Have you ever reused a jar that has had pickles or some other strong smelling food in it? Even after multiple hot washes, the residual smell continues to taint whatever is stored in the jar afterwards.

Often, I’ve thought I was successful at removing the smell, but after a period of time with the lid back on, the pungent fumes explode from the jar the next time it is opened. Frustrating.

I’ve read in forums that people think it is the lid causing the odour problem, but I’m not sure about this because both my jars and lids smell fine until they are put back together. I can’t tell if one or both are causing the problem.

As well as hot washes, I tried soaking my jars and lids in a solution of bi-carb soda for a few days but it made no difference. It wasn’t until I was airing-out all the bedding in the sunshine and thinking about what a great stain remover it was, that I thought about how great sunlight is as a deodoriser too.

I placed several washed pickle jars and lids in direct sunlight and let the sun work its magic for a few days. The results have been fantastic, with only the very faintest smell remaining when the jars have been closed for a period of time. Next time, I’ll try leaving some jars and lids in the sunlight for longer (about a week) to see if the smell goes away completely.

The great thing about deodorising with sunlight is that it requires no effort on your behalf or any extra inputs – it’s readily available for free!

What has worked, or not worked, for you when trying to remove stubborn odours from jars?

Leave your jars in sunlight for a few days to remove stubborn ordours so they can be reused.
Leave your jars in sunlight for a few days to remove stubborn ordours so they can be reused.

7 thoughts

  1. Interesting. I once heard of a rebellious and lazy teen boy who found that his smelly but not dirty clothes didn’t need to be washed. His practice was to put them through the drier and voila all fresh. So maybe with your jars it is sunlight and perhaps heat?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The theory works for cloth nappies – look into anything on cloth nappies and it suggests hanging them in the sun for stain removal and sanitation. I do it for anything that’s been in storage for a while or been in use but too hard to wash (eg wool doona). Sun works wonders 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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