web analytics

What To Do If Your Car Gets Sprayed By A Skunk

As a driver, there are certain things that can get in the way of your smooth ride, including skunk spray. Skunks are notorious for their pungent odor, and if your car gets sprayed, the smell can linger for weeks if not properly handled. In this article, we will explore what to do if your car gets sprayed by a skunk.

Understanding Skunk Spray

Before we dive into the steps to take after your car gets sprayed, it’s important to understand what we’re dealing with. Skunk spray is an oily liquid that contains sulfur compounds. The spray can travel up to 10 feet and can cause eye irritation, coughing, and even temporary blindness.

Step 1: Avoid Reacting with Water

Your first instinct might be to hose down your car with water, but that’s actually one of the worst things you can do. Water will only spread the skunk oil around, making the smell more intense and harder to get rid of. Additionally, water will not neutralize the sulfur compounds in the oil, meaning the smell will linger even longer.

Step 2: Ventilate Your Car

If you can’t drive your car because of the intense smell, it’s important to ventilate the space as much as possible. Open all the windows and doors and let the car air out for a few hours. You can also try using fans to help circulate the air.

Step 3: Use Skunk Odor Neutralizer

There are a number of skunk odor neutralizers available at pet stores and online. These products contain enzymes that break down the sulfur compounds in the skunk oil, effectively neutralizing the smell. Follow the instructions on the product carefully and apply it generously to the affected areas.

Step 4: Try Homemade Remedies

If you don’t have access to a skunk odor neutralizer or prefer to use natural remedies, there are a few options available. One popular method is to mix a quart of 3% hydrogen peroxide, a quarter cup of baking soda, and a teaspoon of dish soap. Apply the mixture to the affected areas and let it sit for 10-15 minutes before rinsing off with warm water.

Step 5: Take Your Car to a Professional

If the smell persists after trying the previous steps, it may be time to take your car to a professional. Auto detailers and car washes have access to powerful cleaning products and equipment that can effectively remove skunk spray. It may cost a bit more, but it’s worth it to get rid of the smell for good.

Step 6: Take Preventative Measures

The best way to avoid getting sprayed by a skunk is to avoid them altogether. Skunks are nocturnal creatures, so try to avoid driving late at night or early in the morning when they are most active. Additionally, keep your trash cans securely closed and don’t leave pet food or water outside.


Getting sprayed by a skunk is a smelly and unpleasant experience, but it’s not the end of the world. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can effectively neutralize the smell and get back to enjoying your car. Remember to avoid using water, ventilate the space, use skunk odor neutralizer or homemade remedies, take your car to a professional if needed, and take preventative measures to avoid future encounters with skunks.


  1. Can skunk spray damage my car’s paint?

    No, skunk spray should not damage your car’s paint. However, it can leave a lingering smell if not properly cleaned.

  2. Can I use air fresheners to get rid of skunk smell?

    While air fresheners can help mask the smell temporarily, they will not effectively neutralize the skunk spray. It’s best to use skunk odor neutralizer or homemade remedies to get rid of the smell.

  3. How long does skunk smell last in a car?

    If not properly handled, skunk smell can last for weeks in a car. However, with proper cleaning and odor neutralization, the smell can be eliminated in a few days.

  4. How can I prevent my pet from getting sprayed by a skunk?

    To prevent your pet from getting sprayed by a skunk, keep them indoors at night when skunks are most active. Additionally, keep your trash cans securely closed and don’t leave pet food or water outside.

  5. Is skunk spray harmful to humans?

    Skunk spray can cause eye irritation, coughing, and temporary blindness in humans. However, it is not harmful in the long term and will eventually dissipate on its own if left untreated.

Scroll to Top