How to Get Rid of Mothball Smell in Camper? (Pro Tips 2022)

How to get rid of mothball smell in camper? Eliminate mothball odor in your camper or RV by attacking it from many perspectives. In the beginning, put vinegar in tiny glasses on the camper’s tables.

In addition, open windows and put on a couple of high-powered fans so that the air may be blown out of the building. Finally, place small dishes of powdered charcoal on the surfaces and leave them there for several days to further reduce the strong smell of mothballs.

For those who have acquired a used camper, you may have noticed the unpleasant smell of mothballs, which was likely caused by the previous owners’ addition of mothballs to the inside of the camper.

The smell of mothballs is not the most delightful thing on the planet, and disposing of them is not the most straightforward process. So I will go through a couple of methods for achieving that fresh fragrance that we all seek in our campsites with you today.

Many owners will apply mothballs to discourage rodents while the RV is parked and inactive for a length of time. While this might be an effective strategy, it may leave a strong smell lingering in the RV when you are prepared to use it.

This is an article on eliminating the mothball smell from a camper.

What Are Mothballs?

How to Get Rid of Mothball Smell in Camper

Mothballs are shaped like candies or gumballs and are almost solely created with two active constituents: Naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene. Naphthalene is the most commonly used active component, followed by paradichlorobenzene. Over time, the balls decompose and turn into a gaseous state.

What does the smell of mothballs smell like? While various individuals will frequently provide different answers to this question, the general agreement is that it has a pleasant fragrance at first, which quickly turns unpleasant the longer you are exposed to it, and that it has a pungent smell when you are exposed to it for an extended period.

The lifespan of a mothball is usually between five and seven weeks when it is exposed to the weather. On the other hand, the vapors may remain for far more extended periods of time, enabling mothballs to be effective for many years if stored in a correctly sealed bag.

Also Read: Can You Run a Generator in The Garage? – Is It Safe?

When It Comes To Campers, How Long Does It Take To Get Rid Of The Mothball Smell?

Your camper will smell like mothballs for a long time after you remove them from the inside. In actuality, it takes four to six months for the mothballs to be turned into gas, which accounts for the lengthy process.

Over time, the vapors get buried in fabrics, materials, and even in leather and other leather-based products.

To eliminate the odor of mothballs in your camper, it is evident that you must have a lot of patience since it is not something that can be accomplished in a single application.

Many individuals try to conceal the stench of mothballs in the hope that the stench will eventually go away on its own. Still, the stench will never wholly disappear until you make some form of effort to eliminate it.

Humidity seeps into a camper’s comparatively thin walls, making the air moist. The scent of mothballs becomes even more ingrained in the camper’s mind due to the high moisture level in the air.

Mothball stink is less of an issue in other spaces, such as attics, because the interior temperature may be readily regulated throughout the whole year.

Mothball odors may be eliminated by purchasing products like Rocco & Roxie Stain & Odor Eliminator for Strong Odor, which is available on Amazon and can be found by clicking here for the most up-to-date price.

If you are still unable to get rid of the stench, you might try using pie plates of charcoal. Mundo Bamboo’s activated charcoal purification bags may be purchased on Amazon.

In my research, I attempted to get an exact estimate of how long campers would be able to smell mothballs, but it seems to vary based on the materials used.

Eliminating the mothball smell is much easier if you have got a lot of leather and hard surfaces. However, mothball odor removal can take longer if you have a lot of material in your RV, such as thick carpets and drapes, because of the several treatments needed.

The scent of mothballs may also have you wondering whether you should avoid using your RV or camper.

Compared to a home, a camper is a much smaller enclosed space, and if the climate mandates that windows be closed due to rain or other weather circumstances, would the mothball vapors be hazardous to your health?

Is The Mothball Stench Injurious To Your Health

Is the scent of mothballs in the air in your camper harmful to your health? Unfortunately, according to some sources, it is pretty hazardous.

This article from Miami caught my eye since many individuals who travel in campers and RVs visit Miami in the winter. Unfortunately, these campers are most likely parked during the rest of the year, reducing the amount of fresh air that may reach them.

As a result of the toxic gasses from mothballs, below are some probable health risks:

Naphthalene is present in the vapors. As a pesticide in the 1940s, Naphthalene was widely utilized. Nausea and dizziness are just a few of the side effects.

Overexposure to the chemical naphthalene may cause specific skin reactions. This might cause an allergic response or lead to a burning sensation on your skin.

Avoid touching the mothballs as much as possible if you can avoid it. Make sure you use gloves if you must handle them.

Your camper or RV trip could be ruined even if the stench of mothballs does not kill you.

Methods For Reducing The Negative Effects Of Mothball Fumes

After treating the textiles in your camper to eradicate the smell of mothballs, it is recommended that you wash and air out the fabrics, mainly if the materials are garments that children will use during your trip.

If you are keeping mothballs in your RV for future use, it is ideal to keep them in their original packaging and store them in a dry, cold location where dogs and children will not be able to get to the mothballs that are still in the container.

But I would suggest avoiding putting the additional mothballs in your camper or RV instead of keeping them in a different location, such as a shed that is not attached to your house.

Used mothballs should not be disposed of in campsites drains, such as a washbasin or a toilet that can be flushed.

Other Ways Of Eliminating Mothball Stench

How to Get Rid of Mothball Smell in Camper

Using Vinegar

Mothballs may leave an unpleasant odor in homes, on clothes, and your hands after they have been used. Mothball odor may be removed from garments using odor-absorbing agents such as vinegar.

Vinegar may be used to treat washable garments. If the clothes can be laundered, soak them in vinegar for a few minutes to get rid of the scent of mothballs.

You could either hand wash the clothing in a solution of similar amounts of white vinegar and water or machine wash the clothing. As an alternative to using standard detergent, you may wash your clothes in the washer while using vinegar instead.

The washer and hand washing should both be effective in removing the smell of mothballs from clothing.

On the other hand, Delicate garments may need to be washed by hand. Read the retailer’s label on a piece of clothing to determine if it should be hand washed or washed in a washing machine.

Try Lucy's Family Owned - Natural Distilled White Vinegar. This bottle of white vinegar is an excellent option for various cleaning and culinary tasks.

Because of our vinegar’s low prices, lack of preservatives, long-lasting container shape, airtight seal, and Halal Certification, they have earned a dedicated following. In addition, the use of white vinegar for cleaning is effective.

You may read some of their client testimonials to discover how they have used this vinegar to clean their homes, especially mothballs and their stinky smell.

Make Use Of Charcoal

If garments have been sitting in a confined space for an extended period, the aroma of mothballs may get trapped in the area as well as on the clothes. It is possible to eliminate the odor by using activated charcoal pills in this situation.

Leave a container filled with activated charcoal in a confined room with your garments and leave the room unlocked. The charcoal should absorb odors from garments and the surrounding area.

Charcoal pills are often found in pellet form in pet shops and department stores.

Nature's Way Activated Charcoal Supplement. 560 mg of charcoal is included in each dose of this co. This activated charcoal is free of additives, fungi, dairy, alcohol, rye, sucrose, soybean, or maize. It is also gluten-free and vegan.

A significant amount of toxins may be absorbed by activated charcoal when used throughout the digestive system. Therefore, elimination is made easier with this supplement.

Use Cedar Chips To Get Rid Of The Odor Of Mothballs

Dressers, dressers, and closet shelves containing clothes with a mothball scent should be filled with cedar chips.

In addition to removing the mothball smell from the garments, this method may also be effective at eliminating the scent from the storage facilities. Odors are readily removed from the air by using cedar chips.

Cedar chips may be purchased at most hardware shops.

100% Natural Cedar Chips are our go-to choice for cedar chips. Using it with your indoor and outdoor plants can help to keep the moisture locked in!

It could also be used as a fragrance since the natural aroma of cedar is both pleasant and effective at combating the odor of mothballs.

The Best Ways to Keep Your Camper Clean and Fresh

When cleaning the camper, it is common for it to get damp. This should be dried thoroughly before putting it away for the winter.

Let it dry thoroughly before using. Keep in mind that it might take some time, so be patient! Also, fungi on the camper’s canvas might develop if it is stored in water.

Preventative maintenance should be performed on your camper. This is a fantastic suggestion that everyone should take note of. Prepare for the possibility of damage to the pop-up camper in advance by taking all necessary precautions before it occurs.

Preventive maintenance may save you a good amount of money and keep your camping vacation from becoming a disaster if done correctly. For example, would you want to have a leaking canvas when camping with your family?

Keep an eye out for any signs of water damage in the RV. After the canvas, the floor of a camper is another area that may easily get damaged if it is not taken care of.

If you see soft spots on the floor, you should investigate the source of the leak and remedy it as soon as possible.

Because of its heavy traffic, you should be cautious when exerting pressure on a soft floor. In addition, the floor wears down with time, causing it to lose its sturdiness.

The floor of an old camper should be in good shape before you purchase a secondhand one. Unfortunately, camper floor repairs and replacements are time-consuming and expensive.


How to get rid of the mothball smell in a camper? Taking care of it in all the ways that we have mentioned before is not an easy job, but it is an important one and should be handled with care and gentleness.

A man’s vehicle is an extension of himself and, therefore, should be taken care of like that too.

Pop-up camper maintenance should be your top concern. While in storage, a cheap tent trailer is often overlooked. Cars that are well-maintained from the tires to the top will last a long time.