As it is not water-soluble, uric acid bonds to any surface that it comes into contact with. The only way that you can break it down and eliminate its odor permanently is by using an enzymatic cleaner.
Uric acid is broken down by the enzymes into ammonia and carbon dioxide, which are both gasses that then easily evaporate. This is why you also need to make sure to air dry the enzyme cleaner. This “natural” drying time is necessary to break down the uric acid salts, and this allows the resulting gases to evaporate.
Using an Enzyme Cleaner on Cat Urine
Any cleaner needs to be used properly to be effective. Most enzyme cleaners are available in spray bottles, but keep in mind that you will not be able to completely clean up that spot by simply spraying a light layer over a urine stain.
To properly use an enzyme cleaner on a fresh urine stain:
- Make sure that you blot up as much of the urine before you apply anything.
- Soak the affected area with the cleaner.
- Allow the enzyme cleaner to sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Blot up as much of the enzyme cleaner as you can.
- Allow the enzyme cleaner to air dry.
It is a good idea to loosely cover the affected area with something. This will prevent the cat from trying to pee in the same spot while the enzyme cleaner is doing its work and also, it will keep family members from sitting on the spot.
For an old stain, you need to follow the same basic steps. But keep in mind that an old cat urine stain may require two or three full enzyme cleaner application cycles to make sure that the stain is completely cleaned.
To clean your mattress, you will need to follow these steps:
- Pour the enzyme cleaner slowly on and around the stained area. Make sure that you give your mattress a chance to thoroughly soak in the cleaner.
- Allow the enzyme cleaner to sit for a minimum of 15 minutes.
- Next, blot up as much of the cleaner as you can, using plenty of towels.
- Place several layers of towels over the affected area. Once this is done, you can make your bed as you usually do.
- Replace the towels every day with clean ones. If you do it properly, your mattress will dry in a matter of a few days.
- When you are not using it, cover your bed with a tarp or large plastic sheet to discourage your cat from peeing in the same spot. You can also cut down a large box and lay it over the top of the bed when you are not using it.
- You can also let your mattress air dry by taking it outside and leaving it there for as long as possible. If your mattress is too thick or bulky to carry outside, the towel method works well to ensure it gets dry.
There are many tips for cleaning cat urine that recommend using a combination of baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and vinegar. Many people who are not familiar with the problem of cleaning stains caused by cat urine try to use the same methods to clean cat pee that they would any other stain, only to find out later that it is ineffective.
When you use traditional household cleaners to clean cat urine, they actually set the stain. This makes it even more difficult to remove the stain with proper enzyme cleaners.
As mentioned earlier, typical household cleaners and homemade mixtures do not contain the ingredients that are required to remove all components of cat urine. Odor can be neutralized temporarily with vinegar and baking soda and hydrogen peroxide is 30% more oxidizing than chlorine. Enzymes are required to break down the chemical bonds of cat urine components, which is why it is best to use an enzyme cleaner to remove cat urine from your mattress.