells. These products are designed to absorb odors, effectively removing mothball smells from a camper. There are a variety of odor absorbers available on the market, so you can choose one that’s right for you.

Use Febreze

Febreze is a popular fabric refresher that can also remove mothball smells. Spray it on any fabrics in your campers, such as curtains, furniture, bedding, and towels. Let the fabric air dry, and then the mothball smell should be gone.

Use Baking Soda

Baking soda is another natural odor eliminator that can be used to remove mothball smells. Sprinkle baking soda on any affected areas, then let it sit for a few hours. Vacuum it up, and the mothball smell should be gone.

Use Coffee Grinds and Charcoal

If you have coffee grinds or charcoal, you can use them to remove mothball smells. Place them in a bowl and set them in the affected area. The coffee grinds and charcoal will absorb the mothball smell.

Use Fresh Citrus Peels

Citrus fruits have a clean smell that can effectively mask mothball smells. Place some citrus peels in a bowl and set it in the affected area. The citrus peel will help to neutralize the mothball smell.

Make sure all Mothballs are Gone.

Before using any of these methods, make sure all mothballs are gone. Even if you can’t see them, mothballs may be hidden in your camper. Once all mothballs are gone, you can use these methods to eliminate the mothball smell.

Causes of Mothball Smell in a Camper

Mothballs are often used to protect clothing and other fabrics from moths. The fumes can be overwhelming when mothballs are placed in a confined space, such as a camper.

Some of the effects of smelling mothballs include:


Naphthalene is the chemical found in mothballs that gives them their distinct smell. When inhaled, your body converts it to alpha-naphthol. This chemical is known to cause kidney, liver, and blood cell damage. You might also experience headaches, nausea, and vomiting.

Neurological Problems

Mothballs can also cause neurological problems. Studies have shown that naphthalene can damage or kill brain cells. Symptoms of neurological problems caused by mothballs include:

  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Headaches
  • Memory loss
  • Seizures

Respiratory Problems

The fumes from mothballs can also cause respiratory problems. Inhaling the fumes can irritate your nose, throat, and lungs. Symptoms of respiratory problems caused by mothballs include:

  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Nosebleeds

How to Prevent Mothball Smells in a Camper

Here are a few tips to help you prevent mothball smells in your camper:

Use Airtight Containers

You can use airtight containers to store clothing and other fabrics that need protection from moths. This will help to prevent the fumes from escaping and making your camper smell terrible.

Use Cedar Balls or Blocks

Cedar balls or blocks can be used in place of mothballs. These products protect your clothing and fabrics from moths without emitting strong fumes.

Use Herbal Sachets

Herbal sachets can also be used in place of mothballs. These sachets are filled with dried herbs, such as lavender or rosemary. The herbs will help to keep moths away while making your camper smell nice and fresh.

Keep Your Camper Well-Ventilated

Make sure your camper is well-ventilated to help prevent mothball smells. Open windows and doors when using mothballs or other products emitting strong fumes. This will help to keep the fumes from becoming overwhelming.

Dry Clothing and Other Fabric Thoroughly

Ensure that clothing and other fabrics are completely dry before storing them in your camper. Moths are attracted to damp cloth, so keeping fabrics dry will help to prevent them from infesting your trailer.

Avoid Using Mothballs

This might be the best way to prevent mothball smells in your camper. If you don’t use mothballs, you won’t have to worry about the strong fumes they emit. There are other ways to protect your clothing and fabrics from moths, so consider using one of those methods instead.

How to Get Mothball Smell Out of a Camper


How long does the mothball smell take to go away?

The mothball smell will eventually go away on its own. However, it can take three to six months for the smell to dissipate completely.

Can mothballs kill you?

Mothballs are not lethal but can cause serious health problems if inhaled. Mothballs contain a chemical called naphthalene, which can be harmful if breathed in. Naphthalene is a known carcinogen; exposure can cause kidney, liver, and blood cell damage.

What is the best way to get rid of the mothball smell?

The best way to eliminate the mothball smell is to avoid using mothballs altogether. If you must use them, be sure to use them in a well-ventilated area and keep the room well-ventilated while they are being used.

Final Thoughts

You can eliminate the mothball smell in a camper by ventilating the camper, using water and vinegar, Febreze, odor absorbers, getting all the fabric with mothball odors out of the camper, or using baking soda.

To prevent the mothball smell from returning, you should avoid using them altogether or use them in a well-ventilated area. I hope this article has helped you eliminate the mothball smell in your camper. If you have any other tips or ideas, please share them in the comments below.

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