That New Puke Smell

Submitted by scott

When you step foot into a vehicle, you can tell a lot about it from the smell. Some cars smell like three week old cheesy poofs, while others may smell like hot sauce. This weekend, our car acquired an unmistakable scent known only as the 'new puke smell.'

We were traveling home from a weekend of camping when something went terribly wrong, but what it was I may never know. Our trip was wrapping up nicely, both kids were asleep in the back seat, and we were a mere ten minutes from our driveway. Then it happened. Those unmistakable gurgling noises started reverberating from the back seat.

What came next was some Princess P puke, and a ton of it. This wasn't so much the projectile vomit kind of puke, but the steady stream of about a gallon of puke. The full horror of the situation could not be seen until we made it home.

After pulling into the driveway and slamming the car into park, my wife and I quickly, but reluctantly turned around as the dome light came on. It looked like the entire front of Princess P had been sprayed with a texture sprayer (think popcorn ceiling) full of chili and fruit punch. I felt so bad for the kid... she looked completely mortified. So, I grabbed her, rushed her into the house, and put her into the bathtub as quickly as possible.

My wife was kind enough to finish up bath time so that I could go clean copious amounts of puke out of the car. The following are a few things I learned while cleaning up puke:

  • Baby wipes are pretty good at wiping up puke, but not very absorbent.
  • After wiping up puke with scented baby wipes, that scent will cause you to immediately gag.
  • Having leather seats pays off big time in puke situations. I can't imagine how deep the puke would have seeped into cloth seats.
  • The vomit can go where you can't, and no matter what, the smell will linger.

I've been told that baking soda can help remove funky car smells... what has worked for you?

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