Deodorize Garbage Bins with Baking Soda (Step-by-Step Guide)(2023)

garbage bin cover

Garbage bins can be a tricky spot to clean and deodorize. No matter how often you clean them and disinfect them, there are still times when the bins reek of strong odors. 

Good thing there’s a simple and eco-friendly solution to this problem.

Baking soda is a wonderful household product to have around for cleaning and deodorizing purposes. With it, you can clean and deodorize your garbage cans in no time at all. 

Baking soda doesn’t just cover the funky odor like other cleaning products. It actually absorbs and neutralizes the odor.

Here is a simple, tried-and-true method that you can use to keep garbage cans smelling fresh and clean. 

Let’s start.

What You’ll Need:

Baking soda

Dish soap


Bowl or plastic container


Rubber gloves

Optional: Cloth or paper towels.


1. Empty out the garbage bin. 

2. Create a cleaning solution. Mix 4 tablespoons of baking soda with 2 cups of water and a few drops of dish soap.

3. Use the baking soda solution to wash the inside and outside of the bin. Use a rag to scrub both the inside and outside of the bin.

4. Rinse with clean water.

5. Take the garbage bin outside. Leave it upside down overnight to let it dry. You can also wipe it dry with a cloth or paper towels.

6. Put a clean garbage bag in the garbage bin. You can skip this step if you don’t like using plastic.

7. Finally, sprinkle a liberal amount of baking soda at the bottom. I use about a cup of baking soda for a small garbage bin.

sprinkle baking soda

Tips On How to Keep Your Garbage Bins Odor-Free

  1. Take out the trash every day. This will also help in keeping roaches away from your home. If you already have a cockroach problem, see my article on how to use baking soda to get rid of cockroaches
  2. Always keep the lid of the garbage bin closed. This will keep the foul odors from coming out. 
  3. You can sprinkle some baking soda directly on top of the garbage. You can do this as a quick fix when you’re too busy to wash the garbage bin.


Don’t waste time and money buying all sorts of cleaning products for your garbage bins when a little baking soda is all you need.

I hope that you find this article helpful.

Thanks for reading my blog.

-Baking Soda Guy

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

  1. Can I use any other cleaning agent instead of dish soap in the baking soda solution? While dish soap is effective in cleaning and deodorizing, you can also use vinegar or lemon juice for a natural alternative.
  2. How often should I clean and deodorize my garbage bins with baking soda? It’s recommended to clean and deodorize your garbage bins with baking soda at least once a month or as needed, depending on the level of odors and buildup.
  3. Can I use baking powder instead of baking soda for deodorizing my garbage bins? Baking soda is more suitable for deodorizing purposes due to its odor-absorbing properties. Baking powder may not provide the same results.
  4. Is it safe to touch baking soda with bare hands while cleaning the garbage bins? Yes, baking soda is generally safe to touch with bare hands. However, if you have sensitive skin or any allergies, consider wearing rubber gloves for added protection.
  5. Can I use scented baking soda for deodorizing my garbage bins? Yes, scented baking soda can add a pleasant fragrance to your garbage bins. However, plain baking soda is equally effective in neutralizing odors.
  6. How do I clean the garbage bin if it has stubborn stains or stuck-on grime? For stubborn stains, you can make a paste with baking soda and water, apply it to the stained areas, and let it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing with a brush or rag.
  7. Can I use the same baking soda solution to clean multiple garbage bins? It’s best to make a fresh baking soda solution for each garbage bin to ensure optimal cleaning and deodorizing effectiveness.
  8. Can I add essential oils to the baking soda solution for a customized fragrance? Yes, you can add a few drops of essential oils like lavender or tea tree oil to the baking soda solution for a pleasant and customized scent.
  9. Is it necessary to let the garbage bin dry outside overnight, or can I use it immediately after cleaning? Allowing the garbage bin to dry outside overnight helps ensure complete drying and eliminates any remaining odors. However, if you need to use it immediately, you can wipe it dry with a cloth or paper towels.
  10. Can I use baking soda to deodorize outdoor garbage bins as well? Yes, you can use baking soda to deodorize outdoor garbage bins. However, in outdoor settings, the odor control may not be as long-lasting as indoor bins.
  11. Can I use baking soda to clean and deodorize compost bins or recycling bins? Yes, baking soda is safe to use in compost bins and recycling bins to help control odors and neutralize foul smells.

Top Photo by Michal Balog on Unsplash